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AUDIO: Rand Paul Breaks with Neocons on Cuba

Rand Paul has taken a temporarily unpopular (within the Republican establishment) position on normalizing relations with Cuba–breaking rank with all of the neocons. Senator Paul deserves credit for embarking on a brave stance on this issue against the illogical and hypocritical grain of the current tough-talking Republican establishment. Can you imagine those opposing free markets with Cuba calling for stopping trade to Saudi Arabia and China–talk about human rights abuses!

Paul told Tom Roten of News Talk 800 in West Virginia that the 50-year embargo “just hasn’t worked” and normalizing relations with the island nation is “probably a good idea.” AUDIO:

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Smaug Endorses Rand Paul

It’s likely lost on the Colbert Report’s audience that the real dragon is endlessly expanding government and a monetary system that devalues the U.S. Dollar…but you can’t take these things too seriously!

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Rand Paul challenges Sec. John Kerry on War Authority against ISIS

Senator Rand Paul and Sec. John Kerry get into a much needed and slightly heated debate on war authority. Things start to get really good around 4:29:

KERRY: We have some of the most extraordinary self-imposed restraints on our checklists…for where and when and how we might use force. Even where we’ve been authorized to use force and you need to review that…

PAUL: There’s a very important restraint and that’s the Constitution it says Congress initiates war. You went to war in Libya without Congressional authority. You have now been at war for five months without constitutional or Congressional authority.

KERRY: We did not go to war in Libya. If that’s how you look at these..I mean, uh…This term of “war…”

Sen. PAUL: I forgot that was “kinetic action?”

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Senate ‘Torture’ Report Released

You can read the full (very much censored) report below. Isn’t it ironic to see neo-conservatives and statists suddenly very concerned about blowback–a word they usually want to avoid? Some unfortunate highlights from the report…

Detainees were deprived of sleep for as long as a week, and were sometimes told that they would be killed while in American custody. With the approval of the C.I.A.’s medical staff, some C.I.A. prisoners were subjected to medically unnecessary “rectal feeding” or “rectal hydration” — a technique that the C.I.A.’s chief of interrogations described as a way to exert “total control over the detainee.” (NYT 12/9/14)

Senate Intelligence Committee torture report by ChadMerda

Glenn Greenwald is running a Live Blog on the report here.

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This is a Hoot! A Great Horned Owl Swimming

Witnesses said the owl was forced down into lake Michigan by some falcons that were attacking it. No footage of that has surfaced. The owl reportedly swam away before rescuers could ‘help.’

Coolest video I’ve seen this week…

Another super cool science story…Note the assumptions made in the story…

maybe our ideas of early humans and dating is wrong?

Zigzags on a Shell From Java Are the Oldest Human Engravings

On the banks of the Solo River in Java, Indonesia, 19th-century physician Eugene Dubois uncovered an astounding fossil find: the bones of what appeared to be an ancient human, surrounded by animal remains and shells. Excavated in the 1890s, the site gained fame as the home of “Java Man,” better known today as Homo erectus.

Dated to between a million and 700,000 years old, the bones immediately provoked controversy, because Dubois claimed they showed evidence of a transitional species between apes and humans. It turns out he was right—Homo erectus fossils have since been found in Africa and elsewhere in Asia, and it is possible the species is a direct ancestor of our own. But it’s the palm-sized shells found alongside the Java remains that are raising big questions today. An examination of the shells published in Nature suggests that Homo erectus may have used the shells for tools and decorated some of them with geometric engravings. At around half a million years old, the shells represent the earliest evidence of such decorative marks and also the first known use of shells to make tools.

The images showed markings on the shells, at first invisible to the naked eye. “It’s strange to see a zigzag pattern on such old fossil shells,” recalls Joordens.

Viewed up close, one fossil Pseudodon shell from Java shows evidence of engraving. (Wim Lustenhouwer, VU University Amsterdam ) Intrigued, the researchers compared the Dubois shells to how living mollusks were arranged and buried in the wild. The patterns didn’t match up. Most of the shells also had weird holes corresponding to the where the organism’s adductor muscle and ligament, used to open and close the shell, would have been attached. Presumably, someone or something was trying to pry open the shell and remove the gooey mussel. Back then, shellfish eaters such as otters, rats and monkeys also lived on Java. Figuring out what could have poked holes in the shells required some experimentation.

Read more:

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Driving Today? What’s your Thanksgiving Mix Tape?

I’m driving from Bloomington, IN to Springfield, MO today and I’m looking for some good music mixes. Here’s a few and please leave a comment with your own links! *If you’re able to catch it today, NPR had a great interview with Ray Davies from the Kinks. When it’s posted, you’ll find it here.

The best mix tape of the season has to be the soundtrack (of classic songs) from Guardians of the Galaxy:

I can’t deny the influence of Sufjan Steven’s hipster Christmas tracks:

Particularly crazy Sufjan:

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LIVE VIDEO: Historic Comet landing

Several live video feeds to check out after the Twitter feed, below:

BERLIN (AP) — How do you land a spacecraft on a comet that is streaking by at 41,000 mph (66,000 kph)? That’s a problem scientists have been grappling with for more than a decade as they prepare for one of the most audacious space adventures ever — the European Space Agency’s attempt to land a scientific probe on the giant ball of ice and dust known as 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. They’ll find out Wednesday whether their plan will work when the agency’s mission control center in Darmstadt, Germany, gives its unmanned Rosetta space probe the final go-ahead to drop a lander on the comet.

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Yep, Obamacare architect really said ‘lack of transparency’ was essential to passing ACA

First off, this clip is over a year old, but it has come into the spotlight again as a new challenge to Obamacare makes it’s way through the court system. The quote from Obamacare architect and MIT economics professor, Jonathan Gruber brings into vivid focus how much deception the Left is willing to use in order to achieve their ‘greater good.’ Let’s watch it again for the first time:

This bill was written in a tortured way to make sure [the Congressional Budget Office] did not score the mandate as taxes. If CBO scored the mandate as taxes, the bill dies. OK? So it’s written to do that. In terms of risk-rated subsidies, if you had a law which said healthy people are going to pay in — you made explicit that healthy people pay in and sick people get money — it would not have passed. OK? Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage. And basically, call it the stupidity of the American voter or whatever, but basically that was really, really critical to get the thing to pass. Look, I wish … we could make it all transparent, but I’d rather have this law than not.

Asked about the quote over the summer, Jonathan Gruber said, “I honestly don’t remember why I said that…I was speaking off-the-cuff. It was just a mistake.”

It would just be wrong to not end this post with a flashback to her worshipfullness, Rep. Nancy Pelosi, “We have to pass the law so that you can find out what is in it.”

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Full Context on Limbaugh quotes on Consensual Sex

I wanted to provide some context for the whole dust-up regarding Rush Limbaugh’s threat today to sue the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee for defamation after fundraising emails claimed he ‘advocated tolerance of rape.’ First off, it’s important to realize that you don’t get an accurate description of Rush Limbaugh’s program from mainstream media or from just listening to his show a few times. A great deal of what Rush says is satirical and it can be difficult for newbies to penetrate–like any idiosyncratic radio show.

During the show in question, Rush called into question Ohio State University’s ‘consent’ program that requires men and women to verbally agree at every phase of sexual activity. He quoted at length from Ohio State University’s policy on ‘consent’ captured here in a screen shot:

The policy continues with, “If consent is not obtained prior to each act of sexual behavior (from kissing to intercourse), it is not consensual sex.” The policy also lists ‘non-verbal’ forms of communication–claiming that “stiffening muscles,” can mean, “you do NOT have consent.”

Here is Rush’s claim against the DCCC:

The DCCC knowingly and intentionally mischaracterized Mr. Limbaugh’sSeptember 15, 2014 statement. In particular, the DCCC removed ten words from question posed by Mr. Limbaugh, and quoted the ten words completely out of context in order to attribute a false meaning to [his statement]. These ten words, in fact, were not a statement at all. Rather, these ten words were part of a twenty-four word facetious question posed by Mr. Limbaugh… Read on from page 2.

Limbaugh Legal Threat to the DCCC

What do you think?

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DailyKos Liberals Want James O’Keefe Dead

Conservative activist, James O’Keefe, must be hitting all of the right buttons in the liberal blogosphere because the mask is off. Many over at the crazed website appear to want him dead–really dead. Here’s a selection of their choice comments–screen captured for all to see. Click here to see the video(s) that have them so angry. Really nice, tolerant people, right?













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