1. Idiot Dictator Quote of the year:
Elsewhere, Chavez found time to defend Venezuela’s human rights record and vaunt his country’s oil reserves, but also gave his views on less weighty matters like fashion, pop music and the British royal family.
Cuba’s Fidel Castro was the world’s most stylish leader, he said (“His uniform is impeccable. His boots are polished. His beard is elegant”), he was aware of the newly-reformed Spice Girls and admired Britain’s Prince Charles.
He also refused to rule out following Russian President Vladimir Putin’s example and posing for topless photographs. “Why not? Touch my muscles,” he reportedly told the supermodel.
2. Hillary Doozy of the Year
ABC News’ Eloise Harper Reports: Senator Hillary Clinton, in an interview with ABC News’ Cynthia McFadden for ABC News’ Nightline, was asked about President Clinton’s controversial comments about race and Senator Obama in the past weeks. Clinton apologized for her husband.
“I think whatever he said which was certainly never intended to cause any kind of offense to anyone,” Clinton said, “if it did give offenses then I take responsibility and I’m sorry about that.”
“Can you control him?” asked McFadden.
“Oh of course,” Clinton replied.
3. The “Reach Out to the Other Side” Quote of 2008
I hate the Republican Party and everything it stands for, including, but not limited to, its interest in denying women reproductive health rights, denying children the right to legally recognized two parent homes if their parents are gay, and their not-so-subtle “be afraid of anyone who isn’t pasty white” message.
But I’ve learned to HATE with a passion that I never knew prior to the November 2000 Election, and I will *never* forget it.
Republicans are Evil, and I hate them.
4. The “I Just Hate People Except for My Six Children” Quote of 2008 – With an Added Bonus Globaloney Warming Kicker
TED TURNER: Not doing it will be catastrophic. We’ll be eight degrees hottest in ten, not ten but 30 or 40 years and basically none of the crops will grow. Most of the people will have died and the rest of us will be cannibals. Civilization will have broken down. The few people left will be living in a failed state — like Somalia or Sudan — and living conditions will be intolerable. The droughts will be so bad there’ll be no more corn grown. Not doing it is suicide. Just like dropping bombs on each other, nuclear weapons is suicide. We’ve got to stop doing the suicidal two things, which are hanging on to our nuclear weapons and after that we’ve got to stabilize the population. When I was born-
CHARLIE ROSE: So what’s wrong with the population?
TURNER: We’re too many people. That’s why we have global warming. We have global warming because too many people are using too much stuff. If there were less people, they’d be using less stuff.
5. “All My Liberal Friends Say I’m Completely Unbiased” Award
“I do like McCain and the people around him, and I consider him still to be a friend. But I have fundamental differences with John McCain on the issues and always have. I don’t have any problem criticizing John McCain….It was no secret to the reporters around me that I have Democratic-leaning views. But they said I was always fair.”
— Former ABC and CBS reporter Linda Douglass, now a spokeswoman for Barack Obama, as quoted by the Washington Post’s Howard Kurtz in a June 16 profile.
6. Media Twit of the Year
CBS News journalist Richard Butler said he believes he was kidnapped in Iraq by policemen with sympathies toward the Hezbollah but isn’t entirely sure who held him captive for two months or why.
Butler, a British journalist kidnapped with his interpreter on Feb. 10, was rescued by Iraqi troops on April 14 when he was found with a sack over his head in a house in Basra.
Butler said he felt it was better to be kidnapped in Iraq then taken into custody by Americans in Afghanistan.
“I was pleased I wasn’t being mortarboarded in Guantanamo or being held for six and a half years like an Al-Jazeera cameraman, for instance,” he said.
And the Chosen One did say:
Suffer the little punishments to come unto me. For such are the ones who didn’t successfully complete the abortion.
Brings us this little item:
An eight-year-old girl decided last week to go the Sana’a West Court to prosecute her father, who forced her to marry a 30-year-old man.
Nojoud Muhammed Nasser arrived at court by herself on Wednesday, April 2, looking for a judge to handle her case against her father, Muhammed Nasser, who forced her two months ago to marry Faez Ali Thamer, a man 22 years her senior. The child also asked for a divorce, accusing her husband of sexual and domestic abuse.
I guess we should be glad that its actually against the law in Yemen for children to be married of this young. However, its apparently not a big deal to her father, uncle, mother, aunt or anyone who might actually have the guts to stand against this kind of crap:
According to Yemeni law, Nojoud cannot prosecute, as she is underage. However, court judge Muhammed Al-Qathi heard her complaint and subsequently ordered the arrests of both her father and husband.
“My father beat me and told me that I must marry this man, and if I did not, I would be raped and no law and no sheikh in this country would help me. I refused but I couldn’t stop the marriage,” Nojoud Nasser told the Yemen Times. “I asked and begged my mother, father, and aunt to help me to get divorced. They answered, ‘We can do nothing. If you want you can go to court by yourself.’ So this is what I have done,” she said.
And isn’t the “husband” just one lovely example?
“Whenever I wanted to play in the yard he beat me and asked me to go to the bedroom with him. This lasted for two months,” added Nasser. “He was too tough with me, and whenever I asked him for mercy, he beat me and slapped me and then used me. I just want to have a respectful life and divorce him.”
The court won’t give her back to her family since there is obviously a suspicion that they would just do this again. But here’s the worst sentence in the story:
Nasser confirmed that Nojoud Nasser’s case is not the first of its kind in Yemen, but it is the first time that a girl went to court by herself to ask for a divorce.
Demography is Destiny and Japan is going to pretty much disappear if trends don’t change:
The number of children has declined for 27 consecutive years, a government report said over the weekend. Japan now has fewer children who are 14 or younger than at any time since 1908.
The proportion of children in the population fell to an all-time low of 13.5 percent. That number has been falling for 34 straight years and is the lowest among 31 major countries, according to the report. In the United States, children account for about 20 percent of the population.
Which pretty much means that Japan has decided no longer to exist:
Population shrinkage began three years ago and is gathering pace. Within 50 years, the population, now 127 million, will fall by a third, the government projects. Within a century, two-thirds of the population will be gone.
Remember when the country we feared taking over everything was Japan? It wasn’t that long ago. Everybody figured that we would all end up working for the Japanese, drive only Japanese cars, and they would own all the real estate in the US. If you haven’t read the novel Neuromancer by William Gibson (1984) I’d highly recommend it, but the whole premise of the novel is that Japan won the corporate wars. (Just as an aside, this is a wonderful science fiction novel credited with creating the whole cyberpunk genre so its definitely worth the time to read).
Instead Japan has pretty much decided that it won’t exist any more. Do you think China is going to sit around and let all that nice Island real-estate just sit idle?
Here’s how the educrats in Sacramento make it look like they are actually doing their jobs:
Will C. Wood Middle School faced a vexing situation when last year’s test results came out in August. Most students had met the mark set by No Child Left Behind. But African American students’ math scores fell far short of it, bringing the school into failing status in the eyes of the federal law.
One hundred students were categorized as black when they took the test last spring. But if the school had fewer than 100 students in that group, their low scores wouldn’t count. So Principal Jim Wong reviewed the files of all the students classified as African American on the test, he said, and found that four of them had indicated no race or mixed race on their enrollment paperwork. Wong sent his staff to talk to the four families to ask permission to put the kids in a different racial group.
“You get a kid that’s half black, half white. What are you going to put him down as?” Wong said. “If one kid makes the difference and I can go white, that gets me out of trouble.”
Over the past two years, 80 California schools got “out of trouble” with No Child Left Behind after changing the way they classify their students, a Bee analysis has found. The changes nudged their status from failing to passing under the federal law.
Of course, the obvious solution of actually teaching these children how to count and multiply and divide is not even considered. And apparently the families of these poor ignorant students have no problems with the whole process either. Instead of the outrage of “why aren’t you actually correcting the problem and making sure my son/daughter can perform to standards” they shrug their shoulders. Which is also why their kids are destined to be the garbage workers of tomorrow.
the point of No Child Left Behind lies in separating test scores by race – then demanding educators bring all children to the same level. The law says all major demographic groups – categorized by race, income, English fluency and disability status – must meet test score targets that increase over time. If one group doesn’t meet the target, the entire school faces the stigma of low performance and a series of consequences.
Advocates see the consequences as extra help for struggling students – from after-school tutoring to more time in the classroom to a change in teachers. Many educators, however, view them as punishment.
Yeah, that whole actually doing your job thing interferes with summer holiday doesn’t it? Because the story notes that before NCLB schools could pass their overall test levels and let the blacks and Latinos stew in their stupidity. But the punishment (their word not mine) of working to bring their students up to standard is a lot harder than just calling them something they are not and then not having to do anything about it.
Just when will black parents start demanding something better? About the time that they quit having children at 13 and start actually being families again – instead of serial wombs for the next drug-dealing punk.