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Evidently a lot of Indiana businesses are upset that the state government has just legalized discrimination. It’s bad for business:
Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff has made good on a threat tweeted Wednesday evening, warning that the $4 billion company would “dramatically reduce” its investment in Indiana in response to a religious freedom law that critics say is a “license to discriminate” against LGBT individuals.
On Thursday, just hours after Gov. Mike Pence signed the legislation, Benioff announced his firm was “canceling all programs” that require its customers or employees to travel to Indiana, saying he would not subject them to discrimination.
Indiana is the first state to enact such a change this year among about a dozen where such proposals have been introduced. The measure would prohibit state and local laws that “substantially burden” the ability of people — including businesses and associations — to refuse services to individuals based on their religious beliefs.
Fucking barbarians. Yellowstone can’t erupt soon enough.
I am not going to stop suggesting a twenty-first century variation of Pascal’s Wager; Pascal of course the seventeenth century philosopher, mathematician and physicist who so frightened The Church that his head to this day resides pickled in a jar somewhere in the catacombs of the Vatican. Simply put: If I am wrong, if the climate is not changing, the world not warming to in-habitability in my grand-childrens’ generation, I don’t lose a bloody damned thing. If you, the denier, are wrong, we all lose, our grand-children lose, the only world we know of we can live on. End of the road, dinosaurs… extinction. Do you want to take that bet?
Snowfall on Half-dome in Yosemite Valley on March 19 of 2012 and 2015
There was certainly no shortage of water in the Northeast this winter. Boston and several other communities saw record snowfall. But in other parts of the North America, a swinging jet stream exacerbated an already dire prolonged drought, stretching the breadth of the entire Southwest, from California to Texas. Even parts of the Midwest bread basket are thirsty.
There are two factors driving the drought: growth, and climate change. As the population increases, demand on surface water and aquifers grows relentlessly. The dipping, winding jet stream, a phenomenon tentatively linked to amplified warming of the Arctic, denies water to much of the western half of the US while dropping more than needed further east. It’s a fair prediction that there will be no relief in terms of reduced population growth or mitigating changes in climate anytime soon. But we don’t have to count on lucky rainstorms to relieve water shortages. There are other solutions.
The Canadian Wetback running for President…
Cruzing for a Fact-Check Bruising: “Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) has announced he’s running for President in 2016. This means it’s going to be a busy campaign season for fact checkers, who have already started the Sisyphean task of correcting Cruz. […] Chris Mooney demonstrated one way for journalists to deal with presidential climate claims by contacting a climate scientist, who made it clear that Cruz was cherry-picking. Michelle Ye Hee Lee examined the satellite comment for WaPo’s Fact Checker column, giving Cruz ‘Three Pinnochios’ for his misleading statements.
Philip Bump took a critical look at Cruz’s comparison of deniers to Galileo and other comments, stating, ‘There’s not much Cruz got right.’ Most amusing (and original) would be Mooney’s column on Cruz’s Galileo defense. Mooney points out that, first and foremost, Cruz botched the history, saying, “Galileo was branded a denier,” for not accepting that the Earth was flat. This is just plain wrong, because Galileo’s ordeal was about whether the Earth orbited the Sun. Going further, Mooney contacted some historians, who made it clear that when it comes to the Galileo comparison, deniers are off base. One science historian pointed out that Galileo wasn’t attacked by scientists (as Cruz suggests) but by “the power structure of his day.’ And in modern times, ‘Climate contrarians are on the side of, and are supported by, the power structure of our day, which is the Republican Party and the carbon-combustion complex.'” [emphasis added]
It is a clear and present danger to my grand-children’s future.
Yes, “it”. It isn’t human. It is less than sufficiently evolved, less than human.
When Hubbard’s odd combination of science-fiction zaniness with proven human practices like confession and meditation and talk therapy inevitably starts to grow less effective, practitioners learn that their auditors have kept meticulous notes on all those dark secrets. The practice that helped members clear their heads ends up providing the personal leverage that the church’s dirty-tricks outfit will use to keep them from getting clear of the organization without serious risk to their reputation and lifestyle.
The alleged blackmail and harassment are sexy, but Gibney and Wright are more interested in the subtler, self-tied bonds that keep Scientologists from fleeing when things get weird. The ex-members interviewed share certain personal traits — ambition but not confidence, high intelligence but low formal education — that make for good zealots. Abandoning zealotry means acknowledging foolishness, and the combination of pride, community, and basic existential thirst is more than enough to keep most members in line without Scientology’s leaders having to turn to darker tactics.
For all their “sophistication”, they’re no different than any other religion: bare-footed rubes blindly following a charismatic leader to suicide.
Seriously, have you ever read Hubbard’s shit? Queer Cowboys in Space.
The stupid, it burns…
Actress Cate Blanchett abruptly ends an Australian TV show interview.
Jonathan Hyla, host of “The Prospect,” started the interview by suggesting he should have served beer to drink during their conversation. Blanchett, who is promoting the new live-action “Cinderella” movie, said she doesn’t drink beer and would have preferred vodka.
She then attempted to steer the conversation back to the Kenneth Branagh-directed film, in which she plays the evil stepmother, saying that “one o us has got to do our job.”
Hyla then wandered off-topic by asking about a cat that appeared in the movie. “OK, serious question: How were you able to get that cat to do what you wanted to on a leash?” Hyla said. “I tried putting my girlfriend’s cat on a leash and it just never works for me.”
“That’s your question?” Blanchett said. “That’s your f*cking question?”
She looked over her shoulder toward the production crew, told Hyla it was nice to meet him, and exchanged an awkward high-five with the host before leaving.
Digby: I have written for years that the right wing was so terrified of Muslim terrorists that they had literally confused them with invading space aliens. But maybe they aren’t the only ones.
Emptywheel noted this strange passage in the recently released FBI report on post 9/11 changes:
The Review Commission recognizes that national security threats to the United States have multiplied, and become increasingly complex and more globally dispersed in the past decade. Hostile states and transnational networks—including cyber hackers and organized syndicates, space-system intruders, WMD proliferators, narcotics and human traffickers, and other organized criminals—are operating against American interests across national borders, and within the United States. [my emphasis]
My God, it’s bad enough that all these people are out there operating against our interests. Now, we find out that “space-system intruders” hate America too.
Me: This notion that some bastard is going to come back and rescue us… that as the blood of our adolescent squabbles over whose imaginary dog has the bigger dick rises to the horses’ bridle will come floating down out of the sky on a white horse with a thousand angels to carry away the chosen few, the faithful… Who are these “Chosen People”, these “faithful”? The genetically purest cattle (or pigs, as it is)? More accurately: just who do they think they are? Get this straight, these “Chosen People”, these “faithful”, can destroy the world – burn the forests, chop down the mountains, turn the air we breath into toxic gas and waters we drink into vast garbage reservoirs… can
drop their fucking bombs and burn the screaming babies
and at the last moment, the moment the world is utterly destroyed, after the bloodbath, some spectral being with whom they’ve entered into some kind of “special” contractual obligation is going to float down out of the sky and carry them away.
Uh-huh. To what?
Far the more likely thousands upon thousands of cavernous spacecraft, vast slaughter-houses piloted by ravenous vaguely reptilian creatures, replete with horns and folked tail, intent not as benevolent overseers of the demise of this world and our current iteration in human evolution and our children’s evolution onto the next iteration of humanity but as ravenous reptilian creatures… you know, hungry lizards.
We did, afterall, invite them to “Come Eat!”
1. White terrorists are called “gunmen.” What does that even mean? A person with a gun? Wouldn’t that be, like, everyone in the US? Other terrorists are called, like, “terrorists.”
2. White terrorists are “troubled loners.” Other terrorists are always suspected of being part of a global plot, even when they are obviously troubled loners.
3. Doing a study on the danger of white terrorists at the Department of Homeland Security will get you sidelined by angry white Congressmen. Doing studies on other kinds of terrorists is a guaranteed promotion.
4. The family of a white terrorist is interviewed, weeping as they wonder where he went wrong. The families of other terrorists are almost never interviewed.
5. White terrorists are part of a “fringe.” Other terrorists are apparently mainstream.
6. White terrorists are random events, like tornadoes. Other terrorists are long-running conspiracies.
7. White terrorists are never called “white.” But other terrorists are given ethnic affiliations.
8. Nobody thinks white terrorists are typical of white people. But other terrorists are considered paragons of their societies.
9. White terrorists are alcoholics, addicts or mentally ill. Other terrorists are apparently clean-living and perfectly sane.
10. There is nothing you can do about white terrorists. Gun control won’t stop them. No policy you could make, no government program, could possibly have an impact on them. But hundreds of billions of dollars must be spent on police and on the Department of Defense, and on TSA, which must virtually strip search 60 million people a year, to deal with other terrorists.
“People are cherry picking science,” he said. “The science is not political. It’s like repealing gravity because you gained 10 pounds last week.” It can’t be done.