Monday Morning Open Thread

What’s up?

I’ve been holed up in a house with family and friends up in the Sierra Foothill Mountain area in California. I am just catching up on news and e-mail and read about the tragic shootings in Tucson. My heart and prayers go out to the victims and their families. Like everyone else, I am standing by for more information.

The U.S. State Department has announced that it will change the U.S. passport application to say “Parent” and “Parent” rather than “Mother” and “Father,” according to the Mombian blog. In somewhat related news: sex advice columnist Dan Savage and our favorite coach from Glee, Jane Lynch, recently spoke to Newsweek about being gay in the United States.

The Coffee Party is hosting a summit in Washington D.C. in light of the one-year anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. FEC case, which made corporations individuals who can donate unlimited sums of money to political campaigns. The summit is from January 20-22.

In other events: one of our favorite local digs, the Zeum Children’s Museum in San Francisco, will open a youth-driven multimedia exhibit on February 6.  

One of the Momocrats just created this brilliant education blog, K-12 Network News.

Who couldn’t use a little help for that “time of month”? Redbook just released helpful hints on how to curve a host of menstrual ailments like bloating, cramps, fatigue and insomnia.

What else is in the news? What’s up with you?

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Wednesday Morning Open Thread

What’s up?

A friend of a friend is an organizer for the union that represents workers at the Mott’s Apple plant in Williamson, New York. She released some distressing news about Mott’s, which is run by the Dr Pepper Snapple company out of Plano, Texas. As it turns out, Dr Pepper Snapple is cutting employee wages, and curtailing paid vacations, pension plans and other benefits, even though it made a whopping $555 million in profits last year. If you feel inclined to support the workers who produce the products of our children, please consider signing a petition on behalf of the workers, e-mailing the CEOs of your favorite brands, or simply, not purchasing the brands as long as they continue to cut employee wages. Here is a list of all Dr Pepper Snapple products. Thank you, comrades!

Here is a depressing statistic released by the United Nations. Cancer is expected to kill more than 13.2 million people a year by 2030, according to a story in Reuters. That is almost double the number who died from the disease in 2008.

In a quirky article in the Consumerist, Kansas, Oregon, South Dakota, Minnesota, and Iowa, were named the “smartest drivers,” based on how they performed on a written driver’s test. New York, New Jersey, Washington D.C., California and Rhode Island, were named the dumbest drivers. In our defense since we Californians placed fourth in the “dumbest” category, our test is pretty damn hard. I don’t know anyone who passed without actually studying — or cheating. What do you think of the drivers and driver’s test in your state?  

McDonald’s just released an ad in France to cater to gay people, according to the Post Chronicle.

In celebrity gossip break: Glee star Jane Lynch married her girlfriend, psychiatrist Dr. Lara Embry, in a ceremony in Massachusetts, according to MSN Wonderwall.

What else is in the news? What’s up with you?

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