There's nothing like going out to some sun-blasted airfield an hour outside of town to see the famous Blue Angels fly around so close to each other that you never know when they'll crash into the spectators—it's the perfect mix of NASCAR and military worship, and Republicans in Congress have shut down this beloved display of air superiority.
"The Navy believes there is value in demonstrating the professionalism and capabilities of our Navy and Marine Corps Naval Aviation team, thus inspiring future generations of Sailors and Marines," the Blue Angels said in a love letter to Obama press release. "The Navy intends to continue aerial demonstrations in the future [...]
"This month, Americans are marking the 10th anniversary of the invasion of Iraq with a sense of profound introspection."
"More than one-third (36%) of Americans who live in the South agree that God plays a role in determining which team wins a sporting event, compared to nearly 3-in-10 (28%) Americans who live in the Midwest, 1-in-5 (20%) Americans who live in the Northeast, and 15% of Americans who live in the West. Republicans (25%) are, however, equally as likely as Democrats (28%) and independents (26%) to agree that God plays a role in determining which team wins a sporting event." —It's almost time for America's annual passion play. Let's hope God can take a break from killing Muslim kids in Syria to bless the most-deserving group of gigantic [...]
"Basically, there's three models. A SwissGear that's made for teens, and we've got an Avengers and a Disney Princess backpack for little kids."
"A Senate proposal touted as protecting Americans' e-mail privacy has been quietly rewritten, giving government agencies more surveillance power than they possess under current law. [Senator Pat] Leahy's rewritten bill would allow more than 22 agencies—including the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Federal Communications Commission—to access Americans' e-mail, Google Docs files, Facebook wall posts, and Twitter direct messages without a search warrant." —Maybe we're all better off without the Senate protecting our Internet privacy. UPDATE: Tech industry people get angry, Leahy kills the warrantless part, for now.
You can look at this story as a kind of tragic meta-commentary on the absurdity of love and how, when it dies, its absence can cause us to lash out in the most ludicrous of ways, engendering unwanted attention that we can't even care about because we are so bitter over our broken heart and desperate to be acknowledged in our despair, to be avenged in our suffering. But I like to focus on the part where the reporter notes that the police have "a binder like this one" on the estranged couple in the case and then holds up the binder to show you just in case you [...]
'I am so happy that we were able to work together across the aisle in a bipartisan way to solve this problem,' said Senator Susan Collins, Republican of Maine, who helped spearhead the last-minute negotiations. 'It’s nice to know when we work together we really can solve problems.' —Gun violence? Meat safety? Childhood hunger? Guess what they came together to solve!
"In the most obese state in the most obese country on the face of the earth in the history of the human race…" would be a good opening for a children's book. As a real-life story, however, it is a little less whimsical.
"Next week is 40 years since the landmark abortion-rights decision Roe v. Wade and a new poll shows the majority of people under 30 can’t name what the case was about."
We can all agree that outside of America's two cities where it's plausible to live without a car, the people of the United States could do with a little physical activity now and then. Americans used to climb stairs and roll pickle barrels and wrassle the neighbors and tar the roof and dig the potatoes and all other kinds of labor that kept the heart healthy and the buttocks muscular, but now something-something cars computers video games taco bars, and just look at us. That's why some officials decided to have a seminar in Washington about the crisis of inactivity. Can't make it? Oh that's all right, you can [...]
"[A]fter months of searching, only one alien falsely claiming to be a U.S. citizen has been caught, charged and convicted in Florida. It turns out he is a Canadian, a man who registered and voted in at least two presidential elections while masquerading as a citizen so he could also buy and 'bear arms,' that other right cherished by many Americans."
"But the Shooter will discover soon enough that when he leaves after sixteen years in the Navy, his body filled with scar tissue, arthritis, tendonitis, eye damage, and blown disks, here is what he gets from his employer and a grateful nation: Nothing. No pension, no health care, and no protection for himself or his family." —Things have not worked out so well for the Seal Team 6 assassin who took out Osama bin Laden, America's most wanted global terror mastermind Bond villain. Update: Someone should have told him about the VA hospital though.
"It's like eating three orders of Olive Garden's Lasagna Classico plus an order of tiramisu for dinner." —The Center for Science in the Public Interest explains just what kind of value you get when you order the Cheesecake Factory's Bistro Shrimp Pasta, "made with a butter and cream sauce and topped with battered, fried shrimp," which comes in at over 3000 calories.
"The 39% of Americans with an opinion about Bowles/Simpson is only slightly higher than the 25% with one about Panetta/Burns, a mythical Clinton Chief of Staff/former western Republican Senator combo we conceived of to test how many people would say they had an opinion even about something that doesn't exist." [Via]
"Billed as the world's largest convenience store, the 67,000-square-foot colossus on Interstate 35 between Austin and San Antonio is 20 times the size of a 7-Eleven and longer than a football field. It features 60 gasoline pumps, 80 soda dispensers, 31 cash registers, 23 flavors of fudge and entire aisles devoted to varieties of popcorn and beef jerky. The pièce de résistance: 84 gleaming toilets, each with its own dispenser of hand sanitizer and shined at all hours by a small army of attendants."