Till the End of the Day

Former military dictator Muhammudu Buhari defeated president Jonathan Gooduck in the Nigerian presidential election.

Violence that has plagued Burma since its independence in 1948 may be close to an end as the government and 16 rebel groups sign on to a draft ceasefire agreement. Caveat: One rebel group in Kokang, which has been responsible for recent violence, did not sign on.

Indiana Governor Mike Pence hoping for a bill to clarify that the stupid discriminatory bill they passed isn’t as discriminatory as people think it is.

Jill Lawrence: “If there’s one takeaway from Indiana Gov. Mike Pence’s “religious freedom restoration” debacle, it’s that Republicans ignore today’s cultural environment at their peril. Conservatives can continue to live in a bubble if they want to, but they should expect blowback, because outside that bubble is a far different reality.”

Steve Kornacki is pretty good on what Martin O’Malley is up to.

The Bill Belichick Offseason Simulator.

Today I learned that I’m a big fan of Courtney Barnett’s new record.


Morning Constitutional – Monday, 30 March 2015

Good morning, everybody. Tom Brady jumped off a cliff. Now, your morning constitutional:

As negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program continue, U.S. officials said Monday that moving Uranium out of Iran is still on the table, despite recent public comments by Iranian deputy foreign minister Abbas Araqchi suggesting otherwise.

In Yemen, Houthi rebels made gains in the outskirts of Aden against forces loyal to the ousted president who were backed by Saudi air strikes. China has sent three navy ships to Yemen to evacuate the more than 400 of its citizens in the country.

French right-wing parties made limited gains in local elections Sunday.

Uzbekistan’s authoritarian president Islam Karimov won reelection Sunday for a fourth term with 90.39 percent of the vote against pretty much nobody. Just a note: Uzbekistan’s constitution limits presidents to two consecutive terms.

Former Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert was convicted of fraud and breach of trust on Monday, his third conviction for corruption since 2012.

Poll shows that many Americans are confused as to what constitutes an imminent threat.

Comedy Central has chosen … Trevor Noah? … to succeed Jon Stewart as host of The Daily Show.

Tim Cook writes a great Washington Post op-ed that religious freedom laws are dangerous.

U.S. consumer spending rose .1 percent in February after two months of declines.

Finally, woman falsely poses as lawyer for a decade, makes partner.

Watch: This amazing and creepy Teletubbies/Joy Division mashup

Inspired by this tweet (nightmares), here’s an incredible and eerie video mashup of the Teletubbies in black and white accompanied by Joy Division’s “Atmosphere” by Christopher G. Brown. Here’s more on its creation.

Maybe the Teletubbies already kind of freak you out, but either way, you’ll never be able to unsee this. Pleasant dreams.

After the bump, another one.

Continue reading Watch: This amazing and creepy Teletubbies/Joy Division mashup

Morning Constitutional – Friday, 20 March 2015

Good morning, everybody. Idina Menzel dyed her hair. Now, your morning constitutional:

Three Four suicide bombers attacked two mosques controlled by Shiite rebels in Sanaa, Yemen, on Friday, killing at least 46 126 and injuring 100 260. Islamic State militants have claimed responsibility for the attack, but the claim could not be confirmed; if true, it would be the group’s first attack in the country.

The U.S. is close to deciding whether to maintain more troops in Afghanistan next year than planned as divisions within the Taliban are keeping them from engaging in peace talks with the Afghan government,

Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-S.C.), newly minted chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, threatened Thursday that he would slash U.S. funding for the U.N. if the U.N. lifts sanctions on Iran as part of an agreement over its nuclear program.

President Obama signed an executive order directing federal agencies to cut their greenhouse gas emissions by an average of 40 percent.

Reuters says that its websites have been blocked in China, joining the New York Times, Bloomberg and the Wall Street Journal.

France passed a law mandating that commercial rooftops be covered in plants or outfitted with solar panels.

Schools around the U.S. facing a shortage of substitute teachers as the economy improves.

No, the president did not say that people should be required to vote.

“A recent Economist/YouGov poll found that 93 percent of Americans over the age of 65 said they don’t receive a government subsidy to pay for health insurance. (Nearly all seniors receive a subsidy via Medicare.)”

Charlie Pierce, because you should always read Charlie Pierce.

Finally, flight forced to land because it smelled like poop.

Watch: The most insane improbable shot in this insane improbable tournament so far

Watch it the first couple of times to see that shot. Then keep watching it over and over to watch the Georgia St. coach fall out of his chair. Over and over.

I hope he “did it for the Vine,” because this may be the most perfect Vine of all time, forever.

Till the End of the Day

Seems like it’s been a long time since we did one of these. Well, here goes: some links to get you through the rest of the day:

The Fed signaled this afternoon that it may consider raising interest rates this summer. Maybe.

Donald Trump is going to announce forming a presidential exploratory committee.  But in better news, he’s also not renewing his contract with NBC.

House Republicans propose a 10-year freeze on Pell grants.

General Motors is shutting down its factory in Russia.

The states that presidential candidates can mock, ranked.

The narrative of decline cannot abide hope and change.

“One of the great sleeper legacies of the Obama administration may be another idea he got from Bill Clinton: income-contingent college loans.”

An oral history of South Park.

Also, the following happened today. Enjoy the rest of your day, everyone.


New York Times Columnist Line of the Day

If you frequent this here premier “web log,” there’s a good chance you may once or twice have read the New York Times op-ed page. You might even recognize the names of the columnists, who every day spout the most conventionally wise of the conventional wisdom. This is a feature that is dedicated to these folks, highlighting one line that is either funny, ridiculous, strange, or actually intelligent or well-written.


Today’s is from Thomas Friedman, who in his column today, “Go Ahead, Ruin My Day,” writes:

It is a more simple fact: In the brutal Middle East, the only thing that gets anyone’s attention is the threat of regime-toppling force.

P.S. This was a really, really close runner-up:

Have I ruined your morning yet? No? Give me a couple more paragraphs.