Overcast and rainy-looking this way-way-too-early Thursday here on California’s north coast, and since I’m on foot nowadays, the wet doesn’t make me want to dance a jig.
Rain is forecast for the next couple of days, so I’ll just have to abide with the dude.
News shit sucks this morning — the same pattern to the same noise machine coming from all parts of the globe. Ukraine and Nigeria are the two hot spots percolating with sweaty stories of war and massacre, followed closely by Syria, and worldwide shock as the situation is so bad, President Obama lamented: “I have this remarkable title right now — President of the United States — and yet every day when I wake up, and I think about young girls in Nigeria or children caught up in the conflict in Syria — when there are times in which I want to reach out and save those kids — and having to think through what levers, what power do we have at any given moment.”
(Illustration: Salvador Dali, ‘Alice’s Evidence,’ found here).
And this week also punched the Clintons, Hilary and Bubba, right in the spotlight-glare as former intern-flame, Monica Lewinsky, exposed herself in words: “It’s time to burn the beret and bury the blue dress.” She also says: “I, myself, deeply regret what happened between me and President Clinton. Let me say it again: I. Myself. Deeply. Regret. What. Happened.”
I’m sure Hilary. Does. Too.
In a lift to the human spirit in the face of horror:
The first Black Death plague which killed millions of people in medieval Europe was good for the health and longevity of generations following it, according to US research.
Nearly 600 skeletons from 1347-1351 were studied from London cemeteries to find out whether the deaths of frail people combined with rising living standards after the disease cleared resulted in a healthier post-epidemic population.
Always gaze upon the bright side, I’d venture a guess.
Back in the day, I used to pick mushrooms that had sprouted from cow shit in numerous Alabama pastures — had no idea I was forcing myself into being a more positive person:
Researchers at the Psychiatric University Hospital of Zurich have now shown that psilocybin, the bioactive component in the Mexican magic mushroom, influences the amygdala, thereby weakening the processing of negative stimuli.
These findings could “point the way to novel approaches to treatment” comments the lead author Rainer Krähenmann on the results which have now been published in the medical journal Biological Psychiatry.
But man, what a way to enlarge the brain nexus, or whatever.
And the GOP obsessions with Benghazi continues with yet another bullshit hearing — maybe the billionth time, and the irony of being nasty:
On Tuesday, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Whip Steny Hoyer sent a letter to Boehner requesting there be an equal number of Democrats on the panel as Republicans.
The letter called for rules mandating that there be bipartisan agreement to approve subpoenas and protocols for the release of documents related to the investigation.
Republicans are all but ignoring the Democrats’ request, with plans to appoint seven of their own to the panel and just five Democrats.
As justification for the move, they point to Pelosi’s decision, when she was Speaker in 2007, not to appoint an equal number of Republicans and Democrats to a Select Committee on climate change.
They also note that with the exception of the Ethics Committee, seats on congressional panels are doled out based on the partisan makeup of the chamber.
“That’s a red herring. I don’t think it’s important at all” to have an equal number from each party, Gowdy said.
“I just want it to be fair.”
Fair, as in the weather, or….
And US high school seniors flunk the future:
Report card time is always an anxious period for students.
On Wednesday, the so-called “nation’s report card” was delivered courtesy of the National Assessment of Educational Progress, and the results would make America’s high schoolers want to hide in their room.
How bad was the report on the math and reading skills of America’s 12th graders?
“Seventy-four percent of students scored below the grade-appropriate level in math, compared with 26 percent of students who scored at or above grade level,” NPR reports.
“In reading, just 38 percent of seniors scored at or above grade level.”
“In reading, the 38 percent share of students performing at or above the proficient level was lower than when the assessment was first given in 1992, when it was 40 percent,” according to the Associated Press.
The report, which tested 92,000 public and private school students, gives America’s schools a failing grade, as its seniors are about to make the jump to college or into the workforce.
The latest scores are almost identitical to the last time the exam was given in 2009, but come on the heels of new data showing U.S. high school graduation rates reached an all-time high of 80 percent in 2013.
What else is new?
Only hours to the weekend, the big news.