I confess to being driven insane this past month by the spectacle of television pundits professing to be baffled by the meaning of Occupy Wall Street. Good grief. Isn’t the ability to read still a job requirement for a career in journalism? And as last week’s inane “What Do They Want?” meme morphs into this week’s craven “They Want Your Stuff” meme, I feel it’s time to explain something: Occupy Wall Street may not have laid out all of its demands in a perfectly cogent one-sentence bumper sticker for you, Mr. Pundit, but it knows precisely what it doesn’t want. It doesn’t want you.
What the movement clearly doesn’t want is to have to explain itself through corporate television. To which I answer, Hallelujah. You can’t talk down to a movement that won’t talk back to you.
On Tuesday, the aerospace industry put out a report saying that chopping the defense budget would put over a million Americans out of work. Cuts that could total up to a trillion dollars over 10 years would “devastate the economy and the defense industrial base and undermine the national security of our country,” said Marion Blakeley, president of the Aerospace Industries Association, which sponsored the report.
But while Blakeley’s group paid for research to draw that dire conclusion, some of her members reported a sunnier economic outlook to their shareholders. In its third-quarter earnings report, also released Tuesday, Lockheed – manufacturers of the F-22 and F-35 jets — told investors to expect that as long as Congress passes President Obama’s next defense budget, ”the Corporation expects 2012 net sales to be flattish as compared to 2011 levels, and that consolidated 2012 segment operating profit margin will remain at approximately 11 percent.” Boom: another $700 million in earnings, on its way.
In more on the mainstream media’s bizarre coverage of Tuesday night’s police brutality in Oakland, a number of blogs have commented on this — both ABC and CBS local affiliates had helicopters providing live feeds as events unfolded in front of Oakland’s City Hall. Allegedly, both television channels cut their transmissions when the police began attacking protesters, and both said it was due to their helicopters’ needing refueling. That’s right — both the ABC and CBS helicopters ran out of fuel at the same moment. The moment when the newsworthy events began to occur. One can only say, wow.
There’s been a lot of talk about Apple creating a TV set.
I didn’t take that seriously, until now.
For all the security improvements at airports after 9/11 — full-body scans, bans on liquids, pat downs — there is one check that airports aren’t doing.
Bags checked at airline counters are scanned for possible explosives but not for loaded guns.
The potential loophole became apparent over the weekend at Los Angeles International Airport, when an undeclared, loaded .38-caliber handgun went undetected from the airport and almost onto an Alaska Airlines flight to Portland. It was discovered by ramp workers, who said the gun fell out of a duffel bag as they were about to load it on the plane.
At first, the incident appeared to a be a breakdown of LAX’s extensive weapons detection system.
But Transportation Security Administration officials said they are not required to screen for loaded weapons in checked luggage, only in carry-on luggage. TSA spokesman Nico Melendez said the duffel bag in question went through an explosives scanner, as do all checked bags. It did not generate an alert.
The directors of Britain’s largest companies were last night condemned as "elite greedy pigs" for pocketing a 49 per cent pay rise in the past year, while average workers failed even to keep up with inflation.
Unions exploded with fury after the publication of figures that showed how boardroom pay soared in the last financial year, thanks to rising salaries, bonuses and in particular the swelling value of directors’ long-term share plans. The statistics, compiled by Incomes Data Services, provide an annual snapshot of executive remuneration, as reported in companies’ most recent reports to shareholders, and show that the chief executives of the FTSE 100 largest companies earned an average of £3,855,172 last year. That is an average 43 per cent rise and, adding in other directors, total earnings rose by an average 49 per cent.
Americans have a long history of using parodies and satire in their political and social debates. Whether it’s the Daily Show, the Onion, or books like The Wind Done Gone, humor and poking fun can have a powerful political impact and are plainly protected by law. So what’s with Justin Bieber trying to take down the website freebieber.org?
Earlier this week, U.K. tabloids such as The Times and The Daily Mail suggested that London’s Occupy LSX protest was left largely empty at night, and used pictures taken by thermal imaging cameras as evidence. With only one or two ‘hot’ tents glowing in a field of darkness, it looked like the campsite was a fraud.
A visit to the camp already proved it plenty full, but
after renting the same model of camera and shooting the above video, however, activists also proved that tents remain “cold” to the cameras even when occupied. This insulating effect is the purpose of tents, whose heat-reflectivity is marketed by the companies that make them.
Moreover, the footage shows that activity in and around camp is still apparent at night, despite the insulating effect of the material. Presumably, those taking the original thermal images could observe the camp and assess the occupation level with their own eyes, too.
Only in carefully-selected thermal stills would the protest camp appear empty, leaving the impression the reporters must have known the story spun from the thermal images wasn’t true.
Dr. Erin Carr-Jordan, a mother of four, started recording and posting videos of trashy playgrounds, and quickly built an international following. Her lab tests, which revealed dangerous bacteria on the equipment, have been featured on network broadcasts and in major national newspapers.
This week, Carr-Jordan was notified by an East Valley franchisee’s attorney that she is no longer allowed in any of his McDonald’s restaurants that have playgrounds.
"Rather than have someone come into the playgrounds and do the right thing and make them clean and safe, they told me not to come in anymore," Carr-Jordan said.
Greece’s failure to cut spending and boost revenue by enough to meet targets set by the European Union and International Monetary Fund prompted bondholders to accept a 50 percent loss on its debt. While Ireland won’t seek debt discounts, the government might pursue other relief given to Greece, including cheaper interest payments on aid and longer to repay it, according to a person familiar with the matter who declined to be identified as no final decision has been taken.
“There’s a political problem for the government,” said Gavin Blessing, a bond analyst at Collins Stewart Plc in Dublin. “The Greeks, who are seen to be behaving badly, get rewarded, whereas the Irish, the top boys in the class, get nothing.”
Reporter Charlie Savage of the New York Times filed a Freedom of Information Act request to find out the federal government’s interpretation of its own law…and had it refused. According to the federal government, its own interpretation of the law is classified. What sort of democracy are we living in when the government can refuse to even say how it’s interpreting its own law?
So, in the future you have to go to a hotel in a different country just to participate in a teleconference where none of the people are in the same room. And nobody talks to each other, they just finger swipe through life. Got it.
The F-22 has been okayed to fly again, after being grounded, cleared, grounded, then cleared once more—all within a year. And yet, the Air Force hasn’t fixed the plane’s life threatening flaw. It doesn’t seem like it cares.
The F-22 is not a fighter aircraft. It is not a weapon of war.
It is, primarily, a means to divert Federal funds to businesses located in Republican districts. That is all.
It doesn’t matter if the plane doesn’t actually fly. Even if it doesn’t fly, it still “works”, because it sinks billions into the economies of Georgia, Alabama, Texas and Missouri. Thats what they mean when they say that the F-22 “works”.