In a stunning blow to privatization efforts everywhere, the town of Missoula, Montana, seizes its water system from the Carlyle Group via eminent domain under state law. The court ruling instructs us that (in CLDC's words) "public interest required public ownership" of the town's water system, and public ownership of said system was a "more necessary public use" than continued Carlyle ownership (and Carlyle was looking to bottle and sell Missoula's water). Dig how Carlyle called the city's water a "product" -- everything's just a "product" to a corporation! -- as if clean water hasn't been the single greatest health care advance of the last century, as if people don't need it to live. We'll fight this battle again, but I think folks care more about the public good than they used to.
Speaking of which, dig the abominable tax plan Rand Paul would usher in if we made him President. The Paul plan would repeal the progressive income tax, the estate tax, the payroll tax, and the corporate tax, and replace them with a 14.5% flat income tax and a 14.5% "value-added tax," which is essentially a national sales tax. That's going to be an easy one to campaign against: Rand Paul would make everyone pay 3 out of every 10 dollars in taxes, and that 14.5% sales tax will add up at the cash register every time. Need I mention that it'd give the rich yet another huge tax cut and would jack up the deficit? The large "no tax floor" is the only part of it I like; we could raise the personal exemption to the living wage level and be done with this plan forever.
The FRC's Craig James claims that "the whole homosexual movement is really like a religion and the religion is sex and they worship their own genitals." That's some cojones, there -- a presumed heterosexual lecturing gays about obsessing about sex. It's like the man has never watched any TV or movies, or talked to any of his teammates in any of his many football locker rooms. But that's what the far-right does: pretends homosexuality is all about sex, while pretending heterosexuality is never about sex. And Jesus Mary and Joseph enough with the "(t)hey're trying to shut down my beliefs talk" already. We're not trying to "shut down" your beliefs; we're trying to shut down your attempt to deprive a group of people of their rights.
The Straight Dope tackles the question of whether we could reasonably harvest icebergs for fresh water. Sounds like a good idea, right? But dragging an iceberg from where it is to a place where we might use it -- if it can be done safely, without, say, a storm breaking it up, or pushing it into a cruiseliner -- would melt away around 40% of it even if you surrounded it with a synthetic textile designed to reduce melting (and 90% of that iceberg is underwater, remember, so dressing it up for transport would be very difficult). And that's before we figure out how much fuel we're going to burn to bring it up from the Antarctic (a better bet for big icebergs than the Arctic). Other problems are legal (does someone own this iceberg?), ethical (do polar bears live on this iceberg?), and health-related (can we get the "penguin poop," and also some salt, out of this iceberg?).
Finally, the Charleston murders of nine black church-goers by one white supremacist have really brought out some seriously moronic "analysis" from the right, as Steve Doocy suggested the shootings had more to do with "the hostility toward Christians" than with the obvious racism of a man who said he was going "to shoot black people" because "you rape our women and you're taking over our country, so you have to go," and at least two Republicans running for the highest office in our land agree. America has come a long way on race relations -- a terrorist attack like this would never have received so much national attention 70 years ago, and certainly not 70 years before that -- but it's not a personal attack to say we still have a long way to go. Yet right-wingers still take it as such, which may be why they substitute their own imagined persecution for actual persecution.