Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Beck Orates, Obama Redecorates

NEWS: A labrador that ate a beehive containing pesticides and thousands of dead bees has won an award that recognized the most unusual pet health insurance claim in the United States.

American pet-insurance adjuster Veterinary Pet Insurance (VPI) Co. selected the four-legged Ellie from a dozen pet-related insurance claims nationwide.

Ellie, who fully recovered from her encounter with the beehive in Southern California, beat an insurance claim from a border collie that ran through a window to get at a mailman and a terrier that bit a chainsaw.

Views: I wonder if any of these claims are denied because being a dog is a pre-existing condition? Just asking.

News: Glenn Beck's "Restoring Honor" rally at the Lincoln Memorial draws thousands, or tens of thousands, or hundreds of thousands, or millions, depending on who you ask.

Views: CBS News commissioned the company AirPhotosLive.com to offer an independent estimate of how many people showed up for the event.

AirPhotosLive.com calculated that there were approximately 87,000 people there, plus or minus 9,000 people. It was the only scientific estimate made of the number of people at the rally.

Beck said he drew at least 500,000. Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minnesota, at her own rally held on the edges of Beck's event, said, "We're not going to let anyone get away with saying there were less than a million here today because we were witnesses."

Suffice to say a lot of people showed up. And just to make sure attendance wasn't spotty, Beck announced before the event that it may be the last chance to attend a large rally at the historic Lincoln Memorial.

"The government is trying to now close the Lincoln Memorial for any kind of large gatherings," Beck said. "This may be the last large gathering ever to assemble at the Lincoln Memorial. Historic, historic."

Beck is no Honest Abe. Because, according to the National Parks Service, the Lincoln Memorial remains open for business.

"There is absolutely no attempt by the government to restrict gatherings at the Lincoln Memorial or at any of our sites," said Margie Ortiz, a National Park Service spokeswoman in published remarks. "There is zero basis for his claim."

Rehabilitation work on the Lincoln Memorial reflecting pool and grounds will begin soon, and could continue for two years, but National Park Service officials said that work will not prevent the use of the facilities for gatherings, though the size of a gathering would be considered when weighing applications during the construction period.

News: President Obama redecorates the Oval Office.

Views: To the chagrin of his detractors, he didn't install a Muslim prayer rug and a minaret.

Instead, the makeover, by California decorator Michael Smith, (and paid for by donations) has drawn reactions ranging from "less intimidating and more comfortable than previous Oval Offices" to "too brown, too modern, and too much like a basement rumpus room."

The most striking feature: a rug adorned around the edges with some of the President's favorite historical quotes:

"The Only Thing We Have to Fear is Fear Itself" - President Franklin D. Roosevelt. "The Arc of the Moral Universe is Long, But it Bends Towards Justice" - Martin Luther King Jr. "Government of the People, By the People, For the People" - President Abraham Lincoln. "No Problem of Human Destiny is Beyond Human Beings" - President John F. Kennedy. "The Welfare of Each of Us is Dependent Fundamentally Upon the Welfare of All of Us" - President Theodore Roosevelt.

Someone soon will undoubtedly read into these quotes a nefarious plot to turn us all into Prius-driving, Quran-quoting socialists who love gay marriage and hate the Fourth of July.

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