Motley Moose – Archive

Since 2008 – Progress Through Politics

All The News: Sunday


@thatsearth Ocean Sand 250x magnification.  

Lead story:

Gun Violence Since Newtown

Bill Moyers; John Light and Lauren Feeney

Take a look at gun deaths, school shootings, public opinion and the Senate vote on gun control in the wake of the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT, that killed 26 people, including 20 children.

The Victims

Number of people killed by guns in the first 98 days post-Newtown: 2,244

 There are info-graphics & data.  Read and weep.




Aerial view of five tents erected by intruding Chinese troops inside Indian territory in Daulat Beg Oldi sector of Ladakh. (PTI)

home » India-news » NewDelhi Quiet diplomacy works, China agrees to pullout in Ladakh

Rahul Singh, Hindustan Times

Deepened diplomatic engagement with China finally ended the 21-day border standoff in eastern Ladakh on Sunday, with both armies agreeing to simultaneously pull out of the site and go back to pre-April 15 positions.

“They began cleaning up on Sunday evening. By morning, everything will be back to normal,” a government source said.

Now that the border impasse has ended, external affairs minister Salman Khurshid will go ahead with his two-day visit to China beginning May 9, paving the way for the Chinese premier’s visit to India shortly after.

Indian soldiers were eyeball-to-eyeball with the Chinese in the Daulat Beg Oldie sector since April 15, after Chinese troops set up tents and took up positions 19 km into Indian territory.

Intensive diplomatic negotiations led by foreign secretary Ranjan Mathai over the weekend, with assistance from Indian ambassador in Beijing S Jaishankar, led to a fourth flag meeting on Saturday and a breakthrough on Sunday evening.

Missed Opportunity?: Hopes Pinned on NSU Trial May Be Dashed

Der Spiegel;  David Crossland

The case has alarmed the country’s 3 million people of Turkish descent and has been a huge embarrassment to Germany because of the catalogue of errors made by the police and security authorities that exposed them to accusations of institutional racism and of having been blind to the threat of right-wing extremism.

Last week, Germany apologized for those mistakes at the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, describing the murders as “without a doubt one of the worst human rights violations in Germany in the last decade.”

Chancellor Angela Merkel apologized to the victims at a formal ceremony in Berlin last year.

The trial start was delayed by almost three weeks because of controversy over the allocation of seats for the media. In the first round, no Turkish news organization obtained a press pass, which caused an uproar that threatened to further tarnish Germany’s reputation.

Turkish PM to host Arab leaders on US trip eve

Hürriyet Daily News; Serkan Demirtaş

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan will meet leaders of the Arab Spring countries to discuss recent political developments in the Middle East and northern Africa only days before his crucial visit to Washington May 16.

Erdoğan will host prime ministers and other senior political leaders of Egypt, Jordan, Tunisia, Morocco and Yemen at a breakfast on May 10 on the sidelines of the annual meeting of the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) that will take place in Istanbul on May 10-11.

“The meeting of the prime minister with visiting leaders is aiming at reviewing the developments in the Middle East and in the North Africa. It’s going to create a good opportunity for these leaders to exchange views,” diplomatic sources told the Hürriyet Daily News.

I think they will talk about Syria, also.  

The Taliban spring offensive – civilians count the cost

The Guardian; John Wendle

The Taliban’s annual spring offensive was not marked with a big operation this year, as it did last year when the militants unleashed a string of attacks around Kabul and across Afghanistan. Instead, there has been an increasing trickle of military and civilian casualties.

On Tuesday, three British soldiers were killed in Helmand province, and six Afghan family members were killed or wounded in Uruzgan province, both by roadside bombs.

This year’s offensive, dubbed Khalid bin Waleed after the victorious general and companion to the Prophet Mohammed and nicknamed “the drawn sword of God”, will consist of “special military tactics” and “insider attacks” which will be carried out “in a systematic and coordinated manner”, the Taliban announced.

“Similarly, collective martyrdom operations on bases of foreign invaders, their diplomatic centres and military airbases will be even further structured while every possible tactic will be utilised in order to detain or inflict heavy casualties on the foreign transgressors,” its statement added.

Malema calls for treason charges against Guptas

Mail & Guardian

“We call on the National Prosecuting Authority [NPA] to charge the Gupta family with high treason for initiating and pushing through efforts that led to the usage of our military airbase despite the disapproval by the minister of defence,” Malema said in a statement on Sunday.

“If the NPA is not in the pockets of the Guptas like many are, it will proceed to lay charges of treason against the Gupta family for undermining and threatening national security.”

“To suggest that [President Jacob] Zuma is not aware or was not complicit in the granting of the permission to his friends to use the airbase is just plain foolishness,” said Malema.

He alleged the Guptas controlled the government and the ANC. “It is not a fallacy that the Gupta family has tremendous control over the ANC and government and have had influence and knowledge of key decisions even before the most senior of ANC leaders are aware,” he claimed.

Family First NZ faces deregistration

NZ Herald; Heather McCracken

Family First NZ says it will be deregistered as a charity because of its views on gay marriage.

National director of Family First Bob McCoskrie said the group has received notification the Charities Commission intends to deregister the organisation.

He said the decision was highly politicised and showed groups that think differently to the politically correct view will be targeted.

“The Commission argues that Family First’s efforts to represent the voice of 80 per cent-plus of families on the anti-smacking law or half of New Zealanders on attempts to redefine marriage, for example, have no ‘public benefit’, and that it is in the ‘public interest’ for Family First to be deregistered.”


Fusian evangelist sees light at end of the tunnel

Bloomberg via Sydney Morning Herald

Chris Bishop paces as he beams the world’s biggest laser at a peppercorn-sized fuel pellet, a crucial step toward fusing hydrogen atoms to replicate the explosive power of the sun, stars and thermonuclear weapons.

With his blond ponytail, sneakers and jeans, Bishop looks more like rocker Gregg Allman than a lead operator at the National Ignition Facility. Here, 45 miles east of San Francisco, 1,200 scientists and staff are on a quest to create fusion energy, Bloomberg Markets magazine will report in its June issue.

On this Tuesday in January, technicians gather in the control room of the NIF, where scenes in “Star Trek Into Darkness” were shot last year. They rivet their eyes on 1.5-meter-high screen projections as the world’s most powerful supercomputer sorts data in a system that rivals the US air-traffic-control network for complexity. Panels turn green to show the laser is storing energy as it looms in the 10- story building above. In the blink of an eye, the laser unleashes its juice. Bishop, 42, gives a thumbs up.

The non-Murdock Australian papers consistently have good coverage of energy and ecological issues.  The science of this kind of energy is not yet firm, but to me it seems a bit more logical than cold fusion.  Maybe some of our scientist commenters can help us out.  I did love the phrase “fusian evangelist.”  h/t to @jfleck

Lawsuit claims Lancôme’s 24-hour makeup fails Sabbath test

NBC; Amy Langfield

What do you do when you think your 24-hour makeup isn’t lasting the 24 hours? File a class-action lawsuit against the manufacturer seeking more than $5 million, of course.

L’Oreal USA, Inc., the maker of Lancôme Teint-Idole Ultra 24H, is facing a suit filed on behalf of Rorie Weisberg, of Monsey, N.Y., an orthodox Jewish woman who said she was duped by misleading advertising into spending $45 on long-lasting foundation that would get her through the Sabbath.

“Lancôme engaged in deceptive, unfair and unconscionable commercial practices in failing to reveal material facts and information,” states the lawsuit filed April 30 in the U.S. District Court in the Southern District of New York. The company markets the product as “retouch-free” for the “velvety finish you love for 24 hour lasting perfection and comfort,” according to the lawsuit.

Iowa Town Named for Muslim Hero Extols Tolerance

NYT; Samuel G. Freedman

Amid an expanse of undulating farmland, deep in the steep valley carved by the Turkey River, the town of Elkader sits most of the year in remote obscurity. Population 1,200 and gradually shrinking, it is the seat of a county without a single traffic light.

Improbably enough, this community settled by Germans and Scandinavians, its religious life built around Catholic and Lutheran churches, bears the name of a Muslim hero. Abd el-Kader was renowned in the 19th century for leading Algeria’s fight for independence and protecting non-Muslims from persecution. Even Abraham Lincoln extolled him.

This weekend, for the fifth year in a row, Elkader will welcome a delegation of Arab dignitaries to celebrate this rare lifeline of tolerance, spanning continents and centuries. Coming less than three weeks after the Boston Marathon bombings, which the authorities say were committed by two Muslim brothers, the Abdelkader Education Project’s forum stands more than ever for an affirming encounter between the United States and Islam.

File this under “Thing I never would have guessed about my home state.”  Go Iowa!

Reds Nationals Baseball

Bryce Harper goes to bat for AFL-CIO

Politico; Patrick Gavin

That’s the hope of the AFL-CIO, which is using an interview given by the Washington Nationals’ slugger to make the case for the value of organized labor.

The video, which features Harper praising his father as an ironworker, was distributed via email by the AFL-CIO’s media office with the following note:

“Where did Nats superstar Bryce Harper get his strong work ethic?” asks Josh Goldstein, who does media outreach for the AFL-CIO. “According to Bryce, it’s from his dad – a union ironworker. Check out this fantastic video from”


A man dressed as Star Wars character Darth Vader poses for photographers at the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney

A man dressed as Star Wars character Darth Vader poses for photographers at the ”Star Wars: Where Science Meets Imagination” exhibition at the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney December 3, 2008.

Credit: Reuters/Daniel Munoz

Native American tribe plans to dub ‘Star Wars’ in Navajo

Reuters; David Schwartz

The largest Native American tribe in the United States is seeking to dub the classic 1977 movie “Star Wars” movie in Navajo as a way to help preserve its traditional language.

Fluent Navajo speakers have been invited for a casting call in Window Rock in northern Arizona on Friday and Saturday to dub the roles of Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, Princess Leia and others, tribal officials said.

Manuelito Wheeler, the director of the Navajo Nation Museum, said he first came up with the idea 13 years ago as a way to preserve the consonant-rich Navajo language, believed to be spoken by about 170,000 people, according to government figures.

Yá’át’ééh Luke! More bloggy commentary

Mother’s Day bookmarks.

These are adorable! It is the position of this mother that Mother’s Day be non-commercial and focused on togetherness.  And I have worked through a variety of issues for Mother’s Day to carefully arrive at this conclusion.  Also, not cooking for the day might be nice.

crossposted from the orange


  1. How Colbert Busch Plans To Win Tomorrow’s Special Election

    Colbert Busch has created a unique recipe for her congressional campaign: one part fiscally conservative, one part socially liberal, and a garnish of ethical problems surrounding Mark Sanford’s recent affair. It’s as if you threw Paul Ryan and Nancy Pelosi in a cocktail shaker and made sure the resulting candidate never set foot on the Appalachian Trail.

    Next week, voters in South Carolina’s lowcountry will decide whether that’s the right mix to represent the first congressional district as Colbert Busch faces off against Sanford, former governor of the state who also held this seat for three terms in the late 1990s, to fill the vacancy left by now-Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC).

    There are a couple of reasons to watch this election. First, it will be delightful to see Mark Sanford’s C Street faux-morality repudiated. Second, special elections to fill vacant House seats can be harbingers. We might start seeing some pushback against the Republican party’s focus on being a barrier to progress.


    Poll: Cuccinelli Leads McAuliffe In VA Guv Race

    Cuccinelli leads 46 percent to 41 percent among Virginia voters. A lead which grows to 51 percent to 41 percent among voters who say they will vote in November.

    This stinks. I am not sure why Virginia Democrats decided that recycling Terry McAuliffe was the answer here. Cuccinelli is a crazy man and he is beatable in a state that has had Democratic governors in the not too distant past and has two Democratic Senators.  

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