Tuesday briefing and open thread

Hey I’ve got a good one. What do Jesus Christ and the Constitution have in common?

Republicans worship both as gods, but don’t give a crap what either one of them actually say!!

Ba da bum!!

Today in talk.


  • Ewwww.

    According to a new study, the average chocolate bar contains eight insect parts. Anything less than 60 insect pieces per 100 grams of chocolate (two chocolate bars’ worth) is deemed safe for consumption by the Food and Drug Administration.

    So unleash your inner Bear Grylls and have a chocolate bar.

  • A staffing firm in Rochester Hills will be building a training center in Afghanistan in the next six months:

    During the next six months, TTi plans to spend about $500,000 to establish a worker training program in Afghanistan. About 20 trainers from Michigan will join about five translators to launch the program, Blaker said.

    Blaker said that $20,000 would be sufficient to build a training center in Afghanistan because the cost of living is low. All tools and equipment will be donated by local manufacturers, she said, because they’re aware that workforce development is critical.

    “There’s a real lack of skilled work force in Afghanistan because of the many years of conflict,” Blaker said. “They have to bring in over 100,000 workers a year from India, Pakistan and China to do really basic jobs — electricians, plumbers, construction workers — jobs that local Afghan people could and should be doing on their own but haven’t had the job skills training.”

  • UAW membership rose by 1.1% last year.

    General Motors Co., Ford Motor Co. and Chrysler Group LLC gained sales and boosted their share of the U.S. market last year. While the UAW’s 2011 gain followed a 6 percent increase in 2010, the union’s total membership is still only about one-fourth its size in 1979, when it peaked at 1.5 million members.


    The UAW, based in Detroit, wants to rebuild membership after failing to organize U.S. factories of Toyota Motor Corp., Honda Motor Co. and Nissan Motor Co. UAW President Bob King pledged to expand the union’s bargaining power by organizing a U.S. plant owned by an Asian or European automakers in 2011. King failed to meet that deadline.

  • The International Brotherhood of Teamsters are striking the Red Cross ..

    WASHINGTON, March 30, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Workers at the American Red Cross represented by the Teamsters Union and the Office and Professional Employees International Union (OPEIU) were forced to strike today in Lansing, Mich., over rising concerns about understaffing and cuts in health care benefits despite $2 billion in revenue from blood donations.

    “Red Cross employees have made every attempt to settle outstanding contract issues,” said Jim Hoffa, Teamsters General President, in a letter to Red Cross CEO Gail McGovern. “They love the work they do, but long shifts with short staff and high pressure, combined with management’s insistence on replacing their quality health insurance with a far inferior one, has left them no other choice.”

    Earlier this week, 150 Red Cross workers who are members of the United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW) walked off the job in Toledo, Ohio. They joined 250 Teamsters who were forced to strike in Cleveland on February 14.

    The safety of the collected blood is also an important issue in the strikes. Red Cross management has tried to eliminate necessary restroom and fatigue breaks for blood collection staff. The result is that employees are overworked and concerned that despite carefully following blood collection protocol, mistakes could occur, thus jeopardizing blood inventory.

    Notice the last paragraph in particular. I don’t understand why anyone would want to add stress to a position as important as blood collection. Except for the old American axiom that greed is good.

    More info and pictures on the Teamster blog.

  • And finally, one right wing blog claims offers up some twitter evidence that there is a liberal bias in the media.

    One of the recurring themes among the smear merchants on the left is this idea that there’s no such thing as a liberal media. Media Matters claims FoxNews, for example, is 100% conservative / Republican even though there are plenty of moderate and liberal commentators on Fox. When conservatives / Republicans appear on other news outlets besides Fox, however, the loons at Media Matters are quick to ask “What liberal media?” They will often cite attacks on Obama, from the left mind you, as proof there’s no liberal media, too. It’s quite funny.

    Those of us who pay attention know this is all a load of bunk. But now we have proof.

    His proof is some screenshots of a twitter conversation with a Media Matters staffer saying that MM is a progressive organization.

    What a tool.

    See, that’s the kind of stupid that happens when you get your education from Fox News.

  • Census Daily

    Profile America — Tuesday, April 3rd. For most of history, a good meal was followed by the drudgery of scrubbing the pans used to prepare it. But something was invented this week in 1938 that changed all that — tetrafluoroethylene — far better known as Teflon. Developed by Roy Plunkett of the DuPont Company, Teflon revolutionized cooking utensils. By the time he died in the early 1990s, three-out-of-four of all cooking pans in the nation were coated with his invention. Today, Teflon is also used in semiconductors, communications cables, and even in clothing. The nation’s chemical industry generates more than $716 billion a year in sales and provides jobs for more than 800,000 workers.

    Solidarity Forever brothers & sisters!!!

    There are no cover bands in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Follow me on Twitter - @christinebarry
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  1. Glad you’re back in the saddle. Sounds like a doozy of a virus. I was afraid I would catch it just texting you!

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