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Rang De Basanti

A Mumbai flash mob!

Shine On Brightly

The chandelier in sinful swing
as gifts for me the three kings bring
of myrrh and frankincense, I’m told,
and fat old Buddhas carved in gold

A rare instance of Christmas lyrics in Procol Harum, but their songs almost always sounded Christmas-y to me. More here.

Scott Walker

Is a horrible human being. Go ahead, Scott. Every time you make another dick move, that’s another thousand signatures on your recall petition.

Special for Netroots Nation

Buy a ticket by midnight tonight and get the earlybird rate.

I can’t say enough good things about NN. It’s a great way to get energized and meet people from all over the country who are working to make things better. If all you do is read blogs, you wouldn’t know how much good work people are doing — and all the local victories they’re racking up. This year, it will be in Providence, RI – driving distance for East coasters. If you can, plan to be there.

Crime scenes

Mortgage fraud stops when law enforcement begins. Still waiting!

The digital story of the Nativity

The Christmas tree

Back by popular demand:

‘Associated forces’

The NY Times editorial board on President Obama’s power grab:

Nearly every top American official with knowledge and experience spoke out against the provisions, including the attorney general, the defense secretary, the chief of the F.B.I., the secretary of state, and the leaders of intelligence agencies. And, for weeks, the White House vowed that Mr. Obama would veto the military budget if the provisions were left in. On Wednesday, the White House reversed field, declaring that the bill had been improved enough for the president to sign it now that it had passed the Senate.

This is a complete political cave-in, one that reinforces the impression of a fumbling presidency. To start with, this bill was utterly unnecessary. Civilian prosecutors and federal courts have jailed hundreds of convicted terrorists, while the tribunals have convicted a half-dozen.

And the modifications are nowhere near enough. Mr. Obama, his spokesman said, is prepared to sign this law because it allows the executive to grant a waiver for a particular prisoner to be brought to trial in a civilian court. But the legislation’s ban on spending any money for civilian trials for any accused terrorist would make that waiver largely meaningless.
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Securities fraud

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. What, you thought they’d indict REAL bankers? LOL

‘Impoverished’

John Aravosis with a great story about how Mitt Romney’s lower-middle-class home in Paris was actually a palace, and until recently was the home of the embassy for the United Arab Emirates:

To hear Mitt Romney tell it, his two and a half years as a Mormon missionary in France in the late 1960s were tough times. The places he was staying often had no working toilet, and certainly no baths or showers, he said just this past Sunday (in an effort to divert attention from the $10,000 bet he made Rick Perry). He lived, he said, just like lower-middle income Frenchmen lived.

The truth is slightly different. According to the Telegraph, for nearly a year during his time in France, Romney lived in a “palace” in Paris’ richest neighborhood, known as “the 16th.”

Although he spent time in other French cities, for most of 1968, Mr Romney lived in the Mission Home, a 19th century neoclassical building in the French capital’s chic 16th arrondissement. “It was a house built by and for rich people,” said Richard Anderson, the son of the mission president at the time of Mr Romney’s stay. “I would describe it as a palace”.

It had chandeliers, stained glass windows, its own art collection and servants. I found a photo of one of the windows, via the Mormon Paris mission’s Web site:

Until just recently the building housed the embassy of the United Arab Emirates, a government known for its impoverished lower-middle class lifestyle.

[…]Oh, but the Telegraph has more:

In his remarks this week, Mr Romney said of his French lodgings: “I don’t recall any of them having a refrigerator. We shopped before every meal”. Mr Anderson said that as well as a refrigerator, the mansion had “a Spanish chef called Pardo and a house boy, who prepared lunch and supper five days a week”.

The home in fact had several baths and showers.

You get the picture.

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