• Yeah, yeah, we know the cantaloupe-shaped drug mule baby migrants hopped up on birth control are invading our country (or they're already here!) to infect us with ebola or murder our pretty white co-eds, but before House Republicans and Rick Perry send Sean Hannity down to the border to go swamp sailing, maybe we should figure out where exactly the border is:

    The whole point of setting the border between Mexico and the United States at the deepest channel of the Rio Grande was that the river was not supposed to move. That was the thinking in 1848, when, following Mexico’s defeat by the United States and surrender of its vast northern lands, boundary surveyors from the two countries were tasked with reinventing the border. The choice of the river for the boundary’s eastern half had been obvious: its use as a territorial marker stretched back into the region’s Spanish colonial past, and it was hard to miss and often difficult to cross. But even as he filed his report on the completed boundary survey, in 1856, Major William Emory cautioned that the river might be an unreliable partner in border making. “The bed of the river sometimes changes,” he wrote, “and transfers considerable portions of land from one side to the other.” [...]

    By the dawn of the twentieth century, the river’s recurring spring floods had dug a completely new bed for it farther south. About seven hundred acres of land that had once formed part of Mexico—the Chamizal, named for a scrubby plant that grew there—were now connected to the United States. Whether the border had shifted with the river, rounding out the war’s annexationist work, nobody knew.

    But maybe we can just build a really big fence anyway. That'll work. We're a lot smarter about borders now.

  • You know who watches the teevee on Sunday nights? According to Happy Nice Time People, it's the oldzzz:

    60 Minutes won the night with 18.3 million total viewers, and the audience was every bit as old as you think.

  • Via Wonkette tipster Lisa, poor George Zimmerman is still busy feeling sorry for himself:

    He's always moving.

    He's in debt.

    And he's constantly receiving death threats.

    "I just try to be smart where I go," said Zimmerman, who described the gun show at Gander Mountain Academy as a "friendly" event that didn't warrant extra protection.

    Zimmerman said he carries a semi-automatic handgun for added safety.

    Yeah. He still carries a piece. You never knew when he might have to kill a kid. For his own safety.

  • Sure, it's a little early, but the great Charles P. Pearce is already making his Christmas wish list:

    So, for Christmas, I want Edwin Edwards in Congress. (Not bloody likely, but I have faith.) And, also, I want control of the Senate to come down to a run-off election in Louisiana. I know that hurts the Democrats but, good lord, imagine stakes of that size coming down to a vote in Louisiana. You'd see so much ratfking the local news would sound like a Friday double-bill at the Mitchell Brothers theater.

    If you don't know who Edwin Edwards is, you need to read the whole thing. And if you do know who Edwin Edwards is, you DEFINITELY need to read the whole thing. But if the phrase "caught in bed with a dead girl or a live boy" means anything to you, well, just go read about him, damnit.

  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is spending up to half a million bucks a year to help make your favorite TV shows better. But it's for a really good reason:

    The organization was established with money from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2001 to provide the entertainment industry with free, accurate health information. Since then, the group has worked with hundreds of television writers as they tell stories about performing complicated surgeries, coping with depression and fighting insurance companies for coverage.

    They consulted on Walter White’s cancer battle in Breaking Bad and on Max Braverman’s Asperger’s syndrome in Parenthood. They advised writers for Law & Order on an unvaccinated child who infected a classmate and on Disney’s Doc McStuffins on treating her broken toys. And as millions of people gain coverage through the nation’s landmark health law, they are also providing producers with information for storylines about Obamacare. [...]

    Television has tremendous reach and impact. In one Kaiser Family Foundation study, for instance, viewers’ knowledge that treatment could lower the risk of HIV transmission from mothers to their unborn children increased dramatically after watching a television show. The study also showed that people’s attitudes changed after the episode—the number of people who thought the pregnant, HIV-positive character was irresponsible decreased.

  • Florida Woman gets third breast:

    While [Jasmine] Tridevil's dream is to star in an MTV reality show, she told the radio station she had the surgery to become "unattractive to men" in addition to gaining fame. "I don't want to date anymore," she said.

    Too bad for Florida Man, eh?


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