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Cliff Notes: NRA's "9 acres of weaponry that could wipe out a continent. Prepare to get scared."

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killings, shootings since Obama took office 2009 guns NRA animated GIF Mass Shooting/Killing incidents since President Barack Obama took office in January 2009 through the time The Atlantic published it on Sept 16, 2013.

My dear friend and mentor, Cliff Schecter, has a new post up; Cliff has given me permission to share his work with you, so I’ll give you the latest edition of what I call Cliff Notes.

He skewers better than a chef at Smokey Joe’s BBQ. He has comedic insights that rival those of our mutual friend, the hilarious Lizz Winstead. He’s sharper than the point on Sarah Palin’s pin head.

Here are a few excerpts from his latest, with permission. Please read the whole thing, because he has way more than I’ve included here. It's about the NRA convention, "nine acres of weaponry that could wipe out a continent."  Cliff calls this one of the most important pieces he's ever written.

These bits and pieces don't do it justice. Please, link over for the entire post titled "Preparing for War in Indianapolis: Inside the NRA Plot to Terrify America":

In a cavernous exhibition hall, as far as the eye can see is all the assault weaponry you’ll need should Red Dawn hit your town. Welcome to the NRA convention—and prepare to get scared.

Church is an important part of the routine, for many. And at the Indianapolis Convention Center on this particular Sunday, an entirely different kind of shrine, where one could purchase such family reading as “Cutting Edge Bullets: Lethal by Design, Proven by Performance.” Or pick up a GSG 110 round rotary magazine—similar to the one used by the movie theater mass murderer in Aurora, Colorado. Or even attend a book signing by admitted serial statutory rapist Ted Nugent.

I’m referring, of course, to the 2014 National Rifle Association Convention. [...]

The NRA had a banner outside the convention center describing it as “9 Acres of Guns & Gear,” and for once it wasn’t exaggerating. [...]

Military-style weaponry of every kind occupied almost every inch of the terrain to my left and right as I began the long trek down each aisle. Not your father’s hunting rifle, for the most part—although there were a few of those here and there—but the kind of arms you use to start a war. Fifty-caliber rifles, which can take down small aircraft. Assault rifles—rebranded “sporting rifles,” in case your sport might be decimating a small village in under a minute. High-capacity magazines of the variety used in so many recent massacres at malls, schools, and universities. [...]

It has embraced this new mission to militarize the streets of America with zeal, scaring the bejesus out of its most faithful adherents with ghost stories about preparing for the breakdown of civilization, to destroy any faith they might have in our democracy or our first responders. You’re all alone, in their telling. Just you and the one thing that’s always faithful: your gun. [...]

LaPierre, Young, and their allies give those in the far-right bubble a completely false sense of our world, when in reality crime rates are steadily falling and the threat of terrorism has receded at least somewhat. That’s with the exception of the easy access any would-be terrorist like the most recent Fort Hood shooter has to military firepower at events such as the NRA convention and stores such as Guns Galore …because of the handiwork of LaPierre and his NRA.

In addition, my dear friend and radio host Nicole Sandler covered this today: Travel Advisory: The United States Is Not Safe:

This article was written and originally posted on Sept 18, 2013. It’s re-posted and slightly updated today, and includes my interview with former Australian Deputy Prime Minister Tim Fischer, who helped enact gun laws in Australia after a 1996 massacre in which 35 people were slaughtered, and who warned Australians not to travel to the US following last summer’s shooting death of Australian baseball player/college student Christopher Lane.

I strongly urge you to link over and read the post as well as listen to her podcast of her conversation with Fischer, available on the same page.

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Friday Links

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Image: PoliticusUSA

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Mid-Day Distraction: Western Australia

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Australia

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Needle In A Haystack Found -- On Google Earth

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needle in a haystack

During this holiday season family plays a great part in our lives. Both our loved ones around us and those we've lost. For the "feel good" story of one lucky soul, a man named Saroo Brierley, his tale is made of the magic fairy dust which abounds this time of year. Abandoned at 5, adopted and raised in a foreign country, he had but a few precious memories of the time before his separation from his birth family -- a mother, and two siblings.

He never gave up hope, nor should we. He was filled with desire to someday find that needle in a haystack. Watch how he found the greatest treasure of all, thanks to modern technology, desire and a great memory:

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Video Mid Day Distraction- Sydney New Year fireworks display in full

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Video Mid Day Distraction- Australian family's record half million Christmas lights show

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Via.

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The Battle of Penises vs. Vaginas Rages 'Down Under'

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paradise lily

The University of Sydney, in Australia, publishes a weekly magazine called Honi Soit which is an Anglo-Norman phrase, loosely meaning: "Shamed be he who thinks evil of it." This week they seemed to have reached a new level, down under.

A few years ago, to much fanfare and a huge response, the magazine cover featured a picture of a well endowed, naked penis. It drew quite a bit of conversation but there was no irreparable harm beyond some bruised male egos.

honi soit

This week the periodical published a provocative cover photo of 18 different vaginas to protest censorship and over-sexualization of lady parts. Honi Soit first attempted to print a cover with entirely naked genitalia then they decided to photo-shop the pictures.

As reported on HUFFPO, Honi Soit:

...was told by lawyers for the Students Representative Council to obscure the images. Then it published a version with the vulvae covered by black bars. However, the council, which operates the publication, determined that the black bars didn't hide enough and seized all 4,000 copies off shelves this week, Jezebel reported.

So here's where irony comes in. The cover never got circulated because it was censored, the newspaper said on its Facebook page. But that doesn't mean that the cover hasn't found its way to the internet. After all, you have a hard time keeping censorship news censored. So by pulling it off the shelves, doing the "banned in Boston" bit, they became and international sensation. If you are truly curious and have the need to see what's caused all of this rage, here it is: (WARNING: ADULT CONTENT - NSFW)

HONI SOIT COVER

“The cover was meant to be an empowering message to women that they don’t need to be ashamed of their bodies," Editor-in-Chief Hannah Ryan told Jezebel. "This response, and the fact that it is possibly criminal, is therefore incredibly disappointing.”

For more on the story, straight from Down Under:

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