Saturday, July 31, 2010

Constitution Sunday: Article I, Sections 4 thru 6

I'm going to post the Constitution of the United States in readable increments, 3 Sections of an Article each post. These posts will be made every Sunday.

(The Constitution is a public document. Annotations are by Steve Mount.

Section 4 - Elections, Meetings

The Times, Places and Manner of holding Elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each State by the Legislature thereof; but the Congress may at any time by Law make or alter such Regulations, except as to the Place of Chusing Senators.

The Congress shall assemble at least once in every Year, and such Meeting shall (be on the first Monday in December,) (The preceding words in parentheses were superseded by the 20th Amendment, section 2.) unless they shall by Law appoint a different Day.

Section 5 - Membership, Rules, Journals, Adjournment

Each House shall be the Judge of the Elections, Returns and Qualifications of its own Members, and a Majority of each shall constitute a Quorum to do Business; but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and may be authorized to compel the Attendance of absent Members, in such Manner, and under such Penalties as each House may provide.

Each House may determine the Rules of its Proceedings, punish its Members for disorderly Behavior, and, with the Concurrence of two-thirds, expel a Member.

Each House shall keep a Journal of its Proceedings, and from time to time publish the same, excepting such Parts as may in their Judgment require Secrecy; and the Yeas and Nays of the Members of either House on any question shall, at the Desire of one fifth of those Present, be entered on the Journal.

Neither House, during the Session of Congress, shall, without the Consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days, nor to any other Place than that in which the two Houses shall be sitting.

Section 6 - Compensation

(The Senators and Representatives shall receive a Compensation for their Services, to be ascertained by Law, and paid out of the Treasury of the United States.) (The preceding words in parentheses were modified by the 27th Amendment.) They shall in all Cases, except Treason, Felony and Breach of the Peace, be privileged from Arrest during their Attendance at the Session of their respective Houses, and in going to and returning from the same; and for any Speech or Debate in either House, they shall not be questioned in any other Place.

No Senator or Representative shall, during the Time for which he was elected, be appointed to any civil Office under the Authority of the United States which shall have been created, or the Emoluments whereof shall have been increased during such time; and no Person holding any Office under the United States, shall be a Member of either House during his Continuance in Office.

Nov 2, 2011 Election: Barbara Boxer of California

From Wikipedia:

Barbara Levy Boxer (born November 11, 1940) is the junior United States Senator from California and a member of the Democratic Party. Boxer was first elected to the U.S. Senate in 1992, becoming the second female Jewish U.S. senator, after Sen. Dianne Feinstein. She was re-elected in 1998 and again in 2004. Boxer is up for election again in November of 2010, when she will face Carly Fiorina.

With the convening of the 110th Congress, Boxer became the first female chair of the Environment and Public Works Committee and, following the resignation of Sen. Tim Johnson (D-South Dakota) from the post, she was also chosen as chair of the Select Committee on Ethics. This made her the only senator to preside over two committees simultaneously. She holds the record for the most popular votes in a statewide contested election in California, having received 6,955,728 votes in her 2004 re-election over former Republican Secretary of State Bill Jones.

She currently holds the position of Chief Deputy Whip of the Democratic Majority.

Early life and family
Boxer was born Barbara Levy in Brooklyn, New York to Jewish parents Sophie (née Silvershein; born in Austria) and Ira Levy. She attended public schools, and graduated from George W. Wingate High School in 1958.

In 1962, she married Stewart Boxer and graduated from Brooklyn College with a Bachelor's Degree in Economics.

Boxer worked as a stockbroker for the next three years, while her husband went to law school. Later, the couple moved to Greenbrae, Marin County, California, and had two children, Doug and Nicole. She first ran for political office in 1972, when she challenged incumbent Peter Arrigoni, a member of the Marin County Board of Supervisors, but lost a close election. Later during the 1970s, Boxer worked as a journalist for the Pacific Sun and as an aide to John Burton, then a member of Congress. In 1976, Boxer was elected to the Marin County Board of Supervisors, serving for six years. During this time she served as the first woman president of the board.

In 1994, her daughter Nicole married Tony Rodham, brother of then-First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton, in a ceremony at the White House. The couple had one son, Zachary, and divorced in 2000.

Boxer's husband, Stewart, is a prominent attorney in Oakland, who specializes in worker's compensation cases (on the side of injured workers) and is known for keeping a very low profile when it comes to politics. Many cases are referred to him by labor unions, including the Teamsters. In 2006, the Boxers sold their house in Greenbrae, where they had lived for many years, and moved to Rancho Mirage. Their son, Douglas, a lawyer, practices with Stewart and is a member of the Oakland Planning Commission, having been appointed to that office by then-mayor Edmund G. "Jerry" Brown, Jr.

According to one story, which Boxer has acknowledged, in 1972, Stewart had planned to run for the Marin County Board of Supervisors, but decided the campaign would interfere with his law practice in Oakland, so Barbara ran instead. She was supported in that election by Marin Alternative, a broad-based, liberal political organization which she had helped found a few years before. A very active force in Marin County politics for a while, Marin Alternative dissolved in the late 1970s.

Boxer's first novel, A Time to Run, published in 2005 by San Francisco-based publishing company Chronicle Books, was released to a mixed reception. Her second novel Blind Trust was released in July 2009 by Chronicle Books.

U.S. Representative
Boxer was elected to the United States House of Representatives in 1982, defeating Dennis McQuaid. Her slogan was "Barbara Boxer Gives a Damn." In the House, she represented California District 6 (Marin and Sonoma Counties) for five terms.

During this time she focused on human rights, environmental protection, military procurement reform, and abortion issues, from a pro-choice stance. She was also involved in seeking protection for whistleblowers in government and pushed for higher budget allocations for health, biomedical research, and education.

Boxer, a member of the House Armed Services Committee, exposed, with the help of the Project on Military Procurement (now Project On Government Oversight, known as POGO), the '$7,600 Pentagon coffee pot' and successfully passed more than a dozen procurement reforms.

Boxer was embarrassed by the House banking scandal, in which more than 450 Congressional representatives and aides, herself included, wrote overdraft checks covered by overdraft protection by the House Bank. In response, she issued a statement saying "in painful retrospect, I clearly should have paid more attention to my account" and wrote a $15 check to the Deficit Reduction Fund for each of her 87 overdrafts.

In 1991, during the Anita Hill Senate hearings, where Hill accused U.S. Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas of sexual harassment, Boxer led a group of women House members to the Senate Judiciary Committee – demanding that the all-white, all-male Committee of Senators take Hill's charges seriously. This helped propel Boxer's candidacy for the U.S. Senate in 1992, when a record number of women ran for the U.S. Senate.

U.S. Senator
Senator Boxer's predecessor, Democrat Alan Cranston, retired in 1992. She won the open seat contest in the US Senate elections that year. She defeated Bruce Herschensohn, a conservative television political commentator, by 4.9 percentage points after a last-minute revelation that Herschensohn had attended a strip club.

In 1998, she was re-elected for a second term, beating Matt Fong, a former state treasurer, by 10 percentage points. She had decided to retire in 2004 but says she decided to run to "fight for the right to dissent" against conservatives like Tom DeLay. After facing no primary opposition in the 2004 election, Boxer defeated GOP candidate Bill Jones, a former California Secretary of State, by a margin of 20 percentage points.

Approval ratings
Source Date Approve Disapprove Undecided
Survey USA July 23, 2010 41% 52% 7%

Committee assignments
Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation
Subcommittee on Aviation Operations, Safety, and Security
Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety, and Insurance
Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, and Coast Guard
Subcommittee on Surface Transportation and Merchant Marine Infrastructure, Safety, and Security
Subcommittee on Science and Space
Committee on Environment and Public Works (Chairwoman)
Committee on Foreign Relations
Subcommittee on Near Eastern and South and Central Asian Affairs
Subcommittee on East Asian and Pacific Affairs
Subcommittee on International Operations and Organizations, Human Rights, Democracy and Global Women's Issues (Chairwoman)
Subcommittee on International Development and Foreign Assistance, Economic Affairs, and International Environmental Protection
Select Committee on Ethics (Chairwoman)
A member of the Senate Democratic Leadership, Boxer serves as the Democratic Chief Deputy Whip, which gives her the job of lining up votes on key legislation. She also serves on the Democratic Policy Committee's Committee on Oversight and Investigations.

Objection to certification of 2004 U.S. Presidential Election electoral votes
On Valentine's Day 2005, Senator Boxer received 4,500 roses for calling attention to alleged voting irregularities in Ohio during the 2004 presidential election.On January 6, 2005, Boxer joined Representative Stephanie Tubbs Jones of Ohio in filing a U.S. congressional objection to the certification of Ohio's Electoral College votes in the 2004 U.S. presidential election.

She called the objection her "opening shot to be able to focus the light of truth on these terrible problems in the electoral system". The Senate voted the objection down 1–74; the House voted the objection down 31–267. It was only the second Congressional objection to an entire State's electoral delegation in U.S. history; the first instance was in 1877.

As a gesture of appreciation and support for her stance on the alleged Presidential election irregularities and Condoleezza Rice's confirmation hearings, Stacy Davies of California began, via e-mail, the "Barbara Boxer Rose Campaign", wherein people collaborated to buy Senator Boxer roses.

2008 Democratic nomination campaign
Boxer speaks during the second day of the 2008 Democratic National Convention in Denver, Colorado.As a superdelegate, Boxer had declared that she would support the winner of the California Democratic primary, 2008 contest, which was won by Hillary Clinton. However, she remained neutral and only officially backed Barack Obama's candidacy the day after the last primaries, once he had garnered enough delegate votes to clinch the nomination.

2010 election
On February 19, 2007, Boxer announced that she will seek a fourth term in 2010. "You can't wait until the last minute," she said. She estimates that she will need $20 million for the campaign. The announcement was made at a fundraiser hosted by Barack Obama. Former Hewlett Packard CEO Carly Fiorina won the June 2010 Republican primary and will face Boxer in the November 2010 election.

Bills and policy positions
Health care

Senator Boxer is part of a coalition to increase medical research to find cures for diseases. In 2007, she authored successful bipartisan legislation with Senator Gordon Smith to combat HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis globally. She authored a Patients' Bill of Rights in 1997. She has written a bill to make health insurance tax deductible and another bill to let any American buy into the same health insurance program that members of Congress have. She supports comprehensive prescription drug coverage through Medicare and the right of all consumers to purchase lower-cost prescription drugs re-imported from Canada.

In October 2002, Boxer urged the Bush Administration to take specific steps to address the causes of the steep increase in autism cases in California. She wrote Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Tommy Thompson to establish a common national standard for the diagnosis of autism; instruct the CDC and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry to convene a task force to review the current literature on autism and conduct its own study if necessary; and direct the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to work with the states to create a national chronic disease database.

Boxer is an advocate for embryonic stem-cell research, which has the potential to help those with diabetes, Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, spinal cord injuries, and other diseases.

Boxer voted for the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

Boxer introduced legislation providing Federal funding for local after-school programs, which have been shown to increase student performance while decreasing juvenile delinquency, crime, and drug use. Her 'Computers in Classrooms' law encourages the donation of computers and software to schools.

Boxer supported the No Child Left Behind Act. Since its passage in 2001, she claims that the bill has been underfunded by billions of dollars. She vows to work towards a goal that assures it will be fully funded going forward, as originally pledged by former President George W. Bush.

Boxer has voted to increase the maximum award for the Pell Grant program, which provides grants to lower income students for college. In addition, she has supported tax benefits that she claims will help more families pay for higher education.

Boxer has co-introduced legislation that she claims is designed to allow college graduates to refinance their student loans at market rate, in order to ease the financial burden on those starting their careers.

Boxer established the Excellence in Education award to recognize teachers, parents, businesses and organizations that are working to make positive changes in education. Since 1997 Senator Boxer has presented the Excellence in Education Award to 38 recipients.

The economy
Senators Boxer and John Ensign (R-NV) are the authors of the Invest in the USA Act. This legislation, which was signed into law in October 2004 as a small part of the more comprehensive American Jobs Creation Act, is intended to encourage American companies to bring overseas profits back to the United States, to create jobs in the U.S., and stimulate domestic economic growth.

In March 2004, Boxer offered an amendment to the Federal budget to create a $24 billion jobs reserve fund. The amendment would set aside funds for a variety of investments to improve the economy and create jobs by establishing a manufacturing jobs tax credit for companies that create jobs in the United States, expanding investment in science research and development, providing a tax credit to small businesses to pay for health insurance for their employees, and expanding trade adjustment assistance to help those who lose their jobs because of foreign trade. The Boxer amendment would also end the tax break that companies receive after moving plants overseas.

On October 1, 2008, Boxer voted in favor of the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act.

On May 11, 2010, Boxer voted against the Vitter Amendment to the financial reform bill (no. 3760) originally crafted by Ron Paul, which would have given authorization for a complete audit of the Federal Reserve. Boxer instead voted for a stripped down version of the Amendment offered by Senator Bernard Sanders.

The environment
Boxer successfully led the 2003 Senate floor battle to block oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. In 2005, Boxer voted again to block oil drilling at ANWR.

Boxer has introduced the National Oceans Protection Act (NOPA) of 2005. Some of the provisions of this act are: strengthen ocean governance; protect and restore marine wildlife and habitats; address ocean pollution; improve fisheries management. The bill also addresses needs regarding marine science, research and technology, marine mammals, coastal development, and invasive species.

Boxer is an original co-sponsor of Senator Jim Jeffords’ (I-VT) Clean Power Act.This legislation would reduce emissions of three pollutants coming from power plants; sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, and mercury, and also reduce emissions of carbon dioxide.

As the new head of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee in January 2007, Boxer wants to reduce energy consumption. She is attempting to curb global warming by leading pilot programs. The few things that she and some of her fellow Senators are doing could cut electricity consumption by as much as 50 percent in their Capitol Hill offices.

Senator Boxer was the Senate sponsor of the Northern California Coastal Wild Heritage Wilderness Act, which was signed in to law by President George W. Bush on October 17, 2006. The bill protected 275,830 acres (1,116 km2) of federal land as wilderness and 21 miles (34 km) of stream as a wild and scenic river, including such popular areas as the King Range and Cache Creek. Senator Boxer worked with Senator Dianne Feinstein and Representative Mike Thompson (the bill's House sponsor) in the five-year effort to pass the legislation.

Boxer along with her colleague Dianne Feinstein voted in favor of subsidy payments to conventional commodity farm producers at the cost of subsidies for conservation-oriented farming.

Reproductive Rights, Family Planning and Birth control
Boxer speaking at an ACLU event.Boxer maintains an extremely strong stance in support of a woman's right to receive an abortion, and is a staunch supporter of partial birth abortions. When asked during a 1999 Senate debate whether a baby has a right to life if it slips entirely out of the birth canal before being killed during a partial birth abortion, Boxer replied that the baby acquires that right when it leaves the hospital: “When you bring your baby home.”

Boxer authored the Freedom of Choice Act of 2004 and participated in the floor fight for passage of the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act.

Boxer is an original cosponsor of the Title X Family Planning Services Act of 2005, S.844, by Senator Hillary Clinton (D-NY). This legislation aims to improve access to women's health care. It authorizes funding for family planning services grants; allows states to provide such services to individuals who may not be eligible for Medicaid; prohibits health insurance providers from excluding contraceptive services, drugs or devices from benefits; establishes a program to disseminate information on emergency contraception; requires hospitals receiving federal funding to offer emergency contraception to victims of sexual assault; provides grants to public and private entities to establish or expand teen pregnancy prevention programs; and requires that federally funded education programs about contraception be medically accurate and include information about health benefits and failure rates.

She was strongly critical of the Stupak-Pitts Amendment, which would prevent taxpayer-funded abortions possibly resulting in women not being able to pay with their own funds for abortion coverage Affordable Health Care for America Act.

Victims of violence
As a member of the House of Representatives, Boxer authored the original Violence Against Women Act. Later in 1994, she cosponsored, and the Senate passed, the Violence Against Women Act, which provided reforms to the criminal justice system to better prosecute violent crimes against women, and provided Federal funding to local law enforcement agencies for training and equipment necessary for prosecution. Boxer has also authored the Violence Against Children Act, based on the successful VAWA. (Boxer has been a consistent advocate of the death penalty until recently. In 2006, she introduced a bill calling for a moratorium on the death penalty.)

Social Security
Boxer supports the current system of Social Security, and opposed President George W. Bush's plan for partial privatization of Social Security. She introduced the 401(k) Pension Protection Act to protect retirement by requiring the diversification of 401(k) plans. A modified version of the bill was signed into law as part of the 1997 tax bill.

Following the Enron scandal, Boxer again worked to ensure that retirement plans are diversified. She also introduced a bill to prohibit accounting firms from auditing and consulting for the same company.

National security
After the September 11, 2001 attacks, Boxer authored a bill to protect commercial airliners against attacks by shoulder-fired missiles, and wrote the law allowing airline pilots with special training to carry guns in the cockpit.

Senator Boxer has lunch with California Marines during her visit to Iraq. (2005-03-22)Boxer wrote the High-Tech Port Security Act, and sponsored the Chemical Security Act to address terrorist threats against chemical plants. Senator Boxer also cosponsored comprehensive rail security legislation.

Iraq War
In October 2002, Boxer voted against the joint resolution passed by the U.S. Congress to authorize the use of military force by the Bush Administration against Iraq. In June 2005, Senators Boxer and Russ Feingold (D-WI) cosponsored Senate Resolution 171 calling for a timeframe for U.S. troop withdrawal from Iraq.

Boxer's petition demanding an exit strategy from Iraq drew 107,218 signatures.

In June 2008 Boxer spoke in the Senate in opposition to the FISA Amendments Act of 2008, a pending bill in the United States Congress to amend the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, and later broke with her counterpart Sen. Dianne Feinstein and voted against it.

Election reform
On February 18, 2005 Senators Boxer, Hillary Clinton, and Representative Stephanie Tubbs Jones introduced the Count Every Vote Act of 2005, which would provide a voter verified paper ballot for every vote cast in electronic voting machines and ensure access to voter verification for all citizens. The bill mandates that this ballot be the official ballot for purposes of a recount. The bill sets a uniform standard for provisional ballots and requires the Federal Election Assistance Commission to issue standards that ensure uniform access to voting machines and trained election personnel in every community. The bill also mandated improved security measures for electronic voting machines. The bill did not pass.

Bush nominees
During the confirmation hearings for the United States Secretary of State nominee Condoleezza Rice in January 2005, Boxer challenged her to admit to alleged mistakes and false statements made by the Bush Administration in leading the United States into the 2003 invasion of Iraq, and ultimately voted against confirmation, along with twelve other senators.

The dissent was the highest vote against a Secretary of State nominee since 1825 when Henry Clay was so named.

Boxer voted against John Bolton's nomination for U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and filibustered him on the Senate floor. As a result of the strong Democratic opposition Bolton could not obtain Senate approval. However, President Bush bypassed the Senate by employing the constitutional right of recess appointment, only the second time such an appointment has been used for a United States ambassador to the United Nations since the UN's founding in 1945. Recess appointments themselves have been used numerous times by various presidents.

Boxer voted against the confirmation of Chief Justice of the United States nominee John Roberts, and against the confirmation of Associate Justice nominee Samuel Alito.

Foreign policy
In 1997, the Senate passed a Boxer resolution calling on the United States not to recognize the Taliban as the official government of Afghanistan because of its human rights abuses against women.

Senator Boxer meets Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. (2005-03-30)In 2002, Senator Boxer voted against the U.S. invasion of Iraq. She has subsequently referred to that vote as the best vote of her career. She also voted against the first Gulf War (Operation Desert Storm) while a member of the House in 1991 and was a very vocal protester against the Vietnam War in the 1970s.

Boxer is a cosponsor of S. 495, or the Darfur Accountability Act of 2005, which would impose sanctions against perpetrators of crimes against humanity in Darfur.

The Internet
Along with former Republican Senator George Allen (R-VA), Boxer authored the Jumpstart Broadband Act. This bill would make more spectrum available for use by devices that incorporate new broadband technology, such as WiFi. The Federal Communications Commission is now implementing the Boxer-Allen bill.

Boxer opposes access and sales taxes on the Internet, co-authoring a bill with Republican Sen. George Allen in 2001 to extend the Internet tax moratorium for five years.

Drug Policy Reform
Senator Boxer has come out against reforming marijuana policy and is opposed to the California Ballot measure to legalize and tax marijuana for those 21 and older in the state. Notably, this position is against the majority of Californians, of whom a recent Field Poll pegs 56% as supporting taxing and legalizing the plant.

Gun control
Senator Boxer joined colleagues to pass a Federal ban on various semi-automatic firearms and established the COPS program. She supports reauthorization of both programs.

LGBT issues
The Human Rights Campaign gave Boxer ratings of 100%, 88% and 100% for the 107th, 108th, and 109th sessions of Congress, respectively, indicating a support of the HRC's slate of pro-gay rights legislative issues. In 1996, she was one of fourteen Senators to vote against the Defense of Marriage Act and also voted against the Federal Marriage Amendment in 2004 and 2006, although when San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom issued a directive to the city-county clerk to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples she stated that she supported California's domestic partnership law but agreed with its definition that marriage was between a man and a woman. However, her 2010 re-election campaign website states that "Senator Boxer supports marriage equality."

She has also co-sponsored the Matthew Shepard Act, which expanded the federal definition of hate crimes to include crimes based on the victim's sexual orientation and gender identity, as well as the Uniting American Families Act. She opposed Proposition 8, a constitutional amendment that prohibited same-sex marriage in California. Proposition 8 passed with a 52.30% to 47.70% majority.

India-U.S. nuclear deal
Boxer is one of the most outspoken critics of the nuclear energy deal between the United States and India. Boxer is of the opinion that India should not get help from the U.S. in the civilian nuclear energy sector until it breaks its relationship with Iran.

Indian gaming
The Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria, formerly the Federated Coast Miwok, was officially recognized by the U.S. government on December 27, 2000, pursuant to an act of Congress. California 6th District Representative Lynn Woolsey introduced the Graton Rancheria Restoration Act (105th CONGRESS, 2d Session, H.R. 4434) August 6, 1998. It was ultimately approved and signed by President Clinton as Title XIV of the Omnibus Indian Advancement Act (Public Law No. 106-568).

Representative Woolsey's original bill (H.R. 4434, later H.R. 946) would not have permitted the FIGR to have a casino. Senator Boxer removed that prohibition when she included Woolsey's bill in the Omnibus Act.

Censuring President Bush
Senator Boxer was, along with Iowa Senator Tom Harkin, one of only two Senate Democrats to come out in favor of Wisconsin Senator Russ Feingold's resolution to censure President George W. Bush.

Support for Fellow Democrats
Senator Boxer is a major supporter of fellow Democrats running for office. Boxer’s PAC for a Change, an ActBlue-active PAC, is a progressive organization that advocated for basic human rights, economic justice, and social justice, and supports candidates who share those values.

Public image, political reception and controversy
As a liberal and also a feminist, Boxer has often been described as a tenacious fighter for what she thinks is right, both by herself and in news accounts.

Brigadier General Michael Walsh was testifying on the Louisiana coastal restoration process in the wake of Hurricane Katrina and answered Boxer's query with "ma'am" when Boxer interrupted him. "Do me a favor," Boxer said. "can you say 'senator' instead of 'ma'am?'" "Yes, ma'am," Walsh interjected. "It's just a thing, I worked so hard to get that title, so I'd appreciate it. Thank you," she said. The Army's guide to protocol instructs service members to call members of the U.S. Senate "sir," "ma'am" or "senator."

Criticizing Condoleezza Rice's judgment
Boxer criticized then United States Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's judgment in relation to the war in Iraq: "I personally believe – this is my personal view – that your loyalty to the mission you were given, to sell the war, overwhelmed your respect for the truth."

In January 2007, Boxer was in the news for comments she made when responding to Bush's plans to send an additional 20,000 troops to Iraq. "Who pays the price?" Boxer asked Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. "I'm not going to pay a personal price. My kids are too old and my grandchild is too young. You're not going to pay a personal price with an immediate family. So who pays the price? The American military and their families... not me, not you." When Rice interjected, Boxer responded by saying, "Madam Secretary, please. I know you feel terrible about it. That's not the point. I was making the case as to who pays the price for your decisions. And the fact that this administration would move forward with this escalation with no clue as to the further price that we're going to pay militarily... I find really appalling."

The New York Post and White House Press Secretary Tony Snow considered this an attack on Rice's status as a single, childless female and referred to Boxer's comments as "a great leap backward for feminism." Rice later echoed Snow's remarks, saying "I thought it was okay to not have children, and I thought you could still make good decisions on behalf of the country if you were single and didn’t have children." Boxer responded to the controversy by saying "They’re getting this off on a non-existent thing that I didn’t say. I’m saying, she’s like me, we do not have families who are in the military."

Keith Olbermann accused the commentators, particularly Rush Limbaugh, of making Boxer's comments into an issue when the same people were not outraged when "Laura Bush said Secretary Rice would never be elected president because she was not married."

Television appearances
She has made cameo appearances as herself in several television shows, including Murphy Brown (1994), Gilmore Girls (2002) and Curb Your Enthusiasm (2007), as well as a cameo (as herself) in the 2000 film Traffic. On November 2, 2005 she made an appearance on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart to discuss her new novel A Time To Run.

Awards and honors
Boxer has been honored in Congress by:

Consumer Federation of America
Planned Parenthood
League of Conservation Voters
Public Citizen
Sierra Club
Center for Environmental Education (now The Ocean Conservancy)
Center for Defense Information
American Association of University Women
Boxer has also been recognized by:

The Anti-Defamation League
The Human Rights Campaign
The Leadership Conference on Civil Rights
Women's Image Network, The WIN Awards Lifetime Achievement Honoree 2006
The Family Violence Law Centre
Division of Women's Issues of the New York State Psychological Association
NETWORK, National Catholic Social Justice Lobby

Boxer has been awarded with two Doctor of Laws honorary degrees, one from Mills College and the other from Dominican University of California.

Obama and Biden schedules for Saturday, July 31, 2010

None entered for today.

My Report - If Not Obama Then Who?

When Obama was campaigning, people, especially young people, looked on him as a breath of fresh air. He was someone, they thought, who was going to bring honesty and integrity back to politics. He'd run a transparent administration, he'd run a competent administration, he'd run an ethical administration.

How disillusioning it must be - for some people at least - to see that he's just as crooked, his underlings just as incompetent - as every other President.

His transparency seems to be limited to just showing his schedule, and that of his VP, on his website, and that's about it.

So what I'm thinking is, will young people become disenchanted with the whole political process after seeing the further mess Obama has made of everything? Going around the world bowing to our enemies and dissing our friends? Showing that he is clearly the Socialist that really - he said he was?

One problem there is of course that most people who have gone to college have been indoctrinated with those Socialist views...they are all too receptive.

But if Obama continues to turn out to be a bust, will young people lose faith in the political process all together.

Because really, is there anyone out there who actually is "a breath of fresh air"? Perhaps Jan Brewer... someone of whom I've not heard Rush say, "Do we really want to watch her grow old in office?" although she is 64.

Will Republicans Ever Be Able to Claim the Moral High Ground?

Just when you thought things were looking up for Republicans - Charlie Rangel and Maxxine Waters in trouble re ethics investigations, comes the news from Washington Examiner that:

Top GOP campaign donors charged with $550 million fraud

Two Texas businessmen, Charles Wyly Jr. and Samuel Wyly, are being accused of massive fraud by the Securities and Exchange commission. You can read the SEC complaint here, but the short version is the brothers are accused of funneling some $750 million worth of stock in four companies the two owned through a byzantine series of companies and accounts in the Cayman Islands and Isle of Man. They are also charged with an insider trading violation that is said to earned them $32 million. In total, they are alleged to have reaped $550 million in profits.

As it happens, the Wylys are some of the top Republican donors in the country, according to the Center for Responsive Politics:

Together with their wives, the Wyly brothers have donated nearly $2.5 million to Republican candidates and committees during the past 20 years, a Center for Responsive Politics analysis reveals.

There's a couple more paragraphs of the article at the link.

But really, all this shows is that a couple of rich guys who didn't want to pay taxes used some creative accounting to get around it. It may very well be that they were just doing what John Kerry was doing with his yacht - perfectly legal stuff, which is now deemed to be illegal, or unethical, because it's depriving states of the taxes they want.

We'll find out.

THe main issue, of course, is that it's Republican donors doing this - not Republican politicians.

Drudge report headlines, July 31, 2010

Compare the Drudge report headlinse (albeit only headline rather than with summary as in Michael Savage) with the Michael Savage headlines. What's news at 10.51 am today?

Oregon officials close investigation of Gore...


--PAPER: Will Washington's Failures Lead To Second American Revolution?
--FDA OKs First Embryonic Stem Cell Research Trial on Humans...
--L.A. building explosion hurls people into street...
--Detergent company puts GPS into product to track consumers to their homes...
--BIG SIS: Amnesty by bypassing Congress?
--GOP lawmakers demand explanation...

--Andy Griffith's new role: pitching health care law...
--OMB nominee got $900,000 after CITIGROUP bailout...

--SCORCH: Russia calls in army as fires escalate...

--Democrat Ben Nelson a NO on Kagan...
--Dem lawmaker blows a gasket on House floor...

--Snooki Knocks Obama's Tanning Tax...
--Obama lies about not knowing who Snooki is?

--'JERSEY SHORE' return earns big ratings...
--PAPER: Evidence Ties Afghan Leaks to Soldier...
--Aides seek to downsize Obama's exposure...
--Web's New Gold Mine: Your Secrets...
--Personal Details Exposed Via Biggest Websites...

--NKorean soccer team shamed in 6-hour public inquiry...
--FACEBOOK to Put Off IPO Until 2012...
--Details of 100 million users published online...
--NYT Reporter Who Criticized FOXNEWS' Audience Diversity Writes for Least Diverse Media Blog
--Prince Charles: 'My duty is to save the world'...

--Democrats say Rangel should resign...

--Decision near on Maxine Waters ethics case...
--Woman Stops Robbery With Faith... Talks to Robber About Jesus, He Leaves Peacefully
--GDP: 2.4%
--Mediocre growth...
--Recession deeper than gov't previously thought...

--NYT: Employment outlook fades...
--IMF: U.S. Financial System May Need $76 Billion in More Capital...
--Paris police: Tear gas in letter for US Embassy...

--Sarkozy: Strip criminals of French nationality...
--REPORT: Steven Tyler offered Cowell job...

--GOP lawmaker offers bill to kill 'lame duck' House session...
--Dems look for first lady's help in mid-terms...
--Pot reviewer paid to get high!
--Inmate sues man he's convicted of burglarizing...

--Is Chelsea Clinton Setting a Bad Example?...
--Bride-to-be 'looks utterly exhausted'...
--Ceremony's secrecy draws worldwide media throng...
--NY COPS: Gawkers will be arrested...

Michael Savage headlines, July 31, 2010 is a news aggregate website. Related to his radio show of course, but presents actual news, not his invective!

Sarkozy: Strip criminals of French nationality
(Reuters) President Nicolas Sarkozy said he wanted to strip French nationality from anyone of foreign origin who threatened the life of a police officer ...

Sheriff Joe not relenting after court ruling
(Fox News) Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio will continue to carry out sweeps in the country's busiest human and drug trafficking corridor ...

Women, white men, Jews, even Hispanics abandoning Obama
(Andrea Tantaros, New York Post) President Obama's once powerful political coalition is imploding ...

Memo outlines backdoor 'amnesty' plan
(Washington Times) With Congress gridlocked on an immigration bill, the Obama administration is considering "a non-legislative version of amnesty" ...

GOP lawmakers want explanation of draft memo on amnesty
(Fox News) A group of Republican senators is asking the Obama administration to reveal whether large-scale plans are under way to provide amnesty ...

Fed atty: Military secrets sold to pay for Hawaii home
(Associated Press) A federal prosecutor said a former B-2 bomber engineer helped China design a stealth cruise missile to raise money to pay the $15,000-a-month mortgage on his mansion-like home ...

He's finally in the Army – at age 60
(Orange County Register) "A lot of pulled muscles, a lot of cramps. I'm in good physical shape but every joint in my body is killing me" ...

Was Wikileaker Bradley Manning betrayed by his queer identity?
( Manning was arrested for allegedly leaking the Iraq Apache attack helicopter video and more than a quarter million classified documents to the website Wikileaks ...

Taliban hunting down informants named in Wikileaks documents
(London Telegraph) "Mr. Assange can say whatever he likes about the greater good he thinks he is doing, but the truth is they might already have on their hands the blood of some young soldier" ...

Muslim cleric: Parents should prepare kids for jihad
(MEMRI) "Today, all our children sit in front of the computer and the PlayStation, and play games that will never lead them to wage Jihad" ...

Theo Albrecht, expanded Trader Joe's, dies
(Washington Post) The reclusive German billionaire made his fortune building a discount-food business empire in Europe before buying and expanding Trader Joe's ...

--Deadliest month for U.S. in Afghan war
(CNN) The latest grim milestone comes amid growing frustration among U.S. citizens over Washington's strategy in the Afghanistan war ...

--Top Republican campaign donors charged with $550 million fraud
(Washington Examiner) Two Texas businessmen are accused of funneling stock in four companies the two owned through a byzantine series of companies and accounts in the Cayman Islands and Isle of Man ...

ACLU slams Obama's security policies
(Washington Times) The ACLU warned Obama his administration was on course to institutionalize the policies of his predecessor ...

Mexican drug lord killed in raid
(CNN) Mexico's army claimed a victory against the country's most powerful drug cartel after troops cornered and killed the man reputed to have founded the multibillion-dollar methamphetamine trade ...

Chilling effect: Violence silences Mexican media
(Houston Chronicle) "Nowhere is the media controlled more than it is here," said one reporter, who stressed he would face serious danger if identified. "There is total control" ...

Sen. Lindsey Graham eyes 'birthright citizenship'
(Politico) Graham is considering introducing a constitutional amendment that would change existing law to no longer grant citizenship to the children of immigrants born in the U.S. ...

Taxpayers funding operations for 'virginity-repair'
(London Daily Mail) Critics, including moderate Muslim groups, have condemned the trend as a sign of the spread of Islamic fundamentalism in the West ...

Rahm throws $1.5 billion life preserver to farmers
(The Hill) The action will help one of the Democrats’ most vulnerable Senate incumbents ...

Burglar sues crime victims
(St. Petersburg Times) Dupree, who is serving a 12-year prison sentence for burglary and cocaine possession, has filed a lawsuit against three men ...

Mexicans working with drug cartels nabbed in Calif pot-growing sweep
(Associated Press) Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims said several Mexican drug cartels were involved in the grow operations and that most of the 97 people arrested are Mexican nationals ...

G.M.'s electric lemon
(Edward Niedermeyer, New York Times) The Volt appears to be exactly the kind of green-at-all-costs car that some opponents of the bailout feared the government might order G.M. to build ...

Obama losing ground with women
(Fox News) According to Nielsen 79 percent of "The View"'s audience is female, a demographic that's started to cool on the president ...

Time's up for Charlie
(New York Post) A panel of his peers has examined his conduct -- and found it grievously wanting ...

Drunken drivers have right to sue bar that served them?
( The New Jersey Supreme Court has agreed to decide whether drunken drivers injured in accidents they cause can sue the liquor establishments that served them ...

Saturday, July 31, 2010 News headlines

Yahoo news headlines, 10.36am eastern time.

--California Rep. Waters may face fall ethics trial (AP)
AP - A second House Democrat, Rep. Maxine Waters of California, could face an ethics trial this fall, further complicating the election outlook for the party as it battles to retain its majority.
--Debris in relief well sets back work on gusher (AP)
--Official: More than 800 dead in Pakistani floods (AP)
--The big day: Chelsea Clinton to wed in upstate NY (AP)
--Air tanker drops fire retardant, slows LA wildfire (AP)
--Obama: Rangel case troubling; some Dems say resign (AP)

--Here Come The Judges: J.Lo & The Latest 'Idol' Replacement Contenders | 94 Votes
--U.S. takes tougher stance with China | 58 Votes
--What Were They Thinking?! | 53 Votes
--Mark Wahlberg's Star, Cheescake Factory Deal, iPad Rival: What's the Buzz | 8 Votes
--Berkman to the Bronx is business as usual (Yahoo! Sports) | 65 Votes
--Snooki arrested: Did 'Jersey Shore' star bother beachgoers? | 17 Votes

Local news, Los Angeles
--Crown fire grows to more than 13,000 acres (Los Angeles Times)
--People of diverse faiths pursue a lofty goal in a peace hike up Mt. Baldy (Los Angeles Times)
--Ethics panel to charge California Rep. Waters (Los Angeles Daily News)
--Proposed tax amnesty program still in talks (Los Angeles Daily News)
--O.C. Woman's Death A Homicide, Husband Detained (CBS 2 Los Angeles)
--Girl, 3, Drowns In Pool At Lancaster Home (CBS 2 Los Angeles)

--Germany: memorial service for Love Parade victims (AP)
AP - Thousands of grief-stricken mourners watched in tears on Saturday as rescue workers lit one white candle for every one of the 21 people crushed to death in a tunnel at the Love Parade techno music festival.
--ABC Family's Paul Lee named boss of ABC network (AP)
--Snooki of 'Jersey Shore' arrested in NJ beach town (AP)
--Prosecutor makes new claim in Anna Nicole case (AP)
--Heidi Montag files for divorce from Spencer Pratt (AP)
--Who will be judged fit to be the 'Idol' judges? (AP)

--Rams, QB Bradford agree to $78M, 6 years (AP)
--Yankees to acquire Berkman, get Kearns (AP)
--Oswalt pounded by Nats in Phillies debut (AP)
--Attorney: 3 armed men sought Wright (AP)
--Redskins' Haynesworth fails test again (AP)
--Cowboys WR Bryant to miss 4-6 weeks (AP)

World News
--Israeli airstrike kills senior Hamas rocket maker (AP)
AP - Israeli warplanes fired missiles, killing a senior commander of the Hamas military wing and wounding 11 people in five targets hit across Gaza overnight, the group and the military said Saturday.
--Official: More than 800 dead in Pakistani floods (AP)
--Pakistan spy scraps UK talks after PM's comments (AP)
--'Black box' found in Pakistan plane crash wreckage (AP)
--Russia begins to localize fires, others rage (AP)
--A Shady Resume Sparks Debate Over Honesty in China (

Friday, July 30, 2010

The Lost Art of Thinking, Rule #1

Steve Allen listed 101 "rules" to reason better and improve your mind in his book Dumbth. Here's #1.

Decide that in the future you will reason more effectively.

"Believe it or not, this simple step, by itself, will produce positive results, however modest. It alone obviously cannot achieve the desired effect, but it is a necessary beginning. The conscious act of will it requires narrows our concentration on the particular task.

("We must, in the end, settle for improvement rather than perfection.")

President's History Saturday: George Washington's 110 Rules to Live By

This list is from NPR. A book was published in 2000.

Intro from NPR:
As a young schoolboy in Virginia, George Washington took his first steps toward greatness by copying out by hand a list of 110 'Rules of Civility & Decent Behavior in Company and Conversation.' Based on a 16th-century set of precepts compiled for young gentlemen by Jesuit instructors, the Rules of Civility were one of the earliest and most powerful forces to shape America's first president, says historian Richard Brookhiser.

Most of the rules are concerned with details of etiquette, offering pointers on such issues as how to dress, walk, eat in public and address one's superiors. But in the introduction to the newly published Rules of Civility: The 110 Precepts That Guided Our First President in War and Peace, Brookhiser warns against dismissing the maxims as "mere" etiquette. "The rules address moral issues, but they address them indirectly," Brookhiser writes. "They seek to form the inner man (or boy) by shaping the outer."

Brookhiser says the advice the rules offer, though often outlandish in detail, is still applicable in our day and age: "Maybe they can work on us in our century as the Jesuits intended them to work in theirs — indirectly — by putting us in a more ambitious frame of mind."

The Rules of Civility & Decent Behavior in Company and Conversation

(For ease of reading, punctuation and spelling have been modernized.)

1. Every action done in company ought to be with some sign of respect to those that are present.

2. When in company, put not your hands to any part of the body not usually discovered.

3. Show nothing to your friend that may affright him.

4. In the presence of others, sing not to yourself with a humming voice, or drum with your fingers or feet.

5. If you cough, sneeze, sigh or yawn, do it not loud but privately, and speak not in your yawning, but put your handkerchief or hand before your face and turn aside.

6. Sleep not when others speak, sit not when others stand, speak not when you should hold your peace, walk not on when others stop.

7. Put not off your clothes in the presence of others, nor go out of your chamber half dressed.

8. At play and attire, it's good manners to give place to the last comer, and affect not to speak louder than ordinary.

9. Spit not into the fire, nor stoop low before it; neither put your hands into the flames to warm them, nor set your feet upon the fire, especially if there be meat before it.

10. When you sit down, keep your feet firm and even, without putting one on the other or crossing them.

11. Shift not yourself in the sight of others, nor gnaw your nails.

12. Shake not the head, feet, or legs; roll not the eyes; lift not one eyebrow higher than the other, wry not the mouth, and bedew no man's face with your spittle by approaching too near him when you speak.

13. Kill no vermin, or fleas, lice, ticks, etc. in the sight of others; if you see any filth or thick spittle put your foot dexterously upon it; if it be upon the clothes of your companions, put it off privately, and if it be upon your own clothes, return thanks to him who puts it off.

14. Turn not your back to others, especially in speaking; jog not the table or desk on which another reads or writes; lean not upon anyone.

15. Keep your nails clean and short, also your hands and teeth clean, yet without showing any great concern for them.

16. Do not puff up the cheeks, loll not out the tongue with the hands or beard, thrust out the lips or bite them, or keep the lips too open or too close.

17. Be no flatterer, neither play with any that delight not to be played withal.

18. Read no letter, books, or papers in company, but when there is a necessity for the doing of it, you must ask leave; come not near the books or writtings of another so as to read them unless desired, or give your opinion of them unasked. Also look not nigh when another is writing a letter.

19. Let your countenance be pleasant but in serious matters somewhat grave.

20. The gestures of the body must be suited to the discourse you are upon.

21. Reproach none for the infirmities of nature, nor delight to put them that have in mind of thereof.

22. Show not yourself glad at the misfortune of another though he were your enemy.

23. When you see a crime punished, you may be inwardly pleased; but always show pity to the suffering offender.

24. Do not laugh too loud or too much at any public spectacle.

25. Superfluous compliments and all affectation of ceremonies are to be avoided, yet where due they are not to be neglected.

26. In putting off your hat to persons of distinction, as noblemen, justices, churchmen, etc., make a reverence, bowing more or less according to the custom of the better bred, and quality of the persons. Among your equals expect not always that they should begin with you first, but to pull off the hat when there is no need is affectation. In the manner of saluting and resaluting in words, keep to the most usual custom.

27. 'Tis ill manners to bid one more eminent than yourself be covered, as well as not to do it to whom it is due. Likewise he that makes too much haste to put on his hat does not well, yet he ought to put it on at the first, or at most the second time of being asked. Now what is herein spoken, of qualification in behavior in saluting, ought also to be observed in taking of place and sitting down, for ceremonies without bounds are troublesome.

28. If any one come to speak to you while you are are sitting stand up, though he be your inferior, and when you present seats, let it be to everyone according to his degree.

29. When you meet with one of greater quality than yourself, stop and retire, especially if it be at a door or any straight place, to give way for him to pass.

30. In walking, the highest place in most countries seems to be on the right hand; therefore, place yourself on the left of him whom you desire to honor. But if three walk together the middest place is the most honorable; the wall is usally given to the most worthy if two walk together.

31. If anyone far surpasses others, either in age, estate, or merit, yet would give place to a meaner than himself in his own lodging or elsewhere, the one ought not to except it. So he on the other part should not use much earnestness nor offer it above once or twice.

32. To one that is your equal, or not much inferior, you are to give the chief place in your lodging, and he to whom it is offered ought at the first to refuse it, but at the second to accept though not without acknowledging his own unworthiness.

33. They that are in dignity or in office have in all places precedency, but whilst they are young, they ought to respect those that are their equals in birth or other qualities, though they have no public charge.

34. It is good manners to prefer them to whom we speak before ourselves, especially if they be above us, with whom in no sort we ought to begin.

35. Let your discourse with men of business be short and comprehensive.

36. Artificers and persons of low degree ought not to use many ceremonies to lords or others of high degree, but respect and highly honor then, and those of high degree ought to treat them with affability and courtesy, without arrogance.

37. In speaking to men of quality do not lean nor look them full in the face, nor approach too near them at left. Keep a full pace from them.

38. In visiting the sick, do not presently play the physician if you be not knowing therein.

39. In writing or speaking, give to every person his due title according to his degree and the custom of the place.

40. Strive not with your superior in argument, but always submit your judgment to others with modesty.

41. Undertake not to teach your equal in the art himself professes; it savors of arrogancy.

42. Let your ceremonies in courtesy be proper to the dignity of his place with whom you converse, for it is absurd to act the same with a clown and a prince.

43. Do not express joy before one sick in pain, for that contrary passion will aggravate his misery.

44. When a man does all he can, though it succeed not well, blame not him that did it.

45. Being to advise or reprehend any one, consider whether it ought to be in public or in private, and presently or at some other time; in what terms to do it; and in reproving show no signs of cholor but do it with all sweetness and mildness.

46. Take all admonitions thankfully in what time or place soever given, but afterwards not being culpable take a time and place convenient to let him know it that gave them.

47. Mock not nor jest at any thing of importance. Break no jests that are sharp, biting, and if you deliver any thing witty and pleasant, abstain from laughing thereat yourself.

48. Wherein you reprove another be unblameable yourself, for example is more prevalent than precepts.

49. Use no reproachful language against any one; neither curse nor revile.

50. Be not hasty to believe flying reports to the disparagement of any.

51. Wear not your clothes foul, or ripped, or dusty, but see they be brushed once every day at least and take heed that you approach not to any uncleaness.

52. In your apparel be modest and endeavor to accommodate nature, rather than to procure admiration; keep to the fashion of your equals, such as are civil and orderly with respect to time and places.

53. Run not in the streets, neither go too slowly, nor with mouth open; go not shaking of arms, nor upon the toes, kick not the earth with your feet, go not upon the toes, nor in a dancing fashion.

54. Play not the peacock, looking every where about you, to see if you be well decked, if your shoes fit well, if your stockings sit neatly and clothes handsomely.

55. Eat not in the streets, nor in the house, out of season.

56. Associate yourself with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation; for 'tis better to be alone than in bad company.

57. In walking up and down in a house, only with one in company if he be greater than yourself, at the first give him the right hand and stop not till he does and be not the first that turns, and when you do turn let it be with your face towards him; if he be a man of great quality walk not with him cheek by jowl but somewhat behind him, but yet in such a manner that he may easily speak to you.

58. Let your conversation be without malice or envy, for 'tis a sign of a tractable and commendable nature, and in all causes of passion permit reason to govern.

59. Never express anything unbecoming, nor act against the rules moral before your inferiors.

60. Be not immodest in urging your friends to discover a secret.

61. Utter not base and frivolous things among grave and learned men, nor very difficult questions or subjects among the ignorant, or things hard to be believed; stuff not your discourse with sentences among your betters nor equals.

62. Speak not of doleful things in a time of mirth or at the table; speak not of melancholy things as death and wounds, and if others mention them, change if you can the discourse. Tell not your dreams, but to your intimate friend.

63. A man ought not to value himself of his achievements or rare qualities of wit; much less of his riches, virtue or kindred.

64. Break not a jest where none take pleasure in mirth; laugh not aloud, nor at all without occasion; deride no man's misfortune though there seem to be some cause.

65. Speak not injurious words neither in jest nor earnest; scoff at none although they give occasion.

66. Be not froward but friendly and courteous, the first to salute, hear and answer; and be not pensive when it's a time to converse.

67. Detract not from others, neither be excessive in commanding.

68. Go not thither, where you know not whether you shall be welcome or not; give not advice without being asked, and when desired do it briefly.

69. If two contend together take not the part of either unconstrained, and be not obstinate in your own opinion. In things indifferent be of the major side.

70. Reprehend not the imperfections of others, for that belongs to parents, masters and superiors.

71. Gaze not on the marks or blemishes of others and ask not how they came. What you may speak in secret to your friend, deliver not before others.

72. Speak not in an unknown tongue in company but in your own language and that as those of quality do and not as the vulgar. Sublime matters treat seriously.

73. Think before you speak, pronounce not imperfectly, nor bring out your words too hastily, but orderly and distinctly.

74. When another speaks, be attentive yourself and disturb not the audience. If any hesitate in his words, help him not nor prompt him without desired. Interrupt him not, nor answer him till his speech be ended.

75. In the midst of discourse ask not of what one treats, but if you perceive any stop because of your coming, you may well entreat him gently to proceed. If a person of quality comes in while you're conversing, it's handsome to repeat what was said before.

76. While you are talking, point not with your finger at him of whom you discourse, nor approach too near him to whom you talk, especially to his face.

77. Treat with men at fit times about business and whisper not in the company of others.

78. Make no comparisons and if any of the company be commended for any brave act of virtue, commend not another for the same.

79. Be not apt to relate news if you know not the truth thereof. In discoursing of things you have heard, name not your author. Always a secret discover not.

80. Be not tedious in discourse or in reading unless you find the company pleased therewith.

81. Be not curious to know the affairs of others, neither approach those that speak in private.

82. Undertake not what you cannot perform but be careful to keep your promise.

83. When you deliver a matter do it without passion and with discretion, however mean the person be you do it to.

84. When your superiors talk to anybody hearken not, neither speak nor laugh.

85. In company of those of higher quality than yourself, speak not 'til you are asked a question, then stand upright, put off your hat and answer in few words.

86. In disputes, be not so desirous to overcome as not to give liberty to each one to deliver his opinion and submit to the judgment of the major part, especially if they are judges of the dispute.

87. Let your carriage be such as becomes a man grave, settled and attentive to that which is spoken. Contradict not at every turn what others say.

88. Be not tedious in discourse, make not many digressions, nor repeat often the same manner of discourse.

89. Speak not evil of the absent, for it is unjust.

90. Being set at meat scratch not, neither spit, cough or blow your nose except there's a necessity for it.

91. Make no show of taking great delight in your victuals. Feed not with greediness. Eat your bread with a knife. Lean not on the table, neither find fault with what you eat.

92. Take no salt or cut bread with your knife greasy.

93. Entertaining anyone at table it is decent to present him with meat. Undertake not to help others undesired by the master.

94. If you soak bread in the sauce, let it be no more than what you put in your mouth at a time, and blow not your broth at table but stay 'til it cools of itself.

95. Put not your meat to your mouth with your knife in your hand; neither spit forth the stones of any fruit pie upon a dish nor cast anything under the table.

96. It's unbecoming to heap much to one's mea. Keep your fingers clean and when foul wipe them on a corner of your table napkin.

97. Put not another bite into your mouth 'til the former be swallowed. Let not your morsels be too big for the jowls.

98. Drink not nor talk with your mouth full; neither gaze about you while you are drinking.

99. Drink not too leisurely nor yet too hastily. Before and after drinking wipe your lips. Breathe not then or ever with too great a noise, for it is uncivil.

100. Cleanse not your teeth with the tablecloth, napkin, fork or knife, but if others do it, let it be done with a pick tooth.

101. Rinse not your mouth in the presence of others.

102. It is out of use to call upon the company often to eat. Nor need you drink to others every time you drink.

103. In company of your betters be not longer in eating than they are. Lay not your arm but only your hand upon the table.

104. It belongs to the chiefest in company to unfold his napkin and fall to meat first. But he ought then to begin in time and to dispatch with dexterity that the slowest may have time allowed him.

105. Be not angry at table whatever happens and if you have reason to be so, show it not but on a cheerful countenance especially if there be strangers, for good humor makes one dish of meat a feast.

106. Set not yourself at the upper of the table but if it be your due, or that the master of the house will have it so. Contend not, lest you should trouble the company.

107. If others talk at table be attentive, but talk not with meat in your mouth.

108. When you speak of God or His attributes, let it be seriously and with reverence. Honor and obey your natural parents although they be poor.

109. Let your recreations be manful not sinful.

110. Labor to keep alive in your breast that little spark of celestial fire called conscience.

Limbaugh headlines, Friday, July 30, 2010

--Robert Gibbs Swerves Into Your Beloved Host and Gets Totaled
A response to the regime's claims about Obama Motors.
WSJ: Robert Gibbs Attacks Rush Limbaugh

--Round of Applause for the Regime
They really want us to thank them for what they've done.

--The Backdoor Amnesty Memo
It fits with the dictatorial nature of this regime.
WT: Memo Outlines Backdoor Amnesty Plan

--Democrats Cracking Up: Anthony Weiner Loses Mind on House Floor
Dems control everything, but they're still miserable.
C-SPAN: Weiner Screams on the House Floor

--Liberals Have Been Pushing the Electric Car for a Hundred Years
The New York Times wrote the story... in 1911.
Daily Beast: The Electric Car Boondoggle
Nov. 16, 1911: Electric Cars "the Ideal Solution"

Stack of Stuff Quick Hits Page
» Joe Arpaio, Man's Man, Continues to Arrest Illegals
» Dems Panicking, Reserving TV Time for Incumbents
» Missouri Ballot Measure Set to Reject Obamacare
» It's True! Bill Clinton on His El Camino with Astroturf
» Heritage: Obama Regime Doubled Education Budget

--How Will T.O. Do in Cincy?
Another fabulous NFL season is fast approaching.

--Pelosi and Rangel Head Up the
"Most Ethical Congress in History"
"Draining the swamp" only applied to Republicans.

The Daily Beast - publication

Rush just mentioned The Daily Beast today. As he mentions these publications, I'll give information on them here, from Wikipedia (a copyright free site, but also one that anyone can go into and edit, so be aware of that.)

EDITED: Oops! I see I'd already covered The Daily Beast a week or so ago. Sorry, lousy memory. Won't happen again!

The Daily Beast is an American news reporting and opinion website founded and published by Tina Brown, former editor of Vanity Fair and The New Yorker. About one-third of its content is original, while the rest is aggregated links to articles written by other news outlets. The Daily Beast was launched on October 6, 2008, and is owned by IAC. Edward Felsenthal, a former Wall Street Journal editor, is the site's executive editor, and Stephen Colvin is its president.

The name of the site is derived from that of the fictional newspaper in Evelyn Waugh's novel Scoop.

One of the features of The Daily Beast is the "Cheat Sheet", billed as "must reads from all over". Published daily, the "Cheat Sheet" offers a selection of articles from online news outlets on popular stories. The "Cheat Sheet" includes brief summaries of the article, and a link to read the full text of the article on the website of its provider.

Since launch, the site has introduced additional sections, including a video "Cheat Sheet", "Book Beast", "Hungry Beast", and "Sexy Beast",[4] a Fashion and Entertainment section. The site frequently creates encyclopedic landing pages on topical subjects such as Obama’s inauguration, the Bernard Madoff Ponzi scheme, Michael Jackson, the Iran uprising, and the US Open.

The Daily Beast contributors include: Christopher Buckley, Scott Turow, Mark McKinnon, Douglas Rushkoff, Matthew Yglesias, Meghan McCain, Reihan Salam, Tony Blair, Condoleezza Rice, Gerald Posner, Simon Schama, Eric Alterman, Reza Aslan, Fatima Bhutto and others including Brown herself.

Major advertising, from brands such as HBO, British Airways, Bottega Veneta, Patricia Cornwell, and Bravo!, are featured on the site.

According to a New York Times article, The Daily Beast had reached three million unique visitors per month as of September 28, 2009.

Beast Books
In September 2009, The Daily Beast launched a publishing initiative entitled Beast Books that will produce books by Beast writers on an accelerated publishing schedule.

Plagiarism controversy
In February 2010 it was claimed by Jack Shafer of that the chief investigative reporter for The Daily Beast, Gerald Posner, had lifted five sentences from a Miami Herald article and claimed that he had written them himself and was able to publish them in The Daily Beast under his own name. Shafer also discovered that Posner had written plagiarised content from a Miami Herald blog, a Miami Herald editorial, Texas Lawyer magazine and a healthcare journalism blog. An immediate internal investigation by The Daily Beast led to Posner's departure.

News: Rush in Time - Their BP Article

Time: The BP Spill: Has the Damage Been Exaggerated?

President Obama has called the BP oil spill "the worst environmental disaster America has ever faced," and so has just about everyone else. Green groups are sounding alarms about the "catastrophe along the Gulf Coast," while CBS, Fox and MSNBC are all slapping "Disaster in the Gulf" chyrons on their spill-related news. Even BP fall guy Tony Hayward, after some early happy talk, admitted that the spill was an "environmental catastrophe." The obnoxious anti-environmentalist Rush Limbaugh has been a rare voice arguing that the spill — he calls it "the leak" — is anything less than an ecological calamity, scoffing at the avalanche of end-is-nigh eco-hype.

Well, Limbaugh has a point. The Deepwater Horizon explosion was an awful tragedy for the 11 workers who died on the rig, and it's no leak; it's the biggest oil spill in U.S. history. It's also inflicting serious economic and psychological damage on coastal communities that depend on tourism, fishing and drilling. But so far — while it's important to acknowledge that the long-term potential danger is simply unknowable for an underwater event that took place just three months ago — it does not seem to be inflicting severe environmental damage. "The impacts have been much, much less than everyone feared," says geochemist Jacqueline Michel, a federal contractor who is coordinating shoreline assessments in Louisiana.
(See pictures of the Gulf oil spill.)

Yes, the spill killed birds — but so far, less than 1% of the number killed by the Exxon Valdez spill in Alaska 21 years ago. Yes, we've heard horror stories about oiled dolphins — but so far, wildlife-response teams have collected only three visibly oiled carcasses of mammals. Yes, the spill prompted harsh restrictions on fishing and shrimping, but so far, the region's fish and shrimp have tested clean, and the restrictions are gradually being lifted. And yes, scientists have warned that the oil could accelerate the destruction of Louisiana's disintegrating coastal marshes — a real slow-motion ecological calamity — but so far, assessment teams have found only about 350 acres of oiled marshes, when Louisiana was already losing about 15,000 acres of wetlands every year.

The disappearance of more than 2,000 sq. mi. of coastal Louisiana over the past century has been a true national tragedy, ravaging a unique wilderness, threatening the bayou way of life and leaving communities like New Orleans extremely vulnerable to hurricanes from the Gulf. And while much of the erosion has been caused by the re-engineering of the Mississippi River — which no longer deposits much sediment at the bottom of its Delta — quite a bit has been caused by the oil and gas industry, which gouged 8,000 miles of canals and pipelines through coastal wetlands. But the spill isn't making that problem much worse. Coastal scientist Paul Kemp, a former Louisiana State University professor who is now a National Audubon Society vice president, compares the impact of the spill on the vanishing marshes to "a sunburn on a cancer patient."

Marine scientist Ivor van Heerden, another former LSU prof, who's working for a spill-response contractor, says, "There's just no data to suggest this is an environmental disaster. I have no interest in making BP look good — I think they lied about the size of the spill — but we're not seeing catastrophic impacts." Van Heerden, like just about everyone else working in the Gulf these days, is being paid from BP's spill-response funds. "There's a lot of hype, but no evidence to justify it."

The scientists I spoke with cite four basic reasons the initial eco-fears seem overblown. First, the Deepwater oil, unlike the black glop from the Valdez, is unusually light and degradable, which is why the slick in the Gulf is dissolving surprisingly rapidly now that the gusher has been capped. Second, the Gulf of Mexico, unlike Alaska's Prince William Sound, is very warm, which has helped bacteria break down the oil. Third, heavy flows of Mississippi River water have helped keep the oil away from the coast, where it can do much more damage. And finally, Mother Nature can be incredibly resilient. Van Heerden's assessment team showed me around Casse-tete Island in Timbalier Bay, where new shoots of Spartina grasses were sprouting in oiled marshes and new leaves were growing on the first black mangroves I've ever seen that were actually black. "It comes back fast, doesn't it?" van Heerden said.

Van Heerden is controversial in Louisiana, so I should mention that this isn't the first time he and Kemp have helped convince me that the conventional wisdom about a big story was wrong. Shortly after Hurricane Katrina, when the Army Corps of Engineers was still insisting that a gigantic surge had overwhelmed its levees, they gave me a tour that debunked the prevailing narrative, demonstrating that most of the breached flood walls in New Orleans showed no signs of overtopping.

Eventually, the Corps admitted that van Heerden and Kemp were right, that the surge in New Orleans was not so gigantic and that engineering failures had indeed drowned the city. But there was still a lot of resentment down here of van Heerden and his big mouth, especially after he wrote an I-told-you-so book about Katrina. He made powerful enemies at LSU, lost his faculty job, and is now suing the university. Meanwhile, he's been trashed locally as a BP shill ever since he downplayed the spill in a video on BP's website.

But van Heerden and Kemp were right about Katrina, and when it comes to BP, they're sticking to the evidence gathered by the spill-response teams — which all include a state and federal representative as well as a BP contractor. So far, the teams have collected nearly 3,000 dead birds, but fewer than half of them were visibly oiled; some may have died from eating oil-contaminated food, but others may have simply died naturally at a time when the Gulf happened to be crawling with carcass seekers. In any case, the Valdez may have killed as many as 435,000 birds. The teams have found 492 dead sea turtles, which is unfortunate, but only 17 were visibly oiled; otherwise, they have found only one other dead reptile in the entire Gulf. "We can't speak to the long-term impacts, but Ivor is just saying what all of us are seeing," says Amy Holman, a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) director for Alaska who is working on van Heerden's assessment team in the Gulf.

The shoreline teams have documented more than 600 miles of oiled beaches and marshes, but the beaches are fairly easy to clean, and the beleaguered marshes don't seem to be suffering much additional damage. Oil has blackened the fringes of the marshes, but most of it stayed within a few feet of the edge; waves from a recent tropical storm did carry more oil a few meters inland, but very little of it infiltrated the wetland soils that determine the health of the marsh.

LSU coastal scientist Eugene Turner has dedicated much of his career to documenting how the oil industry has ravaged Louisiana's coast with canals and pipelines, but he says the BP spill will be a comparative blip and predicts that the oil will destroy fewer marshes than the airboats deployed to clean up the oil. "We don't want to deny that there's some damage, but nothing like the damage we've seen for years," he says.

It's true that oil spills can create long-term problems; in Alaska, for example, shorebirds that ate Exxon-tainted mussels have had diminished reproductive success, and herring fisheries have yet to fully recover. The potential long-term damage that underwater oil plumes and an unprecedented amount of chemical dispersants that BP has spread in the area could have on the region's deep-water ecosystems and food chains might not be known for years. Some scientists worry that the swarms of oil-eating bacteria will lower dissolved oxygen levels; there has been early evidence of modest reductions, though nothing approaching the dead zone that was already proliferating in the Gulf because of agricultural runoff in the Mississippi River basin. "People always fear the worst in a spill, and this one was especially scary because we didn't know when it would stop," says Michel, an environmental consultant who has worked spills for NOAA for more than 30 years. "But the public always overestimates the danger — and this time, those of us in the spill business did too."

It's easy to overstate the policy implications of this optimistic news. BP still needs to clean up its mess; federal regulation of deep-water drilling still needs to be strengthened; we still need to use fewer fossil fuels that warm the planet; we still don't need to use more corn ethanol (which is actually dirtier than gasoline). The push to exploit the spill to gain a comprehensive energy and climate bill in Congress has already stalled anyway — even though the planet still needs one.

The good news does suggest the folly of Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal's $350 million plan to build sand berms and rock jetties to protect marshes and barrier islands from oil. Some of the berms are already washing into the Gulf, and scientists agree that oil is the least of the problems facing Louisiana's coast, which had already lost more than 2,000 sq. mi. of wetlands before the spill. "Imagine how much real restoration we could do with all that money," van Heerden says.

Anti-oil politicians, anti-Obama politicians and underfunded green groups all have obvious incentives to accentuate the negative in the Gulf. So do the media, because disasters drive ratings and sell magazines; those oil-soaked pelicans you saw on TV (and the cover of TIME) were a lot more compelling than the healthy ones I saw roosting on a protective boom in Bay Jimmy. Even Limbaugh, when he wasn't downplaying the spill, outrageously hyped it as "Obama's Katrina." But honest scientists don't do that, even when they work for Audubon.

"There are a lot of alarmists in the bird world," Kemp says. "People see oiled pelicans and they go crazy. But this has been a disaster for people, not biota."

Friday, July 30: VP Biden's schedule

VP Biden has nothing on his schedule today

Friday, July 30: President Obama's schedule

9:30 am The President departs the White House en route Andrews Air Force Base
South Lawn
Open Press

9:45 am The President departs Andrews Air Force Base en route Detroit, Michigan
Andrews Air Force Base
Travel Pool Coverage

11:05 am The President arrives in Detroit, Michigan
Detroit Metro Wayne County Airport
Open Press

11:50 am The President tours the Chrysler Auto Plant
Detroit, Michigan
Travel Pool Coverage

12:15 pm The President delivers remarks
Chrysler Auto Plant
Open Press

1:40 pm The President delivers remarks
General Motors Auto Plant
Pooled Press

3:10 pm The President departs Detroit, Michigan en route Andrews Air Force Base
Detroit Metro Wayne County Airport
Open Press

4:25 pm The President arrives at Andrews Air Force Base
Travel Pool Coverage

4:40 pm The President arrives at the White House
South Lawn
Open Press

Friday, July 30, 2010 News headlines

Yahoo news headlines, 10.49am eastern time

Top stories
--Recovery loses speed as consumers turn cautious (AP)
AP - The recovery lost momentum in the spring as growth slowed to a 2.4 percent pace, its most sluggish showing in nearly a year and too weak to drive down unemployment.
--July the deadliest month of Afghan war for US (AP)
--Dudley to outline BP plans to help Gulf recover (AP)
--Firefighters attack river of flame northeast of LA (AP)
--Obama to sell auto bailout good news in Michigan (AP)
--Arizona sheriff not relenting after court ruling (AP)

--Basketball Player Lorenzen Wright Found Dead | 97 Votes
Former Cleveland Cavaliers player Lorenzen Wright, who had been missing for 10 days, was found dead in Southeast Memphis. His body was discovered near a wooded area just outside of the city. Wright had been missing since July 19th,...
--Reports: Jennifer Lopez Tapped As New 'American Idol' Judge | 69 Votes
--Judge in Arizona decision is well versed in immigration cases | 56 Votes
--S.E.C. Charges Billionaire Dallas Brothers With Securities Fraud | 45 Votes
--Redskins' Haynesworth crossed the wrong guy (Yahoo! Sports) | 130 Votes
--When a Hospital Is Bad for You | 60 Votes

Local News (Los Angelles, CA)
--Judges lineup in flux as Ellen DeGeneres leaves 'American Idol' (Los Angeles Times)
--Former physician sentenced to 25 years in prison for improper prescriptions (Los Angeles Times)
--Disney sells Miramax to investor for $660 million (Los Angeles Daily News)
--Dudley to outline BP plans to help Gulf recover (Los Angeles Daily News)
--1,000 Homes Evacuated As Crown Fire Spreads (CBS 2 Los Angeles)
--Ellen DeGeneres Out As 'American Idol' Judge (CBS 2 Los Angeles)

--Peas 'I Gotta Feeling' hits 6M download mark (AP)
AP - The Black Eyed Peas have more proof of the ubiquity of "I Gotta Feeling."
--Sandra Bullock wants out of Gulf restoration video (AP)
--Disney sells Miramax to investor for $660 million (AP)
--Source: J-Lo close to deal for `American Idol' (AP)
--Box Office Preview: 'Inception' vs. the 'Schmucks' (AP)
--In Rhinebeck with Chelsea: Rocky Horror, cows (AP)

--Redskins' Haynesworth fails test again (AP)
--Phils acquire Oswalt, Padres get Tejada (AP)
--Orioles hire Showalter as manager (AP)
--Redskins ink No. 4 overall pick Williams (AP)
--Police: Lorenzen Wright shot to death (AP)
--Masoli accepts invite to visit Ole Miss (AP)

Officials: Floods kill at least 430 in Pakistan (AP)
AP - The death toll from three days of flooding in Pakistan reached at least 430 on Friday, as rains bloated rivers, submerged villages, and triggered landslides.
--25 dead as forest fires rage across Russia (AP)
--US senator hopes to quiz UK witnesses on Lockerbie (AP)
--Saudi, Syrian leaders visit Lebanon amid tension (AP)
--US expert: China oil spill far bigger than stated (AP)
--Palestinians Hold to Preconditions for Talks with Israel (

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Michael Savage headlines, Friday, July 30, 2010

Headlines from Savage's website, which is an aggregate news site. Friday, 1.03 am eastern time.

--Obama hides behind old leftist's skirts -- 1st president in history to stoop to daytime TV
(New York Post) President Obama said yesterday he had a good reason for sitting down with the gabby ladies of the late-morning chatterfest ...

--Arizona appeals ruling on law amid protests, arrests
(Fox News) Arizona asked an appeals court to lift a judge's order blocking most of the state's immigration law as the city of Phoenix filled with protesters ...

--Jan Brewer builds her national brand
(Politico) The fact that Brewer has developed a national profile in such a short period of time is a testament to the fury surrounding the state's new immigration law ...

--Ethics unveils 13 Rangel charges
(Politico) A scathing House ethics report charges that Rep. Charles Rangel, an iconic New York powerbroker, violated 13 ethics and federal regulations covering public officials ...

--Bank reforms to pinch consumer credit
(Washington Times) Many predict that provisions to force banks to lower their fees for debit card services will boomerang once again and result in less credit available for consumers ...

--Unemployed woman at Obama podium convicted of drug fraud
(WAHU-TV, Virginia) Macko stood next to the president of the United States as his example of the need to extend jobless benefits ...

--Obama pick got $900,000 after Citigroup bailout
(Washington Times) White House officials declined to discuss the compensation, saying only that Mr. Lew is the right person to lead the Office of Management and Budget ...

--Bloomberg: U.S. needs more immigrants, not fewer
(WNYW-TV, New York) New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has strong feelings about immigration and the controversial Arizona law ...

--Obama calls African-Americans a 'mongrel people'
(The Hill) President Obama waded into the national race debate in an unlikely setting and with an unusual choice of words ...

--Judge: Saggy pants butt-ugly but legal
(New York Post) You have the right to look ridiculous. A Bronx judge has thrown out a summons issued against a Bronx man for wearing saggy pants ...

--Report: ABC executive resigns amid sex-harassment probe
(Reuters) Sources said the alleged incidents involved several women, including some executives and on-air talent ...

--Police: Woman admits to killing 8 babies
(CNN) French prosecutors said they charged a woman with murder after she admitted giving birth to and smothering eight babies over a 17-year period ...

--Shirley Sherrod says she'll sue Andrew Breitbart
(CBS News) Ousted Agriculture Department employee Shirley Sherrod says she will sue a conservative blogger who posted an edited video of her making racially tinged remarks ...

--Empires fall abruptly, and America is on the brink
(The Australian) There comes a moment when complex systems "go critical." A very small trigger can set off a phase transition from a benign equilibrium to a crisis ...

--'Will you wish Barack a happy birthday with me?'
( Michelle Obama's request for birthday wishes for her husband links to a donation page ...

Dumbth: The Lost Art of Thinking, by Steve Allen

Any of my readers over the age of 40 will surely recognize the name of Steve Allen. He was one of the first hosts of The Tonight Show, before Johnny Carson took it over and made it his own. He hosted a PBS series called Meeting of the Minds in which people from history met in a round-table to discuss the issues of the present day from their own perspective.

And he wrote several books, one of which was Dumbth. It was first published in 1991, and expanded in 1998. 22 years ago.

The stuff he talks about in 1998 has not changed today. If anything, it's worse.

"In late October 1997 a report was released that showed that only 26 percent of 4th graders and 18 percent of 12th graders could be described as proficient in science, and only 3 percent could be said to have advanced knowledge. 67 percent of Hispanic high school seniors and 77 percent of African-Americans scored below the basic level, which refers to such things as the ability to identify ice as the solid form of water."

In his introduction, he railed against teenagers using "you know" and "like" every other word (I wonder what he'd think of today when they are more likely to use a four letter word every other word.)

Also in his intro, he pointed out a feeature on a Feb 15, 1983 NBC Newscast. A test had been given to a class of students at the University of Miami...(all of them caucasian). 42% of the class of 100 students didn't know where London, England was. Several thoughrt Quebec was in Canada. One student believed the Falkland Islands were off the coast of England. Greenland was mistaken for Iceland. Half of them didn't know where Baja, California was. 8% of the students couldn't place Miami, Florida - where they lived! - on a map.

One could say that it was the American education system failing these students, but really, was it? Every university has a library, every high schoool has a library, every little town (well, most towns) have libraries. Admittedly computers and the nternet weren't really widespread until the 1990s, but libraries certainly were. Anyone who had any curiousity at all could have gone to their library and done some self-educating...

Anyway, Allen presented "101 ways to reason better and improve your mind." I will share one a day. (Just the basics, for anything else, buy the book! Still available at Amazon via kindle or print.)

One thing about this is... do you think you need to reason better and improve your mind? (Or to help your children to do so?) Many people don't realize that they aren't as well educated as they might be, or don't care. I'm blanking on the term...there's a technical phrase for it.... a college had run a study about it.... argghhh. It's gone. And I didn't bookmark the page or write down the phrase (I only found out about it myself a couple of days ago. And there's an illustration for you. I knew I'd forget it if I wrote it down, I've forgotten things in a similar manner a dozen times, but after a dozen times I still make the same mistake....ah me.) If any of my readers can help me out, drop me a line!

Anyway, starting tomorrow, one way a day, to help you reason better and improve your mind.

July 29: VP Biden's schedule


9:45 am The Vice President meets with Senator Lindsey Graham, Senator Jon Kyl, and Senator Joe Lieberman
The White House
Closed Press

12:35 pm The President and the Vice President have lunch
Private Dining Room
Closed Press

1:30 pm The Vice President discusses the administration’s consumer protection agenda and the importance of consumer protection to middle-class families
The White House |
Federal Trade Commission Chairman Jon Leibowitz will announce a new rule to protect consumers of debt relief services at a Middle Class Task Force event at the White House
Pooled TV, Open to Correspondents

4:00 pm The Vice President meets with Earl Devaney, Chairman of the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board
The White House
Closed Press

5:00 pm The Vice President swears in the Broadcasting Board of Governors
Eisenhower Executive Office Building
Closed Press

July 29: President Obama's schedule


10:05 am The President delivers a major education reform speech at the National Urban League 100th Anniversary Convention
Washington Convention Center

The President will deliver a major education reform speech at the National Urban League 100th Anniversary Convention at the Washington Convention Center. The President will discuss how his signature Race to the Top program and other initiatives are driving education reform across the country and focusing the nation on the goal of preparing students for college and careers. He will highlight the unprecedented support for and adoption of common standards by a majority of states already, and the Administration’s commitment to develop the next generation of high-quality assessments benchmarked to common standards. The President’s speech will focus on the dramatic reforms that states, school districts, schools and teachers unions have undertaken over the past 18 months, including steps to improve teacher effectiveness and transform persistently low-performing schools.
Open Press

11:10 am The President meets with his national security team for his monthly meeting on Afghanistan and Pakistan
Situation Room |
The Vice President
Hillary Clinton, Secretary of State
Robert Gates, Secretary of Defense
Rahm Emanuel, Chief of Staff
General James Jones, National Security Advisor
Tom Donilon, Deputy National Security Advisor
John Brennan, Homeland Security and Counterterrorism Advisor
Ambassador Susan Rice, U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations
David Gompert, Acting Director of National Intelligence
Leon Panetta, Director, Central Intelligence Agency
Rajiv Shah, Administrator, USAID
James Steinberg, Deputy Secretary of State
Jack Lew, Deputy Secretary of State
Admiral Michael Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
General James Cartwright, Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
Richard Holbrooke, Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan
Doug Lute, Coordinator for Afghanistan and Pakistan
Mary DeRosa, Deputy White House Counsel and National Security Staff Legal Advisor
General David Petraeus (via videoconference)
Lt Gen John Allen (via videoconference)
Ambassador Karl Eikenberry (via videoconference)
Ambassador Anne Patterson (via videoconference)
Closed Press

12:35 pm The President and the Vice President have lunch
Private Dining Room
Closed Press

1:45 pm The President receives the Presidential Daily Briefing
Oval Office
Closed Press

4:50 pm The President signs the Tribal Law and Order Act
East Room
Open Press

6:00 pm The President signs the Supplemental Appropriations Act
Oval Office
Pool Spray

7:05 pm The President attends a DNC finance event
Private Residence
Closed Press