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McDonnells Convicted

Former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell has been found guilty of 11 counts of conspiracy, bribery, and extortion, for receiving $177,000 in gifts from dietary supplement executive Johnny Williams. The governor's wife Maureen McDonnell was convicted on eight counts of corruption and an additional count of obstructing a grand jury investigation.
Mr. McDonnell, who carried his wife over the threshold of the Executive Mansion the day of his inauguration, portrayed her in his testimony as a harridan whose yelling left him “spiritually and mentally exhausted,” and who was so cold that after he sent her an email pleading to save their marriage, she did not reply. ... The government dismissed the defense strategy of portraying the McDonnell marriage as broken, and Ms. McDonnell as a “nutbag” who was smitten with Mr. Williams. The former governor was trying to “throw his wife under the bus,” the prosecutor, Michael S. Dry, said in closing statements.
McDonnell and his wife each face jail sentences of up to 20 years for each corruption offense.
posted by Ben Trismegistus on Sep 4, 2014 - 96 comments

Virginia is for Lovers

The 4th Circuit Court of Appeals upholds the decision overturning Virginia's ban on Same sex marriage:
"We recognize that same-sex marriage makes some people deeply uncomfortable. However, inertia and apprehension are not legitimate bases for denying same-sex couples due process and equal protection of the laws. Civil marriage is one of the cornerstones of our way of life. It allows individuals to celebrate and publicly declare their intentions to form lifelong partnerships, which provide unparalleled intimacy, companionship, emotional support, and security. The choice of whether and whom to marry is an intensely personal decision that alters the course of an individual’s life. Denying same-sex couples this choice prohibits them from participating fully in our society, which is precisely the type of segregation that the Fourteenth Amendment cannot countenance."
[more inside]
posted by peeedro on Jul 29, 2014 - 87 comments

"Another search warrant 'for pictures of his erect penis'"

A 17 year-old Virginia teenager who is under investigation for sending a consensual sext to his 15-year-old girlfriend may be forced to have an erection in front of police as evidence in the case. [more inside]
posted by porn in the woods on Jul 9, 2014 - 85 comments

Majority Leader Eric Cantor defeated by Tea Party challenger Dave Brat

United States Representative Eric Cantor of Virginia, Majority Leader of the United States House of Representatives, has lost the Republican primary election in Virginia's 7th Congressional District to Dave Brat, a political newcomer and economics professor at Randolph-Macon College. [more inside]
posted by tonycpsu on Jun 10, 2014 - 346 comments

Saving The Bay

Why Are Twenty Far-Away States Trying To Block The Cleanup Of The Chesapeake Bay? After 30 years of attempts, a serious initiative to save the bay exists in the form of an EPA-led plan that limits the amount of agricultural nutrients entering the bay. This pollution causes the "dead zones" in the bay, which are so low in oxygen virtually no animal life can survive. A group of twenty-one Attorneys General, including the AG of Alaska and Wyoming, "argue that the cleanup plan raises serious concerns about states’ rights, and they worry that if the plan is left to stand, the EPA could enact similar pollution limits on watersheds such as the Mississippi." Their actions are in line with the wishes of The American Farm Bureau, a powerful agricultural interest group. [more inside]
posted by spaltavian on Apr 21, 2014 - 57 comments

On Doing an Evil Deed Blues

Lil Ugly Mane. What do we know about this person? Take a trip on through to the other side... [more inside]
posted by gucci mane on Apr 13, 2014 - 9 comments

Trusting God

Patrick Henry College has been called "God's Harvard." The tiny, elite school is considered a safe haven for fundamentalist evangelical Christians. It teaches a dominionist "Biblical Worldview" and has a uniquely religious campus culture (pdf) that emphasizes evangelical moral values. Which leaves female students in a particular bind: How do you report sexual assault at a place where authorities seem skeptical that such a thing even exists?
posted by zarq on Feb 18, 2014 - 154 comments

The Plaintiffs today also ask for fairness, and fairness only.

"Our nation's uneven but dogged journey toward truer and more meaningful freedoms for our citizens has brought us continually to a deeper understanding of the first three words in our Constitution: we the people. "We the People" have become a broader, more diverse family than once imagined." In the case of Bostic v. Rainey, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia's Judge Arenda L. Wright Allen has declared Virginia's same-sex marriage ban unconstitutional [more inside]
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Feb 14, 2014 - 66 comments

The northern soul and R&B sounds of Lenis Guess, straight outta Norfolk

Lenis Guess was one of the pioneers in the Norfolk recording scene. This self-taught vocalist and musician was cranking out records from his 35th Street studio in Norfolk for many artists, including his own and himself. This, producer, singer, musician, performer was at the forefront of the Norfolk sound. With songs like,I was Born to Be A Drummer,“ his funk band, The 35th Street Gang, were mainstays of the 70s in and around the Hampton Roads area. Lenis himself had hits like,I Keep Coming Back for More,” andWorking for My Baby.” [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Jan 24, 2014 - 4 comments

List of reasons for admission to an insane asylum in the late 1860s

Here's what could have got you admitted to the West Virginia Hospital for the Insane (Weston) aka Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum in the late 1860s: Imaginary Female Trouble... Jealousy and Religion... Tobacco and Masturbation... Carbonic Acid Gas... Parents were Cousins... Fell off Horse in War... Dangerous Minds
posted by Mister Bijou on Oct 23, 2013 - 73 comments

The Kommandant's Daughter

"Brigitte Höss lives quietly on a leafy side street in Northern Virginia. She is retired now, having worked in a Washington fashion salon for more than 30 years. She recently was diagnosed with cancer and spends much of her days dealing with the medical consequences. Brigitte also has a secret that not even her grandchildren know. Her father was Rudolf Höss, the Kommandant of Auschwitz." [more inside]
posted by zarq on Sep 10, 2013 - 81 comments

What's worth preserving out there anyway?

Inspired by the NYT Pulitzer prize-winning “Snowfall” report, the Charlottesville VA paper the C-ville Weekly decided to "take our last best shot at untangling the Gordian Knot that is the Bypass problem" in one long, media-rich article.
posted by Potomac Avenue on Sep 6, 2013 - 43 comments

Four Mile Run is Nine Miles Long

Four Mile Run is an urban stream that runs through the middle of Arlington County Virginia, inside the Washington Capital Beltway. It is nine miles long, having been accidentally renamed by a typo from its original designation as "Flour Mill Run" [more inside]
posted by humanfont on Jun 18, 2013 - 26 comments

Researchers have not yet uncovered any potential wine pairings.

Skeleton of teenage girl confirms cannibalism at Jamestown colony. [more inside]
posted by elizardbits on May 24, 2013 - 64 comments

Think Apple Store meets Colonial Williamsburg

240 year-old Menokin House was home to one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. The Menokin Foundation would like to restore it, but all that's left these days are two broken walls and a pair of crumbling chimneys. Even the head of the foundation admits, "Virginia needs another house museum like it needs a hole in the head." So how to honor the home's owner colonial statesman Francis Lightfoot Lee while still trying to present something novel and worth seeing? The Foundation's answer: rebuild the structure, just as it was, but replacing all of its missing components with structural glass.
posted by DirtyOldTown on Apr 18, 2013 - 14 comments

Fog Count

In the false American imagination, West Virginia is a joke or else it’s a charity case; but more than anything it is unseen, an invisible architecture of labor and struggle; and incarceration shares this invisibility, hidden at the center of everything; our slipshod remedy for an abiding fear, danger pinned to human bodies and then slotted into bunk beds you can’t see from any highway. [more inside]
posted by latkes on Apr 7, 2013 - 31 comments

'Catch Me If You Can'

"When Robert Wood Jr. disappeared in a densely forested Virginia park, searchers faced the challenge of a lifetime. The eight-year-old boy was autistic and nonverbal, and from his perspective the largest manhunt in state history probably looked like something else: the ultimate game of hide-and-seek." [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Aug 18, 2012 - 43 comments

(Part of) The World according to Aaslestad

"Peter Aaslestad is both a free-lance photographer and an internationally recognized historic preservation consultant specializing in the use of architectural photogrammetry to document existing buildings." [more inside]
posted by Namlit on Aug 12, 2012 - 4 comments

Virtual and Analog Art

Bryn Oh is staging an art exhibition called Virginia Alone simultaneously at the Santa Fe New Media Festival and in Second Life (free account required). [more inside]
posted by Deoridhe on Jul 13, 2012 - 2 comments

July 4th, 1862

“If ever men should celebrate the day with the rapt ardor of devotees, it is the soldiers of the Union,” bent on “saving the Union of the revolutionary fathers from destruction.” The residents of Fredericksburg VA didn't celebrate Independence Day in 1862. It was no longer their Independence Day. However, just across the river, within both sight and sound of the residents of Fredericksburg, the Union Army threw a raucous celebration, complete with fireworks, artillery salutes, mule races, a greased pole, and a greased pig.
posted by COD on Jul 4, 2012 - 10 comments

Trouble in River City

106-degree temperatures in Richmond, VA aren't even the worst of it. A weatherman for the local CBS affiliate delivers the last forecast Richmonders will need. (slyt)
posted by emelenjr on Jun 29, 2012 - 107 comments

Trouble in the Old Dominion

Uproar over forced resignation of University of Virginia President Teresa Sullivan enters second week. [more inside]
posted by Partial Law on Jun 18, 2012 - 371 comments

In West Virginia, money grows on trees

In the state of West Virginia, the government has just purchased 1064 Cisco 3945 routers at a price of $22,600 each. These are being used to service small public libraries with as few as four PCs when a much smaller router such as the Cisco 1801 would be more appropriate. Local journalists have found out about this and are starting their own investigation. A consulting firm has been retained to audit what exactly happened. [more inside]
posted by thewalrus on May 11, 2012 - 96 comments

We love you. Every part of you belongs to you.

ILU-486, a chilling short story by Amanda Ching, in the vein of dystopian classics like The Handmaid's Tale and inspired by recent events in Virginia, has been sweeping the blogsphere. [more inside]
posted by suburbanbeatnik on Feb 25, 2012 - 66 comments

"You don’t defeat terrorists by adopting their tactics" - Del. Bob Marshall

"The legislative goal of HB1160 is to codify in Virginia law noncompliance with...section 1021 and 1022 of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012 (NDAA)." [more inside]
posted by dubold on Feb 23, 2012 - 36 comments

the handmaid's tale was optimistic

Dahlia Lithwick: This week, the Virginia state Legislature passed a bill that would require women to have an ultrasound before they may have an abortion. Because the great majority of abortions occur during the first 12 weeks, that means most women will be forced to have a transvaginal procedure, in which a probe is inserted into the vagina, and then moved around until an ultrasound image is produced. Since a proposed amendment to the bill—a provision that would have had the patient consent to this bodily intrusion or allowed the physician to opt not to do the vaginal ultrasound—failed on 64-34 vote, the law provides that women seeking an abortion in Virginia will be forcibly penetrated for no medical reason. I am not the first person to note that under any other set of facts, that would constitute rape under state law. [more inside]
posted by gerryblog on Feb 16, 2012 - 331 comments

Oyster Wars

"A Maryland boat was sent to the bottom by the Virginian navy, and a long contest was the result..." Hostility between Maryland and Virginia began the moment Maryland was created in 1632. Virginia objected to the Catholic nature of the new colony, as well as the unusual border which gave Lord Baltimore's colony ownership of all the Potomac River. Disputed maritime borders lead to conflict over the prized oyster, and naval confrontation on the Chesapeake became common. Maryland eventually created an Oyster Navy, which was charged with bringing order to the Bay and enforcing harvesting laws against the oyster pirates. The "Oyster Wars" were frequently violent. [more inside]
posted by spaltavian on Dec 17, 2011 - 20 comments

A place apart, in peril

Tangier Island, Virginia, is mere inches above the Bay around it. There isn't much dry land. Kids play on the airstrip. The people have a unique accent (which is becoming hard to find). With the land mostly marsh, folks bury their dead in their yards. It's a watery place, but charming. If Irene delivers even a glancing backhand blow, the entire island will be underwater. [more inside]
posted by kinnakeet on Aug 25, 2011 - 51 comments

Galax, VA. Old Fiddler's Convention since 1935.

Nothing to do this coming week? Head over to Galax, Virginia to catch the Old Fiddler's Convention, a mountain music festival & competition that has been ongoing since 1935. Galax, located on Virigina's Crooked Road is in the heart of Virginia's musical heritage trail, a well mapped excursion that takes you way off the interstate's beaten path to experience old time Appalachian music in some of the most beautiful settings in the Blue Ridge Mountains. If you take the trail outside Galax, make sure you stop at the Floyd Country Store for daily (and nightly) jams inside the store, much like the Fiddler's convention's campgrounds' awesome impromptu jams
posted by priested on Aug 6, 2011 - 14 comments

Ralph and Carter

I know you can dance, but can you flatfoot? The Stanley Brothers of Virginia: Rank Strangers :: Jacob's Vision :: In The Pines :: How Mountain Gals Can Love
posted by puny human on Jul 22, 2011 - 12 comments

Join the Adventure

The Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail is America’s first water-based national historic trail. It consists of the combined routes of Smith’s historic voyages on the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries in 1607-1609. Designated by Congress in December 2006, the trail stretches approximately 3,000 miles up and down the Bay and along tributaries in Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, and the District of Columbia. [more inside]
posted by netbros on Apr 16, 2011 - 5 comments

And the Articles of this confederation shall be inviolably observed by every State, and the union shall be perpetual...

“It’s time to return America to the common sense conservative principles of limited government, free enterprise, and individual responsibility. The Repeal Amendment would provide a check on the ever-expanding federal government, protect against Congressional overreach, and get the government working for the people again, not the other way around. In order to return America to opportunity, responsibility, and success, we must reverse course and the Repeal Amendment is a step in that direction.” —incoming House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.), on a proposed amendment allowing a 2/3 vote by the state governments to overturn any federal law or regulation. [more inside]
posted by kipmanley on Nov 30, 2010 - 134 comments

In Search of the Meaning of "Mozingo"

Joe Mozingo had always been told that his family name was "maybe Italian." In a three-part article in the L.A. Times, the "blue-eyed, surfing son of a dentist" journalist discovers that the Mozingo name actually traces back to an African slave freed in 1672. [more inside]
posted by infinitywaltz on May 19, 2010 - 41 comments

Virginia is for Science Lovers?

Climate change researcher MichaeMann has had his work subpoenaed by Virginia Attorney General Ken "Cooch" Cuccinelli. The subpoena "relates to data and other materials that Dr. Mann presented in seeking awards/grants (pdf) while in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Mann has previously been investigated by Penn State, his current employer, for issues related to the hacked CRU emails, and cleared of wrongdoing. A representative from the Union of Concerned Scientists calls this action "a witch hunt."
posted by palindromic on May 3, 2010 - 84 comments

Guardian of Language

Born 88 years ago in a bear cave in Eastern Oregon, Virginia Beavert now teaches a language with no textbooks, no study abroad programs, and no dubbed TV shows. The only surviving elder of the Yakama who knows the sacred songs and parables of the "Dreamer Religion", Waashat, Beavert researches and teaches Sahaptin (Ichiskíin Sínwit). [more inside]
posted by fraula on Apr 16, 2010 - 12 comments

It's Appomattox Day!

It's April 9th! Appomattox Day! The day R.E. Lee surrendered the Army of Northern Virginia. Ending the Civil War! Jon Stewart wants to call it Union Victory Month. I'm content with a day. So as Floydd suggests raise a glass of usquebaugh! [more inside]
posted by Max Power on Apr 9, 2010 - 67 comments

The Whitewash

Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell (R) has proclaimed April to be Confederate History Month in his state, without referencing slavery or civil rights. The move has angered civil rights leaders and revived a controversy that has lain dormant for eight years. FireDogLake is reporting that the neo-confederate group which lobbied Governor McDonnell to make the proclamation has ties to white supremacists. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Apr 7, 2010 - 245 comments

It all started with Alice...

Last month, Virginia Davis passed away at 90 years of age. She was the real life (warning: lousy formatting) little girl (warning: teh kyoot) whom Walt Disney sent into the land of cartoons, responding to the popularity of Max Fleisher's Out of the Inkwell series, which used his "rotoscope" and brought cartoon figures into filmed space. Walt reversed the formula, and found his first star.
1923: Alice's Wonderland [more inside]
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur on Sep 23, 2009 - 23 comments

BlogCrime

"Uh oh, They're here": A Washington Post editorial about Elisha Strom, who blogged about the Jefferson Area Drug Enforcement Task Force in northern Virginia with intensity and focus, displaying officers' photos, their cars, and in one now-gone entry, one officer's home. For this on July 16 she was arrested. [more inside]
posted by waraw on Aug 12, 2009 - 94 comments

Polin' on the River

Since 1870, the Hatton Ferry in Hatton, VA, has been helping people and vehicles cross the James River - under pole power [ferry is cable-assisted, and poling starts at 3:42]. Before the nation was connected by a network of bridges, pole barges like this were a common means of transportation across smaller waterways. Hatton Ferry is thought to be the very last working survivor of those thousands of the pole-driven ferries; but today, due to DOT budget constraints, it may go out of existence. [more inside]
posted by Miko on Jul 1, 2009 - 21 comments

"I was up in those clouds all night."

"We were having dinner about four months ago and I was showing Clelia some pictures I'd taken in the air, and she said, 'Oh, that's so beautiful. I want to do that,'" Ben said. Easier said than done when you're 95. [more inside]
posted by emelenjr on Jun 30, 2009 - 9 comments

Packing heat and boat shoes

Arlington: The Rap (SLYT)
posted by Wet Spot on Jun 16, 2009 - 54 comments

Don't call it a comeback

This weekend, at a pizza restaurant in the liberal suburb of Arlington, Virginia, more than 50 people attended the first event held by the National Council for a New America - which is intended to "be a dynamic, forward-looking organization that will amplify the common-sense and wisdom of our fellow citizens through a grassroots dialogue with Republican leaders." The speakers included former presidential candidate Mitt Romney and House Minority Whip Eric Cantor, who said, "This is not about messaging, this is not about branding. This is about trying to foster some discussion, because what's going on in Washington right now is not reflective of the mainstream of this country." [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese on May 4, 2009 - 136 comments

Mountain Bluegrass

Music in the Digital Library of Appalachia provides an unprecedented resource for study of repertoire, technique, lore, and the musical interchanges among the region's traditional musicians. Once you know what you like, it's easy to find the music live with Blue Ridge Music Trails. Meet musicians who have grown up with that music, visit settings in which Blue Ridge folk music thrives, see traditional dancing, and in many cases, take part in the festivities. The Crooked Road, Virginia’s Heritage Music Trail, winds through the mountains of Southwest Virginia. Along the trail, the Bluegrass, Old Time, and Traditional Country music is as beautiful and rugged as the landscape itself. [previous 1, 2]
posted by netbros on Mar 8, 2009 - 12 comments

Smoke-free Virginia

Despite being a tobacco state, Virginia lawmakers passed a smoking ban today. Their ban covers most restaurants and bars, but permits smoking in private clubs and in establishments that construct separately ventilated enclosed smoking rooms for patrons. You can follow the journey of the bill here.
posted by MaryDellamorte on Feb 19, 2009 - 54 comments

Powhatan's map of Virginia

Powhatan's Mantle was the emblem of kingship worn by Wahunsenacawh, also known as Chief Powhatan, father of Pocahontas. A deerskin cloak ornamented with shell beadwork, it may at first appear to be only clothing but in fact it is also a map of the Powhatan Confederacy, which ruled most of eastern Virginia when the English first settled there. The mantle was acquired by one of the John Tradescants whose collection was the foundation of Oxford University's Ashmolean Collection and the mantle resides there still today. The first linked article is a fascination article about the mantle as well as a gallery of images of and related to Powhatan's Mantle.
posted by Kattullus on Feb 12, 2009 - 5 comments

A day at the fair

You may remember Stan Brock from as the British anaconda wrangler from Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom (top right video). These days he runs Remote Area Medical, a volunteer airborne relief corps that brings medical, dental, and educational assistance to remote areas of the world. Every year, they go to remote Appalachian Virginia, a one day drive from Washington DC, for a 3 day event at the fairgrounds.
posted by oneirodynia on Nov 9, 2008 - 10 comments

One Hardscrabble Sumbitch

The John Mobberly Story (parts one through four) about a Confederate Guerilla who terrorized Loudoun county Virginia and the Harpers Ferry area, as written by blogger Neddie Jingo. [more inside]
posted by Devils Rancher on Oct 3, 2008 - 8 comments

RIP Mildred Loving

Mildred Loving of Loving v. Virginia (1967) has passed away.
posted by Morrigan on May 5, 2008 - 51 comments

Ezra Pound, foreign correspondent to the Richmond News Leader

In 1958, Ezra Pound, after being released from a mental hospital, became a foreign correspondent for the Richmond News Leader. All but one of his dispatches were deemed unprintable by the editor and the one that was printed ran as a letter to the editor. The Virginia Quarterly Review has put scans of the dispatches up on their site. [more inside]
posted by Kattullus on Apr 11, 2008 - 44 comments

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