Actor slash model hotness Jensen Atwoodis sexy as ever in the brand new music video for Ife's "Aim to Please". It's a beautiful track from the Seattle-bred singer-songwriter. Ife's melodic voice is part Angela Winbush, part Chante Moore and quite captivating. The video, like the track, is lush and romantic.
If you've been wondering what Jensen looks like without the braids ... much more AFTER THE JUMP.
The bill includes a version of the "public option" preferred by moderates and raises Medicaid eligibility levels to 150 percent of the federal poverty level for all adults, a steeper increase than in earlier drafts....The House legislation aims to provide health insurance of one form or another to 96 percent of all Americans at an expected cost just below $900 billion over 10 years, without increasing the federal budget deficit for at least 20 years, House Democrats said. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says he will include a similar public provision in the Senate bill with an "opt out" clause for states that don't want to participate.
Four page summary here. The full text here. The top 14 provisions that take effect immediately here. The implementation timeline here.
The stronger, Medicare plus 5% provision was solidly backed by House progressives but lacked enough votes to pass. WaPo adds: "Rural Democrats strongly opposed that approach because of the potentially ruinous effect on doctors and hospitals in their districts, where Medicare rates are generally well below the national average."
While Medicare +5 would have been stronger, negotiated rates are not the worst thing. But many progressives are not enthused and question if too many concessions were made.
Via MSNBC, watch Pelosi introduce the bill, Howard Dean on Olbermann critique the bill and fabulous Rep. Alan Grayson on The Ed Show support the plan AFTER THE JUMP.
A visit to the Key West African Cemetery is a heartbreaking walk into a painful chapter in American history. In 1860, some 294 freed African slaves were buried in shallow graves at what is now Higgs Beach near the southernmost point of Key West. The Africans were among 1,432 freed by the United States Navy from three slave ships bound for nearby Cuba. Because of the horrific conditions aboard the slave ships, many of the Africans were very ill and died. The graves remained unmarked until 2001.
Key West was never a slave trading port but its proximity to Cuba (only about 90 miles) and strategic location on the Florida Straits meant that slave ships passed by. As the Civil War approached, a number of slave ships were forced into port and the slaves freed. And of course , over centuries quite a few ships were wrecked in these waters. Many of them, unfortunately, had human cargo.
A few relaxing moments on the Atlantic Ocean side of Key West, not far from the southernmost point in the United States. There's not much wave action here so there is not a heavy sand build-up. But the water is fairly warm if you want to take a dip.
Some good news to report from Maine. The anti-gay National Organization for Marriage (NOM) has filed suit against the state to keep private the name of donors to "Yes on 1" campaign, which seeks to overturn the state's marriage equality law. A federal judge dismissed their challenge, reports the Portland Press Herald.
"Judge D. Brock Hornby ruled that Maine's reporting requirements for ballot question campaigns do not violate the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution as claimed in a lawsuit filed last week by the National Organization for Marriage. Bolstered by the ruling, Maine's attorney general challenged the advocacy group Wednesday night to make its records public before next week's vote on Question 1. 'We are not going to give them legal advice. We trust that their legal counsel will advise them to comply fully,' said Attorney General Janet Mills. 'The court has ruled that it is in the public interest to do so, and the law couldn't be clearer.' ... 'I would hope that they would file before the election," Mills said. "Why not? What is there to hide?' "
NOM, headed by Maggie Gallagher seen above, has contributed about $1.6 million to Stand for Marriage Maine, which is leading the fight to
repeal the same-sex marriage law. That's more than half the total
raised for the campaign so far, authorities say. State law requires any individual or group that raises or spends more than $5,000 to influence a ballot question vote to disclose contributors who gave more than $100 for that purpose.
Anti-gay social conservatives have no problem going to court when they need "activist" judges to overturn laws they don't like. When our side does it ... not so much.
Police accuse [Wiilliams] of stabbing Shawn Henderson, 28, in an apartment in the 9900 block of Adleta Boulevard in northeast Dallas. Another man who lives in the apartment told investigators that Williams and Henderson were lovers and had been staying with him. He said he heard them arguing and told them to keep it down. Then he heard them physically fighting. The witness said he watched as Williams retrieved a knife from the kitchen and began stabbing Henderson with it. Police found the man in a pool of blood. Williams is being held at Dallas County Jail in lieu of $100,000 bond.
The Williams and Martinez cases come during the same week the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Projects (NCAVP) releases data on LGBT domestic violence. The data will be officially released later this afternoon and finds a total of 3,419 LGBT domestic violence incidents reported in 2008. The real numbers are undoubtedly much higher. Reportedly there is "an increased demand" in anti-violence services by LGBT persons of color and LGBT youth—who unfortunately are often taught to value hyper-masculine behavior and ignore/minimize domestic violence. Read hundreds of supportive comments here.
Among the charges were bribery, money laundering, conspiracy, mail and wire fraud and filing a false tax return. The office of the Mayor of Birmingham was immediately vacated and City Council President Carole Smitherman became Acting Mayor until a special election is held in early-mid December.
The Chiefs are off this week and will not play again until traveling to Jacksonville on Nov. 8.
For the past three days, the Chiefs have said they were “investigating” the situation which began after Johnson and the team suffered a major loss to the Chargers. Johnson called reporters "faggots" and called a fan "fag" in a gay-baiting Twitter rant that also insulted his coach.
In the uproar following the anti-gay remarks, the former two-time Pro Bowl player "apologized" to NFL fans, Chiefs fans, teammates and staff—everyone but gays. It was obvious Johnson was not sorry about demeaning gays. Kudos to the Kansas City Chiefs for hitting Johnson—who boasts on Twitter about how much money he makes—where it hurts.
In a late afternoon ceremony in the historic East Room of the White House, the President made remarks on the Matthew Shepard & James Byrd, Jr. Hates Crimes Prevention Bill which he signed into law several hours earlier. President Obama was joined by Denis and Judy Shepard, as well as Betty Byrd Boatner and Louvon Harris, the sisters of James Byrd, Jr. More on why Byrd's name is on the law at the Dallas Voice.
Obama told the audience: "Over the past 10 years, there were more than 12,000 reported hate crimes based on sexual orientation alone. And we will never know how many incidents were never reported at all." He added: "We will finally add federal protections against crimes based on gender, disability, gender identity, or sexual orientation. (Applause.)... Because no one in America should ever be afraid to walk down the street holding the hands of the person they love. No one in America should be forced to look over their shoulder because of who they are."