Monday, March 31, 2008
Thursday, March 27, 2008
Here are a few random thoughts kicking around my head today:
The media coverage has been fun, but those reporter's cameras add forty pounds, especially around the chin area.
I'm very proud of our statement about why we're participating in this event:
We decided to participate in this ceremony because our consciences demand that we not remain silent while same-sex couples are denied the basic legal protections afforded to opposite-sex couples. Through this ceremony, we declare that our love, caring, and respect for each other form an enduring commitment that should be recognized, protected, and celebrated. Having been together for over six years, raising a child with the support of wonderful members of our family of choice, we show that families headed by same-sex partners are already a reality. For our families and allies who are silenced in every community and every culture within America, we will stand and declare our love publicly on March 29th.I'm getting a little bit nervous, but overall I'm feeling pretty happy and confident that the ceremony will be a lot of fun. I'm really looking forward to seeing The Kat in her wedding dress and combat boots! This is it, only the trim color is more like the background, a pale blue that matches the shirt I'm wearing under my silver-gray suit.
So--I hope BushCo doesn't bomb Iran over the weekend or anything.
yala yala yemshi! baga waga boopshi!
I wave this shiv near you as a curse from the demons of Moogooshu!
Die a fiery death! I mean it!
Aw, forget it--
you're not worth the effort.
h/t to the one and only Princess Sparkle Pony
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
Friday, March 21, 2008
Wednesday, March 19, 2008
“Of all the enemies of true liberty, war is, perhaps, the most to be dreaded, because it comprises and develops the germ of every other. War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debts and taxes; and armies, and debts, and taxes are the known instruments for bringing the many under the domination of the few. In war, too, the discretionary power of the Executive is extended; its influence in dealing out offices, honors and emoluments is multiplied; and all the means of seducing the minds, are added to those of subduing the force, of the people.” James Madison, qtd. in NemesisWith these words ringing in my ears for the last few weeks, I decided to participate in the Blogswarm against the War. However, because I read Madison’s words in another book, Chalmers Johnson's Nemesis: The Last Days of the American Republic, I’m combining my Blogswarm efforts with my book-reviewing duties for the Spring Reading Challenge. I hope you don’t mind my squishing two mosquitoes with one slap. (I’m a birder, so I don’t kill birds with stones or any other objects!)
If knowing more about the future can make that future easier to face, then Chalmers Johnson’s Nemesis is helpful, but frightening at the same time. The book was published in 2006, and because George W. Bush’s assault on the Constitution and his ill-fated war of lies in Iraq/Afghanistan have only escalated since then, the book is as timely now as it was two years ago. Unless we turn away from this endless war, we can say goodbye to our freedoms and to our democracy.
The first two books in Johnson’s unintended trilogy, Blowback and The Sorrows of Empire, explained the development of the United States into an empire; Johnson summarizes the themes of those books to make Nemesis a freestanding and complete analysis of why the U.S. is in the state it’s in. The author then makes the case for how our empire will destroy our democracy unless we turn from our imperial ambitions and repair the tatters Bush has made of our Constitution.
Johnson highlights many of Bush’s actions and words to show the insanity and lust for power that have gripped our White House. The book is heavily researched with a huge section for the notes and citations to back up Johnson’s assertions. Here are two especially frightening passages that show Bush’s true colors:
And this man constantly asks, "Why do they hate us?" Gee, I wonder why! But can we really be surprised by any of Bush’s actions, after he called our Constitution—the statement of our rights as citizens—“just a goddamned piece of paper?" Clearly, his words revealed his true attitude, that he was king, dictator, and "decider." Yet he wasn't impeached; he was allowed to tear up that "goddamned piece of paper," and we are now living with the consequences.
“According to Richard Clarke, the former counterterrorism chief for both Presidents Clinton and Bush, who was there, Bush entered the room and said, ‘I want you all to understand that we are at war and we will stay at war until this is done. Nothing else matters. Everything is available for the pursuit of this war. Any barriers in your way, they’re gone. Any money you need, you have it. This is our only agenda.’ In the ensuing discussion, according to Clarke, ‘Secretary Rumsfeld noted that international law allowed the use of force only to prevent future attacks and not for retribution. Bush nearly bit his head off. 'No,' the president yelled in the narrow conference room, 'I don’t care what the international lawyers say, we are going to kick some ass.’”
“'I had to show the American people the resolve of a commander in chief that [sic] as going to do whatever it took to win. No yielding. No equivocation. No, you know, lawyering this thing to death, that we’re after ’em. And that was not only for domestic, for the people at home to see. It was also vitally important for the rest of the world to watch.”
The scariest parts of the book deal with just why the legislative and judicial branches have failed to stop Bush from turning the executive branch into a royal throne with himself as king. In short—Congress is corrupt, and the judicial benches are full of loyal Bush appointees who will protect Bush and his agenda for years to come. We citizens can complain and blog and write our congresspeople forever, but Bush and his cronies have ensured that own their will is obeyed. They’re simply not listening to us anymore; they’re too busy making money and espousing the empty ideologies of the neo-con movement as their justification. Congress and the Judiciary will not stop him. Thus, as Johnson says, "If the United States has neither the means nor the will to overcome this crisis, then we have entered the last days of the republic."
It’s both repugnant and sad to think that people would sell out democracy, their fellow countrymen, and their own souls for money. But as Johnson proves time and again in Nemesis, that's exactly what's happened in our country. Until and unless we citizens put a stop to it, our endless war will be the death of our democracy, and Emperor George will fiddle while it burns.
Read more Blogswarm against the war posts.
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
McCain, at a town hall meeting in this Philadelphia suburb, was asked if he had concerns that al Qaeda or other groups in Iraq might intensify their operations to try to increase casualties in the autumn and influence the November election.
"Yes, I worry about it," McCain said. "And I know they pay attention because of the intercepts we have of their communications ... The hardest thing in warfare is to counter someone or a group of individuals who are willing to take their own lives in order to take others."
"We still have the most lethal explosive devices coming across the border from Iran into Iraq. We still have suicide bombers landing at the airport in Damascus and coming into Iraq as we speak. So I would not be surprised if they make an attempt. I believe we can counter most of it as we are countering them," he said.
3. But never fear, because victory is at hand!
He said is concerned "they might be able to carry out some spectacular suicide attacks but we do have them on the run."
Photo credit: Master Sgt. Andy Dunaway/U.S. Air Force, via Associated Press
Monday, March 17, 2008
“He’s got enormous credibility there, and is able to say to them in words of one syllable that they need to get their act together,” John Bolton, the former UN ambassador, said.
What does that even mean? "is able to say to them in words of one syllable that they need to get their act together"
I can only conclude that Big Dick's one syllable communique went something like this:
Fuck. You. I'm. Still. Rich. Now. Fuck. Off. And. Die. And. I. Do. Mean. DIE. Then. Give. Us. Your. Oil. Or. Else.
Friday, March 14, 2008
“I must say, I’m a little envious,” Bush said. “If I were slightly younger and not employed here, I think it would be a fantastic experience to be on the front lines of helping this young democracy succeed.”
“It must be exciting for you … in some ways romantic, in some ways, you know, confronting danger. You’re really making history, and thanks,” Bush said.
(AP Photo/Khalid Mohammed)
Real fucking romantic. If only he WERE "not employed here," none of this shit would be happening.
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
So I have to write my memoir in only six words. So many subjects come to mind: birds, nature, love, The Kat, The Kid... but I think I'll go with
I tag no one! Be free!
Monday, March 10, 2008
Friday, March 07, 2008
So--here are the rules:
List 7 random things about yourself that people may not know.Link the person who sent this to you, and leave a comment on their blog so that their readers can visit yours.Post the rules on your blog.Tag 7 random people at the end of your post, linking their blog. Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.
And now--what random things don’t you know about me?
1. I often have vivid dreams in color. I even remark on the colors of things in my dreams, so I know they’re in color, despite what I’ve read and heard that we all dream in black and white.
2. I’ve never had the mumps, measles, chicken pox, or flu. Just lucky, I guess. Of course, now when someone even mentions the chicken pox, I have a total flip-out and start interrogating them about whether someone they know has it, have they been exposed, etc. I sure don’t want to get it now, or I’d probably end up in the hospital!
3. Until the age of 36, I had never been east of Houston, Texas.
4. When I was little, I used to like to sleep only in my pajama pants, no shirt. After bath-time, I would put on the pants, slick my wet hair back like Ron Ely, and race around the house pretending to be Tarzan. (complete with beating on my chest like an ape) My mother always made me put on the shirt before I went to bed, though. Now, I hate to sleep without a shirt on, for some reason, but I do still slick the hair back sometimes.
5. I’m very much the introvert when it comes to meeting people, and I have very few close friends. My introversion (which some would call “social anxiety disorder” and prescribe medicine for… uh -- heh heh?) was one of the big reasons I quit teaching. It was too much like being on stage every day.
6. I can finish an NYT crossword puzzle alone—even the weekend ones. And yet I suck at Scrabble.
7. My many jobs/careers: sacker at grocery store, Domino’s Pizza cook, teaching college English, lay-about, retail sales/management, graphic design, managing editor at a trade non-fiction publisher, more graphic design and business-forms production, Domino’s Pizza driver, staffing agency recruiter, business-to-business sales, and marketing clerk. (I think that’s everything…?)
I am reluctant to tag anyone, let alone seven freakin' people, so I'll just say -- those of you who have random facts to reveal -- I will not say you "nay!"
A careless and callous zoo worker abuses our skinny little Monkerstein as well!
Perhaps the next president of these United States should hire a bodyguard.
Thursday, March 06, 2008
Condi: Okay, now, ya'll, like we gotta really show our spirit like this week for the football team! Yeah! They're like playing really really hard, and like we gotta show 'em how much like spirit we have and stuff! Yay!
Tzipi: This is like a nightmare.
All this talk of Goofus and Gallant reminded me of my own Goofus/Gallant moment when I was a child. I was probably 8 or 9 years old, and I’d accidentally knocked a vase off my mom’s dresser. My first thought, of course, was to deny it and/or blame my brother. However, for some insane reason, I remembered that Gallant would've owned up to something like this and then his mom would've respected him for telling the truth. I wanted that kind of respect!
So I wonder what Goofus and Gallant would look like in 2008. Let’s imagine together…
Goofus plays his iPod so freakin' loud that the headphone leakage bothers his classmates -- Gallant keeps the volume on his iPod low and only plays soothing music like Enya, so he can focus on his studies.
Goofus answers his cellphone in the restaurant and he never turns it off during movies or church -- Gallant keeps his cell on "vibrate" at all times, so he doesn't disturb others.
Goofus doesn’t give a shit about the homeless – Gallant has gone to New Orleans twice to help rebuild homes in the Ninth Ward.
Goofus mocks gay people - Gallant starts a Straight Gay Alliance
Goofus supports torture - Gallant protests against Guantanamo
Goofus listens to Rush Limbaugh- Gallant reads Impeachment and other dreams
Many times when I was a kid, I believed I was more of a Goofus than a Gallant, always getting in trouble for my over-curious messing with stuff. (Remember when I took apart your alarm clock, Mommy?) I wasn't trying to be a Goofus, but like the toast that lands jelly-side down, things often just happened. But if modern-day Goofus is a wingnut--then I'll go with Gallant!
Fran also sent me some actual content from the "Highlights" she found:
Goofus hogs the ball in soccer but Gallant is a team player!She also added kids’ comments!
Goofus wipes his mouth on his sleeve - Gallant says "please pass the napkins."
"I felt like Goofus when I waited until I was told to make my bed." Taisi, 10, American SamoaCan you believe these kids? How sweet is that. Makes me have hope for the future.
"I felt like Gallant when I finished all of my homework before I played." Helena, 8, New Jersey
P.S.--You might also enjoy this take on G&G.
Wednesday, March 05, 2008
Before I answer, I think it's necessary to clarify: "enough" what, exactly?
First, Clinton managed to stop Obama's freight-train-like roll; I wasn't sure that was possible. Chalk one up for Hillary there.
Her "terrify people" commercial with the phone ringing at 3am--terror uses a phone?--must have had some impact on the voters in the states where Clinton won last night; further, she's got strong support among hispanics, women, the elderly, and what Carpetbagger's Report calls "whites without college educations." These groups must've come out big for Hillary.
But before we go calling her the Comeback Kid like we did her husband in 1992, we need to look at the delegates tally: 1,562-1,461. That's 101 delegates' worth of difference, despite the big wins and the potential momentum swing. The whole delegates issue is as sore a subject with me as the electoral college--both systems deny the power of the popular vote (don't they, Mr. Gore?). I don't like that at all.
So does Clinton have enough time--and enough remaining support--to catch up and knock Obama out? I am tempted to say yes, and to see this as a definite shift, a change that will give Clinton the momentum she needs to right her ship. A definite benefit for me is that she's more likely to still be on the ballot in April, when I finally get to vote.
But I'm also realistic. Obama's got a hundred more delegates that Clinton. That's not good. And she's still surrounded by idiots like Penn. Again, not good.
Still, I believe she knows how to fight; she's goal-oriented and driven.
I hope it's enough.
Tuesday, March 04, 2008
Yo, tellycoms dudes,
Thank you for doing your patriotic duty and helping defend Amurka after 9/11! Most people think it’s them soldiers out there in Eye-raq and Afghanistan who’s doin’ the fightin, but you and me both know it’s all about readin’ Jow Blow's emails and listenin’ to Jane Blow's phone calls, and fuck warrants! Don’t you worry 'bout that Congress lawsuit bullshit neither. I got it under control.
PS—just put yer usual deposit amount in mah bank, thanks!
That was fun! Now fer mah pals the Ay-rabs. Those fuckers know how to party! Shee-it, the stories Ah could tell ya… Anyway, me and Dick and them are tight ’cuz we’re all oil men. I know pretty much how they're feelin', not wantin' to increase their output. Ah mean, back when Ah wuz runnin' my company, Ah couldn't increase mah oil output neither, seein's how we never found any oil. Anyways...
Dear Bandar Bush,
Thanks a bunch for continuin’ to fuck the Amurkan taxpayers on gas prices. I shore know how hard it is to find oil, and if ya’ll don’t wanna lower them prices, well, hey—Ah understand ’cuz Ah’m a MBA from Harvard! You demand the dollars, we supply ’em! And it all evens out in the end when you give me and Daddy and Big Dick big bonuses fer keeping ya’ll in Mercedes Benzes and BMW limos!
Let’s hold hands again soon, love,
It's shore a lotta fun havin' ya'll peek into mah affairs durin' the day. Well, bye fer now, and see ya at the bar!