Serendipity SOUL | Thursday Open Thread | Etta James Week


Chess years: 1960–1978

Dueting with Harvey Fuqua, James recorded for the Chess label Argo (later Cadet) and her first hit singles with Fuqua were “If I Can’t Have You” and “Spoonful”. Her first solo hit was the doo-wop styled rhythm and blues number, “All I Could Do Was Cry”, becoming a number two R&B hit. Leonard Chess had envisioned James as a classic ballad stylist who had potential to cross over to the pop charts and soon surrounded the singer with violins and other string instruments.[13] The first string-laden ballad James recorded was “My Dearest Darling” in May 1960, which peaked in the top five of the R&B chart. James sang background vocals on label mate Chuck Berry’s “Back in the U.S.A.”

Her debut album, At Last!, was released in late 1960 and was noted for its varied choice in music from jazz standards to blues numbers to doo-wop and rhythm and blues (R&B). The album also included James’ future classic, “I Just Want to Make Love to You” and “A Sunday Kind of Love”. In early 1961, James released what was to become her signature song, “At Last”, which reached number two on the R&B chart and number 47 on the Billboard Hot 100. Though the song was not as successful as expected, it has become the most remembered version of the song.[14] James followed that up with “Trust in Me”, which also included string instruments. Later that same year, James released a second studio album, The Second Time Around. The album took the same direction as her previous album, covering many jazz and pop standards, and using strings on many of the songs spawning two hit singles, “Fool That I Am” and “Don’t Cry Baby”.

All I Can Do Was Cry

Fool That I Am

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92 Responses to Serendipity SOUL | Thursday Open Thread | Etta James Week

  1. rikyrah says:





  2. rikyrah says:

    Michelle Obama and Bow Wow spotted at Howard University

    By Helena Andrews
    April 17 at 6:35 pm

    On Thursday, first lady Michelle Obama and rapper-slash-actor Bow Wow joined 37 students from Chicago public high schools for a tour of Howard University, our colleague Krissah Thompson reports. According to the first lady’s office, Obama specifically requested Bow Wow for the event, an annual college visit called “Escape to the Mecca” — a nod to the university’s nickname “the mecca.”

    “This isn’t bad,” Obama said as she stepped inside a dorm room in Frazier Hall where one enterprising student had the perfect product placement on her desk: a portfolio and résumé. During the sneak peek, Obama encouraged the visiting students to step in and look around too. “You might be living here. I’m just visiting,” she said.

    As Obama made her way through Howard’s famous quad, posing for photos with the Chicago group, female Howard students inside the dorms shouted greetings through open windows. “Hi Michelle!!!” several young women screamed, prompting more fans of the first lady to also shout hello. “Michelllllle! First lady! We love you.”

    Later that afternoon at a roundtable discussion led by Bow Wow, the rapper recalled his first time voting, casting his ballot for Barack Obama.

    “I remember him saying how much they needed us, the youth. It’s us that’s going to shape this world and turn it around,” said Bow Wow. “Maybe the next president is right here in this room.”

  3. rikyrah says:

    Chelsea Having a Baby, What Does It Mean?

    by BooMan
    Thu Apr 17th, 2014 at 07:35:34 PM EST
    Well, if you are wondering about the political implications of Chelsea Clinton being pregnant, that was covered by Haley Sweetland Edwards in the March/April/May issue of the Washington Monthly.


    and here’s one of the comments:

    As horrible as GWB was as POTUS and Governor of TX, his daughter Jenna got married (while GWB was in the WH) with far less public to-do over the event than Chelsea’s multi-million dollar wedding. Jenna handled the pregnancy and birth of her first child without much public fanfare — not secret but not exploited for publicity value. The Bush family doesn’t have much class considering the generations of family wealth, but the Clintons …
    by Marie2 on Thu Apr 17th, 2014 at 08:21:08 PM EST

  4. rikyrah says:




    Two girls, a lifetime of stereotypes, and one powerful performance to shatter them. (via @Upworthy) … #WeAreTheSame

  5. rikyrah says:

    V. Hussein Savage @Kennymack1971

    POTUS is better than me b/c I would’ve walked in, announced 8 mil, told the WHPC/GOP/Pundits fuck all y’all, dropped the mic and walked out.
    5:41 PM – 17 Apr 2014

  6. rikyrah says:

    Goldie Taylor @goldietaylor

    For the first time in a dozen years, every single person in my family has healthcare coverage– no matter their income or health status.
    3:17 PM – 17 Apr 2014

  7. rikyrah says:

    Jon Ralston ‏@RalstonReports 1h
    @SenatorReid says Bundy “does not recognize the United States.” Calls armed folks who backed him ” domestic terrorists.” Wow.

    Jon Ralston ‏@RalstonReports 1h
    “What happened in Mesquite was domestic terrorism.” @SenatorReid

    Jon Ralston ‏@RalstonReports 1h
    “These people who hold themselves out to be patriots are not. They are domestic terrorists.” @SenatorReid clearly prepared that line.

  8. rikyrah says:

    Nerdy Wonka @NerdyWonka
    President Obama on his principles and beliefs: “You should be able to have affordable healthcare whether you are wealthy or not.”


    3:10 PM – 17 Apr 2014

  9. rikyrah says:

    Nerdy Wonka @NerdyWonka
    POTUS on wishy-washy Democrats: “I don’t think we should apologize for it. Democrats should forcefully defend and be proud” of #ObamaCare

    3:09 PM – 17 Apr 2014

  10. rikyrah says:

    AdamSerwer ✔ @AdamSerwer
    According to WH, 5.7 million will be uninsured in 2016 because of the hole John Roberts and friends blew in the Medicaid expansion.

    2:47 PM – 17 Apr 2014

    • Ametia says:

      The Roberts court is complicit in the destruction of helping folks who need medicaid get healthcare. They SANCTIONED DEATH PANELS.

  11. Ametia says:

    Hey press jackals, ask the REPUBLICANS how long are they going to use Obamacare as a “POLITICAL FOOTBALL.”

  12. rikyrah says:

    Bill R @cmpnwtr
    #Obamcare QHPs now at 8 Mil! California at 3Mil with QHPS plus Medicaid Expanded.

    2:11 PM – 17 Apr 2014

  13. Ametia says:

    PBO: What frustrates me right now is states that deny medicaid expansion for its citizens, simply for POLITICAL SPITE.

  14. Ametia says:


    PBO: “i recognize the Republican Party is going through the STAGES OF GRIEF, ANGER, DENIAL, They haven’t gotten to ACCEPTANCE yet.”


  15. rikyrah says:

    Liberal Librarian @Lib_Librarian
    You know you’re badass as a librarian when a patron threatens to deck you and you just laugh in his face.

    1:58 PM – 17 Apr 2014

  16. Ametia says:

    PBO: “NOW I’ll take some questions.”

    • Ametia says:

      Soooo who’s gonna be first to aks POTUS about OBAMACARE, now?

      Here we go, Don’t know who she is, but she’s talking about flaws.. GTFOH

  17. Ametia says:


    PBO is giving a press conference now. And what does he mention coming out of the gate?

    OBAMACARE aka ACA. I love his strategy! THEY WERE WRONG…

  18. Yahtc says:

    Can you believe this?!!

    Teen urinates in reservoir; officials to flush 38M gallons; L.A. weeps,0,6853751.story?track=rss#axzz2zAeoGzmX

    • rikyrah says:


      if your reservoir is so fragile that it can’t take one teen pissing in it…. they weren’t really protecting your water in the first place.

  19. rikyrah says:

    Saving Central: One High School’s Struggle After Resegregation

    Apr 16, 2014

    Meet the students and staff at Tuscaloosa’s all-black Central High School in a short documentary film by Maisie Crow.

    Courtesy of Maisie Crow and ProPublica

  20. rikyrah says:

    John Roberts and the Color of Money

    Applying the history of white supremacy in America to the Supreme Court’s McCutcheon decision

    Tom LevensonApr 16 2014, 9:32 AM ET

    Once you start seeing American history through the corrective lens created by the generations of scholars and researchers on whose work Coates reports, then it becomes possible—necessary, really—to read current events in a new light. Take, for example, the McCutcheon decision that continued the Roberts Court program of gutting campaign-finance laws.

    The conventional—and correct, as far as it goes—view of the outcome, enabling wealthy donors to contribute to as many candidates as they choose, is that this further tilts the political playing field towards the richest among us at the expense of every American voter. See noted analyst Jon Stewart for a succinct presentation of this view.

    But that first-order take on this latest from the Supreme Court’s right wing misses a crucial dimension. It isn’t just rich folks who benefit from the Roberts Court’s view that money equals speech. Those who gain possess other key identifiers. For one thing, they form a truly a tiny elite. As oral arguments in McCutcheon v. FEC were being prepared last fall, the Public Campaign delivered a report on all those who approached the money limits the court struck down. They amount to just 1,219 people in the U.S.—that’s four in every 1,000,000 of our population.

    Unsurprisingly, most of the report simply reinforces the main theme of the reaction to the Supreme Court’s decision: This is one more step toward securing governance of, for, and by rich people and their well-compensated servants. One of the most troubling aspects of the story is that the top donors in this country simply don’t encounter ordinary folks, the middle class no more than the poor:


    But even these pathologies are vastly less severe than those to be found through the lens of race. People of color are almost entirely absent from the top donor profile, and none more so than members of the community that white Americans enslaved for two centuries:

    While more than one-in-six Americans live in a neighborhood that is majority African-American or Hispanic, less than one-in-50 superlimit donors do. More than 90 percent of these elite donors live in neighborhoods with a greater concentration of non- Hispanic white residents than average. African-Americans are especially underrepresented. The median elite donor lives in a neighborhood where the African-American population counts for only 1.4 percent, nine times less than the national rate.

    In other words: Political money and hence influence at the top levels is disproportionately white, male, and with almost no social context that includes significant numbers of African Americans and other people of color.

  21. rikyrah says:

    the post and comments are HILARIOUS!

    Something’s On Jermaine Jackson’s Scalp and It’s a Mystery

    [ 171 ] April 16, 2014 | Luvvie

    Jermaine Jackson has somehow turned out to be the oddest man in a family of really talented weird people and that is no small feat. Besides all the foolery he partakes in, like changing his last name to Jacksun (O__O) and being stuck in Africa because of his lack of child support payment, the dude has been walking around with hair paint for years.

    He was on Celebrity Wife Swap the other day and folks were treated to this visual:

    WHAT IS THIS, JERMAJESTY’S DADDY?? Jermaine cut off the growth on a chia pet, dipped it in tar and glued it on his scalp like TADA! I’m so unable. I think this is an artistic rendering of the BP oil spill. Maybe we just aren’t appreciating the depth of Jermaine. Maybe he invested in Sharpie in the early 90s and he just wants to make sure it remains profitable.

  22. Ametia says:


    Putin Takes Question From Edward Snowden on Russian TV, Says Russia Does Not Conduct Mass Surveillance

    Vladimir Putin denied that Russia employs NSA-style mass surveillance programs after fielding a question from Edward Snowden via Skype-style video during what seems to have been a televised mass town hall event.

    Here’s a transcript of what the two said, as best we can tell. (Translation of Putin’s remarks is from the audio on the state-affiliated RT network’s broadcast):

    SNOWDEN: I’d like to ask about mass surveillance of online communications and the bulk collection of private records by intelligence and law enforcement services. Recently in the United States two independent White House investigations as well as a federal court all concluded that these programs are ineffective in stopping terrorism. They also found that they unreasonably intrude into the private lives of ordinary citizens—individuals who have never been suspected of any wrongdoing or criminal activity. And that these kinds of programs are not the least intrusive means available to such agencies for these investigative purposes. Now, I’ve seen little public discussion of Russia’s own involvement in the policies of mass surveillance, so I’d like to ask you: does Russia intercept, store, or analyze, in any way, the communications of millions of individuals, and do you believe that simply increasing the effectiveness of intelligence or law enforcement investigations can justify placing societies, rather than subjects, under surveillance? Thank you.

    PUTIN: Mr. Snowden, you are a former agent, a spy. I used to be working for an intelligence service. We are going to talk one professional language. First of all, our intelligence efforts are strictly regulated by our law—so, how special forces can use this kind of special equipment as they intercept phone calls or follow someone online. And you have to get a court permission to stalk a particular person. We don’t have a mass system of such interception, and according to our law it cannot exist. Of course we know that criminals and terrorists use technology for their criminal acts and of course special services have to use technical means to respond to their crimes, including those of terrorist nature. And of course we do some efforts like that, but we do not have a mass scale uncontrollable efforts like that. I hope we won’t do that, and we don’t have as much money as they have in the States and we don’t have these technical devices that they have in the States. Our special services, thanks god, are strictly controlled by the society and by the law and are regulated by the law.


  23. Ametia says:

    Barkhad Abdi detained at airport

    Barkhad Abdi ran into some recent travel troubles due to troubles in his past, and the Oscar-nominated actor will meet with customs agents on Tuesday.
    Barkhad Abdi ran into some recent travel troubles due to troubles in his past, and the Oscar-nominated actor will meet with customs agents on Tuesday.

  24. rikyrah says:

    Oklahoma moves to discourage solar power

    04/17/14 10:14 AM
    By Steve Benen

    In the final installment of a multi-part report, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change explained that the climate crisis is intensifying quickly, creating a critical situation. We’re approach a point of no return, requiring significant action over the next 15 years.

    What kind of action? There’s no easy fix, but the IPCC was encouraged by new measures that can reduce emissions without drastic lifestyle changes, including sharp reductions in the costs of solar and wind power.

    Just two days after the IPCC’s findings were made public, Oklahoma moved to make renewable energy more expensive, on purpose.

    Utility customers who want to install rooftop solar panels or small wind turbines could face extra charges on their bills after legislation passed the Oklahoma House of Representatives on Monday.

    Senate Bill 1456 passed 83-5 after no debate in the House. It passed the Senate last month and now heads to Gov. Mary Fallin for her approval.

    The bill was supported by the state’s major electric utilities, but drew opposition from solar advocates, environmentalists and others. It sets up a process at the Oklahoma Corporation Commission to establish a separate customer class and monthly surcharge for distributed generation such as rooftop solar or small wind turbines.

    Just so we’re clear, the climate crisis is getting worse; we’ll have to act quickly to prevent a catastrophe; the use of renewable energy is an important part of the solution; and Oklahoma is poised to discourage consumers from using energy technologies that reduce emissions.

  25. rikyrah says:

    Brian Beutler: The Repeal Swindle Republicans are pretending to support Obamacare’s goals, but they don’t

    For years now, undeterred by an imposing level of conservative schadenfreude, a handful of us have argued that the introduction of Affordable Care Act benefits in January would flip the politics of Obamacare, and the GOP’s repeal platform would collapse.

    It’s April now and that worm is turning before our eyes, both on on Capitol Hill and in states across the country.

    Republicans have replaced an unabashed “full repeal!” mantra with a deluge of weasel words meant to conceal the fact that “repeal” is still the beginning and end of their health-care reform agenda. It’s still the goal—they’re just a little ashamed of it now. And that places an onus on Dems (and reporters and anyone else who believes politicians should own the consequences of their policies) to be extremely explicit about the benefits Obamacare is conferring, and what an unvarnished rendering of GOP health policy would really look like.

  26. rikyrah says:

    Jews ordered to register in east Ukraine

    Oren Dorell, USA TODAY 11:46 a.m. EDT April 17, 2014

    Jews in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk where pro-Russian militants have taken over government buildings were told they have to “register” with the Ukrainians who are trying to make the city become part of Russia, according to Israeli media.

    Jews emerging from a synagogue say they were handed leaflets that ordered the city’s Jews to provide a list of property they own and pay a registration fee “or else have their citizenship revoked, face deportation and see their assets confiscated,” reported Ynet News, Israel’s largest news website.

    Donetsk is the site of an “anti-terrorist” operation by the Ukraine government, which has moved military columns into the region to force out militants who are demanding a referendum be held on joining Russia.

    The leaflets bore the name of Denis Pushilin, who identified himself as chairman of “Donetsk’s temporary government,” and were distributed near the Donetsk synagogue and other areas, according to the report.

    Pushilin acknowledged the flyers were distributed by his organization but he disavowed their content, according to the web site Jews of Kiev, Ynet reported.

    Emanuel Shechter, in Israel, told Ynet his friends in Donetsk sent him a copy of the leaflet through social media.

    “They told me that masked men were waiting for Jewish people after the Passover eve prayer, handed them the flyer and told them to obey its instructions,” he said.

    The leaflet begins, “Dear Ukraine citizens of Jewish nationality,” and states that all people of Jewish descent over 16 years old must report to the Commissioner for Nationalities in the Donetsk Regional Administration building and “register.”

  27. rikyrah says:

    Nerdy Wonka @NerdyWonka
    An estimated 12M previously uninsured Americans have now gained health coverage thanks to #ObamaCare,0,4218118.story#axzz2z8kb47wN

    The law works

    9:53 AM – 17 Apr 2014

  28. rikyrah says:



    “Mr Snowden, you are a former agent, a spy, I used to work for the
    intelligence service, we are going to talk one professional language,”
    Putin said, according to translation by state-run broadcaster Russia Today.

    • Ametia says:

      BWA HA HA I posted the video below. Snowden’s Putin’s little BITCH now, and there’s NOTHING he can say or do to downplay that FACT.

  29. rikyrah says:

    Suburbs Try to Prevent an Exodus as Young Adults Move to Cities and Stay

    APRIL 16, 2014

    It is a well-trod trail: Suburban youngsters enter their early 20s, leave their parents’ comfortable Tudors or colonials for the pizazz of the city, dawdle a few years until they find mates and begin having children and then, seeking more space and good public schools, move back to the suburbs and into their own Tudors or colonials.

    But that pattern is changing, or at least shifting. A recent report on the suburb-dotted New York counties of Westchester, Nassau and Suffolk, based on United States census data, found that those young people seem to be lingering longer in New York City, sometimes forsaking suburban life entirely.

    Demographers and politicians are scratching their heads over the change and have come up with conflicting theories. And some suburban towns are trying to make themselves more alluring to young residents, building apartment complexes, concert venues, bicycle lanes and more exotic restaurants.

    Since 2000, Westchester, Nassau and Suffolk have experienced a drop in the number of 25- to 44-year-olds, with the declines particularly sharp in more affluent communities. Between 2000 and 2011, Rye, for example, had a 63 percent decrease in 25- to 34-year-old residents and a 16 percent decrease in 35- to 44-year-olds.

  30. rikyrah says:

    Never-before-seen African-American artifacts creating a buzz in Atlanta

    by Kunbi Tinuoye | April 17, 2014 at 9:44 AM

    The nationally acclaimed exhibition, The Kinsey Collection, is in Atlanta for the first time since its inception.

    The exhibit at the Atlanta History Center is creating a buzz, in part because it features never before displayed artifacts, including the first edition of Solomon Northup’s 12 Years a Slave.

    “A young man called me eight months ago about a stack of books his uncle had been collecting for 75, 80 years,” said philanthropist and avid collector Bernard Kinsey, who began the collection over 35 years ago, along with his wife Shirley.

    “We purchased these books about a month before the Oscars, really not thinking about 12 Years a Slave quite being so impactful. We got it because it’s really one of the first-person slave narratives that’s important to be in our collection.”

    Aside from Northrup’s harrowing memoir, which inspired the Oscar-winning movie, W.E.B Du Bois’s first edition copy of his groundbreaking book, The Souls of Black Folk, is also on public display for the first time ever.

    In fact, out of 130 items at the Atlanta History Center, on display through July 13, there are at least 15 new artifacts, which include the earliest known African-American marriage record dating back to 1598.

    “We have another book that has never been shown outside the house,” said Mr. Kinsey. “A personally autographed book from Mrs. Rosa Parks to Shirley [Kinsey].”

    Bernard Kinsey’s wife Shirley said their collection continues to pull in the crowds because the exhibits are changed to fit the city.

    “It always brings out somebody who’s connected to something,” she said.

    The couple has amassed one of the largest private collections of artwork and artifacts tracing African-American history spanning more than 400 years.

    The Kinsey Collection, which now has around 400 items, includes everything from rare art, photographs and manuscripts that showcase African-American achievement and contribution. The idea is to dispel myths and promote dialogue about the role of African Americans in the making of America.

    The exhibits have been viewed by close to 14 million visitors in 15 cities across the United States.

  31. Ametia says:

    SMGDH What a fucking tool for Putin.

  32. Yahtc says:

    “Police Charge High School Student with Disorderly Conduct for Using an iPad to Prove He’s Being Bullied”
    The teen sought proof that school administrators were ignoring his plight. So they had him arrested.

  33. Yahtc says:

    This is horrible!

    “Violent Chester police confrontation caught on video”
    Wednesday, April 16, 2014

  34. Ametia says:

    Columbus Short: Wife Says He Threatened Murder/Suicide
    4/16/2014 2:10 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

    “Scandal” star Columbus Short has been thrown out of his house and his wife has filed for divorce … after he allegedly put a knife to her throat last week and threatened to kill her and himself.

    According to a new restraining order — obtained by TMZ — Short got into it with his wife April 7 at their Chatsworth home, where she claims he came into her room intoxicated with a wine bottle in hand, acted like he was going to hit her with the bottle and then unloaded the wine on her.

    Tuere Short claims Columbus then ran to the kitchen for a knife, pinned her to the couch and began choking her. She says he then demanded they play a game he called “Truth or Truth.” He allegedly said if she lied he would stab her in the leg.

    She says he then started naming men he believed she was having affairs with. She denied them all but he allegedly then put the knife to her throat and threatened murder/suicide. As she tried escaping she says he slashed her tire.

    The restraining order requires Columbus to move out of the house. We’ve learned cops were there today to ensure the peace as he moved out.

    Read more:

  35. Ametia says:

    How ‘Scandal’ Star Bellamy Young Transformed Mellie Into Fans’ Favorite Character

    Somewhere along the way, once-hateful First Lady Mellie Grant became the most complex, most fun character on ‘Scandal.’ Breakout star Bellamy Young tells us how she did it.

  36. rikyrah says:

    Gorgo The Black @FeministaJones
    “Colorblindness” is psychological violence.

    “No, I don’t see you for who you are. I see you for who I need you to be to make me feel good”

    7:44 AM – 17 Apr 2014

  37. rikyrah says:

    Nerdy Wonka @NerdyWonka
    That moment Putin realizes President Obama won’t say “how high” when Putin says “jump.” So he throws a tantrum.

    7:07 AM – 17 Apr 2014

  38. rikyrah says:

    About that Democratic ‘outside money advantage’…

    04/16/14 04:59 PM—Updated 04/16/14 05:01 PM

    By Steve Benen

    There’s a big AP article that’s made the rounds today with a headline that offers surprising news: “Democrats Have Outside Money Advantage – for Now.” The piece goes on to report, “Democrats, at least for the moment, seem to have a roughly 3-to-1 advantage over Republicans in cash raised and banked through independent groups, according to the early filings.”

    Reading this, it’s tempting to think Democrats and their allies, just 202 days before the midterms, must be in great shape. Despite all the fears of conservative billionaires helping buy the entire election cycle for congressional Republicans, here’s evidence that it’s Dems with the big financial advantage, at least as of now.

    But if this doesn’t quite sit right, there’s a very good reason. Consider this excerpt from the AP piece (thanks to my colleague Tricia McKinney for the heads-up):


    Don’t brush past this too quickly, it’s important.

    On the one hand, Democrats “seem to have a roughly 3-to-1 advantage over Republicans” when it comes to outside campaign cash.

    On the other hand, this doesn’t include major far-right groups that haven’t filed their campaign-finance reports yet and it doesn’t include the Koch brothers’ operation.

    Remember, in order to keep the finances secret and shielded from public scrutiny, a variety of political operations technically describe themselves as “social welfare” organizations under the law, not political action committees. These “social welfare” groups run campaign ads and generally appear to be intervening in elections in support of or in opposition to various candidates, but the legal fine print insists they’re not actually campaign operations. They only seem like campaign operations.

    And it’s this subtle distinction that makes quite a difference. When the Associated Press tells the public Dems “seem to have a roughly 3-to-1 advantage” on outside funds, this is true – just so long as you exclude all the outside funds from “social welfare” organizations, such as the “Koch brothers’ network of conservative groups,” which “is technically not political.”

    In other words, in practice, one might say the “roughly 3-to-1 advantage” doesn’t really exist at all.

  39. rikyrah says:

    The whole world inexplicably loves Captain America

    By Zachary M. Seward @zseward
    April 8, 2014

    America’s greatest export is entertainment, and its improbable brand ambassador is now Captain America. The second installment of Marvel’s movie franchise is drawing huge audiences outside the United States, even in areas of the world that might ordinarily reject a jingoistic superhero clad in red, white, and blue.

    Captain America: Winter Soldier pulled in $107 million overseas this weekend, even more than its record-breaking $96 million draw in the US. It was the number one film in China ($39 million), South Korea ($20 million), the United Kingdom ($18 million), Mexico ($16 million), France ($12 million), Russia ($7 million), and Australia ($6 million).

    Russia’s enthusiasm for Captain America is particularly surprising given current tensions with the US over Russian encroachment in Ukraine. The film’s villain is a brainwashed Soviet assassin, and an agent played by Scarlett Johansson is a former KGB spy who defected to the US. At one point, she says she “called in some favors from Kiev.”

  40. rikyrah says:

    A Nigerian terrorist group just kidnapped 100 girls to keep them from going to school

    Updated by Zack Beauchamp on April 15, 2014, 2:35 p.m. ET 

    The Nigerian terrorist group Boko Haram, one of the world’s most dangerous Islamist groups, just abducted 100 girls from a school in northeastern Nigeria. Why would an organization known principally for bombings and shootings kidnap a group of kids? Because Boko Haram’s opposition to educating girls is a core part of its ideology — and they think they can get something in exchange for the girls’ safe return.


    Boko Haram will probably ransom the girls

    “Their goal is almost certainly to ransom [the girls],” Daveed Gartenstein-Ross, a senior fellow at the Foundation of the Defense of Democracies who follows Boko Haram, told me. “Otherwise, they have chosen a target that will make everybody hate them. Killing [100] schoolgirls would be a huge PR hit even for some of the rougher jihadist groups.”

  41. rikyrah says:

    Anyone watching the new Fargo tv series? I put it on the DVR.

  42. rikyrah says:

    where is my teeny tiny violin?

    that they actually published this?



    Why Rich People Feel Poor
    By Ben Steverman
    Apr 15, 2014 4:04 PM CT

    Spare a thought for the millionaires this week. The bill from last year’s tax increases has come due.

    The rich aren’t poor, of course, whatever their tax burden. An adjusted gross income of $389,000 puts you in the top 1 percent of earners in 2011, according to the latest IRS data. No telethons have been organized. No TV ads have been narrated by Sarah McLachlan. Even the House Republicans have been silent lately on taxes on top earners, as Bloomberg’s Richard Rubin notes.

    But put aside the tone-deaf rich and their caricatures in pop culture. Hold the class warfare. High-earning Americans who haven’t found the right dodge, or who live in high-tax states, get socked. They contribute more or less like their compatriots in other developed nations, with few of the perks.

  43. rikyrah says:

    The Daily Edge @TheDailyEdge
    27,000 Americans will die in 2014 because of a preventable pre-existing condition: Their state elected a GOP Governor

    12:19 AM – 16 Apr 2014

  44. rikyrah says:

    Benjy Sarlin ✔ @BenjySarlin
    I repeat myself, but any argument GOP makes to Latino voters that Obama killed reform means trying to blame someone 70% of them voted for

    4:12 PM – 16 Apr 2014

  45. rikyrah says:

    An unflattering portrait of Susana Martinez

    04/17/14 08:00 AM
    By Steve Benen

    Look up any list of “Republican rising stars” and you’re likely to find first-term New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez. And on paper, it’s easy to see why: she’s the nation’s first Latina governor and an effective former prosecutor with a high approval rating in a relatively blue state.

    But Mother Jones’ Andy Kroll this week published a detailed, closer look at the New Mexico Republican and the portrait that emerges is deeply unflattering.

    [P]reviously unreleased audio recordings, text messages, and emails obtained by Mother Jones reveal a side of Martinez the public has rarely, if ever, seen. In private, Martinez can be nasty, juvenile, and vindictive. She appears ignorant about basic policy issues and has surrounded herself with a clique of advisers who are prone to a foxhole mentality. […]

    [I]nterviews with former Martinez aides, state lawmakers, Democratic and Republican officials, fundraisers, and donors show a governor whose prosecutorial style and vindictiveness have estranged her from leaders in her own party and from the Democratic lawmakers she must work with to get anything done. Martinez and her staff, they say, have isolated themselves in her fourth-floor office inside the modest state capitol known as the Roundhouse. As one major Republican donor in New Mexico puts it, “They’ve got this Sherman’s march to the sea mentality, burning everything in sight until they get to the finish.”

    It’s a lengthy, tough-to-excerpt piece, but Kroll’s piece raises some highly relevant concerns that will matter quite a bit if Martinez pursues national office. Her political operation, for example, appears petty and paranoid, alienating friend and foe alike. On public policy, Martinez comes across as disinterested in governing details – soon after getting elected, she asked an interviewer to “remind me” what the DREAM Act was.

    There are even questions about possible corruption: in 2011, the state “awarded a 25-year lease worth an estimated $1 billion to a company largely owned by a pair of major Martinez backers … to operate a racetrack and casino at the state fairgrounds.” Critics have accused the Martinez administration of rigging the bidding process and the FBI has interviewed witnesses about the deal.

  46. rikyrah says:

    uh huh

    uh huh

    Cenk Uygur Just Took $4-Million from a Conservative Source (but He’s Still a Better Liberal Than You)

    Chez Pazienza on April 16, 2014

    One of the pitfalls of running a for-profit media company that traffics almost entirely in one specific brand of political opinion is that your funding, and where it comes from, becomes especially relevant. If you spend all day espousing what you claim are strongly liberal views, then turn around and take a giant bag of money from, say, a former Republican candidate for president and governor of Louisiana who has worked against a woman’s right to choose and in favor of the Defense of Marriage Act, people might accuse you of being a bit hypocritical.

    Just a little while ago the Young Turks Network announced that it’s inked a deal to get $4-million in seed money from a group run by Buddy Roemer. With the funding comes an option that could double the take for TYT, with the whole thing being made through Roemer’s private equity fund, Roemer, Robinson, Melville & Co. Roemer himself is a pretty staunch conservative, despite having been a Democrat for many years and a late-career decision to try running for president as a member of both the Reform and Americans Elect party. In addition to his retrograde views on abortion and gay marriage, he also supported Arizona’s draconian crackdown on undocumented immigrants, is pro-torture, and is for the repeal of the ACA, saying that it amounts to government interference in healthcare. In other words, the guy is the furthest thing from a liberal.

  47. rikyrah says:

    Shared Space at Heart of New York’s Heated Charter School Debate
    By Nona Willis Aronowitz

    When Ginette Hernandez’s five-year-old son switched schools in November, she felt a palpable sense of relief. Her son, who has speech, behavior and developmental issues, had been struggling in his public school in central Harlem. Not quite potty-trained, the boy had accidents, and teachers didn’t have the time or training to clean him up. It seemed like every time her son had a meltdown, Hernandez got a panicked call at work.

    Things started looking up when the boy switched to the nearby Mickey Mantle School (P.S. M811), a special education public school that provides more individual attention. But a New York state budget deal struck in Albany two weeks ago has her afraid that her son will have to move yet again.

    The deal requires the city to provide rent-free space in public school buildings for charter schools — independently run public schools that receive less public funding than district schools and are subsidized by private donations. If the city can’t find room for charters inside public schools — an arrangement known as colocation — they must pay to house them elsewhere. The new law will also allot $500 more per charter school student by 2017.

    The decision grants unprecedented protections to charters, and stokes the often vitriolic debate over whether they offer a refuge for underprivileged kids from failing schools — or provide opportunities for a few at the expense of the larger public school system

    • Ametia says:

      THIS right here:

      The decision grants unprecedented protections to charters, and stokes the often vitriolic debate over whether they offer a refuge for underprivileged kids from failing schools — or provide opportunities for a few at the expense of the larger public school system.

      For the most part, it’s the latter.

  48. rikyrah says:

    I Hope That Sebelius Runs for Senate
    by BooMan
    Wed Apr 16th, 2014 at 10:46:40 PM EST

    I don’t know if Kathleen Sebelius will run for U.S. Senate against Pat Roberts or not, but I hope that she does. Most people probably think it’s a crazy idea. A Democrat hasn’t represented Kansas in the Senate since the 1930’s. It’s an extremely conservative state where President Obama and the Affordable Care Act are unpopular. It would require Sebelius to raise a lot of money in a very short period of time. It would subject her to even more abuse than she was subjected to in Washington DC. And, apparently, she has a very young grandson who she wants to spend time with.
    Yet, if she were to run, it would help the Democratic Party across the board. Why not have the chief implementer of ObamaCare running on her record of insuring somewhere around 10 million people? What the hell has Sen. Pat Roberts accomplished in the last six years? I’ll tell you what. Nada. Bupkis. Squat.

    Roberts doesn’t even have a permanent residence in Kansas. He’s like Dick Lugar on steroids in terms of being out of touch with his home state.

    I am no expert in Kansas politics, but I do know that the reason that Sebelius was a successful governor there is because there is a real split in the Republican Party between the Eisenhower branch of the party and the (now) Sam Brownback branch. And Gov. Brownback basically purged the Eisenhower branch during his first term in office.

    There are no shortage of alienated Republicans in Kansas who voted for Sebelius twice and would be willing to vote for her again. To get an idea of what I am talking about, Sebelius and Roberts and their families are close friends.

    If Sebelius were to run, it would a signal that there is nothing to be defensive about with the president’s health care law. It’s a positive.

    Plus, Sen. Roberts is a weak incumbent who has only generic support. If he’s going to win reelection, it will only be because of his party affiliation and not because he is personally popular or particularly well-liked in Kansas. Ever since he saw his colleagues Bob Bennett of Utah and Dick Lugar of Indiana lose in primary contests, Roberts been has voting like he’s Attila the Hun. There’s plenty of room in the center to attack Roberts.

    I hope that Sebelius makes a go of it. Even if she loses, she’ll encourage everyone else while providing them with some needed cover.

  49. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone :)

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