Wednesday, May 31

Art and chaos day at Blue Gal

Peggy Guggenheim was never convicted
of conspiracy and wire fraud...

Every once in a while we need to take a break and look at some art.

There's a lovely online museum of the Peggy Guggenheim Collection of modern European and American art in Venice. Click on the link, click on a room, and take a look around.

I've heard said that art collections like this are politically incorrect, because they are a most convincing argument for the concentration of wealth. Hey, if loving art like this is wrong, I don't wanna be right, or left. I just wanna gaze, and sigh.

Also, there's mounting evidence that Kenneth Lay lacks Peggy Guggenheim's good taste. Peggy never went to prison for securities fraud, either, so there's a difference.


Tuesday, May 30


Blue Gal's buddy W. David Stephenson is the first caller on yesterday's On Point NPR radio show. The topic is:

The New Republic's Peter Beinart talks about the good fight in the war on terror and why he thinks liberals need to lead it.

Mr. Stephenson's comment:

[The] New Republic editor's contention [is] that only liberals (he means the Scoop Jackson style, rather than the Gene McCarthy types such as me) can really fight the war on terror. I was the lst call in, and said I think that the conservatives can't see all of these issues from a systems standpoint, but see them in isolation, and that means they can't fight terrorism...

You can give a listen here.

And you can send some lovin' his way via the blog: W. David Stephenson is a new grandpa, too. Sending our love (and hope your laptop dries out after the toddler grandchild spilled drink on it. Yuck.)

The mainstream on abortion and why we're out of it...


I've said it before and I'm gonna say it again: we Dems will never have a firm handshake with a large cross-section of the American People(tm) until we at least reframe the abortion debate. A most frank and much-needed dose of advice came in the May 29 New Yorker from one Winston Simpson, a hog farmer from Missouri:

Simpson described himself as a loyal Democrat...”I’m even pro-choice--that’s how much of a Democrat I am,” he said. He came to that position, he explained, through his knowledge of animal husbandry. “If you’ve ever seen a young heifer get bred too soon, you know what a fiasco that is, which is why I think teen-agers should have access to abortion. But I’m out of the mainstream on this.” He continued, “I always tell people who are running for office that if they want to get elected in Missouri, when someone asks them for their feelings about Roe v. Wade don’t give some long scientific talk. Just say, ‘I’m against abortion’ and move on quick.” [emphasis mine]

If only we could. The author of this interview, Jeffrey Goldberg, goes into more detail regarding reframing the abortion debate on the New Yorker’s website:

Part of the Reagan revolution was getting people to change how they self-identified. Do you think that’s possible for liberals now?

Of course it’s possible, if the Democrats learn how to talk to people. Here’s a perfect example: abortion. Many moderate Democrats are looking at the way they talk to the country about abortion. What we see in a lot of candidates and at a lot of Democratic think tanks is that they’re all pro-choice, pro-Roe v. Wade, but they’re reframing the issue to emphasize not choice and individual rights but abortion reduction.

A recognition that an abortion represents a failure of one sort or the other.

That is not the belief of the hard-core activist pro-choice community. But polls have shown two interesting things: a majority of Americans are pro-choice, and a majority of Americans also see abortion as a moral problem. The Democrats can reach all these people if they show that they, too, believe in this pair of seemingly contradictory ideas. They’re not that contradictory.

Will abortion always be harder for the Democrats than something like Iraq, because of the deeply ingrained, heartfelt feelings involved?

Americans have very heartfelt feelings about national security, too. The way the Democrats can win on national security is to separate Iraq from the larger picture—or to use Iraq, do a kind of Karl Rove jujitsu, if you will, and say that the President has actually weakened our national security by invading Iraq.

I think we Democrats can doe a Karl Rove jujitsu on abortion, too. Here's how:

And while you’re reading this (thanks, btw) please keep in mind that I am a mother of three who has accepted Jesus Christ into her heart, yadda yadda yadda. I've also lived in Alabama for ten years. Here's the talking points:

1. Christian women get abortions. Plenty of them.

Never in pro-life literature does it talk about the large quantity, by some estimates over 20%, of abortions performed on born again Christian women. That article mentions the amazing story of a girl protesting at a clinic the day after her abortion. Then there's that old joke about the three times abortion is okay are "rape, life of the mother, and me."

There are actually two epidemics among women of the born-again persuasion: unwanted pregnancy and eating disorders. Both are based on ignorance, shame, and an self-repressed standard of womanhood that has very little basis in reality.

I’m repeating myself here, but doctors I talk to in Alabama say that the sexual blinders put upon young women in the Alabama Baptist Convention is a serious detriment to their health. They have sex anyway, and they have no idea how easy it is to get pregnant. Honeys, as far as God is concerned, the whole point of sex is to get pregnant.

I remember the time before my third child was conceived. Mr. Blue Gal and I talked about having a third child, and I thought to myself, “Hey, I’m forty years old, I’ve got a history of infertility, I’ll just leave it up to God.“ I’m never leaving it up to God again. God loves babies!

No matter what your pastor says, God/mother nature/the reproductive impulse of the universe, does not care if you are married or not.

It may truly alienate the very voters we are trying to persuade, but the “what if it was your daughter?” question should in some subtle way be brought to the table. Or perhaps not so subtle...after all, what would Karl Rove do? I can imagine the TV spot...a shot of nice white people praying in church, and the voiceover says, "If you're praying for the victims of Roe v. Wade, [dramatic pause, pan over to a weeping blonde pretty lass] don't forget the one in the next pew..."

2. The religious right ground forces have been completely hoodwinked by their leadership on the abortion issue.

The Republican leadership, except for some few true-believers, really has no interest in resolving the abortion issue. Hell, even Laura Bush wants to re-frame the issue, and has said so for years, so therefore no one is allowed to ask her anymore.

The same desire for impasse on abortion could be said of the Planned Parenthood/pro-choice contingency, but I would argue that the Democratic leadership have more cred in terms of wanting a firm, eternal committment to choice, than the Republicans do of overturning Roe. The abortion issue is the biggest cash cow the Religious Right has on their farm, folks.

I’m convinced that a lot of the true believers, those average born-again church goers are feeling quite betrayed already. Those “little people” who donated money over the years to the Christian Coalition specifically to fight lottery proposals in the South are just a little pissed off at Ralph Reed.
Somehow money laundering of Indian casino money is not seen as the Christian thing to do. (Bless his heart.)

We need to point out just what is at stake here, and call the pro-life leadership on this. If you’re worried this will lead them to push harder against Roe, so what? That will wake up those voters who think we don’t need to worry about Roe. We do. I think it’s really important to blow the lid off of how much money is being donated to pro-life organizations and just how much of that money is being spent on so-called administrative costs. This article complains that upwards of 80% of money raised for these crusades goes to professional telemarketers running the campaigns. Who owns them? I wanna know. If this information is not publicly available, just make it up. Again, what would Karl do?

Oh, I’m just kidding.

The thing to do is to raise the question, again and again and again, so that these organizations and mega-churches are put on the defensive. Either they have to release information on fund-raising and how it is being spent, or they will see a drop in their fundraising due to the questions being raised.

See? Betcha Karl’s eating his heart out now...

3. Nevermind abortion. We need to re-frame the issue of accidental pregnancy as a high-priority public health concern.
Yes, libs, we’ll call it “women’s reproductive health” when we’re at the 92nd Street Y, okay? In Missouri, we’re gonna call it accidental pregnancy. NOT “unwanted pregnancy,” which conjures up images of hard-hearted baby-hating prostitutes aborting every other month. Every third person you meet was “an accident,” if their parents were perfectly honest. And every parent of a fifteen-year-old girl counts that accident as their worst nightmare, if THEY are perfectly honest. Publish a cost comparison between flying to that lovely Indian reservation in South Dakota versus flying to Scandinavia for an abortion. Put it in a chart for USA Today, so those Christians who pretend they can read the Bible can read this, and figger out that when Sissy forgets to take her pill, we don‘t wanna hafta learn how to say “take care of it” in Norwegian.

But I digress. I want a national dialogue lecture on how not to get pregnant. I want Oprah to have a book for her book club on how not to get pregnant, so at least one and a half million women in this country will have a partial clue. I want The View to talk about condoms and how often they fail and how to make sure they don’t. I want Seventeen and Cosmo Girl! and Women’s Day and Family Fuckin’ Circle to publish charts showing women how to measure their menstrual cycle and how to know when they are most likely to get pregnant and then tell them not to play Papal roulette but use some serious contraception and here’s how you use it and here’s where you get it.

Memo to Blue Cross/Blue Shield: Remember how Bill Clinton MADE you pay to keep C-section patients in the hospital for the medically-recommended three days? You are gonna fuckin’ pay for contraception, because using contraception is not a “lifestyle,” it’s a part of life. We value your cooperation. Thank you.

Monday, May 29

Internet panties, etc.


Two very cool findings:

If you are new to blogging, or just want to learn a little more HTML, this site is very helpful. It allows you to edit some sample HTML on the left side of the screen, and with one click see the result on the other side of the screen. This without messing up your own blog. You can cut and paste code you like to your blog template when you're done. Wicked.

Also, if you have lots of time to waste online (and who doesn't?) this is extremely cool. You may have to download Shockwave 10, but it's worth it. h/t to Spork who got it from Drifty. Love on you boys.

'Course Blue Gal won't be playing with that for a few weeks. She's summering (that is SO not a verb) in a blue state which is cool, lovely, and fun, but the house is on dial-up. The miracle of transcontinental air travel means that Saturday your Alabama neighbor has scraped the W sticker off her white Cadillac Esplanade, and two days and a couple thousand miles later, your Washington State neighbor still has the Kucinich sticker on her 1985 Volvo. I like it here.

Sunday, May 28

Yeah but...

all for mike

I just love Crooks and Liars readers, but you know Mike honey, I'll never actually wear these. They're just too precious. xoxoxo

Friday, May 26

Blue Gal's first open thread


Since earlier today I had my first, well, somebody said wingnut troll, but anyway, maybe it's time to really hit the highlife and have a weekend-long open thread.

So whatcha planning on reading this summer?

Wingnuts welcome, but please don't tell me "your" planning on reading Rush Limbaugh or Ann Coulter. They have their own websites. Go there instead with my blessing. And take along a spelling dictionary, okay?

I plan on a lot of mind-wasting romantic junk, so don't be shy. And post anything else you have on your mind or your blog too. Here's your chance to pimp shamelessly.

Religious liberals agree to fail to agree...

If you're coming here from Mike's Blog Roundup, welcome. I got yer panties right here. xoxo

Comments reveal my first troll. Don't miss it.


eternity panties

The "Christian Left" is getting more publicity these days.

I'm a Christian. I'm a leftie. But more and more I see that the separation of Church and State has to apply to my own heart, as well. I absolutely had to laugh at the fact that 1200 delegates to the "Network of Spiritual Progressives" conference had difficulty coming up with a cohesive and united policy statement. Liberal Baptist minister (and there are plenty, believe it or not) Tony Campolo complained, "The thing about the left is that they want everybody to feel good." So those delegates who have a "problem" with Biblical text but not "spirituality" clashed, albeit gently, with their more churchy brethren.


The Democrats have been issuing bland unifying meaningless platforms my whole life. The idea that a group of progressives could not make a statement about honesty in government, respect for the environment, an end to this horribly unjust war, and a commitment to help the poor, without getting uppity about whether or if "God" or "The Bible" is part of the equation, is just silly.

The righteous blog Uncommon Sense summarizes the Christian Left perspective rather nicely in this post:

I suspect that Jesus is getting a bit tired of hearing that the only things he cares about are stopping abortion and keeping the gays down. If he cared all that much about either one, I suspect he would have mentioned them at some point. He didn't. He did have quite a lot to say about demonstrating compassion for the poor. I haven't heard Bros. Falwell, Robertson, Perkins or Dobson say much about that lately. Or, ever.

The religious left's failure to come up with some practical solutions and instead to dwell in the land of feel-good 'spiritual' masturbation is completely embarrassing, but probably just as well. We really don't need to get an endorsement from Jesus in order to do the right thing, and more importantly, as Gary Wills and Andrew Sullivan [both subscription, dammit] have recently pointed out, if we really believe what Jesus supposedly says in Scripture, we are terribly unlikely to get one. Blue Gal is not the only Christian who thinks, as Sullivan points out, "that Christianity should not get too close to the corrupting allure of government power." Render unto Caesar, and all that shit.

We can't become the left-wing equivalent of this guy, and why would we want to?

The biggest sin of the religious right is their theologically incorrect insistence that God is on their side. God forbid the left should begin to make the same mistake. And don't get me started on the whole "the founding fathers wanted America to be a Christian nation." That is not only theologically incorrect, it is historically incorrect. Not mincing words, it's bullshit. [See a great write-up on this here.]

And intelligent design is neither. Look, I "created" my children with Mr. Blue Gal, and yet they're still evolving every other minute. Stop limiting God's creation to what happened a gobzillion years ago and get over it.

On the topic of faith and democracy, I love what Hendrik Hertzberg said over at the New Yorker, commenting on that letter to Bush from Iran's leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (emphasis mine):

Much of Ahmadinejad's letter is devoted to religious hectoring, culminating in an appeal to Bush'’s faith. The Iranian President writes that he has "been told that Your Excellency follows the teachings of Jesus (Peace Be Upon Him) and believes in the divine promise of the rule of the righteous on Earth." One can imagine an American President responding that he believes in the rule of the people, righteous and unrighteous alike, exercised through democratic institutions. It's a little harder to imagine that response from this particular American President. But one can dream.

The good news: Last I heard Roy Moore, Alabama's Ten Commandments candidate for governor, is down 44 points. Baptists down here finally see through him, and they don't appreciate being used. I think we'll all be surprised at the CHRISTIAN backlash, particularly the Abramoff/Christian Coalition/casino money/Republican lovefest. There are some rather pissed off Christians in this state (bless their hearts.)

Now, if both sides could just see a little more gray rather than black and white on the abortion thing...but more on that in another post. I'm sorry, you devoted pro-choice, anti-Christian lefties, if you want the White House, we have to at least take Tennessee. You're not gonna do that by spitting on the Bible and arguing for abortion on demand for minors. We can and we must separate Church and State. That does not mean people of faith can't vote that faith if they choose, and that we should not solicit their support and contribution of their religious views to the discussion.

Some of us may just have to hold our noses and love Jesus, or at least find a way to court his followers.

Other excellent, non-subscription resources (Thanks, Mike):

Michelle Goldberg on Christian Nationalism

Goldberg's book is also the current read at the TPM Cafe book club.

Tristero on Christianism, Islamism, etc.

Side note: They've always been on the tip of my tongue (in cheek), but now they're back on the blog: Conservatives for American Values is back, thank the Lord! (In the wonderful world of CFAV, I'm not supposed to thank God but let a man do it for me, you know, because of Eve.)

Thursday, May 25

Coincidence? I think not.

Memo to Bill O'Reilly:

Your staff is compiling your talking points from my own decidedly liberal blog.

My post of May 22...

Your "post"
of May 23...

Welcome aboard, Bill. I got yer panties right here.

Blue Gal goes green...

Al Gore's appearance
on the Today show yesterday is good timing, as I was gonna blog about Vanity Fair's** May "Green" issue anyway.


I'm not the type to read Vanity Fair so you don't have to. But if you like fashion photos of environmentalists (and you consider Arnold Schwarzenegger and George Pataki environmentalists), VF coos right at ya: "Saving the earth isn't just for lefties anymore." [EPA alert: GOP approval numbers just hit critical endangered status.]

The best article of this issue: "The Rape of Appalachia" about just how bad the coal industry is. If you need one more reason to oppose/hate/impeach the Bush administration, surely their consistent appointments of industry lobbyists as "overseers" of the environment is reason enough by its own self.

An important lesson for polluters, btw: first, bust all the unions.

And if your liberal panties aren't in enough of a wad yet, find out just how mercury gets into our water from coal burning emissions and then think about the explosion in autism cases in the past fifteen years, and...

...yeah, yeah what happens when you can't turn on your laptop 'cause a buncha treehuggers closed the coal-burning power plant that powers it...

We are all responsible.

We need vision, hope, and a plan of action. Enter President Al Gore.

Bush, you son of a mother fucking bitch craphead 29 percent mother earth rapist --memo to the NSA listen in on THIS you buttfuckers of the US Constitution oh I am SO just getting started when are we EVER gonna learn?

Oh sorry. Back to Al Gore's excellent article on how much danger the environment, OUR environment, my two-year-old's environment, my three-year-old's environment, my seven-year-old autistic son's...


Oh, sorry again. This is what Blue Gal is like when her liberal panties are in a wad. No, this is not PMS. I would be crying if this were PMS. I don't fantasize about castrating the President when I have PMS. But thank you for your concern.

Where was I? Oh, Al Gore. Great article.

Gore brilliantly compares Bush, not to Hitler, Satan, Madonna, the usual suspects, but to Neville Chamberlain, the British PM who in the 1930's thought it best to try to get along and co-exist with the Third Reich, while Winston Churchill slapped his hand to his own forehead and prophetically slammed out the truth:

...The era of procrastination, of half measures, of soothing and baffling expedients, of delays, is coming to a close. In its place, we are entering a period of consequences.

This has apparently become the motto of the stop global warming movement. The second half of Gore's VF article reads like a campaign speech, but a good speech of hope and vision and a plan for the future. It might just excite enough voters to make a difference. Is Gore running? Is this the 2000 do-over we wish could be? And why are fashion magazines thinking he is so cool all of a sudden? Here's the latest W**:

Gore is everything you thought he wasn't: personable, passionate, brilliant, humble and funny. (Where did this guy come from? He'd be a great politician.)

Regardless, over the course of my week away I came to a certain conclusion. Whether our candidates turn out to be 'blue" enough to make us bloggers happy remains to be seen, but we Democrats better get ready because we're about to be handed the mantle of power again, and when (not if, I've concluded) this happens, it's gonna be a big mess of steaming, stinking elephant shit landing right in our lap. Iraq, the environment, energy, health care: we are gonna have the snark slapped right off of our faces and have real work to do. I'm grateful that at least with Al Gore and other Dems we have some real cred and some real abilities to fix things when it comes to the environment.

Blame Bush. Why, sure, it's fun, and it will be useful during the upcoming campaigns and maybe even during the transition period. But January 20, 2009 may be the end of a nightmare, yet not the beginning, of our American dream. It's gonna take prayer, solemnity, maturity, and back-aching work to set this country right again. Count me in.

**I know, I know. Vanity Fair and W in the same post. And it's that W with a 46 page spread of Madonna dressed up like a horse. I know. But I was on vacation, people. Cool down and look at some leaf panties, for crying out loud:


Wednesday, May 24

Book Review: Al Franken's The Truth (with Jokes)

A big thanks to Bill O'Reilly for reminding me that he was ignoring Al Franken's book. I forgot:

"When he attacked me in his book a couple of weeks ago -- not a couple of weeks ago, a couple of years ago -- News Corporation made a mistake in actually trying to sue the guy, and, of course, that helped his book sales.

Now, his last book bombed, nobody bought it, because we all ignored it."

Can you feel the spin, folks? Let me translate O'Reilly for you, just for fun:

"My rampantly inflated ego was offended by Franken's book, and I made Rupert Murdoch's lawyers sue over it. We got laughed outta court, and Al Franken still makes fun of us at his paid personal appearances. I am personally responsible for making his Lies book a bestseller. He admits that. Ain't I a laughingstock?"

I feel so much like Al Franken right now I might really be him, because I'm gonna do a little fact check on O'Reilly. Fingers quivering, but here goes:

Publisher's Weekly reports that The Truth was the 19th most popular non-fiction book of 2005, with sales of 560,163. No big threat to Da Vinci Code, nor to his Lies and the Lying Liars book, which by many accounts was a landmark bestseller with sales approaching a million copies. Franken's self-narrated audio book of The Truth was one of the top three best selling audiobooks of the year and won audiobook of the year for humor. So great job bombing that book, Bill. points out:

Like his conservative counterparts, Franken has hit upon a method for publishing political books that is the closest thing to a money-printing machine known to mankind. The O'Reillys, Hannitys and Coulters of the world seem to come out with an annual book that is simply a compilation of their on-air rants and political tirades. Obviously, based on the sales of each of these works, there is an audience willing to digest this material in its written form. Franken takes the same tactic in his book, presenting material familiar to any listener of his daily Air America show, but with one major difference: Franken is funny.

If you Blue Gal readers haven't picked this one up yet, now is the time. I'm astonished at just how bad the Bush Administration really is and really has been, for when you read it all in one book it could make you sick. If you believe Al Franken, he himself is hospitalized with toxic shock from reporting on Karl Rove's political dirty tricks. And remember, this book came out BEFORE Katrina, three-dollar gas, and 29%.

You may remember in my review of Joan Didion's Year of Magical Thinking, I mentioned that Didion's erudite prose is a necessary cushion to her subject matter, death. The same is true here for Franken: even the staunchest Democrat (uh, that would be me) could hardly stand a straight-faced litany against what has happened to our country in the past five plus years. In spite of their endorsement from the reality-based community, I humbly confess I have not and could not read the serious canon regarding Bushco: Bob Woodward's Plan of Attack, Richard Clarke's Against All Enemies, David Phillips' Losing Iraq. I confess I need the digestive aid of Franken, Stephen Colbert, and Jon Stewart. I need the cushion of humor and snark just to get through it. The truth, without the jokes, just isn't palatable.

This book has some wonderful chapters. The one on God is short, personal, poignant, and exposes the lie that the left is bereft of spirituality. If you thought we Blues were finished with Tom Delay, Chapter 10 will convince you obscurity is not punishment enough. And the chapter on Social Security had me laughing so hard Mr. Blue Gal asked me to stop reading. Finally, this is the only book I've ever read which purports to have an embedded LSD tab (page 193 in the hardcover edition, save you the search) so that you, the reader, can trip on the same drugs our President was apparently doing when he said the Social Security trust fund was "a bunch of worthless IOU's." (That is US Treasury Bonds to you and the rest of the investing world.) Mine was a library copy (I didn't want to skew the sales figures and get O'Reilly's panties in a wad) and another library patron got the LSD tab first.

One statement Franken makes must be contradicted. On page 143 he says that in the Terri Schiavo debacle "can be seen all the elements of dishonesty, hypocrisy, extremeism, and corruption that I believe will lead to the utter destruction of the Republican Party within one year and one month of the publication of this book [October 2005]." As I wondered ablog two weeks ago as to whether I'd missed the GOP's funeral, I think Franken is a little off on his dates. Fix that in the second edition, will ya, Al?

"The narcissism of minor differences"


I certainly don't consider myself a Freudian but when I saw this phrase in the latest Harper's it jumped out at me as a perfect description of the left-wing blogosphere, the Democratic party, our country as a whole, etc. etc.

Freud coined the phrase to describe the relations between neighboring countries who are similar, and their tendency to poke fun at, ridicule, and occasionally aggressively attack each other, resulting in, they hope, a greater cohesiveness within their own group. So we lefties attack the Christian right and they attack back, not only because we hate the "other," but to please and solidify our own constituency.

Tell me the difference between

"All Christians are stupid, Republican, Jesus drones."


"All Democrats are arrogant, atheistic, baby-killers."

The name-calling is false on both sides.

Lefty blogospherians (Blue Gal included) are, admittedly, a wildly narcissistic bunch. And we attack each other like crazy, have you noticed? There is so much snarky in-fighting between the Kos-ters, the Firedoglake bunch, the Eschaton chat room commenters, feminists, perverts, gays, mothers, singles, etc. and we've all got to have a say and be right. All the time.

Check this article out. Sound like anyone you know?

...we reserve our most virulent emotions – aggression, hatred, envy – towards those who resemble us the most. We feel threatened not by the Other with whom we have little in common – but by the "nearly-we", who mirror and reflect us.

...To maintain this self-differentiating aggression, the narcissist stokes the fires of hostility by obsessively and vengefully nurturing grudges and hurts (some of them imagined). He dwells on injustice and pain inflicted on him by these stereotypically "bad or unworthy" people. He devalues and dehumanises them and plots revenge to achieve closure. In the process, he indulges in grandiose fantasies, aimed to boost his feelings of omnipotence and magical immunity.

In the process of acquiring an adversary, the narcissist blocks out information that threatens to undermine his emerging self-perception as righteous and offended. He begins to base his whole identity on the brewing conflict which is by now a major preoccupation and a defining or even all-pervasive dimension of his existence.

...Deep inside, the narcissist is continuously subject to a gnawing suspicion that his self-perception as omnipotent, omniscient, and irresistible is flawed, confabulated, and unrealistic....

Similarly, intimacy brings people closer together – it makes them more similar. There are only minor differences between intimate partners. The narcissist perceives this as a threat to his sense of uniqueness.

Who are your partners here in the blogosphere? And whom do you deride? Are they really just like you?

P.S. Frogs and Ravens has an excellent on-topic post.

Tuesday, May 23

Birth rates and makin' babies...


I know this is last week's news, but I was on vacation, and I want to sound off about John Gibson's plea that we all make more babies. I'm lovin what Bibliosquirrel had to say:

...the phrases "making babies" and "John Gibson" in the same sentence is likely to put women OFF their feed, if ya know what I mean.

[Full disclosure: Blue Gal has done her bit to keep white American babies in the gene pool. "2.1 children per couple" is the demographic replacement rate, and Blue Gal, after her ob-gyn told her having 0.1 babies would cost extra, went ahead and had three. And while there are instances in life where three is one too many, when it comes to my own children I wouldn't change a thing.]

Even Canadian commentators weighed in on this issue. Margaret Wente in the May 13 Globe and Mail has a purely Canadian perspective, but her point is universal (subscription only so I won't link to it):

...rural Canada [is] depopulating. Moose Jaw and Carbonear are destined to be ghost towns, unless we can persuade Chinese and South Asians to settle there, which I doubt. Your caffe-latte-coloured great grandchildren (if you are lucky enough to have any) will be amazed to learn that people once lived there, and that Canada was once overwhelmingly white.

Two thoughts come to mind here: first is the preservation of whiteness, which Gibson swears was not his point (and Blue Gal can't figure out what is point was, then).

We somehow think this debate grew out of the current US immigration debate. It didn't. In 1751 Benjamin Franklin was all freaked out in Philadelphia about German immigrants:

Why should Pennsylvania, founded by the English, become a Colony of Aliens who will shortly be so numerous as to Germanize us instead of our anglicizing them, and will never adopt our Language or Customs anymore than they can acquire our complexion?

Huh? Germans not white enough for you, Ben Franklin, poster boy for the Minutemen?

A little later in US History 101, we'll learn about Teddy Roosevelt, another dead white guy who worried publicly in 1903 that the progeny of dead white guys would not longer rule the world unless white guys persuaded white gals to spit out the babies like poor, southern European, (oh hell, just say it, Catholic) immigrants were. He went so far in one speech as to warn against (white) "race suicide." Yeah.

The important lesson that Gibson's veiled hate speech uncovers, is that peoples who refuse to get along with their neighbors (uh, that would be us vis-a-vis Mexico) either in the short run or the long haul had better make sure they procreate. For instance, Palestinian mommas are churning out babies faster than a Jewish mother can make her daughters feel guilty about it. The battle for Israel is being lost in the time bomb of the maternity ward. This from the Population Resource Center:

Jews currently make up just over half of the population of the region, but due to high birth rates, Arabs will become a clear majority within twenty years. In 2020, the region will be home to about 6.4 million Jews and 8.5 million Arabs.

And Israel will either have to allow the majority full citizenship (no more Jewish state) or be guilty of apartheid with the minority in control of a much larger majority. They're afraid that change is coming in Israel, and they should be.

Speaking of control, it should be noted that in spite of the dearth of white births around the world, the Bush/Blair/Putin/Stephen Harper (Canadian PM, Conservative) administrations seem to be doing an excellent job of making sure the white guys continue to own everything, even to the point of pre-emptive wars over petroleum reserves. So not to worry, white guys, I think you've got it under control. Take a Prozac, take a Viagra, and take it easy.

bush rich white

The second thought is preservation of population levels. Now I know the baby boomers are the center of the goddamn universe, and it's just awful that they're too selfish to grow up and have babies of their own. But my sense is Mother Earth is breathing a huge sigh of relief. There is actually, absolutely, no way that a generation that comparatively huge to the ones before and after can or should "replace" themselves demographically. The boomer generation has left a huge environmental footprint on the planet which will take eons to re-fill. It's perfectly okay with the environment if we have a few less people here. (Blue Gal goes green in a soon to be published environmental post. Watch this space.)

On topic and highly recommended: this op-ed by David Barash in the LA Times.

And not to "should" all over you, but as Gibson so clumsily back-pedalled, the skin color of the babies who are here should not be an issue. Blue Gal is blue, notice, and she is gonna loooove her mocha latte grandchildren. Her daughters are mere toddlers, but the guilt lessons have already begun...


Monday, May 22

Is Jon Stewart helping or hurting?

Andrew Chung of The Toronto Star relates findings that (gasp) TDS viewers are more politically cynical than non-viewers. This is raising some alarms, as TDS viewers are primarily young and forming life-long habits of political thought and discourse.

Of course, other studies have shown that Daily Show viewers are better informed than those who don't watch. Maybe we're cynical because we just know too much.

Shouldn't the decider-in-chief take some of the credit for my cynicism, huh?


Home Sweet Home

canada protest

Blue Gal is back from beautiful Canada, though I suspect you will be missing the guest bloggers almost as much as I missed all of you. Six days without internet access will not happen again, though writing blog posts (twenty single spaced pages, just wait) in a notebook is an novel change of pace and thinking.

Two women I cannot thank enough. Captain Dyke took care of the blog, and Aunt Mary took care of the children. Thank you, I love you, thank you.

It was a lovely trip. Mr. Blue Gal and I got to know each other as partners rather than as mere parents, and he even started (don't tell him I noticed) pointing out stories for the blog. This from the man who mere weeks ago thought this was a "waste of time." Ah, well.

One of the trips many high points was in a pub in Ottawa and three guys at the next table were talking about blogging. The blogger at the table said he was a gay right-wing blogger but I informed him that shit might work in Canada but a gay guy drinking beer in public and claiming to be right wing in Alabama would be dirty-looked "right" outta town.

One of the other guys at the table stayed to chat and he, while not a blogger, felt blogs were a primary news source for him, and he agreed that the blogosphere policed its own very well as far as fact-checking. As he left he said,

"You know, up here we don't all hate Americans."

I replied, "I noticed! When I was yelling 'fuck you'** in front of the American Embassy yesterday, I was the only one there!" [Embassy is so fortified, btw, it looks like a damn prison.]

Low point of the trip was sitting at dinner on the cruise with an obnoxious American lady (OAL). In her defense I can only hope she was drunk. She started off the dinner telling us just how awful the AY-mish were. Yes. Amish people are bad. Who knew? It went downhill from there, and hit bottom here:


"I think we have too many civil liberties in this country."

Blue Gal will pause here while her readership gets up off the floor...btw I think she forgot we were sailing in Canadian waters.

Mr. Blue Gal, a model of restraint:

"We'd better not have this conversation. [Yeah.] I am...[explains his long-standing official capacity within the ACLU].


"Aah! I'm not going to TALK to you!!! [points to Blue Gal] I'll talk to YOU!"

Blue Gal, not so restrained:

I am the wife of [ACLU capacity] and I agree with everything he does in that capacity. Absolutely. Everything.

Of course my restraint involved the omission of any mention of me as a leftie blogger, in which capacity I am also entitled to issue a high-ho and hearty "fuck you"** to obnoxious American lady, via the internets.

**Notice to the left-wing blogosphere: "fuck you" is the intellectual property of one Paul Wolfowitz, Iraq-War architect (kudos!), to Al Franken at an even earlier (pre-Stephen Colbert) White House Correspondents' Dinner. Blue Gal is using Mr. Wolfowitz's intellectual property under the fair-use provision, as I'm sure Al Franken is the numerous times he reports the Wolfowitz quote at paid appearances and on page 221 of his book, The Truth (with Jokes). [Blue Gal's full review of The Truth later this week.]

It's great to be back, folks.

Doh! AKA Only in Alabama...

From the Mobile Alabama Press Register:

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Former Gov. Don Siegelman, Paul Hamrick, Richard Scrushy and Mack Roberts, who are now on trial, have pleaded not guilty to the federal charges against them. A Friday article left out the word "not" in stating their pleas.

Hat tip: Red State Diaries

Sunday, May 21

Guest Blogger - Jesus H. Christ

wwjd panties

We are gonna end the guest blogging with a post from none other than Jesus H. Christ of the blog Emails from Jesus.

I was a little hesitant to even ask Jesus to guest blog, what with him being so busy and all being our Lord and Savior. It turns out Jesus is a really kind, accessible guy. Funny, 'cause if you listen to some of his so-called prophets today you'd think you had to jump through holiness hoops just to get his attention.

It makes sense that Jesus would prefer that we all be just, well, familiar with him, since on many occasions he calls his own father "Abba" (Daddy). I just hope that these days that doesn't remind the Father of that silly Scandinavian group.

Jesus, I really appreciate the props. Thanks hon.


Hey, my children. I guess I don’t need too much of an intro. I mean, I am
your Lord and Savior. You can call me Jesus…JC…J-Dawg…pretty much
whatever you want. (Not Sally, though, please, I hate that, man!)

I haven’t been blogging long. Actually, dude, I didn’t know what a blog
was until recently. Eh. When you have crap like President Bush (har, har,
thanks for the funny joke, Satan) causing a billion prayers a day, who’s
got time for the internet??

Anyway. If you haven’t been to my site (,
basically, I answer prayers sent via email.

When I started EFJ, I expected to answer stuff like, “why is my grandma
sick?” and “why do people die?” and “will you forgive me for that hooker,
even though my wife won’t?” So far: none of that stuff. The prayers I
do receive are more “Did you have sex with a lot of easy hotties back in
your day?” and “Is anal sex okay?”

I’ve never gotten a mental prayer like this (except from Jim Baker…I got
lots of weird crap from that dude). What is it about the net that brings
out the ever-lovin’ pervert in everyone? Don’t get me wrong, I love me
some crazy prayers, dude, but you internet folks are a special breed.
Would you ask your real father what his thoughts were on anal? Hmmm. I
certainly wouldn’t. (Then again, MY father would strike me with
lightning.) You crazy, crazy kids. Even all you sickos, I love ya.

Please keep sending me prayers (, comments, suggestions, praise, whatever works, dude. I try to answer everything – via email or on the site. And, don’t forget to email my pal, Stan (a.k.a. Satan) ( He’s the newest member of EFJ and, even though a little grumpy, is more than willing to answer questions and take comments.

Bless you all, children.

Jesus H. Christ

Saturday, May 20

Guest Blogger - Sandy Underpants

thanks to the Captain for this photo.

Our guest blogger today is the aptly named Sandy Underpants of The Aristocrats, a relatively new, kickass group blog that I just love. If I ever get along to offically endowing a Don't Sugarcoat It Hall o' Fame, Sandy will be there, along with Aloysha McBain and Driftglass.

This guest blogger thing is getting addictive, n'est-ce pas? -BG


I wait...

Blah blah
BlueGal vacation
Nice enough yada
to ask blah blah
(interesting anecdote)
Underpants cha cha
here 'tis:


I wait for the scandal involving a corrupt transaction between the Dept. of Defense and Bill Gates. it will be a huge contract for software to remotely control and synchronize the gait of soldiers via implanted chips - a system so full of holes and bugs that the holes will have bugs. Mr. Gates claims completion and gets paid, plus a bonus. oh wait that's not a scandal ....also Mr. Gates gets a blowjob. that's better. the scandal will be called Gates' Gaitgate. ..and everyone will laugh and sigh and know there can't be another. it'll be the end of the -gate era.

pic from here.

Friday, May 19

Guest Blogger - AL of Threading Water

I love her. I found her blog, declared her my twin, and our friendship just blossomed from there. She is full of sass, intelligence, humor, and talent. I hope when I grow up I am just like her. Proud to be her friend and to have her here today. Madrona, Baby!

Oh, and she found these perfect panties for her post. What more could you ask for? -BG


iron hymen

Slogans R US

There’s a new billboard along the freeway near my house: “Teen Pregnancy Hurts – Practice Abstinence.”

That message sums up our government’s official policy on sex education for teens: practice abstinence. It is a single-note message sounded over and over and, just as the Bush energy policy omits any call for conservation efforts, abstinence-only sex education is another hollow bromide in this administration’s War on Reason.

Abstinence-only sex education is not preventing teens from having sex. It is not preventing teen pregnancy. It is not reducing the spread of STD’s. Abstinence-only sex education is a failure.

The latest evidence comes from a Harvard University study that found 52% of young people who signed virginity pledges, had sex within a year. Surprising? Hardly.

The United States has the highest rates of teen pregnancy in the western world, despite the fact that teens here are no more sexually active than their counterparts in Canada, Great Britain or Scandinavia.

Abstinence is a good message for young people. It’s simply insufficient to the task when promoted as the only method of preventing teen pregnancy and safeguarding the health of our young people. In defiance of the facts, the Bush administration continues to practice pathological stupidity, delivering its policies in word bursts that fit billboards and car magnets.

That’s tragic, because in this case the billboard message isn’t instructive as much as it’s prophetic. Abstinence takes practice, and teen pregnancy will hurt.

I know.

Thursday, May 18

Guest Blogger - Omnipotent Poobah

And he designs panties, too, girls...

Our guest blogger today is the one and only Omnipotent Poobah of The Omnipotent Poobah Speaks! You may think from the title and picture that O.P. has a few ego issues. Nothing could be further from the truth. He has no false pride. Indeed, I have been trying for weeks to get him change the name of his blog to "The Omniscient, Omnipotent Poobah Speaks, but he says that spells oops which reminds him of the people scraping those W stickers off their SUVs. No one needs to be reminded of them, they're everywhere. Poobah's post is dear to Blue Gal's heart. - BG


Let's face it, Blue Gal has a serious panties thing going on. She claims it's for search purposes, but I suspect otherwise. When she asked us to take this guesting gig she even reserved the right to paste in some panties. Yup, that girl does like her panties, not that there's anything wrong with that you understand.

I thought long and hard about what to write today and, of course, panties came to mind. Funny, that happens a lot. More than you might imagine. Oh Crikies, I can't get 'em off my mind!

I looked at all Blue Gal's previous posts and have to admit I was intimidated to take her on in a subject for which she has so much expertise, but I do like a challenge, so here goes:

Panties I'd Design If I Was a Panty Designer
  • Honorable Cloth Republican Panties - Imagine pair a of baggy, granny panties with no lace - the better to tempt the conservative wearer. Designed two sizes too large, that have an elephant's nose affixed to the crotchal area. Designed for either the discerning woman or man - we need to appeal to those crossdressing Republicans you know - wearers can only one way (see definition #4), to the right.
  • Jenna Bush Autograph Model Panties - Since the First Daughter seems to have a penchant for drunkenly falling ass-over-teakettle (oddly enough right in front of photographers every time...hmmm), we designed these invisible fabric panties to offer an unrestricted view of the First Cootchie. This way, each tumble will bring at least 10 percentage points to Daddy's sagging poll numbers, giving new meaning to the term "Pimp Daddy".
  • Duke Cunningham Panties - A gen-u-ine war hero needs a gen-u-ine pair of panties. These Dandy Dukes are reversible. One side shows off the stars and stripes in honor of Duke's patriotic contributions as a certified war hero and Congressman. Turn them inside out and they're black and white stripes, perfect for that casual and stylish walk around the cellblock with your new honey Spike. Bar of soap sold separately.
  • Turd Blossom Specials - If Karl Rove loves one thing, other than smearing others, it's eating. Designed in anticipation of his eventual indictment, these edible panties provide more than 400 calories of quick energy and 16 vitamins and minerals per pair. They're functional, stylish, and perfect for the "husky" fugitive from the law who needs his strength for that long trip to Rio. Available in $1000 per plate beef or chicken flavors.
  • Blue Gal Panties - Made from the finest English lace, these are the panties for the female blogger on the go. Road tested tough, yet soft enough for an angel, these sapphire encrusted beauties come with a small pouch that's perfect for inserting a card with a witty saying or some pithy repartee. Sorry, only available in blue and Blue States. Hanging chads optional.
Blue Gal, thanks for honoring me with this little gig. You have my omnipotent best wishes and I hope the vacation is going swimmingly. Hey, if this gig takes off maybe I can start designing bathing suits too...

Wednesday, May 17

Guest Blogger - Quaker Dave

Can you be a Quaker, a brainiac, and still kick ass? Yep. Quaker Dave's blog, Quaker Agitator, is much classier than the one you are currently reading, but he still agreed to slum it over here. I'm delighted. - BG


An interesting post from Bride of Acheron regarding wingnut Michelle Malkin's latest histrionic anti-immigrant (or something: I can never really quite tell what's up with her) hysterics. This time, our favorite right-wing reactionary anti-everybody/everything is having a slobbering hissy fit over the Texas Rangers baseball team's decision to wear uniforms bearing a logo reading "Los Rangers," for a home game vs. Los Yankees on, of all days, Cinco de Mayo. One would think this somewhat appropriate, considering the Rangers' fan base might have a significant number of Mexican-Americans in it, maybe. Dunno, just a wild guess.
Wow. Can you imagine?

Just to give Ms. Malkin a head's up, here are some other occasions upon which Major League baseball might have its' players wear commemorative-type uniforms, so she'll be ready with more moronic bombast:

- August 18th will be the anniversary of Roberto Clemente's birthday. As he was of Puerto Rican birth, any attempt to honor him might be objectionable, to her. Wasn't he an immigrant, who couldn't speak English when he first got here, huh?

- MLB usually somehow honors the old Negro Leagues. That might be a problem, what with that Jackie Robinson being an affirmative-action hire and all.

- And heaven forbid somebody might get the idea to honor, say, Saddharu Oh, the great Japanese homerun king. Given that Ms. Malkin thinks that the internment of Japanese-Americans in concentration camps during World War Two was such a peachy idea, I'm sure she'd balk at that one.

Way to keep your eye on the ball, Michelle.

Tuesday, May 16

Guest Blogger - Paul -V-


Brainshrub is one of the latest additions to the Blue Gal blogroll. Paul -V- has the intelligence (aphrodisiac), presence of mind, and technical know-how to create his own community within his blog. One can actually "join" Brainshrub and log in so you can edit your own comments. Doncha wish some talking heads could do the same? Besides, code editing makes me hot.

In addition to Paul's post, make sure to click and read his counterpoint article linked below. This is a feature of his own blog and always worth the time.

Thanks for the props, Paul. - BG


Panties and self esteem.

"You spent $150 dollars on this?" I asked incredulously.

"They make me feel sexy" said Kathy (Not her real name) as she snatched the blue laced panties from my hand.

"Baby, you're sexy no matter what your underwear looks like," I said following her from the bedroom into the kitchen. "Why did you spend so much money on panties when I'm the only one who is going to see them regularly?"

"You're a man so you wouldn't understand," she snapped back while rummaging through the junk-drawer for a pair of scissors to remove the Victoria's Secret price-tag.

She was wrong, I did understand; but I also understood her well enough to know when to drop the subject. If she wanted to spend $150 of her own money on frilly panties, who was I to argue?

Besides, she did look look great in them.

The need for people to feel good about something no one else can see is a powerful force. You can't spot a college diploma, a happy childhood or a good credit rating from across the street. However, these attributes have a profound effect on the way we interact with one another.

The interesting thing about attitudes toward our hidden features is that they are so arbitrary. Dropping out of high school may not affect one person, while to another it will become a source of secret shame.

The important thing to keep in mind is that, ultimately, you are the only one who gets to decide how your hidden attributes affect your life.

So, if a $150 thong makes you feel good about yourself: Go for it! Just remember that you could get the same feelings from a $20 dollar pair of panties from Target if you would allow them to.

Read counterpoint here.

Monday, May 15

Guest Blogger - W. David Stephenson

compassionat competency

W. David Stephenson is one of my favorite "professional" bloggers, and he definitely gets a ten on the "intelligence is an aphrodisiac" scale. I hope you get a chance to visit his blog on Homeland Security. It's from a really interesting perspective. David is one of us, you see, and gets leftie blogosphere cred as a true blue conscientious objector during Vietnam. He's also a wonk, in the best sense of the word. That is, the sense of the word that says "this guy knows his shit." Too bad our current Department of Homeland Security, not to mention FEMA, skips "competence" as one of their job requirements.

David is kind enough for Blue Gal, the blog, to leave the technical stuff out and give us this wonderful reminscence of a southern upbringing, and a kickbutt book review with no extra charge. Thanks much, David. -BG


Aubrey W. Williams cures my Southophobia..

I'm grateful to one of my fav's, Blue Gal, for giving me this opportunity to be a guest blogger!

I normally blog on innovative strategies to involve and empower the general public in homeland security, (which is even more important in the wake of the Katrina catastrophe), but I'd like to change gears in this post, taking advantage of Blue Gal's geographic base in Alabama, to deal with one of my personal bugaboos: growing up in the South during segregation.

The experience still haunts me. I faintly remember a black neighborhood right opposite Chesterbrook Elementary School in McLean, VA, but those kids didn't walk to school, they were bused somewhere, to what I assume was a crappy, separate-but-definitely-not-equal school. Even more embarrassing, after attending integrated classes outside of Philly through the first half of 5th grade, and having real-life, honest-to-goodness black friends (i.e., not the Stephen Colbert "my black friend Alan" type), I can't believe how easy it was for me to start making racist jokes when I moved to Virginia, as a way to fit in.

At any rate, one of the ways that's manifested itself in my adult life is rather snide condescension toward the South, especially during the Bad Old Days. And that, if you're still with me, brings me to an Alabaman who I suspect Blue Gal would find a a kindred spirit, Aubrey W. Williams (1890-1965).

One of Aubrey's sons, Jere, is my wife's uncle by marriage. Several years ago he gave me a copy of John A. Salmond's bio of his father, A Southern Rebel: the Life and Times of Aubrey Willis Williams. Wow!

If you buy the conventional wisdom about poor whites in the South being racists because they had to fight blacks for the bottom of the economic barrel, Williams should have been a KKK member: the son of a ne'er-do-well alcoholic, he remembered his childhood "as one of living in many place and many homes, moving around, looking for a cheaper place to live," (NB, Blue Gal, that included moving to Birmingham at 6 m0., then moving 20 times in that city by the age of 10!). He quit school at 7 to work. Not off to a very good start, are we?

However, Maryville College had a special program for young people of promise ( evidently they're still one of those rare schools, not unlike my alma mater, America's Finest Liberal Arts College, which inculcates a sense of ethical responsibility along with educational content...), admitted Williams, and from there (with limited finances always an obstacle), he attended the University of Cincinnati, drove an ambulance during WWI, joined the French Foreign Legion, and finally the US Army. After the war he earned a degree at the University of Bordeaux, returning to the US in late 1919.

After one mis-step (ok,, that's just being selfish on my part: he turned down an offer to be a Unitarian minister in the Boston area -- as a Boston UU I can't help what a cool minister he might have been!), Williams accepted a job as director of the Wisconsin Conference of Social Work. He'd found his life's work.

From there Aubrey Williams went to the American Public Welfare Association, and, when FDR took office, joined the New Deal, specifically the the great Harry Hopkins' Federal Emergency Relief Administration.

Aubrey Williams bloomed under Hopkins, playing important roles in creation of the WPA and the National Youth Administration (he later became the NYA administrator and deputy administrator of the WPA). A particular favorite of Eleanor Roosevelt (Salmon wrote, "Of all the relationships that he [Williams] developed during his years in Washington, this one [with Mrs. Roosevelt] was the most important. From 1935 on, the two worked as a team, reinforcing each other's resolve, pursuing the same egalitarian goals, investigating in the same areas of concern."), his liberalism was a frequent weapon for FDR's opponents. They finally zapped him in 1945, when the president nominated Williams to head the Rural Electrification Administration, and the Senate wouldn't confirm him.

Enough of the bio material. IMHO, here's the cool thing about Aubrey Williams that helps me deal with my Southophobia: his amazing attitude about race (ok, this has admittedly been a rather round-about post....). Quoting Salmond:

"Why he, a southerner, should have believed in the cause of black equality so passionately cannot be known with certainty. Obviously, his deep-seated belief in equality of opportunity for all had much to do with it, while his long sojourn outside the South doubtless helped him shed any racism that his southern boyhood may have bred in him. Williams, who wore few convictions lightly, took none more seriously than this commitment to securing racial justice in America. At times pessimistic about the efficiency of his 'puny efforts,' as he once called them, in the end he lived long enough to see his position vindicated."

The last word on Aubrey Williams belongs to the WaPo in its obituary: "His courage, the paper said, 'was wrapped in extraordinary gentleness .. In all he did he was impelled by the same warm humanity and social concern. Of Aubrey Williams it could truly be said, above all else he loved his fellow man.'"

Wow! I wish I'd met Aubrey Williams (not to mention other Alabamans of his era such as Clifford & Virginia Durr, Justice Hugo Black (who showed that even a Klan member could be redeemed by his later actions), but I'm grateful to all of them for their courage -- and thankful to Blue Gal for this opportunity to deal publicly with one of my demons.
--W. David Stephenson

PS: Aubrey Williams' papers are part of the FDR Library collection..

Sunday, May 14

Happy Mother's Day

full time mom sticker
photo is from Stunted Growth's flikr set

Please pray for Blue Gal today, as she is vacationing away from her three young children on today of all days and is likely to have a big attack of the guilts. Whenever my children are mad at me, though, I tend to sing the "meanest mommy" song, which I wrote when my firstborn was two, in 2000. I dedicate it to all you moms out there, especially if you have a two year old. (If you have a fifteen year old, you need more help than one song is gonna getcha, but it's for you, too.)

(sung roughly to the tune of "It's a long way to Tipperary")
Now with wikipedia reference links!
I wrote this my own self and reserve all rights. Link to it, ma hunnies, don't copy it.

I'm...the meanest mommy...
In the whole. wide. world.
I am...the meanest mom-my...
In the whoooole wiiiide world!
Medea, and Joan Crawford,
Have nothing on me!
That's why
I am known as
The world's mean-est mommy!

If you don't believe me,
Well, let me tell you now.
I am...the meanest mommy...
Since Madam Chairman Mao!
Call me a nasty na-ame,
Like the one that rhymes with "witch."
'Cause I am
A meaner Mommy
Than Mrs. Slobodan Milosovich!

Clinton coulda met me,
But then wouldn't ya know.
His aides said,
That would be like,
Shaking hands with Fidel Castro!
Ask Secretary Albright,
And her face will start to burn...
'Cause I'm not
A "rogue mommy,"
I'm a "mommy of concern."

If you still
Don't believe me,
I'll have to tell you twice.
Saddam Hussein
Loves me
'Cause I make him look so nice.
That's why
He salutes me
With the Iraqi flag unfurled!
'Cause I am
The meanest mommmy
In the whooole wiiiide world!!!

I wrote this my own self and reserve all rights. Link to it, ma hunnies, don't copy it.

Saturday, May 13

Guest Blogger - Blogenfreude

When I really feel like flattering myself with a big fat hairy lie, I look in the mirror and say "you know, Blue Gal, your blog is right up there with Agitprop." Heh. This is such an honor.

Caveat: Blogenfreude and I are a little worried that Fucker Carlson might apologize for his idiocy between this writing (Monday 5/8) and press time (Saturday 5/13). Please be aware that [A] as of this writing he has not apologized, and [B] Blogenfreude and Blue Gal took it straight out of Carlson's own book that fact-checking is for pussies.

- BG


photoshop by the gifted Commandante Agi

[via Media Matters]

Fucker Carlson has cleared Rummy! We just knew Rummy wasn't guilty of anything:

I think a lot of the hostility here is misplaced. You know, people are angry about our Iraq policy; I'm one of them; I'm angry about our Iraq policy. But that's not Rumsfeld's fault, in the end. He didn't dream up the invasion of Iraq. He doesn't have the power to execute it. That's something the president did. That's also something members of Congress endorsed by their vote in the run-up to war. Those are the people you ought to be angry at.

Hmmm ...


Donald Rumsfeld is the Secretary of Defense of the United States, and supported the war against Iraq, partially on the grounds that Saddam had used chemical weapons in the 1980s.

No one important said that, just Juan Cole ...

::google, google::

and guess what?

Rummy's also in PNAC, that there Project For A New American Century, which said on its website that we had to do Iraq - Rummy signed a January 1998 letter to Clinton sayng we had to wipe out Saddam.

Fucker Carlson should have known better - Rummy's been saber-rattling for years.

Friday, May 12

Guest Blogger - Douglas Hoffman

kiss the frog

When I was in Washington State for Christmas last year and only had internet access for a half an hour a day or so, the only blog I read every time I logged on was Balls and Walnuts. This man can excite you with sci fi, bitch out Bush, fix your kid's ear infection, review romance novels, and make a kick ass of course he's married. Nevertheless, a true renaissance man.

His post will make you angry, and will make you think. That is so sexy.

I'm honored to have him here today. -BG


The Mexican Question

For some folks, genocide is just another tool in the toolbox. On April 27, Nashville radio talk show host Phil Valentine recommended that Border Patrol Agents shoot illegal immigrants, and the crowd cheered. (Hat tip to Tennessee Guerilla Woman.)

That's a lot of shooting, but they don't call it the "white man's burden" for nothing. No one said turning America into an Aryan nation would be easy.

Genocide has a long if not proud history here in the States. Let's give a passing nod to the liquidation of Native Americans, our most successful genocidal campaign, something no doubt fondly remembered by the people who wish the same for "Islamofascists," i.e., any practicing Moslem -- people like Michael Savage:

In April 2006 Savage, a Bronx-born Jew, called for the murder of 100 million muslims, saying ""intelligent people, wealthy people...are very depressed by the weakness that America is showing to these psychotics in the Muslim world. They say, ‘Oh, there’s a billion of them’…. I said, ‘So, kill 100 million of them, then there’d be 900 million of them.’ I mean...would you rather us die than them?...Would you rather we disappear or we die? Or would you rather they disappear and they die? Because you’re going to have to make that choice sooner rather than later.” (Quoted in Wikipedia.)

Asshole. The fact that he looks like a hairy version of my grandpa nauseates me. The fact that any Jew could blithely call for genocide makes me want to scream.

Okay, Hoffman, calm down, get back on topic.

Yes, let's stick to a discussion of homegrown genocide, the kind that doesn't require a trip overseas, the kind that will rely on an army of pistol-packin' Minutemen (which my wife pronounces my-NOOT-men) itching to shoot anything nonwhite and warmblooded. And why shouldn't the Minutemen fulfill their destiny? They have history on their side.

In 1845, President James Polk ordered General Zachary Taylor to move his forces into disputed territory near the Rio Grande (disputed by the Americans, that is). Taylor arrived in March 1846. By April 1846, Polk's move achieved its desired effect: not one, but two lethal incidents occurred, involving the deaths of Taylor's men. The Mexicans had supposedly drawn first blood, and now the US could claim the moral upper hand. From Polk's speech to Congress: "But now, after repeated menaces, Mexico has passed the boundary of the United States, has invaded our territory and shed American blood upon the American soil . . ." American soil being a dubious claim at best.

Despite the opposition of the antislavery Whigs (who feared a southwestern land-grab would only add to the South's power), Congress voted overwhelmingly in favor of war. Public support was spotty, but public opposition was spottier still. According to Howard Zinn,

The churches, for the most part, were either outspokenly for the war or timidly silent. Generally, no one but the Congregational, Quaker, and Unitarian churches spoke clearly against the war.

However, as always, certain strident voices made themselves heard. A writer in the American Review, the Michael Savage of his day, "talked of Mexicans yielding to 'a superior population, insensibly oozing into her territories, changing her customs, and out-living, out-trading, exterminating her weaker blood . . .'" The New York Herald made it sound like a good thing: ". . . we believe it is part of our destiny to civilize that beautiful country." And God, of course, loved the idea of conquest, too: "That the redemption from 7,000,000 of souls from all the vices that infest the human race, is the ostensible object . . . appears manifest." (All quotes from Howard Zinn's A People's History of the United States, linked above.)

What followed was a relatively short but bloody war, with heavy losses on both sides. Despite the successful land grab, the historical outcome was by no means blissful. The Mexican-American war increased internal tensions over slavery, ultimately leading to the American Civil War, the most deadly war in US history, where 620,000 Americans died.

We now have an escalating war of rhetoric against illegal dark-skinned immigrants, a cold war which may soon heat up. American Aryans fear their soon-to-be-minority status. How afraid are they? When will their racism become more bold, and when will it translate into lethal action? Is it that far-fetched to imagine it spilling over to encompass our legal Hispanic citizens?

Is it that far-fetched to imagine another American Civil War -- this time, a race war?

Thursday, May 11

Guest Blogger - Cap'n Dyke


Time for Blue Gal to go on vay-kay.

Our first guest blogger is the inimitable Captain Dyke of the Mound of Blue Dykes. As I've said many times in this space, Blue Gal just can't have too many smart lesbians at her blog. My Captain was kind enough to agree to be me keeper of the password and post-er of the guest blogs for the next ten days or so. Thanks to all who are guest blogging while I sail the St. Lawrence Seaway with Mr. Blue Gal.

YOU can thank the guest bloggers by visiting their blogs and leaving a comment or two here and there. Bloggers love comments, feedback, etc. Don't be shy, after all, when it's all about the panties, what's ta be shy about? -BG


(No animals or creative common SEOs were harmed in the making of this post)

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."--Benjamin Franklin

You know, the way things are in the United States right now, you’d think we decided to anoint a king. The Pimperor might as well be.

We let him lie to us again and again. America, you let him go to war without proper cause. You let him take food out of our children’s mouths and proper health care away for young and old alike. You let him spy on us. You let the media get away with covering up for him and not bringing out the truth in time to try and stop the stupidity.

You let the Republican Aristocracy get away with more lying and cheating than has been seen in the country ever in its history. You let the other ‘Party’ act like mewing kittens that have been kicked so many times, they automatically lay down when they see anything controversial coming. You let the corporations that take your jobs and outsource them do it without much of a whimper.

Why do I say ‘you’? Because this is America. Remember? Do you remember what America is? We’re the folks that started a revolution to get away from oppressing taxes and rule by a king and aristocracy that saw us as serfs to be tread upon and used for their own enrichment. Yet, you let King George rule us by ‘divine right’, using his God to tell us if we don’t agree with him, we are pagans and heretics that deserve the fires of hell.

You let fanatic religious leaders tell us how to think and act. You let the Freedoms of Religion and Free Speech get tossed in the trash—just so you wouldn’t have to think for yourselves. You let the concept of Civil Liberties drain down the sewers of corruption and self-serving corporations.

We’re supposed to elect our leaders by majority rule. We apparently don’t want to mess with such nonsense and we let a few key states decide who should govern us and, if someone should get to office by cheating and coercion, we just stand back and say, “Gee, how’d that happen?"

Thomas Jefferson said, "I have sworn upon the altar of God eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man."

Now, you have to remember that Jefferson was a Deist. He believed in a higher governing power than humans, but he didn’t believe in the angry, vengeful god of today’s Christianity.

Jefferson, his fellow revolutionists, their families and their ancestors had lived under the yoke of kings that believed whatever they said was from God; that whatever they did was uncondemable. They lived under an aristocratic minority that were fat and happy living off the backs of the majority.

Our founding fathers--and mothers--were all afraid that one day America would forget what they fought for and let a minority place the majority in slavery.

They were right in their fear.

Wednesday, May 10

Continuing the conversation....


Paul at Brainshrub is continuing the blogosphere/respect conversation, regarding whether the blogosphere has any effect on grassroots political action, and therefore candidates and elections, and whether Democratic candidates can or should have "respect" for bloggers. Here's my comment, but do go look at the whole thing.

I think we may be comparing apples and pomegranates here. My own post did not mention grassroots political campaigning. I agree with those that the jury is completely out as to whether left wing blogging is having any effect on actual political races, yet. It is certainly having an effect on the discourse. Does Bill O'Reilly or Michelle Malkin or Chris Matthews have an effect on local races? Does Al Franken? Unless these guys go out and fundraise for candidates (and I know Franken has done so) they are not having a direct effect on political campaigns.

I can only speak from my own experience, that being a blogger has inspired me to go out and join local Democratic fundraising and events that I would not have otherwise done, and did not do in 2000 and 2004.

I feel as a blogger that I have a much greater stake in politics than I did before the blogosphere came into prominence. I feel part of something greater than myself. I love my fellow bloggers, the intelligent, hardworking, funny, patriots I have met on this journey.

PS. The whole Froggo thang is called "Forni-gate." Pass it on.

Where's my invite?


Man, did the Republican Party's FUNERAL come and go and I didn't get an invite? Lou Dobbs last night shows a pic of Our Dear Leaker and the caption "When will the lying stop?" For real, somebody get a screenshot, please.

We lefty bloggers are influencing conversations between Kunty O'Bierne and Chris Mofo-er Matthews? Are you about to give up the blog? I. Don't. Think. So!

Best news of the day:

It appears the GOP hopes of unseating Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson rest with Katherine Harris.... [Tears of joy!]

State House Speaker Allan Bense today turned down the yearlong courting that came from the White House to the Governor's Mansion, saying he could not make what he considered a nearly two-decade commitment a seat in the Senate would require.

And then Feingold. mmmmwah!

I mean, even the American Idol voters are gonna vote Democratic this year, if only because they have to fill up their SUV's on the way to the polls. Fuckers.

I'm T minus 20 hours to my vacation. I will miss all of you more than you can possibly know. While I'm gone, we're going to have some fabulous guest bloggers (and the rest of you I will do this again before the end of summer I promise). The posting will be done by my favorite pirate. Be good, she has my permission to set her sword on any misbehavior.

In case you feel abandoned, think of the books I'm packing: Al Franken, Bill Maher, and some high-trashy romances, all for the blog, my dearies. xoxoxo

gal dyke 2008

Monday, May 8

Late night quickie

Oh not that kind...

Just that Rising Hegemon wins the caption contest, if there was one.

Best laugh of the week so far. But why aren't they smiling?

Can't a blogger get a little respect around here?


Blogenfreude and Shakespeare's Sister had a fascinating topic going last week. When will bloggers get a little respect?

We need to define our terms here. If "respect" means attention from the world at large, I think we're more than halfway there. We forget how new the blogosphere is. Heck, we forget how new the internet is in historical terms. That is the curse of modern society, that the new is so immediately taken for granted, but we bloggers, also being the techno-stocracy of our culture, are particularly guilty.

Crooks and Liars had their biggest day for hits ever last week. Over half a million f-ing hits.

Without the lefty blogs, MSM (and by the way, folks, nobody even SAID "MSM" before we came along, they were just the "M" and they got away with a lot more than they do now) would never have covered the Kaloogian fake photo of "Baghdad," Bush's fake "interview" with our troops, and, um, don't get me started about you-know-who. And you also know I'm just scratching the surface here. Needless to say Joe Lieberman wishes we would just go away.

We have a place at the table. It may not be the best seat, but we are there, and it is not just because we are talking to each other, though the power and immediacy of our community is one of our greatest strengths.

As I said over at Agitprop:

One thing we lefty bloggers do not have is patience. The blogosphere is so new. We've got so much still to work out. We'll get there, folks. Yeah, yeah, the polar ice caps are melting while I type this. There is a sense of urgency...

Yet everyday I see another blogger give up, delete the blog, stop posting. It takes a huge time commitment not only to keep up your own blog but MORE IMPORTANTLY (sorry for the caps) to visit other blogs regularly and comment, to continue to support the community that is so vital. We can have it all, the respect, the audience, a place at the table, if only find within ourselves the commitment and sorry to say, the maturity to keep going.

(No, I am not running for mayor of Blogospheria.)

But there is another connotation for "respect" and that we may never get. I hate to inform you, lefty blogospherians, but we are also the intellectuals of our society. That may sound snooty, but when Stephen Colbert says that "reality has as well-known liberal bias" and says that he "trusts his gut more than his head" he is talking back at us, directly and specifically. Critics stress that Colbert is pretending to be right-wing a la Bill O'Reilly, but more than knee-jerk conservativism, what Colbert is lambasting is O'Reilly's anti-intellectualism. Anti-intellectualism has a long and cherished history in American politics. Elections are won by being the guy everyone wants to have a beer with, rather than the one with the best ideas. Smart politicians since before Adlai Stevenson have paid the price for being eggheads. This from Wikipedia:

In the 2000 Presidential Election, the media (particularly late night comics) portrayed Candidate Al Gore as boring "brainiac" who spoke in a monotonous voice and jabbered on about numbers and figures that no one could understand... It was the classic stereotype of a pompous, out-of-touch intellectual, and this perception arguably hurt Gore in the election....The word "intellectual" itself has been used as an insult by many on the right.

Both O'Reilly and Limbaugh, as well as other conservative hosts such as Tucker Carlson and Joe Scarborough are frequently accused of having anti-intellectual atmospheres on their shows, evidenced by their frequent interruption of guests who try to put forward complex arguments. Scarborough once commented that, "If my guest is allowed to speak uninterrupted for more than 15 seconds, then I'm not doing my job."

The beauty of the internet is that all of us are allowed more than fifteen seconds (that is, if you're still reading this. Thanks.) The challenge of the internet, and particularly the blog, is that you are capable, and I would argue, therefore required, to name your sources and back up your bullshit. The tightness of our community is also its control mechanism. If you lie, if you plagiarize, you will be caught and you will be outed. The internet is no respecter of persons, it respects the truth (panties and snark are also appreciated).

We bloggers as intellectuals will never get any "respect" in that sense. Those who think their vote on American Idol is as valuable as their vote for President will never respect us.

Get over it.

Hopefully we are not mere Cassandras, the public will catch up, I think is catching up, more quickly than the Right can even manage. If you ask me, the race is already won on many levels. Keep fighting, keep blogging. Respect your own selves, and keep the faith.