Tuesday Morning Open Thread

Animals don’t lie. Animals don’t criticize. If animals have moody days, they handle them better than humans do.

Betty White

Nine hurt as gunmen fire at Cairo protesters

Nine people were hurt when gunmen fired at protesters camping in Cairo's Tahrir Square on Tuesday, according to witnesses and Egyptian media, as the opposition called for a major demonstration it hopes will force President Mohamed Mursi to postpone a referendum on a new constitution.

Supporters of the Islamist leader, who want the vote to go ahead as planned on Saturday, were also gathering in the capital, setting the stage for further street confrontations in a political crisis that has divided the Arab world's most populous nation.

Police cars surrounded Tahrir Square in central Cairo, the first time they had appeared in the area since November 23, shortly after a decree by Mursi awarding himself sweeping temporary powers that touched off widespread protests.

Policewoman targeted as Northern Ireland tensions rise

A policewoman narrowly escaped injury when a petrol bomb was thrown at a police car in Belfast, police said, as tensions in Northern Ireland prompted by a vote on the flying of the Union flag continue to simmer.

The car was stationed at the time of the attack outside the office of Alliance Party lawmaker, Naomi Long, who received a death threat last week. The Police Service of Northern Ireland are treating the incident as an attempted murder.

Long, the Alliance Party's sole lawmaker in the UK parliament at Westminster, has called on British Prime Minister David Cameron to intervene.

Mandela "responding" to treatment for recurrence of lung infection, S. African gov't says

South Africa's presidency says former President Nelson Mandela is suffering from a recurring lung infection and is responding to treatment.

The statement Tuesday from presidential spokesman Mac Maharaj said the 94-year-old anti-apartheid icon is "receiving appropriate treatment and he is responding to the treatment."

'Choose Life' license plates ruled unconstitutional in North Carolina

A federal judge ruled that North Carolina's new "Choose Life" license plates are unconstitutional because the state does not offer a pro-choice alternative.

"The State's offering a Choose Life license plate in the absence of a pro-choice alternative constitutes viewpoint discrimination in violation of the First Amendment," U.S. District Court Judge James Fox wrote in the ruling Friday.

The ruling was praised by the American Civil Liberties Union, which had filed a lawsuit in 2011 to stop the specialty plates.

Scalia defends legal writings some find anti-gay

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia on Monday found himself defending his legal writings that some find offensive and anti-gay.

Speaking at Princeton University, Scalia was asked by a gay student why he equates laws banning sodomy with those barring bestiality and murder.

"I don't think it's necessary, but I think it's effective," Scalia said, adding that legislative bodies can ban what they believe to be immoral.

U.S. students continue to trail Asian students in math, reading, science

Students across the United States have made some gains but continue to lag behind many of their Asian counterparts in reading, math and science, according to the results of two international tests released Tuesday.

U.S. fourth-graders’ math and reading scores improved since the last time students took the tests several years ago, while eighth-graders remained stable in math and science. Americans outperformed the international average in all three subjects but remained far behind students in such places as Singapore and Hong Kong, especially in math and science.

Billionaires Warn Higher Taxes Could Prevent Them From Buying Politicians

Introducing a new wrinkle into the already fraught fiscal cliff showdown, a consortium of billionaires today warned that if their taxes are raised they will no longer have enough money to buy politicians.

The group, led by casino billionaire Sheldon Adelson, commissioned a new study showing that the cost of an average politician has soared exponentially over the past decade.

Google Maps lets users explore NASA's 'Black Marble'

Google Maps is now letting users explore Earth's far-reaching lands filled with flickering lights using imagery from NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's "Black Marble."

The Web giant announced the launch of its own Earth at Night today, which is a global view and animation of the images taken from NASA and NOAA's jointly operated Suomi NPP satellite. These series of images show what the Earth looks like from space once the sun sets.

Targeting kids' salt intake may curb childhood obesity rates, study says

When it comes to childhood obesity, experts are not shy about suggesting a link between consumption of calorie-filled sugary drinks and ballooning obesity rates in the United States.

However, a new study finds a target that its researchers say may be a better way to head off the obesity epidemic in kids and prevent them from reaching for a sugary drink in the first place: Salt intake.

"In addition to the known benefits of lowering blood pressure, salt reduction strategies may be useful in childhood obesity prevention efforts," concluded the researchers from the Centre for Physical Activity and Nutrition Research at Deakin University in Burwood, Australia.




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Good morning.

Glinda's picture

I just wish that The People bodies could ban immoral Supreme Court Judges like Scalia, and in fact Scalia. 



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Apple IOS maps could be deadly

Glinda's picture

SYDNEY — The city of Mildura is not at the end of a dirt road in the Australian bush, in tire-choking desert sand far from food and water. Unfortunately, Apple’s much-maligned mapping application thinks it is.


More than two months after Apple’s CEO apologized for errors in its Maps service, Australian police say the app is “potentially life threatening” because of the bad directions it has given to the southern city.


Victoria state police say they’ve had to rescue several Mildura-bound drivers who were directed by the app to remote Murray Sunset National Park, about 70 kilometers (44 miles) away. Some were stranded for 24 hours without food or water, and had to walk long distances through tough terrain to access phone reception.

iSolated: Bad Apple Maps directions leading drivers to remote Australian park, police warn


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type1error's picture

"You will enjoy yourself, dammit!"

Sounds like family get togethers at the holidays....

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mornin'! would say 'good' but it's morning so that...

poligirl's picture

negates that!

it's frickin 39 degrees here on the bayou at 930am... this is not fair. this is Louisiana fcol. and i'm gonna whine til it gets warmer dammit! ;>

and good on the fed judge with the NorCar license plates.

in other news, Scalia is still a dick.

hope wherever you are, you find your weather pleasant. if not, come sit next to me and let's bitch.  :D

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I was running late today,

type1error's picture

so I showed up at the office in my workout clothes....shorts and a t-shirt.

I love Florida weather!!!!

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Recommended Reading:

Glinda's picture

MN-Sen: Al Franken (D) Leading The Fight To Protect Jobs From The Trans-Pacific Partnership


The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) “free trade” agreement is a stealthy policy being pressed by corporate America, a dream of the 1 percent, that in one blow could:


    offshore millions of American jobs,
    free the banksters from oversight,
    ban Buy America policies needed to create green jobs and rebuild our economy,
    decrease access to medicine,
    flood the U.S. with unsafe food and products,
    and empower corporations to attack our environmental and health safeguards.

Closed-door talks are on-going between the U.S. and Australia, Brunei, Chile, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, Malaysia and Vietnam; with countries like Japan and China potentially joining later. 600 corporate advisors have access to the text, while the public, Members of Congress, journalists, and civil society are excluded. - Public Citizen


Josh Wise, director of the Minnesota Fair Trade Coalition, which is closely monitoring TPP negotiations, explains that Congress has been mostly shut out of TPP negotiations.  Franken's letter is the closest law makers can get to influencing these negotiations before the TPP lands in Congress for a ratification vote.

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I was about to get into my sweats and go run

Shahryar's picture

but here comes the rain again, falling on my head like a new umbrella...no, that's not right. Like a something, whatever it is. Anyway, it's raining now in Oregon, if you can believe that! So maybe instead I'll keep working.

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