Friday, December 19, 2008
Franken Up 262 As Canvassing Board WrapsST. PAUL (AP) ―Democrat Al Franken holds a 262-vote lead in Minnesota's Senate recount after the state Canvassing Board has wrapped up its work deciding disputed ballots.
Franken took the lead from Republican Norm Coleman on Friday and steadily increased it. The board was handling almost entirely Coleman challenges, and rejecting most of them.
There's plenty of drama left. Next week, some 5,000 challenges that were withdrawn earlier will be allocated to the two candidates.
And an estimated 1,600 improperly rejected absentee ballots will be brought into the count at some point. The candidates and election officials have to figure out a process to do that by the end of the year.
Coleman's campaign also went to court Friday. They asked the state Supreme Court to block the Canvassing Board from including possibly double-counted ballots in the recount.
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Sunday, December 14, 2008
Saturday, December 13, 2008
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Monday, December 08, 2008
Monday, December 01, 2008
DIRTY Dancing star Patrick Swayze has reportedly taken a turn for the worse and started saying goodbye to loved ones after learning his cancer has spread.The Dirty Dancing and Ghost star, who in January was told he had pancreatic cancer, has started preparing himself for death, reports say
In pictures: The ever-popular Patrick Swayze
"Patrick recently got word that the cancer had spread to his liver and that is what his doctors said would begin the countdown to the end," a source told National Enquirer magazine.
"Patrick knew it was coming because he was suffering increased weakness.
"At times, he was so weak that he could barely walk without feeling faint. Sometimes he feels out of breath and has to sit down."
Swayze, 56, told Lisa, his wife of 33 years, and his brother Donny that he doesn't have long to live.
"Lisa phoned Donny in Los Angeles and told him he need to come to Chicago, where Patrick has been filming TV show The Beast. She was crying and scared Donny to death," the source told National Enquirer.
"Donny got the impression his brother was already on his deathbed because Lisa was saying Patrick wanted to say goodbye. She couldn't stop crying."
Swayze has been undergoing pioneering Cyberknife radiotherapy at California's Stamford University Medical Centre, and had been making a steady recovery from the illness.
He has finished filming The Beast in Chicago, where he has been putting in 12-hour days. He went to a party earlier this week to celebrate with Lisa and Donny.
He stayed for one-and-a-quarter hours sitting on a couch the entire time, happily talking to people.
Swayze's wife "mingled a little more than Patrick did, leaving the couch to grab a drink or talk to people, but mostly she remained at his side" a source told the US magazine.
"Patrick let the party-goers come to him, never circulating around the room and rarely even standing up, but when others did come to him, he chatted at length with many of them."
In October, his production team reported Swayze had missed only a day and a half of work.
"I'm still fine to work, I haven't changed - oh, I have changed, what am I saying? It's a battle zone I go through. Chemo, no matter how you cut it, is hell on wheels," he told The New York Times.
Sunday, November 30, 2008
St. Paul, Minn. — Local elections officials are expected to resume recounting votes in the U.S. Senate election on Monday after taking time off for the Thanksgiving holiday.
The entire recount must be done by next Friday, Dec. 5. The State Canvassing Board then meets on December 16 to start reviewing challenged ballots. The board intends to declare either Norm Coleman or Al Franken the winner a few days later.
But even then, the election may not be settled. A court challenge is likely, and both sides are preparing for the possibility that the Senate itself could weigh in.
After saying for weeks that he was going to take the recount process one step at a time, Democrat Al Franken's attorney now appears to be jumping ahead.
On Wednesday the State Canvassing Board rejected Franken's appeal to review any rejected absentee ballots, but the board did leave open the chance that they could examine any rejected ballots that were discarded for errors outside the voter's control. Afterwards Franken's Attorney Marc Elias said he would continue to work to make sure that all legitimate votes are counted.
"There are a number of ways that this can happen. Whether it is at the county level, before the State Canvassing Board, before the courts of Minnesota or before the United States Senate, we do not know, but we remain confident that one way or another, all lawful votes will be counted in this election," said Elias.
The Senate's top Democrat Harry Reid also weighed in on the canvassing board's ruling. In a statement he called the decision "a cause for great concern" and urged Minnesota authorities to ensure that no voter is disenfranchised. The comments by Elias and Reid have increased the potential that the Senate may take the rare step of weighing in on the race.
"Ultimately, the Senate has complete authority to determine who was elected," said Washington University political scientist Steven Smith.
According to Smith the Constitution allows the Senate to be the final arbiter of its membership. Smith said the Senate does so by determining the qualifications of each member. On most occasions, Smith said the Senate simply accepts a state's election certificate, but it has diverted course a few times.
"There is a motion under Senate rules and precedents that allows any Senator to make a motion to refer the credentials to a committee, presumably the Senate Rules and Administration Committee, which has jurisdiction over election matters, in order to delay action on it," explained Smith.
In other words, the Senate could start its own investigation into the election and vote counting. If that action is taken, it's conceivable that Franken's argument regarding rejected absentee ballots could be reconsidered by the Senate.
"So, if this is like cases in the past in the House and the Senate, we could have staff members, or even Senators, sitting there looking at these contested ballots. It could come down to that," said Smith.
Smith said the Senate last weighed in on a serious election contest in 1974.
The contest involved a dispute between two New Hampshire candidates. After several recounts, the Senate moved to seat the Democrat. The motion was brushed back several times by Republicans who filibustered the issue. After months of wrangling, the Senate declared the seat vacant and ordered another election, which the Democrat won.
The possibility that the Senate, which is now controlled by 58 Democrats, could weigh in on Minnesota's election is a worry for Republican Norm Coleman's campaign.
For weeks Coleman's attorneys and Republican surrogates have warned that Franken was laying the groundwork for the Senate to consider the election.
Coleman spokesman Mark Drake called on Franken to abandon any efforts to get the Senate to weigh in on the race when the body seats its new members in January.
"We fear that that's where it's headed, and I think Al Franken owes it to the people of Minnesota to reject any and all efforts to stop a Minnesota Senator from being sworn in on the 6th. If the recount shows that Norm Coleman prevailed, as we expect it to. Al Franken should respect that," said Drake.
Drake said the Coleman campaign is preparing for a lengthy fight either in court or in the Senate.
Political scientist Steven Smith doubts the Senate will get involved. But he said there could be a real temptation for Democrats to consider the option, if Franken loses to Coleman by only a few dozen votes. But he said Democrats know a nasty floor fight could take away from all of the other business they want to conduct over the next several months.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Friday, November 14, 2008
• He collects Spider-Man and Conan the Barbarian comics
• He was known as "O'Bomber" at high school for his skill at basketball
• His name means "one who is blessed" in Swahili
• His favourite meal is wife Michelle's shrimp linguini
• He won a Grammy in 2006 for the audio version of his memoir, Dreams From My Father
• He is left-handed – the sixth post-war president to be left-handed
• He has read every Harry Potter book
• He owns a set of red boxing gloves autographed by Muhammad Ali
• He worked in a Baskin-Robbins ice cream shop as a teenager and now can't stand ice cream
• His favourite snacks are chocolate-peanut protein bars
• He ate dog meat, snake meat, and roasted grasshopper while living in Indonesia
• He can speak Spanish
• While on the campaign trail he refused to watch CNN and had sports channels on instead
• His favourite drink is black forest berry iced tea
• He promised Michelle he would quit smoking before running for president – he didn't
• He kept a pet ape called Tata while in Indonesia
• He can bench press an impressive 200lbs
• He was known as Barry until university when he asked to be addressed by his full name
• His favourite book is Moby-Dick by Herman Melville
• He visited Wokingham, Berks, in 1996 for the stag party of his half-sister's fiancé, but left when a stripper arrived
• His desk in his Senate office once belonged to Robert Kennedy
• He and Michelle made $4.2 million (£2.7 million) last year, with much coming from sales of his books
• His favourite films are Casablanca and One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest
• He carries a tiny Madonna and child statue and a bracelet belonging to a soldier in Iraq for good luck
• He applied to appear in a black pin-up calendar while at Harvard but was rejected by the all-female committee.
• His favourite music includes Miles Davis, Bob Dylan, Bach and The Fugees
• He took Michelle to see the Spike Lee film Do The Right Thing on their first date
• He enjoys playing Scrabble and poker
• He doesn't drink coffee and rarely drinks alcohol
• He would have liked to have been an architect if he were not a politician
• As a teenager he took drugs including marijuana and cocaine
• His daughters' ambitions are to go to Yale before becoming an actress (Malia, 10) and to sing and dance (Sasha, 7)
• He hates the youth trend for trousers which sag beneath the backside
• He repaid his student loan only four years ago after signing his book deal
• His house in Chicago has four fire places
• Daughter Malia's godmother is Jesse Jackson's daughter Santita
• He says his worst habit is constantly checking his BlackBerry
• He uses an Apple Mac laptop
• He drives a Ford Escape Hybrid, having ditched his gas-guzzling Chrysler 300
• He wears $1,500 (£952) Hart Schaffner Marx suits
• He owns four identical pairs of black size 11 shoes
• He has his hair cut once a week by his Chicago barber, Zariff, who charges $21 (£13)
• His favourite fictional television programmes are Mash and The Wire
• He was given the code name "Renegade" by his Secret Service handlers
• He was nicknamed "Bar" by his late grandmother
• He plans to install a basketball court in the White House grounds
• His favourite artist is Pablo Picasso
• His speciality as a cook is chilli
• He has said many of his friends in Indonesia were "street urchins"
• He keeps on his desk a carving of a wooden hand holding an egg, a Kenyan symbol of the fragility of life
• His late father was a senior economist for the Kenyan government
Saturday, November 08, 2008
Friday, November 07, 2008
On July 25th, 2008, Sonny Landham called for genocide against Arabs and referred to them as "ragheads". His comments were made on the political radio show the Weekly Filibuster. Three days later, on July 28, the Kentucky Libertarians voted unanimously to withdraw Landham's nomination, citing his comments were not in keeping with the party's platform and values.
Looks like at least one person from Predator has no shot at an office now.
Wednesday, November 05, 2008
(well fuck, Fox's video deal sucks ass and won't show up here... I'll try to fix it tomorrow.)
Well double fuck it, I can give you this link to Salon.com and see if you can find the video there...
Sunday, November 02, 2008
Sunday, October 26, 2008
Saturday, October 25, 2008
On the machine I used you can tell whether or not a box is checked and there's always that nice summary page at the end, but I'm sure there are some other machines outside of Travis County.
Anyhow, have you kids outside of Austin had any early SNAFUs or similar rumors? Any Aggies carving letters in their own faces (but needing a mirror to do it).
And you guys in Austin, reply with some reports or posts or the original warning about this if you spot 'em. Who knows, it might be a good resource if something looks wonky come Nov. 4.
Friday, October 24, 2008
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
SWF who isn't asking too much
Date: 2008-09-10, 9:46AM EDT
I am a single, free-spirted, web-savvy thirtysomething female. Living in the gorgeous Caroll Gardens for the past year, I love life and am only looking for a man who is not an idiotic pig-headed beer-swilling moron (which seems to be hard to find in this city). This is my final plea to the Craigslist community. I own my own internet business which means I don't get to leave the house much, but I do know the internet and its dating potential. So far it has let me down every single time.
I've done MySpace, Facebook, Match.Com, eHarmony, and even Jdate (I'm not Jewish and don't care about Israel). Don't get me started on Jdate. But with so many people out there, at least ONE guy can match this. I know he's out there. My standards are exacting, but they're not too much to ask. Life is too short to compromise yourself!
Here is what I am looking for. It's not much. If you're this guy or know this guy, have him contact me right away.
-must love cats and be open to the idea of future adoptions
-must not be more than one to five stops away from Carroll Gardens F train in either direction
-must not be opposed to wicker furniture
-must be 420 friendly
-must clean up hair from the tub after a trim, a ring of hair around the edge is GROSS
-past bar tending/table-serving experience a plus but not necessary
-some knowledge of vintage wine
-must be fluent in 2 languages (English DOES NOT count); I still like to practice my French from study abroad
-toilet paper must go over, NEVER under, when placed in dispenser
-PUT the lid DOWN. Animals have better manners than most men
-no stockbrokers, unemployed musicians, actors, or baristas
-no ravers, goths, punks, or rude boys
-musical taste must include, but not be limited to, Kingston Trip, Buffy Sainte-Marie, and Judy Collins
-name must not begin with an R, a J, or a B (Js are negotiable; Rs are not. Bs should consider that if they treat a cat nicely, it will respond accordingly; but if you scare it by approaching too fast, of course it will attack)
-must like scented candles (not vanilla); no incense
-must be willing to pay for dinner at least once a week at a Zagat-rated restaurant after proper research and scouting of restaurant
-must own more than 3 items from ?The North Face? jacket line but no more than 5
-owning a car is a plus, but it can't be a hatchback (some standards)
-I ski one weekend a year, so you ski. No shredders.
-must love Gary Larson, and hate Dilbert
-passionate about animal rights, but willing to take in the circus when it comes to town
-must read at least 3 books a month, no comics unless Gary Larson
-must have read complete works of Jane Austen
-must know how to turn a Word document into a PDF
-must be on T-Mobile for Fave 5 access
-must love pinball and not play ping pong
-3 out of your 5 favorite movies should be John Hughes films
-must agree to watch "The Hills" on MTV on Sundays but hate that bitch Heidi, she is everything wrong with womankind
-must know CPR and have current certification, ++ for SCUBA certification
-must be home from 2-6pm on Saturdays to receive packages; bonus points if you're an Ebay power seller too!
-must have all limbs, no quads (not biased, just poor past experience)
-Ivy League education desirable, but Amherst, UPenn, Colgate, Vassar, Georgetown etc. acceptable
-must have Scrabulous installed on Facebook during work hours
-must prefer dark chocolate over milk; no omnivores
-must like North-Eastern microbrews, NO COLORADO, NO EXCEPTIONS
-no corduroy pants, jackets, shirts, socks, caps, etc. And while we're on the subject of hats, no hats at all. Having a hat as part of your job costume is not an excuse.
I know the guy for me is out there. I've come so close to finding him in perfect form so many times. If you are this know or know this guy, PLEASE contact me. I am willing to make a few sacrifices, but not many. If you see yourself in even a FEW of my specifications, you are invited to apply. Think of it more like a guidebook to my heart.
Please reply with a little bit about yourself, include pics.
Sunday, October 19, 2008
2. Colin Powell endorses Obama.
Friday, October 17, 2008
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Monday, October 06, 2008
Friday, October 03, 2008
Thursday, October 02, 2008
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Thursday, September 18, 2008
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Monday, September 15, 2008
The top figure contains raw counts for the number of song titles from my iTunes library that contain the anatomical words listed on the abscissa. The bottom figure is the the same figure, but this time normalized using the sum over all song titles with some piece of anatomy in their title. You can think of this as the conditional probability of a specific body part, given that we already know the title contains some sort of anatomy. So, for example, Probability( head | category of word is anatomy ) ~ 0.19. I didn't bother calculating the joint probability, because I'm lazy. In that case, we would just multiply: Probability of ( anatomy_label & category of word is anatomy ) = P(anatomy_label | category of word is anatomy )*P(category of word is anatomy ).
Fuck. I should really be doing homework.
This is getting me nowhere.
Also, let me know if you can think of any labels I missed.
Friday, September 12, 2008
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Monday, September 08, 2008
Thursday, September 04, 2008
This is a headline from Yahoo. I find it hard to believe that it's really only 1 or 2 percent that don't have TVs. I'm sure that number will rise with the HD conversion next year.
For many Americans the thought of life without TV is akin to forgoing food, shelter or, God forbid, the Internet. But about 1 to 2 percent of Americans do abstain from the boob tube, and they might seem like strange bedfellows.
A recent study of those who live without found that about two-thirds fall into either the "crunchy granola set" or the "North Carolina's Wake Forest University. Krcmar interviewed 120 people from 62 different households who do not watch television, as well as 92 people from 35 households with TV, and described her findings in a new book, "Living Without the Screen" (Routledge, 2008)., ultraconservative" camp, said researcher Marina Krcmar, a professor of communication at
Aversion to television, it turns out, is a common ground for the very liberal and the very conservative.
"I interviewed one guy who was 31, single, an artist living in Boston, who saw himself as countercultural," Krcmar told LiveScience. "The next day I had an interview with a religious woman with ten children who lived in the Midwest. These people seem like they would disagree about almost everything, but if you ask them about television the things that came out of their mouths were almost identical."
Why do people give it up?
Krcmar herself lives on the dark side, having given up television about 13 years ago.
"It's just something I don't want in the home - it's a perpetual annoyance, like a gnat," she said.
The motivations for most people who abandon TV fall into three categories, Krcmar found.
Some give it up to avoid exposing their families to the excessive sex, violence, and consumerism they feel are promoted onscreen. Others object to the medium itself, claiming television intrudes too much into their lives, interferes with conversation and takes time away from the family. Finally, some people have a beef with the power and values of the television industry and don't want its influence in their homes.
In contrast to the average American adult, who watches three hours of television a day, non-watchers fill their time with a plethora of activities.
"Non-viewers had a greater variety of things that they did with their free time than viewers did," Krcmar said. "It's not just that they were reading instead of watching TV. They were hiking and biking, and going to community meetings and visiting with friends. Overall, they tend to do more of everything."
The article goes on to talk about kids and TV, but to be honest, I don't really care about kids.
Sunday, August 31, 2008
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Friday, August 08, 2008
By Addie Broyles AMERICAN-STATESMAN STAFF
Friday, August 08, 2008 Feeling tipsy? You're not alone, according to Forbes magazine, which this week said that Austin might be the hardest-drinking city in America. Forbes, which releases similar rankings several times a year, used data from a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention survey to pinpoint Austin residents' affinity for alcohol. The CDC's Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System Survey last year found that 61.5 percent of residents said they had at least one drink in the past 30 days.
But it was the number of drinks per day that put Austin at the top of — or perhaps the bottom of — the bar. Nearly nine percent of people surveyed said they had at least one drink per day for women, two for men.
Milwaukee, Wis. came in at No. 2, followed by San Francisco, Providence, R.I., and Chicago.
The University of Texas, like most major universities in the U.S., has been battling the binge drinking image for decades. Forbes named it the No. 1 party school in 2006.
"I would hope that people would look at the methods of how these rankings are made," said Sandi Cleveland, manager at the Health Promotion and Resource Center, which is part of the University Health Services. "It's important for people to understand that UT students make up 5 percent of Austin's population when they are all here."
Tuesday, August 05, 2008
PS, I'm sorry, once again that I arrived late. I will cook for the couples at my house next week.
Saturday, August 02, 2008
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
Monday, July 28, 2008
Thursday, July 24, 2008
Monday, July 21, 2008
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
Sunday, July 13, 2008
Friday, July 11, 2008
Tuesday, July 08, 2008
Sunday, July 06, 2008
Well, we need to find something that sparks interest, is a very narrow area of focus, probably involves travel to places most folks can't make it too, may be linked to larger interests in the world.
What makes a good and interesting photo series that will appeal to a broad audience:
A bizarre subculture (did you know there are only 4 Shakers left in the world?)
A subculture that is difficult or challenging to penetrate (Like Hunter S Thompson's acclaim from his iconic novel Hells Angels)
Anything music based, regional music based, etc ( Houston Hip Hip, Swedish Death Metal, Mexican Morrissey fans, etc)
Something when attached to a little white girl from Brooklyn makes it even more intriguing. (How did that photographer Aubrey Edwards photograph death row inmates in Mississippi?)
Can you guys please throw out some ideas that you think I can roll with? I really am at a blank and need a great idea to get rolling in this world. Serious inquiries only.
Saturday, July 05, 2008
Wednesday, July 02, 2008
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - Sonny Landham carved out a tough-guy reputation in a series of big-screen roles, from roughing up Sylvester Stallone to getting tossed out a window by Carl Weathers. He pulls no punches in his newest role: Libertarian challenger to a man known for political toughness, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.
Now 67 and living in northeastern Kentucky, the man who played Billy Bear in "48 Hours" and was killed by an alien in "Predator" admits his action-movie days are behind him. "I think I'm having wild action when I take two aspirin with my hot chocolate at night," he quipped.
The actor known for his powerful physique, booming voice and his American Indian heritage says he's serious about his longshot bid, because too many politicians are indifferent to voters' problems.
Landham refers to McConnell, a four-term Republican, as "Boss Hogg" after the corrupt politician from "The Dukes of Hazzard" TV show. He bluntly called Democratic candidate and millionaire businessman Bruce Lunsford an "elitist."
Even President Bush is a target: "He took us into a war on lies," Landham said, claiming the actual intent was "to put 'Big Oil' back into Iraq."
To qualify for the November ballot, Landham must collect at least 5,000 valid petition signatures by Aug. 12. State Libertarian Party Chairman Ken Moellman said the petition drive began recently and he believes Landham will make it.
But the bid includes some campaign baggage that seems scripted for Hollywood, instead of socially conservative Kentucky. Early in his acting career in the 1970s, Landham bared it all in adult films.
Asked whether that could hurt him politically, Landham replied, "What can I do? That was a part of my life you cannot call back."
But he does express regrets.
"If I was going to do it now - knowing that I'm going to have four children, knowing that I was going to run for office - no, I wouldn't make that choice," he said. "But at the time I made the choice of getting a paycheck, staying alive for your big break."
Landham also served more than 2 1/2 years in federal prison after being convicted of making threatening and obscene phone calls to his ex-wife. The conviction was thrown out by a federal appeals court that found he committed no crime.
Libertarians, with their "live and let live" philosophy, look past his history.
"We look at the character of the man today, not what he did 30 years ago," Moellman said, noting the actor "asked his Maker for forgiveness, and that's all you can ask a man to do."
He said Landham lives "a better lifestyle" today, residing in Ashland with his fifth wife and three of his children.
The cast of 1987's "Predator" featured two future state governors: Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jesse Ventura. But the prospects of winning office seem far more remote for Landham.
Political scientist Michael Baranowski, of Northern Kentucky University, predicted minimal impact on the Senate race, though Landham could take some votes from McConnell.
"I'm not sure which is more of a hurdle for Landham, being a former porn actor or being a Libertarian Party candidate," he said. "But if the race between McConnell and Lunsford is tight enough, the votes Landham pulls from McConnell might be critical."
McConnell campaign adviser Scott Jennings said Landham won't push the Republican incumbent off his message of how he has "delivered for the commonwealth time and again."
This isn't the first dabbling in politics for Landham, who struggled to get odd jobs after being released from prison. Now he still dabbles in acting, but Social Security checks and an acting pension are his main income.
He flirted with running for governor as a Republican in 2003, left the GOP and promised an independent run. He ultimately stayed out and backed Republican Ernie Fletcher, who won.
Landham is as blunt on issues as he is skewering rivals. He equates abortion with murder. He supports scrapping the North American Free Trade Agreement. As for political correctness, he said, "PC is BS. Say what you mean, mean what you say."
Moellman said such unscripted frankness will grab voter attention.
"Sonny is very upfront," he said. "You ask Sonny a question, he'll tell you the answer. He isn't going to pull any punches, which is why I know this race is going to be a lot of fun."