Hit & Run

A.M. Links: Charlie Rangel, Orrin Hatch Survive Primary Challenges, Assad Says Syria in "Real State of War," Obama the Favorite in Alien Invasion


  • inside job

    Charlie Rangel survived a primary challenge in a redrawn district in New York City, virtually securing a 22nd term in Congress. Senator Orrin Hatch survived a primary challenge as well, and will likely become the Senate Pro Tempore and 3rd in line to the presidency if he wins in November. Hatch once ran for president, briefly, in 2000.

  • Bashar Assad swore in a new cabinet, telling them they "live in a real state of war from all angles" and that "all policies and all sides and all sectors need to be directed at winning this war." Syria's been embroiled in violence since protests there first started about sixteen months ago, during the so-called Arab Spring.
  • A Louisiana businessman will likely plead guilty to trying to bribe an elected official believed to be the former mayor Ray Nagin.
  • A patent dispute is keeping Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1 off U.S. store shelves for now; Apple argues the tablet looks "indistinguishable" from an iPad. Except that it's obviously not an iPad?
  • CNN registered its lowest primetime ratings in its 21 year history in the last quarter.
  • A National Geographic Channel survey found that 79 percent of Americans think the government's keeping secrets about UFOs and 55 percent think something like the men in black are real.  The survey found 36 percent of Americans believed UFOs existed and one in ten thinks they've spotted one. 22 percent of Americans would befriend an alien if they met one while 2 percent would try to inflict bodily harm. By a nearly two to one margin they think Barack Obama would do better in an alien invasion. Paul Krugman, of course, thinks we'd all be better for one.
  • The BCS finally approved a seeded playoff system. Two bowls will act as semi-final games with a national championship to follow. The new system will start in the 2014 college football season and last 12 years.

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  1. Charlie Rangel survived a primary challenge in a redrawn district in New York City, virtually securing a 22nd term in Congress.

    A plurality of voters get the representative they deserve.

    1. and Team Red has decided that 36 years of Hatch is not enough. I am sure nothing could go wrong with people turning elective office into a career path.

    2. He may not be the hero they deserve to need to want, but maybe he's the hero they want to deserve to need.

      1. Like Hamlet!

  2. CNN registered its lowest primetime ratings in its 21 year history in the last quarter.

    It's nosy to ask why.

    1. We already know. It's from "sucking the ballz of the state with gleeful abandon".

      HT: Jesus H Christ

    2. They need to acquire a Palin.
      Maybe Trapp is availible, or Trakk.

      1. They don't want Palin kind of ratings!

  3. Somalia's Prisons: The War on Terror's Latest Front

    The U.S. wants out of the international jailing business. So what happens when we catch a terrorist abroad? In Somalia, they end up in a living hell.

    1. wait a minute...wasn't Somalia about roadz? So, you're saying it is branching out.

    2. Welcome to the world of unintentional consequences. The people who went to GUTMO were not going to be let go. And they were better off there than most other places. But oh well, lets not send any of them there so instead the President either kills them or sends them to some third world hell hole.

      1. This is actually what I predicted. We were never going to bring these guys onto US soil. So if we can't hold them, we turn them over to someone else who's willing to take them.

        Anybody who is willing is, in general, going to treat these guys far, far worse than the US ever would. I called the Russians or the Egyptians. I can't imagine what a prisoner rendered to either of those countries under a black program is going to endure.

  4. Sounds like one heck of a deal to me man, Wow.


    1. TIGGY!!!! TIGGY!!!!

  5. Stain of racism is finally fading in America

    I HAVE A DREAM, said Martin Luther King in 1963, that someday "on the red hills of Georgia, the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood." King was a prodigious dreamer, but even he might have found it hard to imagine that thousands of those listening to him that day would live to see a black pastor elected ? unanimously and enthusiastically ? to lead the Southern Baptist Convention.

    It was in Georgia before the Civil War that the Southern Baptist Convention had been born, in large part to ensure that black and white would never sit down together, at the table of brotherhood or anywhere else. Beginning in 1845 as a breakaway from the anti-slavery Baptist churches in the North, the Southern Baptist Convention would grow into the nation's foremost Protestant denomination ? and one of its most racist.

    1. Not if Obama loses.

      1. Flash: Proper use of "racism" in a sentence is now considered to be pedantic, according to a certain Reason commenter:

        T o n y|6.26.12 @ 9:51PM

        Using culturally stereotypical names for groups of people is racist. Your understanding of racial politics has evolved not much past the slime mold stage, and pedantically pointing to a dictionary only demonstrates that. It's complicated, and I don't expect you to understand it if you don't care about it. ... If you have to drag out a dictionary to prove you aren't racist, then you're a fucking racist.

        Conclusion: To a leftist, "racism" means whatever the fuck the leftist *wants* it to mean, especially when it scores political points by way of misusing the word.

        1. Conclusion: To a leftist, "racism" means whatever the fuck the leftist *wants* it to mean, especially when it scores political points by way of misusing the word.

          So it has joined the words "fascist", "deregulation", and "capitalist" in the leftist misuse dungeon. No surprise there.

          1. Don't forget "fair" and "access". Double plus good!

            1. "I'm going to the store to buy some milk."

              "Why do you hate Mexicans?"

  6. Bashar Assad swore in a new cabinet-

    I once swore in a new armiore I bought from Ikea. I was in there trying to assemble the shelves and those directions are impossible to follow.

    1. I have no way of confirming it, but I'm pretty sure David Carradine swore in a Thai closet.

      1. I spit coffee on my keyboard. Thanks, Q.

      2. Well played sir.

    2. and those directions are impossible to follow

      So much for the stereotype that chicks can't follow assembly directions. I find Ikea furniture (and I have lots of it) ridiculously easy to assemble.

      1. me too! You look at a picture of the end product, the parts supplied, and the instruction sheet. You then put it together and admire your spanking new piece of kit furniture and your unchipped nails

        1. The only problem is after years of buying the stuff you wind up with a pile o' allen wrenches in your junk drawer.

      2. I thought Escher did their diagrams?

        1. no no, don't exaggerate. It's all very simple and straightforward and you end up with a perfectly straightforward bookcase

      3. Pictograms can be fun. Even more fun was getting a rise out of a former gf whose mother was Swedish. They do not like to hear Ikea called "Swedish Walmart".

    3. I swore at an ottoman once. Does that count?

      1. racist!

      2. Did he swear back?

        1. Only after I used him as a footstool.

  7. Yo, fuck Kruggymandias.

    1. I saw that this morning. There was some women talking about how beautiful the hills were around her home and how it is such a shame the neighborhood is gone. I feel bad for anyone losing their house. But those hills burn down every few years. Sure it is great to live around them right up until they catch fire. People seem to think nature owes them something.

      1. when I lived in Boulder back in '90, the northern hills had a fire. Afterward it was a black charred landscape. But a year later and you could hardly notice.

        1. This year has already been pretty bad. One fire over 87k acres and still going, another near CO Springs, and another started in Boulder last night.

          1. OMG IT'S GLOBAL WARMING!!!!!!

            1. Well, it is pretty hot near the fires.

              More seriously, the temps have been in the 90s all week, and are forecast to be in the 90s the rest of the week. But even those temps don't break the record temps so take it for what it is worth.

              1. And a few weeks previous it was in the 40s at 8000ft in the mountains just west of Denver.

                1. Last Sunday morning it was 39 when I woke up in Vail.

              2. I live in Denver. It's been 105 degrees for three days. Hottest it's ever been here.

                1. Yeah, me too. And biking to work this morning was miserable.

          2. I was living in San Diego during the Cedar Fire. 280,000 acres toasted in just a few days. It was surreal.

            1. I think that's the one where all the houses across the street from my parents' former residence got torched. Nice neighborhood. Lucky Ma n Pa weren't there anymore.

        2. when people do not pro-actively do controlled burns to thin out the underbrush, nature has this way of doing the job for them.

          1. Or get a thatching rake.

          2. Or, zod forbid, a reasonable logging plan.

          3. when people do not pro-actively do controlled burns

            ...and sometime when they do controlled burns. The North Fork fire started out as a controlled burn that quickly turned into an uncontrolled burn. Of course that's what happens when you have unseasonably high temperatures combined with 50+ mph winds and some moron decides "let's do the scheduled control burn anyway". Thanks Forest Service!

          4. Actually, only the state is allowed to do controlled burns here. And they're not very good at it. Since a "controlled" burn is what started our first major fire of the year and got one lady killed, I can only assume that our wise and not-short-sighted-at-all state government will ban controlled burns entirely. And Tony will continue to praise their infinite wisdom.

            1. Or, you know, what Loki said.

            2. The forest service thought they had the controlled burn extinguished. It wasn't.

      2. I feel bad for anyone losing their house.

        I get the impression from the rest of your post that you're secretly happy about it. Nature-loving hippies deserve what they get, and all that.

        1. I don't think she was a hippy. And I am sure her house was nice. I feel bad for her but really more because she is stupid.

          1. stupid

            Just because she lives in the mountains doesn't mean she is stupid, especially if she understands the risks. Sounds like she was simply saying it was sad that the neighborhood burned. Nothing stupid about that.

            1. I don't think you understand John's point. If you live near the Gulf Coast and get wiped out by a hurricane, you're stupid. Likewise if you live in California and get crushed by an earthquake. Also stupid. And if you live in Tornado Alley and a twister takes away your trailer...yup! Stupid! Stupid for living where "nature" is not always benevolent.

              1. Stupid for living where "nature" is not always benevolent.

                So by this reasoning, anywhere you live is stupid. If you mean living in dangerous areas and being unaware of the risks involved or thinking nothing bad will ever happen, then yea, that would be considered stupid. But I don't think that was what she was saying.

                1. So by this reasoning, anywhere you live is stupid.

                  Yeah, according to John, if you give him the benefit of logical consistency. But I think it's simpler than that. John felt the need to ridicule a lot of people he doesn't know who have just suffered devastating loses. Why? That's probably best left between him and his mental health professional.

                  1. I think you're being unfair to John.

                    There are places to live with relatively low levels of risk, and places to live with relatively high levels of risk.

                    Before the state started subsidizing insurance for the very risky places, fewer people lived there.

                    It's like we woke up after WWII and said, "Hey, I think the country would be better off if we induced lots of people to live in flood plains and on beaches in hurricane zones and on fault lines. Let's get that done!"

                    And when one of those places goes, I am not really that unhappy. I'm grimly pleased, in a Randian kind of way.

              2. There are ways to mitigate those risks. For example, I live in the Gulf Coast. Some house sites and construction methods are much more susceptible to hurricane damage than others, and that information is not hard to find. So not choosing wisely is kinda stupid.

                In the same way, if you live in an area known to have periodic wildfires, and build a house way out in the hills surrounded by brush, well, you are exposing yourself to higher risk than say, if you live in the town center.

                1. This. Besides, I think most people would agree that if your house is built on the beach, very few would have any sympathy when it's wiped clean off the map by Mudda Nature.

                  But yeah, pretty much every part of the globe has some sort of natural force that can easily kill you.

                  1. Eh. Floridians seem pretty sanguine about the fact that their taxes pay for beach houses to be rebuilt. Citizens Insurance -- the state owned insurance agency -- while intended to be the insurer of last resort, is the only insurance agent who will insure most beach properties for any premium the Dept of Insurance considers reasonable. So come on down to Disney, your bed tax keeps my parents' beach house insurance subsidized.

                    1. while intended to be the insurer of last resort, is the only insurance agent who will insure most beach properties for any premium the Dept of Insurance considers reasonable.

                      So, it's the insurer of first and only resort.

                      Disincentives. How the fuck do they work?

          2. John, fire insurance is not subsidized. Based on where that lady lived, she probably had it, and will be made whole except for any sentimental stuff that she was not able to take with her when she evacuated. So she chose to live somewhere that had a very slight risk of fire, and she got unlucky. Fuck off, and stop being a dick.

            1. She had more than a slight risk of fire. Fires happen every year. If you live in a forest, it will eventually burn down. That is what forests do.

              Fuck off and stop being stupid and thinking that the world owes us living in high risk places.

              1. Being sad about having houses burn down is not a request for subsidy. It's being sad.

              2. Fires happen every year, but a fire hadn't happened in that particular location in over 50 years. It's not a high risk place. Even living up in the mountains, surrounded by forest, the chances of a particular house being burned down are extremely low.

                1. So, are you saying that a person whose house burns down is not necessarily "stupid," as John insists? That life is not risk-free? That, sometimes, regardless of one's precautions and intentions, shit happens? That attitude takes all the joy out of schadenfreude.

        2. First, Pip from the forge, who the fuck are you?

          Second, a sibling of mine has a house just a four miles from the fires, who writes code for a living and is not a hippy.

          1. I'm Pip from the forge, but it's not my real name.

      3. Seriously John, You're a fucking cocksucker.

        1. Maybe so, but at least he's not stupid! His house hasn't burnt down. Yet.

    2. Maybe I'm stupid, but wouldn't the lower oxygen levels make it harder for fires?

      1. this is "new fire" - invented by the Koch Brothers to inflict maximum damage.

        1. A more libertarian fire, less dependent on oxygen handouts from Big Atmosphere.

        2. Charles "the Imp" Koch is paying the local alchemists to brew it nonstop up until the elections.

        3. And, of course imported. Technically, its "fuego nuevo."

          1. put this little sub thread in amber...its classic just like the greatest MST3k episodes are...

      2. Updrafts, convection, etc. Massive forest fires have no trouble finding enough oxygen to rage on.

    3. Lucky me, I work in Colorado Springs. Fortunately though I live an hour to the North north in a suburb south of Denver. The visibility wasn't too bad on the drive in this morning, and as long as you stay inside as much as possible it's not too bad, although as I type this I can smell a slight hint of smoke even though I'm inside an air conditioned building.

      Last night I-25 Southbound was shut down just past the AF Academy, so I was hoping maybe I wouldn't be able to get to work today, but no such luck.

    4. Yeah, it is pretty fucking scary living here.

  8. The new system will start in the 2014 college football season and last 12 years.

    So maybe in 2085 players will be paid a little?

    1. Because $32,790 per year isnt compensation.

      [That, btw, is the average tuition/room/board cost for a 4-year school in the 2009-10 school year]

      1. As an aside, I find it funny that this means than Duke and Vandy and etc are compensating their athletes better than Alabama or Florida St or etc.

        1. Alabama, Florida St., etc. are compensating their athletes as much. They're just also compensating the rest of their students, especially in-state ones, more, paid by taxpayers.

          (Though a huge fraction at Duke and Vandy get financial aid as well.)

          1. Something like 98% of the in-state students at FL public universities are on Bright Futures scholarships, which means that their tuition and fees are subsidized up to 100% based on their HS grades. The other 2% are probably scholarship atheletes.

            1. Hope scholarship works similarly in GA.

              It has led to parents who had saved up money for college giving a big chunk of it to their kid who stays in state and gets the free ride. So much so, that in Athens, GA, fake boobs are referred to as "Hope Scholarships".

              1. fake boobs are referred to as "Hope Scholarships".

                And not as hideous abominations, unfortunately.

                WHY, REBECA LINARES, WHY??

                1. What a delightful skill-set!

            2. and you can, no doubt, be sure that there is no HS grade inflation in either FL or GA. No, sir; those schollys are totally earned.

              1. The Hope has actually improved things academically in GA, at least for uga and GT.

                GT marginally, as a few students who might have paid to go to MIT or Cal Tech, stay home and take the free ride instead. Back in the 80s, GT struggled to find enough in state students, the admission standards for in-state and out-of-state (like me!) students was noticeably different. Now, not so much.

                Georgia, on the other hand, has had a massive improvement in freshman SAT scores. As much as I hate to admit it, its a decent academic school now.

              1. PL: If you only count HS graduates going directly to college, it may be higher. My father is a community college guy and he says "essentially all students" at UF, FSU, and UM are now Bright Futures. It is mostly a result of the fact that there are something like 15000 freshmen slots at these 3 universities for in-state students and you can't get a better deal than "free". I think a B average gets you 75% coverage or something. So everyone graduating from a Florida HS that can get into college is eligible. Between that and GI Bill students, I think I might have been the only in-state student paying for my own college at FSU. I can't imagine how this is sustainable, because these schools are now 100% funded by the legislature, which makes the tuition increase kabuki they've been doing for the last several years a bit clearer. It has nothing to do at the University level with how much students have to come up with out of their own pockets.

                1. I think it's 75% for a 3.0 or better; 100% for a 3.5 or better.

                  Back in the late 80s, I was paying something like $27/hour at UF (inclusive of fees, I'm pretty sure). That's without any direct subsidy for my tuition.

                2. I can't imagine how this is sustainable, because these schools are now 100% funded by the legislature, which makes the tuition increase kabuki they've been doing for the last several years a bit clearer.

                  I'm pretty sure the Bright Futures scholarships in Florida are paid through the lottery, or at least a lot of it is. I believe that was the case when I was attending UCF 5 years ago. Could be wrong though, and I (and any taxpayers) definitely overpaid for my degree.

                  1. UCF? Were you able to complete your undergrad degree in less than 6 years?

                  2. Say, while you're here, my son is majoring in mechanical engineering. He's at community college now, but next year he'll be transferring to a university. Seems like UF is the first option, but I'm hearing that UCF may actually be the number two (overall) engineering school in the state. Is that true?

                    Before anyone says anything, the only option is in-state--Daddy's not paying out-of-state or private school tuition with pre-paid accounts and three more kids.

                    1. UCF has a great engineering program, and even with NASA losing the Shuttle program, there are a number of internship opportunities in Orlando (Lockheed-Martin, Boeing). I can't speak too much about Florida's programs (other than Gators fans being the biggest douches in the southeast), but UCF has continued to grow their engineering program among other things and I don't see any sign of them slowing down soon.

                      And to BP, I finished in 4 and a half, with one semester used to study abroad (or two!) in Japan. So it can be done.

                    2. I'm not talking sports. I don't advocate UF except to the extent the school is generally the best in the state. But when you get down to specific majors, you have to dig deeper. Until we started looking at schools, I thought USF was a good option. Now I'm not so sure.

                      I almost did a year at Kansai Gaidai in Osaka. UF had an exchange program with the school, all at UF's tuition. You could live with a Japanese family, too. Always wished I had done that. I took a semester of Japanese and everything.

                    3. Oh I didn't mean anything by that, other than what I said. Obviously there is a far greater concern as to the school for your son than the sports programs. But I can't speak for UF other than what I've heard: they do have a lot of good programs.

                      I studied anthropology at UCF, and that is better at UF by far, however a few of my professors had studied directly under some of the "legends" of forensic anthropology. But what I said about UCF's engineering program(s) is still true. It continues to grow and offers a lot of local internship/externship opportunities. I have a number of friends who have graduated with engineering degrees, and it was by no means easy for them (I think most engineering students have to use all 3 of their grade forgiveness to retake some of the more difficult classes) but at least anecdotally it has prepared them well for the FE exam when they graduate.

                      I wish you and him luck in your search, and if you have any questions or want me to ask around, feel free to shoot me an email (address in name)

                    4. UCF is a good choice. I wouldn't recommend my alma mater for ME if he can go to UCF or UF instead.

                    5. I've heard that FSU has a strong physics program. Is that still true?

                    6. Yes. We've got the biggest magnets in the world, too. So there are a number of high energy and superconductor projects going on that are top flight. We also have some bad-ass NMR, sorry MRI, stuff going in the biomedical engineering program.

      2. That is $32,790 TAX FREE compensation.

        1. I can assure you that most student athletes are not on a full ride...more likely they are getting 10-15% of the tuition/room and board (~32970). Not bad and not that there aren't other perks. But not free education.

      3. No one makes them go there. If they don't like it, play baseball where you can sign pro out of high school.

        1. Why are you responding to me?

          1. I was just agreeing with you.

            1. Yeah, got that. But it was a response to guy I was responding to, not to me.

      4. Fair point.

        Slight shift: I assume that's the average cost per year? That is mind-blowing.

        1. Yep, googled for average cost of college education, and got a chart from early 80s up until 2010.

          And I see I misread it. 32k is private. For All it is $21,189.

      5. I don't care if the schools ever allow the paying of student athletes, but the NCAA's ban on any form of outside earnings (err...excessive outside earnings) has to be stopped. A decent portion of scholarship athletes have their prime earning years reduced to a $30,000 salary because of it.

        I also don't really see a problem with some booster spending his money to attract more talent; it doesn't take any money out of the taxpayers', alumni, or tuition-paying students' pockets after all.

        1. *I don't care if the schools are ever allowed to pay student athletes*

          What a terrible sentence. I need an editor.

          1. Indifferent I am, to schools ever paying student athletes?

            1. Yeah, I just think the original version reads terribly. Writing was never my strong suit, though.

              1. I'm a terrible writer too, unless I'm writing a brief or something similar. Otherwise I just put it out there and hope for the best.

        2. My grandfather was captain of the Iowa basketball team for two years in the earl 1930s - then he played semi-pro baseball for a summer and got $50 to help support himself and his new bride. Needless to say, the NCAA came down on him like a ton of regulation books. They had their priorities during the Great Depression alrighty.

        3. 18-21 is not your prime earning years.

          1. It is if you're a good college athlete in a money sport with minimal pro prospects.

  9. What Good Is a GOP Senate?
    Montana Republican Denny Rehberg sells out on Medicare reform.

    Will it matter if Republicans take over the Senate this November? Not much if you judge by the TV ads trashing Paul Ryan and the House budget reforms, courtesy of Republican Senate candidate Denny Rehberg.

    The six-term Montana Congressman is gunning for Jon Tester, in what is one the GOP's best chances to defeat a Democratic incumbent. The Montana Republican Party has been running 30-second TV spots touting Mr. Rehberg as an "independent thinker," and neither word is true. The ad goes on to note (with a glint) that "Rehberg refused to support a Republican budget plan that could harm the Medicare program so many of Montana's seniors rely on," and in "a partisan town"?presumably not Billings?"Rehberg refuses to toe the party line."

    1. Fuck him. Better off having Tester so at least we know who to blame.

      1. I live in MT. One is as bad as the other.

        There will be no liberty until the people actually want to be free.

    2. What's with all these links with no pictures of hot chicks? I don't come to Reason for news articles!

      1. No shit - I get my news from Playboy. Reason is for TA.

        Speaking of which...I haven't been around too much (102 fever will do that), but I haven't seen mention of a certain one-season sci fi/western show in a while.

        1. You mean Red Dwarf?

          1. You mean Red Dwarf?

            Dear sweet Jeebus, that show was execrable. Well, the first half of the first two episodes were, I couldn't make it past that.

            1. it got better. Way better. Then it got worse again.

            2. Yeah, that's one I've never been able to take the plunge on. There seems to be a serious subset of Dr. Who fans that love that show, so that immediately makes me doubt any and all claims of it being good.

              1. It wasn't really sci-fi, more like an Odd Couple-style sitcom in space - uptight prissypants stuck with a slob. The first two or so seasons are a bit ropey, but then it really hit its stride before seasons 78 turned it to shit

                Oh, and the laugh track sucked.


        2. Ampersanded!!!

          1. You got a bracket in your link, J dub.

            1. That's the squirrels, not me.

          2. Great show. I have that on DVD.

  10. ...during the so-called Arab Spring.

    Arab Spring gets a "so-called" now? When you've lost Reason...

  11. Obama's piecemeal defense of Obamacare

    The latest turns in Obama stump speech suggest how he will defend Obamacare should the Court strike down the law's individual mandate. Obama and Democrats front-loaded Obamacare with popular features, like the ban on pre-existing conditions, that have already gone into effect, while putting off universal coverage, with its mandates and subsidies and Medicare cuts and taxes, until 2014. Should the mandate be struck down, Obama will focus on preserving those other features. And if the entire law is struck down, Obama will likely press Congress to re-instate those features.. On the stump, Obama is defending Obamacare as if it were a small package of reforms, rather than the law that actually passed.

    1. He lies his ass off about everything, why would Obamacare be any different.

      1. This is why tomorrow is going to be great. Two co-equal branches of the federal government are going to bitch-slap the third.

  12. The 'truth' about FF.

    the poor widdle ATF was just doing what if could with the limited resources and lax laws on the books. We should feel sorry for them, not angry. They never intentionally let guns fall into the hands of criminals...

    1. Really? What law required ATF officials to pressure gun dealers into making sales they would otherwise had refused to make, after the dealers went to the ATF with their concerns that the people were straw dealers?

      And at any rate, as grenadewalker indicates, it wasn't that prosecutors didn't have the authority to try cases (and as we all know, if a prosecutors wants your ass in jail, they can find some bullshit law that you broke). They just chose not to. You can say that that isn't ATF's fault, but that just moves the blame to DOJ, and closer to Eric Holder.

      Somebody needs to keep a hack database, a sort of global incif, so that I never have to read anything by this fucking administration toady again.

    2. Indeed, a six-month Fortune investigation reveals that the public case alleging that Voth and his colleagues walked guns is replete with distortions, errors, partial truths, and even some outright lies.

      Perhaps Fortune can persuade the administration to give Issa what he wants.

    3. The one thing about the article that really bothered me was the author's reference to "minor penalties" in the law. Why not report the actual sentences in the actual code and let me make up my own mind?

      Straw purchase? Ten years max. Sentencing guidelines, usually 2-3. False statements on the federal forms? up to five years, usually at least one year by the sentencing guidelines.

      Doing 1 to 10 years in prison isn't "light" to me.

      1. You have to keep in mind that the CNN flack writing this probably personally believes that all private gun ownership should net you life in prison or something similarly hilarious.

    4. That story is so rank it deserves its own Reason post. It can be a trend story about how CNN is fully transformed into a fascist propaganda outlet.

    5. Jesus Christ.

      CNN should change their fucking name to izvestia.

    6. Not clicking on it. Is this different from the Granderson slurping from yesterday?

  13. Ever wondered how often old French masturbate?

    The mayor of Cannes has stopped a survey on the sexual practices of old people living in nursing homes in the southern costal town, after interviewees complained the questions were too intrusive...

    "The important thing in the whole project is that people start talking about themselves."


    1. Wouldn't it be so wonderful if you were to touch yourself!

      1. Jesus, an Australian woman has a post on masturbation, and you don't post this? Disappoint.

        1. I'm afraid to click while at work.

          I assume it's the Divinyls?

    2. I thought the city was named Cannes, not Cann't. They can't even do a sex survey properly. And they can't even pull off a project whose objective is got get French people talking about themselves.

      I, for one, can't stand being in ignorance of how often the old people of Cannes "butter their baguettes."

      1. Well, M. Le Mayor, if I wanted a dildo, I'd come by your office. Because you are a dildo.

      2. "And they can't even pull off a project"

        I see what you did there.

    3. Ain't no party like a French lemon party...

  14. The BCS finally approved a seeded playoff system.

    After tomorrow, this might turn out to be Obama's legacy achievement.

    1. I wonder if anyone has Robc on suicide watch. The system pretty much screws anyone not in the SEC, Big 10, Big 12 or Pac 12.

      1. It is amazing that if there was a way to take a screwed up system and make it worse; they did it.

        No one is going to be happy about this, except maybe the SEC, Big10, Big12 PAC16.

        1. People, because most of them think the world began right around the year 2000, forget that the idea of any but a few powers contending in college football is a product of the last 30 years. For most of the sports' history there were very few bowls and only a few big powers ever mattered. People forget how truly shocking the rise of FSU and Miami in the 1980s was. It was unthinkable that two nobody independent schools could become top teams. Really the playoff is just a return to normalcy after 30 years of chaos.

          1. Playoffs are going to be good. They should expand it to 16 teams quickly.

            1. Good Zod, no. When was the last time the #16 team had even a remotely colorable argument to be the best team in the country?

              1. Good Zod, no. When was the last time the #16 team had even a remotely colorable argument to be the best team in the country?

                Let the playoff decide that. If they win out, that is the only argument they need.

                1. while we're at it, let's cut the regular season to six games and start the tournament mid-October. #16 usually has in the neighborhood of 3-4 losses and the only thing that has historically separated college football from all other sports is that the regular season matters. A lot. The bigger the playoff field, the less relevant the regular season is.

                  1. Like, no non-conference, maybe one for rivalries like Clemson-South Carolina, but otherwise straight into conference play then the tourney?

                    1. I'm just being a smart-ass. The only certainty in this is that a four-team field is only the first step. It will grow.

                  2. No, keep the season as is, but a three game playoff (with 4 teams) is retarded. What happens if you have five teams with zero losses, or a strong fifth with only 1 loss? I guess my biggest gripe is the small size of the playoff field. What would be the ideal size??

                    1. 8? 10 with top 2 getting a bye?

                2. Same argument applies to the #25 team, right? Or any team in "Others receiving votes." Or any team.

                  For the regular season to have any meaning, it needs to separate those teams which have demonstrated sufficient proficiency from those that haven't. A #16 team hasn't.

                  If "let the playoffs decide" is supposed to be some kind of solution, play 3-4 games to try to determine seeding then have a 8-9 week single-elimination tournament involving all of 1A, or bowl subdivision, or whatever they are calling it this year.

                  1. I favor a 16-team, because that allows for all conference champs.

                    10 champs (now that WAC is dead) + 6 at large.

                    Play first two rounds on 2nd and 3rd saturday of December on school sites (1-8 host week 1, 1-4 week 2). Semis on NYD, Finals a week later.

                    Top 2-3 teams effectively have byes, playing winners of Sun Belt and MAC and etc. Anyone who has a reasonable claim at the title gets in, without going too deep. And all proven champions get in. Just like the crappy 15/16 seeds in basketball.

                    1. Not bad, I could get behind 16 and it works for FCS so no reason it couldn't work for the big boys.

                    2. Seconded.

                    3. Thanks robc. That is my exact thinking as well.

                    4. that pretty well ends the bowl games then. At least the ones that would be interesting to watch.

      2. Bullshit. The ACC is in fine shape for this.

        1. They are done. The Big 12 is going to go to 12 teams and a conference championship and there is your defacto 8 team playoff. It will be very rare for any team outside of the Big 4 conferences to get into the tournament. It is also the end of the automatic BCS bid, which means that crap teams like Clemson, UCONN and Virginia Tech will no longer be able to cut the line in front of teams from the bigger conferences. The Big East and ACC just became basketball conferences.

          1. Money John, put your money on the line. Clemson and FSU have until Aug 15 to leave.

            It is also the end of the automatic BCS bid

            You need to learn to fucking read. It doesnt do that at all. The 6 bowls that will be sharing the championship will remain as a BCS system in the years they arent the semis. ACC is about to announce reupping of Orange Bowl deal, and its already been announced that the years the OB is a semi, the ACC champ is guaranteed a spot in another BCS bowl if the champ isnt in the playoffs.

            1. "sharing the semi-finals"

              the championship will be bid out separately. The semis will rotate amongst six bowls...Orange, Sugar, Rose, Fiesta and probably Cotton and Chik-Fil-A.

            2. It totally does that. The BCS is gone. The other bowls will now be free to invite anyone they want. The conferences will go back to the old system of contracting their champion to a single Bowl, see the new Big 12 SEC bowl at Jerry World for an example.

              Yes, the ACC can go play the winner of the Big East in the old Orange Bowl if they can get them to buy it. But it won't be called or have the cache of a BCS bowl.

              1. the Orange Bowl had cache before the BCS and it won't become the Independence Bowl without it. Some bowls have always been bigger than others, mostly depending on who played in them.

              2. The BCS is gone. The other bowls will now be free to invite anyone they want.

                Nope. They are, for some reason, keeping the BCS system around underneath the playoffs.

                Rumor is Notre Dame will be OB opponent if they reach certain # of wins, but dont make playoff. But that isnt certain yet.

                1. The announcement I saw says there will be 3 contractual BCS bowls...Rose for P12 and B1G, Champotton Bowl for SEC and BigMath, and Orange for ACC. (BigEast is toast, John is right about that).

                  Those 5 champions will be guaranteed spots in the other BCS bowls in years that their bowl is a semifinal and they dont make the playoff.

                  1. Another interesting bit announced. The 6 bowls will all play on Dec 31/Jan 1. Which means the stupid midweek/nonholiday BCS bowls are gone.

                    Which means ticket sales will improve. And football might be watchable on NYD again.

                    1. but rob,
                      it's the most wonderful time of the year. I mean, ESPN says so, so it must be true.

        2. come on, rob. The only thing that keeps teh ACC on life support is the way Big Texas keeps finding creative ways of not helping itself. Losing NE, A-M, CO, and Mizzou in two years is not good strategy.

          ACC's hope rests in two things: 1) the expansion to 8 teams that we all know is just a matter of time and 2) some program to rise beyond conference power status to become perennially national, be that FSU/Miami (again) or VA Tech.

          1. The word is Miami has decided to not invest in football anymore and will probably never be a national power again. And despite what Rob says, FSU is going to leave the conference.

            1. FSU isnt going anywhere. Their president and AD are committed to ACC.

              Aug 15th is the deadline for leaving. And the board doesnt meet again until September.

              1. Rob, they are never going to say publicly they are leaving until the moment they do. They are lying Rob.

                1. FSU isnt going anywhere.

                  Your choice, any amount up to $1000.

                  Aug 15th deadline.

                  Asked BakedPenguin how betting with me on oddball sporting possibilities works out for you.

                  1. [Ask] BakedPenguin how betting with me on oddball sporting possibilities works out for you.

                    I lowered the bar a bit on that one, though. I still doubt Tebow will have a decent NFL career as QB. We'll see.

                    1. Tebow's already been demoted to Punt Protector. Robc should give you your money back if that's what yall bet on.

            2. FSU's departure should have been to the SEC, though I get the business reasons for why the conference went with other schools. So, FSU will go...where? Big 12? Big 10? Not sure I see a FL team signing on to play November games in places like IA, WI, and other cold locales. But I could be wrong.

              1. FSU belongs in the SEC. But the SEC won't take them. Georgia keeps objecting and the SEC has decided they will only take teams like aTm and Missouri that expand their TV footprint.

                1. Florida is blocking FSU to the SEC, not Georgia.

                  One rumor is that UF, uga, USCe, and UK have a "gentlemens agreement" to block FSU, GT, CU, and Louisville.

                  1. the SEC also has business reason to block those teams - it is already in their TV markets. Adding FSU or Tech only makes sense to fans and to geography. Expanding to TX and MO was about new, and large, tv markets.

                    As it is, the exclusion of those schools does one positive thing - it ensures one out of conference game against teams not named Western Carolina or Fla Atlantic.

                    1. It also explains neither SEC or ACC taking WVU. BigMath took them and TCU out of desperation (they had to be back to 10 teams for their contract to be valid).

                      WVU is the source of all the stupid rumors. Its actually been hilarious watching the backpedaling and reframing and redefining they have done. WVU fans were totally butthurt over the ACC not inviting them. They didnt expect an SEC invite I guess.

                      The analogy Ive drawn: WVU is like the chick who hopes the QB (SEC) asks here to prom, but isnt surprised when he doesnt. But, she fully expects the boy-next-door (ACC) who she has crushed on forever to ask her. And she will be fine going with him. And then he asks that bitch she hates (Pitt) instead.

                      So now she has completely lost it and is spreading rumors and spewing hate in a completely insane manner. Also, burning couches and pooping in empty band sections.

                      [Note: the latter really happened at the Gator Bowl]

                    2. [Note: the latter really happened at the Gator Bowl]

                      the former is not infrequent, either. And it happens after wins.

                    3. I thought everyone knew about the couch burning, didnt feel the need to clarify. The other is probably rare, even amongst WVU fans.

                    4. I don't know. You're having to explain why the Big 10 is neither, so why assume folks are aware of the, ah, curious, rituals that some schools have. Then again, we cover trees in toilet paper so I may not be the best judge.

      3. Any ACC team that goes 12-1 or 13-0 will get in.

        Clemson was #5 last year until we beat them. And they started the year unranked. And pulled a Clemson starting with our game.

        I would have preferred a "top 4 conference champions" playoff, but the current standards (which arent totally set yet) will favor conference champions and favor strong SOS.

        So the SEC and BigMath are going to have to boost up their OOC schedules of face the committee leaving them out.

        I would have preferred a selection of OPEN computer algorithms over the committee approach, but at least the polls are gone.

        John has this exactly backwards. The SEC and B1G took advantage of the poll system. Take 2007 for example (crazy year, but it shows the point). The computer component had VT #1 overall. The polls pulled them down to #3 in the BCS. Ohio St, which was the only 1 loss team, had such a bad schedule that some of the computers had them #4. But the poll put them and LSU in the championship game.

        Im not saying a committee wouldnt have done the same thing that year, as LSU had trounced VT opening weekend, but in a more sane year, that awful buckeye schedule would have cost them to a committee. But the pollsters loved them.

        1. Clemson had no business being ranked in the top 20 much less the top 5. And no ACC team is going to get invited unless it goes undefeated and maybe not even then. This is all we need to know about Clemson


          And to think that VTech was probably worse last year. Those days of letting teams in because they come from an automatic bid are over.

          Forget it Rob. ACC, Big East, Mountain West are the new 1AA

          1. Money, John.

            Name an amount.

            1. What are we betting again?

              1. I think rob is betting on FSU staying in the ACC and John is betting that he has a bigger dick than everyone here.

              2. On whether John robc is right.

                About what, who the hell knows.

                1. I thought we were betting whether the ACC was in "good shape" to get into a four-team playoff, which is just a sick joke. The Big 10, Big 12, Pac-Whatever and SEC are the clear year-over-year favorites to send teams to this system. It's unquestionable.

                  1. My response to the announcement was "so the top 2 SEC schools and 2 others and Clemson still has to go undefeated to have a shot." We're both Clemson fans...

                    1. I left out the part where I was talking to a friend of mine about it yesterday.

                    2. If Clemson had recovered from the beatdown we gave you last year and run the table and finished 12-1, they would have made a 4 team playoff.

                      So, does the new DC have a clue how to stop the triple option? Steele didnt.

                    3. Hopefully Clemson's recovered from its absolutely embarrassing Orange Bowl loss to a mediocre team from a terrible division.

                    4. rob, so far Venables seems to be a huge improvement, but we'll see what happens. It also helps not having a completely neurotic DC. I'm cautiously optimistic. The beat down, yeah, something a lot of people who aren't Clemson fans don't understand is that most of us, the more rational ones, realized we were playing with house money after the FSU game.

                    5. So far Venables seems to be a huge improvement because they haven't played any actual games.

                    6. Clemson may not have to go undefeated, but one loss is the maximum and that loss has to be fairly narrow. If it's a blowout, may as well be two losses.

                      The biggest fly in this ointment is conference title games. Imagine you've run the table or maybe had one close loss, then get blindsided by the other division's three-loss winner. Of course, some might say the existence of these games is a playoff unto itself but a better case is that this new system makes those games, along with divisions, almost meaningless.

        2. rob,
          While I agree that such a record would get an ACC team in a four-team field, it is more difficult to see such a team existing. VA Tech has been top dog the past few years and no one mistakes the Fighting Beamers for national title holders.

          The same problem the idea of a playoff had before is the same one it has now - it is a game of perception. It's how a bama team that lost on its home field and did not even win the division gets a second shot in the big game. It's why one-loss Boise teams got shafted so multi-loss Michigan could go to New Orleans.

          The ACC does not need just one team to create the perception of dominant football, it needs several playing at a high level. In short, it needs to translate what it has in basketball to football, tough for any league.

          1. Its cyclical. In the mid 2000s, the ACC was consistently one of the top 2 conferences, some years #1 (using objective criteria like Sagarin).

            There was a year in that period where the SEC finished 5th in Sagarin. They had a few awful years, where they pushed the perception that they were beating each other up, but they were really just bad.

            Over the last 5-6 years, the BigTen has been awful. The #5 or #6 conference most years. They avoided the perception of being as awful as they were by having one team each year survive the league with a top record. And then get crushed by the SEC in a bowl.

            The ACC has been weak at the top but strong in the middle. Which makes it tough for anyone to get to that 12-1/13-0 record. VT pulled it off in 2007 (11-2 actually, but considering the year, that was good enough) but got screwed. They would have been in a 4 team playoff however.

            1. They would have gotten no where near a four team playoff. They lost 48-7 to LSU to start the season. No committee would have forgiven that loss. And they lost to KU in the Orange Bowl.

              1. LSU lost to Kentucky. Much later in the season.

                VT would have made a 4 team playoff. They should have made the 2 team playoff.

                1. LSU lost to Kentucky. Much later in the season.

                  So what? LSU would have said "we beat them 48-7 and play in a better conference".

            2. Over the last 5-6 years, the BigTen has been awful. The #5 or #6 conference most years

              Are you seriously claiming that the Big Ten was worse than the ACC or the Big East?

              1. Do you want me to run the numbers? I can. Ive done it before.

                You forget just how bad Indiana and Minnesota have been.

                1. What criteria are you using? Points scored? Games won? Because for most of us, if I take a gander at the entire time the ACC has been in the BCS, they've won, what, two games? Three?

                  1. What criteria are you using?

                    Averaging Sagarin ratings over entire conference.

                    BCS games are just 1 game. That hurts, but it hurts perception much worse than reality.

              2. a pretty strong case can be made that the Big 10 is, top to bottom, worse than a lot of leagues, certainly no better than the ACC. If the Big 10 and ACC had home and home series, the outcome would hardly be lopsided. The Big East, meanwhile, has slid into irrelevance, something that began when the league lost Miami and VA Tech some years back.

                1. If the Big 10 and ACC had home and home series, the outcome would hardly be lopsided.

                  As in top teams v. top teams? I'd take that bet. The middle teams might see some action.

                  1. As in top teams v. top teams? I'd take that bet. The middle teams might see some action.

                    1v1 thru 12v12. Like with the basketball challenge.

                    I think the ACC wins most years. Duke even gets a win over Indiana more than 1/2 of the time.

                    1. However, 2011, using final Sagarin rankings, B10 beats ACC 11-1. Only Duke beats Indiana.

                      I dont think it would have been that bad, because many were close, and upsets occur, and with half the games in ACC stadia, the 3 extra points pushes it the other way...but B10 would have crushed the ACC last year.

                      But 2011 may have been the worst ACC year since 1989 (when Duke and UVA shared the conference title).

                  2. yes, top vs. top and further down if possible. Some will depend on conditions as in September in Tallahassee vs. November in Madison, but that gets smoothed out over time. Both leagues could use the boost.

              3. 2007 Sagarin conference ratings:

                1. SEC
                2. P10
                3. B12
                4. Big East
                5. ACC
                6. B10
                1. SEC
                2. B12
                3. ACC
                4. P10
                5. Big East
                6. B10
                1. SEC
                2. Big East (really)
                3. P10*
                4. ACC*
                5. B12*
                6. B10
                *if you use his simple average instead of simple mean method, ACC moves to 3, B12 to 4, and P10 to 5 -- they were basically tied

                After that, the B10 got better.

                1. simple avg instead of CENTRAL mean.

                2. I'm sorry, but that is absurd. I want to see his methodology because while Sagarin may have name recognition, he's widely considered a SEC homer and a hack of the highest order that rewards a home win over Fla International by 30 more than a road win over Washington by 10 for a team that has to travel across the country.

                  He's a fucking joke.

                  1. You have to question methodology that ever, ever, ever puts the Big East over the Big Ten.

                    1. You have to question methodology that ever, ever, ever puts the Big East over the Big Ten.

                      No you dont. Big East has the advantage of only 8 teams, so a year with 2 or 3 decent teams has a proportionate advantage.

                      Big East has higher volatility, which is what you would expect with a smaller denominator.

                    2. Nobody gives a fuck about the 7-10 teams in a conference, so they should be discarded when ranking conferences.

                      I don't mean rank conferences on a single team, but when someone says "Conference A is better than Conference B, 90% of the time they are referring to the top half of that conference. And by that metric, the ACC or Big East have never, ever been as good a conference as the BigTen.

                    3. 90% of the time they are referring to the top half of that conference. And by that metric, the ACC or Big East have never, ever been as good a conference as the BigTen.

                      Yes, this exactly.

                    4. no, hardly exactly. For the longest time, the Big 10 was basically the Big 2 with the only variable being which two. And while FSU dominated the ACC for about the first decade it was in-house, the league is far more balanced.

                    5. Nobody gives a fuck about the 7-10 teams in a conference

                      I do.

                      so they should be discarded when ranking conferences.

                      No they shouldnt. In fact, that is how the SEC, for a number of years, managed such good records for the top teams, by beating up on Vandy, UK, Miss St and Ole Miss every year.

                      When your 7-10 are guaranteed wins, it makes the top look better than it really is. When 7-10 are capable of pulling upsets, the conference is better, despite their being more losses in 1-6.

                      I don't mean rank conferences on a single team, but when someone says "Conference A is better than Conference B, 90% of the time they are referring to the top half of that conference.

                      And they are wrong.

                    6. The reason the Big12 was clearly #1 last year, and the reason Okie St should have been included in the championship game, was that the conference was strong 1-9. Kansas was awful. But 7-9 were capable of, and did, pull upsets vs the top teams and beat teams OOC. They werent strong at the top, other than OSU, but they were insanely deep last year.

                      Ignoring the bottle half of the league does them a huge disservice.

                    7. When your 7-10 are guaranteed wins, it makes the top look better than it really is. When 7-10 are capable of pulling upsets, the conference is better, despite their being more losses in 1-6.

                      The 7-10 are still almost guaranteed wins every year. I don't care which conference we are talking about. And the SEC schools pad their records against subpar OOC opponents anyway, so their internal record is automatically enhanced, seeing as the quality of OOC opponents is just so freaking bad year after year after year.

                      The SEC has gamed the system. They've gamed it good and hard to ensure they are not only placed above other Conference schools in the preseason polls, but that the computers enhance their stature early in the year, which exacerbates the error in the human polls since many pollsters can't watch enough games weekly and often look at prior human and computer polls to cast their ballot.

                      But there aren't too many people out there that would say "My conference is better than yours because although the top 4 teams in yours are much better than in mine, we have the best 5-12 teams in the nation. And if there are, they are not people I would want to associate with.

                    8. The SEC has gamed the system. They've gamed it good and hard to ensure they are not only placed above other Conference schools in the preseason polls, but that the computers enhance their stature early in the year, which exacerbates the error in the human polls since many pollsters can't watch enough games weekly and often look at prior human and computer polls to cast their ballot.

                      SEC is gaming the computer in this way. One, the computer adjusts. Two, the SEC plays many more conference games early, than say, the BigTen. If anything, they are gaming the system playing the tour de MAC in September.

                    9. SEC isnt, that meant to say.

                  2. Im pretty sure one thing Sagarin isnt is a conference homer.

                    His methodology isnt open, unlike Colley, for example, but Im pretty sure it doesnt have any conference bias. It takes scores and locations and crunches numbers. I think some of his numbers are BS sometimes, but Ive designed my own systems, and they all produce BS.

                    But overall his numbers are ballpark reasonable, and easy to access.

                    1. Sagarin is a hack. Period.

                      should you treat a road game the same if it is against a Sun Belt team at a neutral site 60 miles from your campus so you can fill the stands the same as one against a team from a BCS conference 2200 miles from your campus?

                      And saying "The SEC has the best OOC record, so they will default into the #1 position" is pretty fucked up when the SEC rarely plays more than a pair of decent OOC opponents annually. But that's what Sagarin does. As a matter of fact, all of the computer polls suck. Football playoff teams and bowls should be selected by a panel comprised of former coaches.

                    2. Football playoff teams and bowls should be selected by a panel comprised of former coaches.

                      So in a few years, Duke starts getting one vote every year?

                      If you think all computer polls suck, design one that doesnt. I want objective criteria determining who makes the playoff.

                      As the basketball committee has shown, they cant make that happen. They do a decent job, but with the large field, screwups on the edge dont really matter.

                    3. If you think all computer polls suck, design one that doesnt. I want objective criteria determining who makes the playoff.

                      I'm no programmer, and I doubt one could be designed that took the full range of variables into account. Does a team (call them Big Ten Team A) get punished because they had their second string in the entire second half of a game they were leading 42-0 at the break and end up winning 49-17 when compared to the team that keeps their starters in (let's call them SEC Team A) the entire game and wins 67-0?

                      What about the team (call them Big Ten Team B) that has a top QB they don't want to risk getting hurt and they're up by 22 so they pull him in the 4th quarter because they have a bye the following week, and they end up winning by 9 because the backup throws two picks in their own half of the field when compared to the school that has a high ranked QB they leave in the same game (let's call them SEC Team B) to throw 2 more passing TD's in garbage time to pad his stats. Do you punish the first team in this scenario?

                      Computers can't answer these questions.

                    4. Actually, was having that exact discussion on another board earlier this week. And a method was suggested to handle those problems.

                      The easy version is to calculate MOV by the average lead at the end of each quarter (with a minimum of 1 for a come from behind victory). Thus if you are up 14-0, 28-0, 42-0, and end up 49-17, that would be (14+28+42+32)/4 which is 29.

                      A game which went 7-3, 14-10, 21-17, 49-17, would be (4+4+4+32)/4=11.

                      Still isnt perfect...could average over entire game instead, which is complicated, but easy for a computer to do.

                      And almost all systems cap MOV and/or have diminishing returns, so the running up at end doesnt matter. That worked with pollsters much better than it did with computers.

                      The key, IMO, is take choose a selection of open systems that fit the needs, and tweak every year AFTER the season, if someone is gaming the system.

              4. He's also misrepresenting tOSU that beat Oregon and Arkansas in consecutive years and has a 6-3 overall record in BCS games.

    2. It'll just be a playoff between Alabama, USC, Oklahoma, and Ohio State.

      That's all the BCS voters care for anyway.

      1. Did Texas fall of the face of the earth or something?

        1. Well, sub in any of the top two-three teams in each of the most important conferences and you've got the general gist.

          1. I do like the fact that ND is no longer on that list.

            Their slide into irrelevancy continues apace.

            1. Notre Dame has no chance. Although it isn't as if the BCS was affording them much of one anyway.

        2. sloopy, in fact, Texas did indeed fall off the earth. 8-5 record last year, if memory serves, and that includes the scrubs they slapped around.

          1. Please. Texas still made more money than any other program in the country. Money has a very strong correlation to winning. Texas will be in the first playoff, and will contend for a BCS bowl this year. Their only losses this year will be Oklahoma and West Virginia, and WVU is a toss up.

    3. Here's how the bracket will work.


  15. Andrew Tisch: Let's Ban the Word 'Trillion'
    U.S. national debt is $15,800,000,000,000. Our lingo shouldn't obscure how dangerous that is.

    1. Fifteen thousand eight hundred billion better conveys the magnitude.

    2. I disagree completely. 'Trillion' sounds like an immense figure to me, while $15,800,000,000,000 is just a string of numbers where I have to count the zeros first.

    1. Equality has arrived.

      1. Not until the divorce lawyer bar has fattened up on 'em.

  16. I don't know who Michael Bubl? is, but his wife is, well, damn!

    1. He's a terrible singer.

      1. Make that "a terrible singer with a hot wife".

        1. The economics of the situation would tend to disagree very strongly with you, HM.

  17. Fradella's disaster restoration firm, Home Solutions of America, and its affiliates won millions of dollars in city contracts after Hurricane Katrina.

    There's a picture of Fradella in the article. It is SOP to use vanilla bricks to build a chocolate city?

  18. Four men arrested for "noodling"!

    1. perfectly legal in Oklahoma, where I'm originally from. But it sure is stupid.

    2. "Do you have a license for those hands, boy?"

    3. Guess we won't see any "Hillbilly Handfishing" episodes filmed in the Hawkeye state.

  19. Half of German teens 'unsure Hitler a dictator'


    1. What would really tip the irony scales is if they blame the Jews for not teaching them that Hitler was a dictator.

      1. Are there any Jews in Germany left to blame for anything?

        Japan also likes to gloss over its own unpleasantness from the last century.

        1. There are a few. And the Germans have developed a bad habit of thinking of themselves as victims of the "Nazis" as if the Nazis came down from Mars or something.

          1. I don't think Germans living now can be blamed for the atrocities of the Nazis anymore than Americans alive now can be blamed for slavery or the annihilation of Native Americans. That said, it would be better if everyone took a good, hard look at the history of their own country and took ownership, and more importantly attempted to learn from it.

            Ironically, history suggests this won't happen.

        2. Japan Every country also likes to gloss over its own unpleasantness from the last century.


          1. Good point.

          2. Agreed, but Japan sets a high bar in that regard.

            1. Yeah, Japan wins that one. They managed to get a Hiroshima memorial put in the UN building, with no mention of Pearl Harbor anywhere.

    2. Wait, Hitler was a real person?

      1. Yes, his real name was George W. Bush!

    3. You know who wasn't unsure you-know-who was a dictator.

      1. The Communists?

      2. Henry Ford?

        1. Hullo?

    4. I think that's just common ignorance rather than anything sinister. When I was in high school there (granted it was 20 years ago), there was certainly no evidence to indicate they were trying to 'hide' anything.

  20. Gay rights activist should have become a priest.

    1. Because pedopriest jokes never ever get old.

  21. "He Had Sex With Me While I was Sleeping!"

    I have been dating this great guy for a few months and everything seems good so far. I really like him and enjoy our time together but some stuff has happened in the last few weeks and it's freaking me out. Last weekend when I slept over at his place we had sex and then at some point I fell asleep after we had finished. Well, I woke up a while later because he was having sex with me. I freaked out and told him to get away from me. He told me he was really sorry and he thought I had been awake. The next morning he brought it up and told me again how sorry he was and that he did not know I was asleep as I was talking to him. It freaked me out but I thought his apology was honest and I believed he thought I was awake. It still bugged me but I decided to let it go; he seemed like he felt bad.

    1. Maybe its because she moves around more than when she's awake.

      1. Zing!

    2. Maybe he found her irresistably attractive once she was finally quiet.

      1. Maybe he found her irresistably attractive once she was finally quiet.

        Except she wasn't.

        ...he did not know I was asleep as I was talking to him.

        Even while asleep.

    3. Maybe he wanted to try a new technique with her but didn't want to be embarrassed if he couldn't make it work.

    4. "ZZZZ ... Snork! Whoa, was I sleep-humping again?"

      1. actually, I have been woken up by my sleeping mate, who is attempting something, and then turn over, falls back asleep, and sometimes have no memory of it. I call it zombie sex. It's kind of fun, but usually goes nowhere. My best friend says her man has done the same to her . . . not sure what it all means.

        1. My wife can also attest to this phenomenon.

          1. She told you about me?

        2. Well, Sir Flashman is a randy scoundrel.

          1. With a name like that, what else?

          2. "Randy Scoundrel" is a great name. Thanks!

            1. Wasn't Rnady Scoundrel a DJ at that country station in Chicago?

              1. There's a country station in Chicago? Why?

        3. Yeah, my ex would have entire conversations in her sleep.

          Strangely enough, her sleep-talking never ratted out her rampant infidelity.

          1. My wife answers my unasked questions while asleep. She pokes me and says 'no', which is the same answer I usually get if she's awake.

    5. Wait, so what's the problem?

      1. "Stop sexing me, sex partner!"

    6. And some of you don't think 30 Rock is hilarious.

    1. Wouldn't changing out the barrel defeat the purpose?

    2. What if you collect other peoples' spent casings to reload them yourself?

    3. Amitai Etzioni is professor of international relations at George Washington University and director of the Institute for Communitarian Policy Studies.

      So, obviously an expert.

      The gun lobby is likely to prevail, given that in 2008 -- for the first time in American legal history -- the Supreme Court interpreted that the Second Amendment guaranteed an individual's right to own guns for personal use, rather than as the tools of a "well-regulated militia."


      1. Amazing how people can boil down any part of the constitution to 3 words that seem to say what they want them to say as long as you ignore their context.

  22. Must not have been Activa!
    or alternately:
    He should've taken his lactase tablet!

    Yogurt Boom Leaves Dairy Farmer[']s Behind

  23. http://washingtonexaminer.com/.....ed/2006431

    Obama prepping thousands of lawyers for election day. What an asshole.

    1. He's going to get crushed so badly it won't matter.

      1. yep. if you win big, they can't cheat.

        1. At this point, I wouldn't put it past either party to emulate Vlad Putin.

    2. Are those *outsourced* lawyers?

  24. Gun Riders Derail Markup on D.C. Budget Autonomy

    Plans to mark up legislation Wednesday to give budget autonomy to the District of Columbia were derailed after a Republican Senator said he planned to offer amendments that would roll back some of the District's gun laws.

    Democrats on the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee were confident they could defeat a number of amendments offered by Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), including one that would ban federal funding for abortions in D.C.

    But there was less certainty about whether they would be able to block two other Paul amendments related to guns; a number of pro-gun-rights Democrats sit on the committee.

  25. The survey found 36% of Americans believed UFOs existed and one in ten thinks they've spotted one.

    Every sighted person who has looked skyward has, at least once in their life, seen an object that was flying that they couldn't identify.

    1. Yeah, they are called commercial airliners.

      1. Ghost Riders in the Sky!

    2. Hell, I have. Saw a couple of very odd lights in the sky (err, sober, that time) several years ago.

      No idea what they were. No reason to think they were starfaring aliens, though.

      1. You were just driving between Alpine and Marfa RC.

  26. http://www.rollcall.com/issues.....os=htmbtxt

    Rand Paul attaches rider rolling back DC's gun control laws to bill giving DC budget authority. Dems kill the bill in Senate. I guess they care more about their superstitions about guns than they do about DC sovereignty.

    1. Rand Paul put some silly Aborto-Freak rider in that too.

      He must have wanted it to fail.

  27. Mugshots of Victorian thieves as young as 11


    1. I felt bad hanging the little waifs. But I felt I owed it to them.

      1. Hey, Smails! My dinghy's bigger than your whole boat!

    2. White people are just born natural-born thieves.

  28. Which one of you is behind this?

    "A provocative advertising campaign that declares hipsters, cat lovers and crazy old aunts "deserve to die" is popping up in major American cities, including New York, Chicago, Seattle and New Orleans."

    1. well it doesn't include artisanal mayo makers, so that rules at least one of us

      1. I thought it was implied by either the "Hipster" or "Crazy Aunt" one.

      2. It also includes people other than Hipsters, so he's definitely out.

    2. [whistles past subthread]

    3. Whew, under-employed losers like me were spared.

    4. O! care battlespace prep?

    5. Living in NYC, I can pretty much assume that any ad campaign that doesn't immediately make sense is a campaign against smoking. Or lately, against fat or sugar.

  29. New Disability Regs Limit Slope of Mini Golf Holes, Require Businesses to Admit Mini Horses as Guide Animals

    Although the Justice Department has extended the deadline for America's hotels to comply with regulations regarding handicap access to swimming pools, new Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) guidelines are already being applied at miniature golf courses, driving ranges, amusement parks, shooting ranges and saunas.

    Among the provisions in the "Revised ADA Standards for Accessible Design," which went into effect on March 15, is one requiring businesses to allow miniature horses on their premises as guide animals for the disabled. Another limits the height of slopes on miniature golf holes.

    1. Another limits the height of slopes on miniature golf holes.

      Do you hear that? That's the sound of North Myrtle Beach evaporating into nothing.

      1. God I hate that law.

    2. requiring businesses to allow miniature horses on their premises as guide animals for the disabled

      What are guide *anteaters*, chopped liver?

    3. I've always felt that mini-golf was insufficiently accessible tothe handicapped, and that the little windmills were a not so subtle insult to the Dutch.

    4. True fact:

      An ADA "service" animal doesn't have to be trained, certified, or anything. And it doesn't have to be a service animal. All you have to do is claim that you need it for "emotional support". The owner of the business isn't allowed to ask about what disability, exactly, your mutt is supposed to be servicing.

      Hospitals are only allowed to limit animals to certain areas of the hospital if the medical staff adopts a policy specifying the clinical reasons.

      So, wanna keep your Great Dane/chihuahua mix with you in the hospital? Not much anyone can do to stop you.

        1. Who is Aubrey Oday?

      1. Other true fact - the ADA applies to skate parks and BMX courses, which can be shut down if they don't make 'reasonable accommodation' to people who will never use their premises.

        1. I would think those parks would have plenty of ramps.

      2. Here's an irony - to have an actual certified, insured therapy dog, you and the dog have to pass a fairly difficult test. Our first ex-guide dog passed easily. Our second failed. We'll work with him and try again, but it's irony to me that any butt-hole Joe can just waltz into a hospital with a "service" animal while we go through all this trouble to be properly certified. I realize "therapy" and "service" are different, but fer cryin out loud.

        1. Well the point is that "butthole Joe" doesn't plan to take his dog around the hospital to provide emotional support and service to others. Joe's dog is intended for him only.

  30. Oreo Pride: Rainbow-Stuffed Cookie Sparks Boycott

    Oreo posted the photoshopped picture of an Oreo cookie stuffed with rainbow-colored layers of frosting Monday evening with the caption "Proudly support love!"

    Over the past 17 hours more than 157,000 people have "liked" the image, 40,000 people have shared it and 20,000 have commented on it.

    But while many of the comments were supportive, some Facebook users pledged to boycott the cookie because of the post.

    "I'll never buy Oreo again," one commenter wrote.

    1. Why would you, when your local grocery chains provide exactly the same product? I don't understand people who buy name brand products.

      Except yogurt, store-brand yogurt is frequently crappy.

    2. "I'll never buy Oreo again,"

      Jesus wept. Seriously?

      1. why the Oreo itself can be seen in several racist ways.

        1. I called a girl an oreo once. She did not like that at all...

          1. Did you explain to her that you were only trying to lick her yummy center first?

            I keep hearing of how chicks like that sort of thing.

          2. I had a black girl hit on me by telling me she wanted to be an oreo. Not sure if it was racist, but it was effective.

    3. I preferred Hydrox back in the day. Preferred is an understatement. Those fucking things were so much better than Oreos, it's not even funny.

      1. "They really cheap out on the snacks. Hydrax cookies? Did you know there was an off-brand Hydrox? Because I did not."

        "They aren't bad."

        1. I have bought some weird cookies that were off-off-brand Oreos. It ain't like mixing sugar and lard together is real complicated.

  31. 22% of Americans would befriend an alien

    "Befriend" in the Captain Kirk sense?

    1. Only if it is a hot chick, who happens to differ from a human only in being green.

      1. Or if they are into Hentai

  32. Americans would befriend an alien if they met one while 2% would try to inflict bodily harm.

    I presume the 2% would do that only when they weren't busy tearing wings off of bugs.

    1. After the Supreme Court took the teeth out of Arizona's law, vigilante justice is the only recourse we have.

    2. "It's bringing piece! Don't let it get away!"

      "Break it's legs!"

  33. 15 year old almost gets lucky at the gym.

    1. if she had waited until he was 16, it would not have been illegal

      1. Yeah but can you imagine the sunburn?!

  34. 22% of Americans would befriend an alien if they met one

    Possible alien message to get reply from humanity
    If there's something you'd like to say to aliens, now's your chance. The Wow! signal, a mysterious radio transmission detected in 1977 that may or may not have come from extraterrestrials, is finally getting a response from humanity. Anyone can contribute his or her two cents ? or 140 characters, to be exact ? to the cosmic reply via Twitter.

    All tweets composed between 8 p.m. EDT Friday (June 29) and 3 a.m. EDT Saturday (June 30) tagged with the hashtag #ChasingUFOs will be rolled into a single message, according to the National Geographic Channel, which is timing the Twitter event to coincide with the premiere of the channel's new series, "Chasing UFOs."...

    1. That twitter feed should be as much fun as the Reason donation banner. Off to compose a tweet about the Golden Girls turning our sons into homosexuals....

    2. Great. So 200 years from now, aliens will know how vapid we are as a society.

    3. You can probe me any time - signed, the Mayor of Cannes.

    4. If the aliens have the technology to travel through interstellar space, I really don't want them coming here or even knowing we are here. This is pure stupidity.

      1. If we don't want them even knowing we are here we really need to stop littering their neighborhood.

      2. C'mon, man, surely they understand natural law and will treat us with respect.

      3. This is pure stupidity.

        I agree.

      4. but they will give us useful technology!

      5. Too late - Carl Sagan already provided a map.

    5. SEND. . .ME. . .A. . .POWER. . .RING.

  35. The squirrels won't let me call this rocket pr0n.

  36. All tweets composed ... will be rolled into a single message

    "We double dog dare you to wipe us out!"

  37. Now this is what drones should be used for.

    I wonder if they chased down the lion who stole their remote control vehicle. "Dude, its your turn to go fetch it back."

  38. Man charged with assault with dangerous weapon for throwing McDonald's fries at step-daughter

    This is what happens when you let Michelle open her mouth...French fries get declared dangerous weapons.

    1. So did the cops just happen to be there, did some concerned citizen call it in or did the step-daughter file a complaint?


    2. Blessed be Buck Henry and all his works.

    3. SF'd.

      A piece of 70's cheese I was completely unaware of. This makes my day.

      1. I highly recommend it. I loved it as a kid, but I finally watched it last year on DVD. Very funny.

        1. It's out on DVD? Yay! Thanks for the info

    4. Holy hell, I've been trying to remember the name of that show or if it even existed for so long. I was just a wee lad when it aired.

      1. My dad taped it when it first aired, so I grew up watching it on odd occasions. I bought it on DVD.

  39. Looks like Command Conquer inspired this new weapon.

    Army is looking to develop a weapon that zaps targets with lightning

    1. Fully charged!

    2. Damn, looks like I picked a bad time to retire. Now I will never get to do an authentic Thor impersonation.

  40. French fry assault.

    You know, because they are hot and oily. Smells like a tort lawsuit too.

    1. I beat you to it

  41. "A Louisiana businessman will likely plead guilty to trying to bribe an elected official believed to be the former mayor Ray Nagin."


    1. "Trying to bribe?" Something is somehow wrong with that statement. Does that mean he bounced the bribe check or something?

      1. he showed up with sacks with $ signs on them instead of a nondescript briefcase.

      2. It means he didn't offer enough. Which to politicians and lawyers, is the worst crime imaginable.

      3. Maybe somebody was trying to bribe him to allow oil drilling on Mount Rushmore?

        1. You know, I've been there. There's no house on top. Disappointed!

          1. There's no house and no alpine tarns like in National Treasure: Book of Secrets, which leads me to believe there's no labyrinth leading to the city of gold.

          2. Are you going to tell me that it's not a good place to have a fistfight, too?

          3. Next you're going to tell me that there's no secret Team America base hidden insed Washington, Lincoln, snd TR's heads either.

  42. Well now that jsut makes a ll kinds of sense dude.


  43. YET AGAIN Gary Johnson is excluded from a poll:

    ?Nearly 65% think Barack Obama would be better suited than Mitt Romney to handle an alien invasion.

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