Saturday, January 30, 2010

Political Cartoons of the Week 30 Jan 2010

From Denny: This has been an interesting week. The State of the Union address by President Obama basically summed up how the Republicans have been screwing over the entire country in every aspect of our lives and how much fun the Republicans have had screwing over Prez Obama at every turn while he continues to be inclusive and gracious to them.

Let's see, then our very own highest court in the land decided to screw over the American people by letting loose the floodgates of the greedy Big Business monopolies to fund elections and completely control the politicians elected. Granted, the corrupt basically control most of the politicians, all of the Republicans and far too many of the Democrats.

And the most recent group to get screwed over? The print publishing industry. Those adorable hold-in-your-hand books may soon be no more. Why anyone is shocked is the surprise. Come on; we all grew up on Star Trek and Sy-Fy spin-off shows where they featured hand-held computers and digital books decades before computers were any smaller than a football field, filling whole cavernous rooms like over at NASA. Of course, comparing Apple CEO, Steve Jobs, to God is a bit of a stretch - OK, it's downright creepy. :)

Take a look and chuckle for the day at how the cartoonists responded to this week's news stories:

Obama's State of the Union:

The Obama Scream vs. Big Banks

Screwed by the Supreme Court that is supposed to guard our liberties:

And the latest tech toy the iPad:

Can it be the death of print books as we know it?

OK, this one is a little scary...

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Thursday, January 28, 2010

67 Charities to Donate: Helping Haiti Heal

From Denny: The outpouring of donations worldwide for the relief of suffering in Haiti following a 7.0 devastating earthquake is incredible. The following are a list of 67 well-known established charities to which you can donate safely.

The Mobile Giving Foundation has received over $30 million in text pledges from cell phone donors the past two weeks. Even the Pew Research Center was well impressed and threw out some statistics:

14% donated by text message
12% donated by phone
23% donated via the web
5% donated via email
39% donated in person via a church or other group

Here's something I doubt any of us thought about when we donated by text message or phone: how long will it take for the phone companies to send out that donation? Turns out it can take from 30, even up to 60 days to transfer customers' contributions, which is then added to the mobile phone bills.

The biggest carriers like Verizon Wireless, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile have all decided to expedite those donations.

Here's each company's status:

Verizon Wireless:
Last Friday, 22 January, they transferred $2.98 million. Today, 28 January, they transferred $4.84 million. Jeffrey Nelson declared the campaign "the largest outpouring of charitable support by texting in history — by far. In all of 2009, all mobile giving (via texting) to all charities totaled just under $4 million for the year."

AT&T: Donations are up to $10 million. The company says they will "advance payment of verified texted donations" to the Red Cross.

Sprint: Donations so far are $3.1 million. By Friday, 29 January, they will advance 80% of the donations with the remaining 20% placed into the usual 30 to 90 day settlement cycle.

T-Mobile: They are working hard to expedite on a weekly basis.

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Relief Agencies where to donate:

Action Against Hunger 877-777-1420
Agape Flights 941-584-8078
American Red Cross 800-733-2767
American Refugee Committee 800-875-7060
American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee 212-687-6200
American Jewish World Service 212-792-2900
AmeriCares 800-486-4357
Beyond Borders 866-424-8403
B'nai B'rith International 202-857-6600
CARE 800-521-2273

Catholic Relief Services 800-736-3467
Childcare Worldwide 800-553-2328
Church World Services 800-297-1516
Clinton Foundation 501-748-0471
Concern Worldwide 212-557-8000
Convoy of Hope 417-823-8998
Cross International 800-391-8545
CRUDEM Foundation 413-642-0450

Direct Relief International 805-964-4767
Doctors Without Borders 888-392-0392
Episcopal Relief and Development 800-334-7626
Feed My Starving Children 763-504-2919
Food for the Poor 800-427-9104
Friends of WFP (World Food Program) 866-929-1694
Friends of the Orphans 312-386-7499
Habitat for Humanity 800-422-4828
Haiti Children 877-424-8454
Haiti Foundation Against Poverty

Haiti Marycare 203-675-4770
Haitian Health Foundation 860-886-4357
Healing Hands for Haiti 651-769-5846
Hope for Haiti 239-434-7183
Hope for Haiti Now 877-99-HAITI
International Child Care 800-722-4453
International Medical Corps 800-481-4462
International Rescue Committee 877-733-8433
International Relief Teams 619-284-7979
Islamic Relief USA 888-479-4968

Lions Club International Foundation 630-203-3836
Lutheran World Relief 800-597-5972
Medical Benevolence Foundation 800-547-7627
Medical Teams International 800-959-4325
Meds and Food for Kids 314-420-1634
Mennonite Central Committee 888-563-4676
Mercy Corps 888-256-1900
Nazarene Compassionate Ministries 800-306-9950
New Life for Haiti 815-436-7633
Operation Blessing 800-730-2537

Operation USA 800-678-7255
Oxfam 800-776-9326
Partners in Health 617-432-5298
RHEMA International 248-652-9894
Rural Haiti Project 347-405-5552
Salesian Missions 888-608-2327
The Salvation Army 800-725-2769
Samaritan's Purse 828-262-1980
Save the Children 800-728-3843

UN Central Emergency Response Fund
UNICEF 800-367-5437
United Methodist Committee on Relief 800-554-8583
World Concern 800-755-5022
World Hope International 888-466-4673
World Relief 800-535-5433
World Vision 888-511-6548

Text to donate:

Text/ Number/ Giving campaign/ Amount

"HAITI" 90999 American Red Cross $10
"QUAKE" 20222 Clinton Bush Haiti Fund $10
"GIVE" 25383 MTV telethon $10
"HAITI" 25383 International Rescue Committee $5
"HAITI" 85944 International Medical Corps $10

"YELE" 501501 Yele Haiti foundation $5
"HAITI" 52000 The Salvation Army $10
"HOPE10" or "UNICEF" 20222 UNICEF $10
"HABITAT" 25383 Habitat for Humanity $10
"OXFAM" 25383 Oxfam America, Inc $10

"HAITI" 40579 National Religious Broadcasters $10
"SAVE" or "SAFE" 20222 Save the Children Federation $10
"GIVE" or "WORLD" 20222 World Vision, Inc $10
"CARE" 24383 CARE (Cooperative for Assistance and Relief Everywhere, Inc) $10
"AJWS" 25383 American Jewish World Service $10

*** THANK YOU FOR YOUR DONATIONS - even the smallest amount delivers a huge impact!

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

2 Inspiring Haiti Stories: Woman Pulled From Wreckage, New Baby Born on USS Carl Vinson

From Denny: Finally, a happier story of triumph as a woman named Jeanette was pulled from the damaged building in strong health with minor injuries and dehydration after six days pinned down. This is an awesome story of her faith in God and her determination to survive to be reunited with her husband.

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Of course, with any horrific disaster it helps to focus upon the positive. Nothing is more positive and heart-warming than the birthing of a new life. How fortunate this young mother was to have an entire USS Navy ship at her beck and call. The crew is all smiles to be a part of something so life affirming. Can you guess the new baby boy's name? Yes, it's Vinson, in honor of the ship and crew.

The ship is about 17 miles out from the shore of Haiti. They have been taking in any and all injured discovered on the streets of Haiti by U.S. troops. They were the closest American ship in the area and the first to arrive after the disaster.

Can you imagine being pregnant and deep in labor right after an earthquake? The things that had to be going through her mind as she was getting ready to birth her baby. Luck had it she was found by American troops who quickly transported her to the ship to deliver her baby safely.

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Sunday, January 17, 2010

Unusual: Funny Music Video of How Americans Sound to Foreigners

From Denny: This is so funny, mainly because the lampooning Italians have us accurately nailed to the wall. If you have ever wondered what Americans sound like to others who speak different languages you will laugh at this. An Italian singer decided to write a song with nothing but gibberish to sound like it was intelligible English. Of course, the funniest thing of all is that often today's music sounds unintelligible to us as well! :) But hey, pop music is really all about the beat that makes you want to dance and have fun! ("That's my story and I'm sticking to it!" as the saying goes in America...) I guess Americans can remind themselves of the other saying: "Imitation is the greatest form of flattery." Anyway, you look at it, this little musical spoof is great fun!

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Wednesday, January 13, 2010

5 Funny Quotes About Time

Time? Where are you, you little rascal? I'll go shoot me some Time to keep!

From Denny: Enjoy these funny quotes as a sampling of today's Mind Candy! For more grins at funny photos and quotes, go here: Funny Quotes About Time - Cheeky Quote Day! 13 Jan 2010


* When I give a lecture, I accept that people look at their watches, but what I do not tolerate is when they look at it and raise it to their ear to find out if it stopped. - Marcel Achard

* Time will explain it all. He is a talker, and needs no questioning before he speaks. - Euripides

* I would I could stand on a busy corner, hat in hand, and beg people to throw me all their wasted hours. - Bernard Berenson

* I've been on a calendar, but never on time. - Marilyn Monroe

* Time and Tide wait for no man, but time always stands still for a woman of thirty. -Robert Frost

: "Play it again, Sam!"

*** To enjoy the full post, full of funny photos too:
Funny Quotes About Time - Cheeky Quote Day! 13 Jan 2010

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Saturday, January 9, 2010

Funny New Years Resolutions Cartoons

From Denny: Made your lame New Years resolution yet? If you are stumped for a good idea, check out what the editorial cartoonists are suggesting. They never disappoint. Which one is your favorite?

*** Update: Check out the latest 2010 funny New Years cartoons where the embed codes are active :)

Best New Years Cartoons 2010

New Years: Funny Quotes, Resolutions Tips, Poems

Funny New Years Resolutions

*** Also: Funny Editorial Cartoons 9 Jan 2010
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Wednesday, January 6, 2010

4 of 10 Top Quotes of 2009

*** Thought you might enjoy a teaser of Cheeky Quote Day! This is an excerpt from the full post over at The Social Poets:

Political Cats!From Denny: Some of the cheekiest - most irreverent or most odd - quotes were uttered in the year of 2009 in America. There are times when I wonder if there are regions of the country with lead in the water, sounding as bizarre as ancient Rome did right before they destroyed their empire. The ancient Romans poisoned themselves with lead in their wine, unknowingly, that also sterilized them, dropping the population of the ruling aristocracy. Their increasing bizarre behavior is well documented historically and, of course, Hollywood celebrated it with many a movie. After all, villains are great story grist! :)

I knew there was a verbal bridge somewhere in here... more like a teetering wood suspension bridge in the Amazon... 2009 has been a very bizarre year for quotes from politicians in particular and a few celebrities too. Notice that Tiger Woods is noticeably silent. Maybe he's saving his quotes for 2010. Stay tuned...

1. "Do ya think?" he's: Holding Back

"He deserves my silence."

George W. Bush, former President, refusing to criticize President Barack Obama during a speech in March, his first address since leaving office. Yet the Republicans didn't waste any time later in the year, propelling Bush out in front to take the fire for complaining about Obama's job performance and handling of terrorism issues.

Hmmmm... yes, Obama still deserves his silence. The man was a hack in the Presidency so what real advice could he offer? The majority of the time he never watched nor read the news, depending upon filtered information from jealous coveting-the-power aides like Rove.

Photo by Ross D. Franklin/Getty

2. Obama's Persistent Peanut Gallery (OPPG) throwing rotten tomatoes:

"The America I know and love is not one in which my parents or my baby with Down syndrome will have to stand in front of Obama's 'death panel' so his bureaucrats can decide, based on a subjective judgment of their 'level of productivity in society,' whether they are worthy of health care."

Sarah Palin, former Alaska governor, rambling all over the place on her Facebook page, whiner lying about a provision of the proposed health care bill that called for Medicare to reimburse doctors for counseling patients on end-of-life-care issues such as living wills and hospice availability. Somehow, she had reading comprehension problems and started screaming death panels are in the bill when clearly they are not.

3. Perilously Close on the Heels of Republican Retreads

"I'm happy to get good ideas from across the political spectrum, from Democrats and Republicans. What I won't do is return to the failed theories of the last eight years that got us into this fix in the first place, because those theories have been tested, and they have failed. And that's what part of the election in November was all about."

President Obama, during his first official press conference, on 9 Feb 2009. What's annoying is when you follow such a disastrous act like Bush and Cheney who basically broke several world governments, is that you are forced to continue some of the same policies until you can stabilize a region, beginning new policies to repair all the damage.

So it goes in American politics for decades: Republicans like to blow up the world and Democrats come in behind them to clean up their mess. Then the public gets angry it takes too long to clean up the mess and choose Republicans again, thinking the economy will pick up. There is a real disconnect of the American voter with an understanding of just how long it takes to repair a mess and then gin up the economy.

4. The Commies Are Coming! The Commies Are Coming! Stay safe; hide under your school desk when the nukes hit. (Now there's a plan.)

"I don't want this country turning into Russia, turning into a socialized country. My question for you is, What are you going to do to restore this country back to what our founders created according to the Constitution?"

Katy Abram, a Pennsylvania mother, speaking at a health care town hall moderated by Senator Arlen Specter in August in Lebanon, Pennsylvania. If this woman knew what she was talking about, understood economics, international diplomacy and common sense, and actually cared if women got equal pay for the same job, well, she would never have voted Republican in the first place. These guys are the ones who sent our country careening out of control financially for decades starting with President Reagan and his paranoid Star Wars concept.

*** For the full post and quotes 5 - 10: including Michael Jackson, Hillary Clinton, Berlusconi, David Letterman and con man Madoff, visit The Social Poets, go here.

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Monday, January 4, 2010

How Funny! 10 Banned Overused Buzzwords of 2009

From Denny: That's the thing about buzzwords. First they are cool because they are a clever reference or manipulation of other words and then everyone starts using them. Our minds so crave something clever and unusual.

Then those same cool words get overused and suddenly people turn on them, like a rabid dog bites its once loved owner, declaring them now uncool. I can only imagine the confusion of someone trying to learn the English language. The occasional idioms are one thing but popular current language is a real mind-bender at times. I'm a native speaker and even I scratch my head sometimes, going, "Huh?" :)

Well, lucky you, these words and phrases are on their way "out" of our everyday language for 2010. Of course, who in the heck declares what's "in" or "out" anyway? Some fairy godmother waving her wand over the globe? Well, on to new magic in the New Year!

Photo by Betsie Van Der Meer/Corbis

1. Sexting = sex + texting - Parents are horrified, kids snicker, while someone gets slapped with pornography charges for dirty dialing on the phone. Not too funny when the law comes calling and empties your wallet for the deed.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid photo by Nicholas Kamm/Getty

2. Public option - Health care reform bill reference to a government run health care plan that is actually affordable. The popular idea is it would compete with private plans to force the insurance companies to keep their prices in line "or else" the public has a cheaper alternative with the government. Works for me. Seems to me the only ones that want to ban this phrase are the insurance companies because it means less billion dollar profits to the CEOs.

3. Autotune - Refers to a software program to correct imperfect musical pitch. After rapper T-pain made good use of it the late night comedians picked it up and applied it weirdly to news clips. T-pain released his own iPhone app that has been downloaded to the tune of 10,000 a day. Bet he doesn't care if he becomes a cliche with that kind of money rolling in daily at $3 an app. Whew!

Photo by Christy Bowe/Corbis

4. Wise Latina - Came from Sotomayor's first Latina nomination to the Supreme Court. This is the much maligned and repeated line from her 2001 speech the racists tried to use against her: "I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experiences would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn't lived that life." What's funny is that her term of a wise Latina became a rallying cry in the Hispanic community where people proudly displayed it on T-shirts, coffee mugs, baby bibs and banners. Isn't it great fun when the mean-spirited people get backfired?! :)

Republican Senator Grassley photo by Alex Wong/Getty

5. Death Panel - Senator Grassley from Iowa declared for sure that Obama's health care plan would "pull the plug on Grandma." This is the same guy who was crafting the bill, had read it supposedly and yet still claimed this to be true. The 1,000 page bill had no mention of committees that were set up to execute the infirm or the old. Dementia or just plain stupidity here?

Alaska's weird Governor Palin shrieked from a Facebook message: "The America I know and love is not one in which my parents or my baby with Down Syndrome will have to stand in front of Obama's 'death panel' so his bureaucrats can decide, based on a subjective judgment of their "level of productivity in society, whether they are worthy of health care. Such a system is downright evil." Uh... Governor, can you read?

6. Birther - Speaking of shriekers, Orly Tait from California, peddled a huge fat lie that Obama was secretly smuggled into Hawaii just after his birth so he could qualify as an American citizen. What drugs was this guy on? This stuff is so incredulous you can't make it up: he did. Now what mother who just gave birth is going to get on a plane with a day old baby and fly all the way from Kenya to America? Are you nuts or just not female? Worse, who is actually brain dead enough to believe any of this warped nonsense?

Obama was born in Hawaii, complete with birth certificate and birth announcement in a local paper. Yet the Birther crowd still demands to see the original document. Yeah, like I'm going to show a bunch of crazed folks my social security number and other personal data as a sitting President. Yeah, right.

Photo by Juice Images/Corbis

7. Opposite Marriage - It's supposed to mean a marriage between a man and a woman but Miss California, Carrie Prejean, bungled her rambling answer to a question and it fumbled into this phrase. The question: Do you think gay marriage should be legalized in every state of the union? Answer: "Um, we live in a land that you can choose same-sex marriage or opposite marriage and, you know what, in my country and, in my family, I think that I believe that a marriage should be between a man and a woman. No offense to anybody out there." As you can guess there were some angry folks and a shouting match.

Michael Jackson Photo by Paul Richards/Getty

8. Summer of Death - A number of high profile notable celebrities passed away this year: singer Michael Jackson, actor Ed McMahon, actress Farrah Fawcett, newsman Walter Cronkite, actor and dancer Patrick Swayze, John Hughes and even beloved Taco Bell spokes-puppy Gidget the Chihuahua. Most of the deaths occurred from May to August of 2009.

From the New York Times: "No more celebrities had died than in past summers ... this summer could come to be known as the summer when baby boomers began to turn to the obituary pages first, to face not merely their own mortality or ponder their legacies, but to witness the passing of legends who defined them as a tribe, bequeathing through music, culture, news and politics a kind of generational badge that has begun to fray."

Photo by Pete Souza/White House/Getty

9. Beer Summit - Prez Obama met with black Harvard professor Henry Gates, Jr. and white police officer Sergeant James Crowley to defuse a racial incident between them. The local police badly handled a call from one of Gates' neighbors who thought someone was breaking into Gates' house: it was Gates fumbling with his keys at the door.

The police got angry when Gates got angry and the whole thing blew up out of proportion, taking on racial overtones and a national controversy. Obama made public comments about the incident when he really should have remained above the fray.

Police profiling of minorities is a sticking point in America even after electing the first African-American President. Obama successfully sat down with the men over shared beers to lay to rest the overblown sensitive issue. Of course, the photographers had never seen an American President do such a thing and went wild in the Rose Garden snapping a piece of history.

Photo by Simon Marcus/Corbis

10. Green Shoots - What's the first thing you think of when you hear this phrase? Yep! Spring time and vibrant green plant shoots rocketing out of the ground at record pace. Turns out this phrase has been around about twenty years now. It really caught on this year when Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke, in a 60 Minutes interview, used it to describe his optimism for this year's economic growth.

Of course, since then depressed and disappointed analysts - and desperate journalists - jumped on the bandwagon and wore it out trying to use it as a soothing effect on their audiences. From Slate's Daniel Gross: "Economists are now walking around, eyes fixed on the ground like French rustics hunting for truffles, searching for verdant signs of growth."

I have to admit it was truly bizarre to hear modern day crusty personality business journalists using the phrase "verdant signs of growth" like they had just popped in from a 19th century luncheon with Sherlock Holmes at a poetry slam. I'll have to keep my eye on these guys in 2010 just to make sure they aren't suffering from buzzword dementia... :)

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