Thursday, February 12, 2009

Cleaning Out my Favorites List... Passing Some Information On...

[A Little Light, Anyone?; Photo by NS]

Please check out: "Politically Direct with David Bender"; Air America Media; as Posted on Air America ("On Demand") on 2/9/09;

Quote from Above: "If they have no shame, how can you shame them?"

Quote (based on a famous saying) from Above: "If you don't know history you are doomed to repeat it."

Some Interesting Headlines and News Snippets:

1. "Wife pulled $15M before Madoff's arrest" [Glen Johnson; Associated Press (AP); 2/12/09;]

Snippet from Above:

"The wife of disgraced money manager Bernard Madoff withdrew more than $15 million from a firm co-owned by her husband... the top securities regulator in Massachusetts said Wednesday... Prosecutors have already said investigators found 100 signed checks worth $173 million that Madoff was ready to send out to his closest family and friends at the time of his arrest... Two weeks later, during the Christmas holidays, Madoff sent more than $1 million in jewelry and heirlooms to family and friends..."

2. "Study: Paying smokers to quit boosts success rate" (Linda A. Johnson; AP; 2/12/09;

Snippet from Above:

"Dangling enough dollars in front of smokers who want to quit helps many more succeed, an experiment with hundreds of General Electric Co. workers indicates. Among those paid up to $750 to quit and stay off cigarettes, 15 percent were still tobacco-free about a year later. That may not sound like much, but it's three times the success rate of a comparison group that got no such bonuses..."

"...This kind of reward system provides them with direct, positive feedback in the present," not just delayed, intangible health benefits, said Dr. Kevin Volpp, the lead researcher of the study."

3. "Salmonella found at Ga. plant as early as 2006... Owner Stewart Parnell refused to testify at hearing; 9 have now died" ( staff and news service reports; 2/11/09;

Snippet from Above:

"See the jar, the congressman challenged Stewart Parnell, holding up a container of the peanut seller's products and asking if he'd dare eat them. Parnell pleaded the Fifth... The owner of the peanut company at the heart of the massive salmonella recall refused to answer the lawmaker's questions — or any others — Wednesday about the bacteria-tainted products he defiantly told employees to ship to some 50 manufacturers of cookies, crackers and ice cream..."

"Turn them loose," Parnell had told his plant manager in an internal e-mail disclosed at the House hearing..."

4. "Pa. judges accused of jailing kids for cash" (Michael Rubinkam and MaryClaire Dale; AP; 2/11/09;

Snippet from Above:

"...In one of the most shocking cases of courtroom graft on record, two Pennsylvania judges have been charged with taking millions of dollars in kickbacks to send teenagers to two privately run youth detention centers...

Prosecutors say Luzerne County Judges Mark Ciavarella and Michael Conahan took $2.6 million in payoffs to put juvenile offenders in lockups run by PA Child Care LLC and a sister company, Western PA Child Care LLC. The judges were charged on Jan. 26 and removed from the bench by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court shortly afterward... No company officials have been charged, but the investigation is still going on."

5. "CBO Sees Stimulus Boosting U.S. Growth, Jobs" (; 2/10/09;

Snippets from Above;

"The economic stimulus legislation pending in Congress would... create between 1.3 million and 3.9 million jobs by the fourth quarter of 2010, compared to the baseline forecast..."

"The nation's unemployment rate would be between 0.6 and 2 points lower than the baseline forecast of 8.7 percent by then, according to the CBO's analysis..."

6. "Mugabe rival takes oath as Zimbabwe prime minister" (Angus Shaw; AP; 2/11/09;

Snippets from Above:

"President Robert Mugabe swore in his longtime rival as prime minister Wednesday, cracking his nearly three-decade stranglehold on power and conceding they must work together to rescue Zimbabwe from economic and humanitarian disaster... The image of Mugabe administering the oath of office to Morgan Tsvangirai was extraordinary given the history of state-sponsored violence against opponents..."

"At a celebration rally attended by some 15,000 supporters later in the day, Tsvangirai pledged to reopen schools that are closed because teachers can't afford bus fare and to fight a cholera epidemic blamed on the cash-strapped government's neglect of hospitals and sanitation... He drew the biggest cheers when he said all government workers _ from teachers to soldiers _ would be paid in hard currency starting next month to shield them from the world's highest inflation rate. He did not say how the government would afford that."

7. "A Plea to Remember the Indian Nations" (Ashley Southall; 2/10/09; "New York Times" Blog, "The Caucus: The Politics and Government Blog of the Times";

Snippet from Above:

"Mr. Obama, who was adopted by the Crow Nation during the primaries and named “One Who Helps People Throughout the Land,” included... money for the Indians in his stimulus proposal... (The organization, like the rest of the country, awaits the results of the negotiations in Congress to produce a final plan.)... Mr. Garcia praised the Obama administration for its inclusive approach to American Indians and natives of Alaska."

[Note: Please see this blog at - for a lively discussion on a subject that is close to my heart!]


Snippets from Above:

"FORT MYERS, Fla. -- While senators in Washington were passing a massive stimulus package aimed at avoiding economic disaster, President Obama was pitching the plan to a cheering convention center audience in a town facing rising unemployment and sky-high foreclosure rates... He also gave a glimpse into how he would help struggling homeowners and his goals for getting a health-care reform bill through Congress..."

"One homeless woman... cried as she spoke of living out of her car and needing help. Obama comforted her and said his staff would speak with her after the event... A young student... who said he has worked at McDonalds for four years because he could not find a better job, shouted with joy when Obama called on him to ask a question... "Oh, this is such a blessing to see you, Mr. President," he said. "Thank you for taking time out of your day! Oh precious God, thank you so much!"

Respectfully Passed On By,


No comments: