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''Helen, where are we going to keep a horse statue that big?'' -King Priam
Florida purges left-handed softball players from voter rolls
Florida Governor Rick Scott is defending the state's latest voter registration accuracy program today, calling a Parks and Recreation Department database of softball players "just as legit as any other official government information."
The action is in addition to a new policy that drops Bronze Star winners from the rolls in case one of them is Massachusetts Senator John Kerry. Kerry is ineligible to vote in Florida, the Secretary of State's office ruled last week.
The new effort to keep noncitizens from voting uses a 1997 intramural softball league player database. The governor maintains the intention is to use an uncontroversial source of data, "and everybody loves baseball, right?" said Scott.
The Miami Herald obtained a copy of the database but could not analyze it because it had been saved as a Hypercard stack.
The governor explained it was part of a cunning plan to foil noncitizens from invading our democracy.
"Think about it. Illegals are not going to be on a 15 year old softball roster. So shut up or I'll revoke your reporter licenses," Scott told The Herald.
Handedness was the only database field not left blank for any player from the 1997 softball season. Lefthanders were notified by mail of their voting ineligibility. Those wishing to contest the finding were instructed to "escribir a los parques del condado y la oficina de Recreacion para solicitar una audiencia de revision."
Florida Secretary of State Ken Secretary promised the focus on lefthanders was not part of any plan to single out minorities, "even though they are," Secretary said.
In a related story, businessman Donald Trump told CNN's Wolf Blitzer that President Obama, unlike presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney, has never produced a softball league registration form or participation trophy.
Fred Phelps, Charles L. Worley protest "penguin iniquity"
Thousands are flocking to the Madrid Zoo to see penguins Inca and Rayas, who are taking their committed same-sex pairing to the next level by becoming parents. Zookeepers have given the two flightless birds an egg of their own.
Inca has taken on the "female" role of incubating the donated egg. His partner Rayas, meanwhile, keeps a watchful guard over the nest while eating whatever he can fit in his beak, in preparation for the traditional male job of feeding his young with regurgitated fish.
The inseparable pair are expected to hatch their egg in the next few weeks.
However, not all are pleased with the unconventional parenting arrangement. Outside the penguin enclosure, two flightless humans are staging a protest.
One, Pastor Fred Phelps of Kansas, says God is angry at any promotion of homosexuality. "The wrath of the Lord will rain down on Europe because it tolerates this penguin iniquity. Already God has sent a warning -- the Eurozone crisis didn't just happened by itself," Phelps said.
Meanwhile, Phelps' partner, Charles L. Worley of North Carolina, stood nearby holding a God Hates Fag Penguins sign. "God is agin this, I'm agin this. We know this because there's nothing in the Bible about gay penguins," said Worley.
"We should build an electrified fence around Antarctica so the queer penguisexuals can't get out, and you know what, in a few years they'll all die," he added.
The inseparable pair say they are collaborating on a white paper on the topic of homosexuality in animals. "Penguins aren't born gay, they learn it from the media, it's all marketing," said Phelps.
Phelps said he and Worley will next travel to the Toronto Zoo, where they will protest at the funeral of a Horny Toad.
In a related story, presumptive 2012 Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney today reiterated his opposition to marriage equality. "I am opposed to gay penguin marriage as well as civil unions," Romney said.
However, he did express support for gay adoption, saying it would be "fine if, say, a pair of pink flamingos wanted to adopt a penguin chick."
Romney mulling switch to support marriage equality
Wants Cory Booker as son-in-law
In a startling turnaround, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney is considering reversing his position on marriage equality, the campaign disclosed today.
The presumptive Republican presidential nominee is enjoying last weekend's tactical victory in his contest against President Barack Obama, when Newark Mayor Cory Booker appeared on "Meet The Press" equating the Obama campaign focus on Romney's record at Bain Capital to plans by GOP activists to play up past associations between the president and Rev. Jeremiah Wright.
"Mayor Booker has done a great thing, I am jumping for joy that a big-city east coast Democrat mayor has supplied audio and video negating Barack Obama's number one argument for his reelection," Romney told reporters aboard his campaign plane en route to Lansing, Michigan.
"In fact, I am so happy I want Booker to be part of the family, he should be my son-in-law, that's how much I love that young man," said Romney.
"That 'Meet The Press' appearance makes for a perfect dowry," he added.
He and Ann Romney have no daughters, only sons Tagg, Matt, Josh, Ben, and Zeppo. "Therefore I am now in favor of marriage equality. The law shouldn't be allowed to stand in the way of the happiness of Cory and whichever one of my sons I can talk into it," he said.
The candidate asked his conservative Christian supporters not to think of the pending nuptials as a gay marriage: "Marriage has never been only about procreation. History has many examples of marriages being used to create alliances between kingdoms and dynasties."
"Why, you need look no further than 'Game Of Thrones,' where Robb Stark had to agree to marry the Frey girl just so his army could cross a river," Romney pointed out.
Romney said those unfamiliar with 'Game Of Thrones' should think of the Romney-Booker marriage simply as a corporate merger.
Armageddon Clock set further from midnight
The kingdom of heaven is a little further off today, as the Bulletin Of Creation Scientists announced they have turned back the hands of the Armageddon Clock to an hour before midnight.
Bulletin Executive Director Ward Monger attributed the change to a worrisome decrease in Mideast tensions. Yesterday Palestinian detainees said they would end a hunger strike in return for an agreement by Israel to improve conditions. Under the deal, brokered by Egypt and Jordan, Israel also agreed to release 320 people being detained without charge.
"Nothing reduces the likelihood of the Rapture as fast as compromise," said Monger, who holds a doctorate in Solomonic Dispute Resolution from Regent University.
It is the 420th time the hands of the metaphorical clock have been turned back in the last 33 years. Midnight symbolizes the arrival of planet-ending war heralding the second coming of Jesus. Before today's change, the hands had been stuck at 59 minutes before midnight since 2010.
"This has been going in the wrong direction since the Camp David peace accords," said a crestfallen Monger.
"Sure, once in a while some maniacs give us the chance to move the hands closer to midnight. The assassination of Yitzhak Rabin was worth a minute, and we put the clock ahead five minutes after 9/11," he said.
"Unfortunately more often than not people are giving peace a chance, may they rot in hell," Monger said.
World ends - Bush accidentally sets Doomsday Clock ahead 1 hour
House passes LaLaLaLaLa Amendment slashing Census funds
Saying ignorance is bliss, a Florida congressman led the floor debate resulting in passage of an amendment slashing $250 million from the budget of the U.S. Census Bureau.
Rep. Daniel Webster had introduced the bill, the LaLaLaLaLa Amendment, because he believes Census Bureau's American Community Survey is an unconstitutional gathering of data to determine what is real.
Webster's amendment passed, 232-190.
The Orlando Republican was pleased at the result, saying his district doesn't care about reality. "My constituents know the world is changing, and they don't like it. The last thing they want is government wasting tax dollars on Census surveys that confirm things are changing," said Webster.
"Bible-believing, patriotic Americans rely on family values, not statistics. They don't want to be forced to realize the country is becoming more ethnically diverse, or more people are commuting by transit, or women are earning more, or there are more same-sex households." he said.
"Basically, my district doesn't need to know things are changing, they just want to believe they are changing, so they can be afraid of them," Webster said, adding -- "This country stands for the freedom to cover your ears and say 'Lalalalala, I can't hear you'."
Romney supports 'Medicare For All Corporate Persons'
Mitt Romney -- in a bid to change the subject away from questions surrounding his religion, 2011 taxes, gay marriage, time as CEO of Bain Capital, record as Massachusetts governor, statements during the 1994 Senate race against Edward M. Kennedy, women's reproductive rights, lack of empathy, abuse of a family dog, foreign bank accounts, Richard Grenell, Ann Romney's $990 shirt, car elevators, the auto industry bailout, the height of Michigan trees, and leadership of a 1965 prep school gaybashing incident -- spoke today about where he differs from President Obama on American health insurance.
"I will repeal Obamacare because mandates are a limit on freedom of corporate persons, and I am on record as having changed my position on mandates," said the presumptive Republican nominee.
The former Massachusetts governor went on to say he has no plans at this time to change his position on freedom, saying: "The free market is all we need. At this time."
Currently, companies delay treatment that could lead to costly emergency bailouts later. "That's not how we play the game," he said.
"Why should General Motors get special treatment? What I will do, what Barack Obama lacks the courage to do, is treat all corporate persons equally," said Romney.
Instead, Romney proposes a single payer corporate health care system -- dubbed Medicare For All Corporate Persons, or RomneyCorpCare for short. "Under RomneyCorpCare, companies would have access to public insurance coverage that includes annual preventative bailouts and free stress tests," he said.
The plan would enact cost controls on wages and make bailouts available to all -- not just Wall Street financial institutions, but aerospace, military contractors, and private prison corporations as well. "We owe it to our corporate families to make sure profits are a right, not a privilege," Romney said.
He added that he is confident RomneyCorpCare will work, "because we've been subsidizing oil companies for decades."
North Carolina passes amendment cancelling "Modern Family"
North Carolina voters today narrowly approved an amendment to the state constitution cancelling the situation comedy "Modern Family."
The Office of Secretary of State announced passage of Amendment 1 with a Yes vote of over 59%, thereby enacting a blanket ban on gay marriage, including depictions of gay marriage, civil unions and Broadway theater.
The state amendment effectively cancels ABC's "Modern Family" because it includes a positive portrayal of a gay marriage. Although the hit series is filmed in Hollywood, California must follow Amendment 1 due to the 'full faith and credit' clause of Article 4 of the U.S. Constitution.
Other series affected are "Smash" on NBC, and syndicated reruns of "Will & Grace."
"This is a huge victory for fictional families and fictional values," said Tony Perkins of the Family Witchhunt Council.
"The people of North Carolina are sending a message that they oppose the attack on fictional families. They oppose fictional Hollywood stories portraying fictional gay marriages as being equal to fictional traditional marriages," said Perkins.
"It just sets a bad example for fictional children," he said.
The ballot measure campaign attracted national attention in its final week. A Bill Clinton robocall warned North Carolina's ability to attract talented workers and entrepreneurs would be harmed by a Yes vote, while a letter signed by Rev. Pat Robertson allayed fears that Amendment 1 would affect the ability of cousins to marry.
The vote results sent executives at ABC and NBC scurrying to find shows to fill suddenly empty time slots. Expect family-friendly fare such as competitive ballroom lambada, a "Jersey Shore" spinoff featuring Snooki, and an untitled Jim Belushi comedy about an abusive husband.
Romney fires airport terminal security advisor Larry Craig
The Mitt Romney campaign has fired another policy advisor, the campaign announced today.
Former Sen. Larry Craig, an openly closeted man, will no longer serve as Romney's special advisor on airport terminal security issues.
Craig is the second advisor to leave the Romney campaign this week. He follows Richard Grenell, the uncloseted foreign policy advisor let go on Wednesday, to the ranks of the unemployed.
A Romney staffer commenting on condition of anonymity described Craig as an extremely dedicated and hands-on advisor. The Romney proposal to shift Department of Homeland Security resources away from patrols of airport terminal men's rooms, in favor of a privatized system, is the result of Craig's influence.
"He was always inviting me to help him do security checks of airport bathrooms," said the staffer.
"He advocated for drilling more holes in restroom stalls so would-be terrorists would have fewer places to hide. He'd ask me stuff like, 'Can you see me through this hole?' 'Are my feet visible under the stall wall?' Those sorts of things," the staffer said.
Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association had agitated for Craig's removal, believing the former lawmaker has too wide a stance on airport terminal restroom security. Today Fischer called Craig's ouster "a great victory for pro-family activists like me who want privacy when meeting in airport terminal restrooms."
Romney himself says he has nothing to apologize for abut Craig, since pro-closet activists have yet to speak out publicly. "And I will fire as many advisors as it takes to assemble a team the Republican base will support," he added.
"If there's one thing I stand for, it's firing people," Romney said.
Revealed: Romney bought, shut down contractor building Osama Bin Laden's pool
Mitt Romney's national security credentials received a big boost today, with release by his financial managers of information showing the former Massachusetts governor quietly took action in 2009 to severely inconvenience Al Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden.
The Romney campaign was quick to trumpet the disclosure, hoping to blunt the impact of Tuesday's surprise visit to Afghanistan by President Obama.
Records show Romney's Kayman Kapital Kompany bought out Frandle Construction Company in spring of 2009. Kayman learned the Abbottabad, Pakistan firm was in the middle of a project building a swimming pool at Bin Laden's compound.
Romney did his part for the war on terror by ordering Frandle to lay off its employees and shut its doors, leaving the Bin Laden pool unfinished.
Bin Laden's own diaries, captured by Navy SEAL Team 6 in the May 1, 2011 raid on the the Bin Laden residence, describe the terrorist mastermind's frustration over the lack of progress on the 50 foot long infinity pool with Jacuzzi tub.
"It has been over six months since the hole was excavated, but no one has shown up for work in weeks. I am beginning to suspect I have hired an unscrupulous business man," Bin Laden wrote in November 2009.
The delay continued, resulting in this April 2010 diary entry: "The rains have come and the backyard has become like a swamp. I call and call and call the contractor, but all I get is an automated phone system. Never before have I encountered such poor customer service."
Romney took credit for the poor customer service today while campaigning in Chantilly, Virginia -- "I am proud to say that for the last two years of his life Osama Bin Laden had to look out his window at a muddy hole in the ground," he told employees of Chantilly Lace Inc.
"It must have really pissed him off, owners of estates and compounds know what I'm talking about. The frustration must have made Bin Laden slip up, allowing our brave fighting forces to locate him and take him out," said Romney.
"What's more, I kept Osama's $2,500 deposit," he declared.
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