Tuesday, October 31

Lynne Cheney's clean hands patrol!

[Greetings and a tip of something tasty to the beautiful people coming here from Crooks and Liars. Doesn't Mike rock? Get your full-frontal Blue Gal here.]

Wolf Blitzer's interview with Second Lady Lynne Cheney last week, transcript courtesy of C&L:

BLITZER: ...there have been some cases where innocent people have been picked up, interrogated, held for long periods of time then simply said never mind, let go — they're let go.

CHENEY: Well, are you sure these people are innocent?

BLITZER: They're walking around free right now and nobody has arrested them.

CHENEY: You made a point last night of a man who had a bookstore in London where radical Islamists gathered who was in Afghanistan when the Taliban were there, who went to Pakistan. You know, I think that you might be a little careful before you declare this as a person with clean hands.

You know, I sleep better at night knowing that the wife of the Vice-President knows clean hands when she sees them.

"Smells like Teen Smegma."

"Surprisingly soft, and has the same scent
as my granny's musty old douche bag."

"It's uncanny how Lebanese dead-baby blood-stink...."

"...reminds me of Iraqi dead-baby blood-stink."

dick cheney
"Thank goodness Halliburton profits smell like rose petals!"

"And we know why he uses hand sanitizer on a regular basis."

abu grahib
"But you hung out in the wrong bookstore, chump."

Happy Halloween

I wouldn't treat her this way if she hadn't stolen the Presidency, played, unplayed, and played again the Christian card, and oh, Sean Hannity. Order yourself a set of postcards here.

BTW my 4yo wants to know why she doesn't get the day off from school, "for candy."

Monday, October 30

Is is hot in here, or is it just me?

Yes, it's a really big news story when both Forbes and Aljazeera.net (love linking to them, gets my federal agency hits way up) are covering it.

It turns out that if we don't do something about global warming, we might have another worldwide depression, on a scale with the 1930's. Do we have your attention yet? I mean, I know Wife Swap is on tonight, but it's a repeat, and gee, unlike boring Global Warming, that movie was last summer, worldwide depression might garnish :57 with Katie Couric, you know what I mean?

The Brits sure do know how to write a Downing Street Memo, don't they? Trying to make up for the war before you go, Tony? Too late.

I hate to get all self-referential here but this story reminds me of my own Labor Day post about WalMart. Once again, it's fascinating that the negative story that gets the most play in MSM is not that global warming is bad for the environment, children, animal and plant life, you know, all of us. The negative story that gets play is that...

Global Warming is bad for business and the economy.

Once again, the dialogue itself shows just how much we've lost.

But before we leave the environment issue and go watch something else it turns out that as far as Congressmen go, there's a direct correlation between being a corrupt money-soaked butt boy for Jack Abramoff AND getting a nice fat zero on the League of Conservation Voters Scorecard. Oh. Besides that they're also all Republicans. Take a look at the letter after the name on the Zero Percent Club. R. R. R. R. R. You get my drift.

While you're thinking about the environment and whether or not you want to support it, you might also look at the Sierra Club's list of endorsements for the House and Senate this year. The letters after the names there are also interesting. Oh! Lincoln Chaffee. There's an R. Is he sure?

(It also looks like Sierra Club is on the fence in Connecticut, more's the pity, go Ned.)

On topic: we Dems want paper ballots: 100% post-consumer recycled printed with soy ink. Thank you.

Update: Boy, you guys look at the panties rather than comment on the text! Hmm. Anyway, most of the comments have been on organic stuff rather than global warming. There was a dearth of panties on fire images on the web this morning.

Kevin's personal comments on banana eating got me thinking. Not. But seriously, we often think about consuming organic produce as being a pro-active statement towards ecology, but isn't it also a retreat from the actual marketplace? Those who can afford it can have "clean" food, "clean" (bottled) water, and "clean" air (I'm sure someday McMansions will come with their own oxygen generators a la Michael Jackson.) And if we're supporting organic farming with the hopes that someday all of us can afford better food, good for us. I don't see that at the super expensive Fresh Market and Whole Foods grocery store chains, though. Call me a Commie, but I see class divisions.

Sunday, October 29


To those of you who had problems posting comments the past couple. Blogger's been a pill all weekend.

Off topic, let's all say the leftie blogger pledge together, now, shall we?

This is no time for partisan bickering. Therefore, this blog stands with President Bush: from this time forward, I will NEVER mention the need to "stay the course" in Iraq.

I challenge members of the so-called "reality-based community" to join me in taking this pledge.

Originally from David Stephenson. (Congratulations on the new grandson, too, David: 7 lbs. 11 oz. 20" Friday night at 11:30 pm. Many blessings.)

Saturday, October 28

"Panties," he said.

Yeah, he talked about the stupidity of the Congress discussing a flag burning amendment this past summer. "I was walking by a sex shop in Reno, Nevada, which tells you what my life is like..." he said, and he proceeded to describe some crotchless American Flag panties, and that maybe f-ing the American Flag is worse than burning it.

At least, I thought that's what he was talking about. He described them as American Flag panties with a hole in the back. Hmm. Googlegooglegoogle...

It was a great show. Lewis alluded several times to his concern that there might be some Christians in the audience, as well as some Republicans. He even ended the show saying that it took guts for the University to invite him. Which it did.

The audience was full of students, natch, but there were a few "adults" as Lewis called them. It actually amazed me that anyone would dress up for a date to go see Lewis Black. I wore my C&L T-shirt and Mr. BG's peace sign necklace and my hair down like a hippie.

And yeah, I suppose one or two former Bush voters coulda been in the audience. Hack, cough. And Lewis dealt with that in a very Frank Zappa way--his "there is no bad language" riff was great. But the thing Lewis doesn't get (because he hasn't lived in the South for a decade like I have) is the "bless his heart" motif that most Southerners have coursing through their veins more than grits for breakfast. "Bless his/her heart" is a dismissive insult that, here in the South, is tossed off as a compliment, and it's also used in the case to say "hey, that's your problem, I'm moving on".

Two examples:

Dismissive insult: "She has a really big nose, bless her heart."
That's your problem: "My husband is in the hospital and my car doesn't work and my kids are sick with flu." "Oh! Bless your heart!"

So I kinda wish I could have had two minutes with Lewis before he went on, just to explain this. 'Cause he can get up on stage and say as many f*cks and insult Bush and even joke about Jesus...

"He's a liberal Jew comedian from New York City, bless his heart."

If he comes to your city (schedule here), go.

Friday, October 27

Yep, here's another independent expenditure ad Ken Mehlman can't pull out of...

The hilarious boys at CFAV are keeping bizay this campaign season. It's true you boys, Santorum is on my list, too.

Thursday, October 26

Pick a Card for Thursday

Did you see this?

It's been nearly two years since Denver Nuggets superstar Carmelo Anthony and MTV VJ La La Vazquez got engaged, and Vazquez is a bit prickly about nagging questions concerning a wedding date.

[La La:] "What people don't realize is Melo and I got engaged really quick after we met each other. We're still in that early stage. By the time we do get married, we might have known each other three, four, maybe five years. A lot of people have been together that long and (are) not even in the engagement stage."

La La? A little calendar tip from Blue Gal: Your relationship is past the "early stage" when your BABY is due in MARCH. Get to know the daddy, 'kay?

Number Two: Don't forget to check out the Rising Hegemon After Dark "Character Counts" Calendar for 2007. It's not easy on the eyes or necessarily safe for work, specially if you work for the RNC.

3: For those of you who like living in the past, V is right. Some people have lots of "tyme on their hannds". But Geoffrey Chaucer Hath a Blog is brilliant, nonetheless.

IV: Certain people have a panty or two in a wad about my calling KO "beautiful meat." Of course, ma hunnies, I meant the meat between his ears. Yeah.

In Keith We Trust panties

Listen, given a pair of clean sheets and a couple of hours of "solitude" Blue Gal could make Richard Dawkins believe in God and David Kuo believe in the Devil. (Preferably not at the same time..."The theological implications are staggering! STAGGERING, I tell you!") And KO? Well, don' he put the sir in sirloin. mmm mmm mmm. (And I mean that in the "Mensa" way.)

Wednesday, October 25

Memo to Mr. Sparkle Gaze

I do not deserve you.

And I was totally bowled over by this:


But I will keep it forever. Thank you.

Loretta Nall on Olbermann! Updated

Update: Kathy at Birmingham Blues found the video of the interview. It's only three minutes, well worth watching. Thanks, Kathy.

I'm going to try to get went to the NBC studio to watch her do her stuff. She's fab. And she's bringing a lot of traffic to Blue Gal (the blog) these days, too.

Um, I have no idea what the "Newt Gingrich pedofile" search is about.

If anyone has video they could let me post to YouTube I'd really appreciate it. Her segment was under three minutes at the end of the show and she totally rocked.

The live in the studio experience was as I expected: like watching paint dry. It's a waiting game, and natch I brought my knitting, just as Julia Roberts would have done. Once Loretta was on with KO it went very quickly. But Loretta was great and again I was so impressed that KO just let her talk. That is such a graceful thing and something you hardly ever hear on "if my guest talks for fifteen seconds in a row I'm not doing my job" Fox News.

Loretta got her anti-drug war statement out there, a very strong statement against the Iraq War (she thinks governors should band together to insist that their National Guard troops be sent home) and a statement in favor of naturalizing Mexican immigrants already in this country. Not exactly the Democratic platform, but I kept saying to myself, why isn't it? Maybe it's because, pardon my drawl, much of the Alabama Democratic Party is a buncha pussies, whereas Loretta with her boobs and her panty free bottom is one tough momma and just what this state needs to wake up.

Memo to Loretta: Here is a picture of the Democratic candidate for Governor:



Now I DEFINITELY do not go after women candidates for how they dress. But in practically every shot out there of Baxley on google images, this "Democrat" is wearing red. Now Lucy, Blue Gal her own self is a vibrant winter, and if you can wear clear red like that you can wear cobalt blue, too. Shit, woman, your campaign buttons and t-shirt are red, too. And you're a DEMOCRAT? Who are you trying to fool? Blue Gal takes offense.

Anyhow, tonight is probably the closest I'll ever get to this beautiful meat:

Mmm mmm. Tonight KO proved to me that in addition to being a sex god and a brilliant propagandist for our side, he is also a consummate professional and all around gentleman. In spite of the fact that the reason Loretta was there was all the hubbub about her boobs, KO used that as an introduction and then let Loretta talk about the issues. He let her talk, even though the show was running long and he could have taken more time to make the end of the show all about him. I used to love Keith. Now I like him, too.

Crossposting at Kos. Go recommend if you like.

Da Bomb!

Info on why and how here. Thanks, Doug.

--AZ-Sen: Jon Kyl

--AZ-01: Rick Renzi

--AZ-05: J.D. Hayworth

--CA-04: John Doolittle

--CA-11: Richard Pombo

--CA-50: Brian Bilbray

--CO-04: Marilyn Musgrave

--CO-05: Doug Lamborn

--CO-07: Rick O'Donnell

--CT-04: Christopher Shays

--FL-13: Vernon Buchanan

--FL-16: Joe Negron

--FL-22: Clay Shaw

--ID-01: Bill Sali

--IL-06: Peter Roskam

--IL-10: Mark Kirk

--IL-14: Dennis Hastert

--IN-02: Chris Chocola

--IN-08: John Hostettler

--IA-01: Mike Whalen

--KS-02: Jim Ryun

--KY-03: Anne Northup

--KY-04: Geoff Davis

--MD-Sen: Michael Steele

--MN-01: Gil Gutknecht

--MN-06: Michele Bachmann

--MO-Sen: Jim Talent

--MT-Sen: Conrad Burns

--NV-03: Jon Porter

--NH-02: Charlie Bass

--NJ-07: Mike Ferguson

--NM-01: Heather Wilson

--NY-03: Peter King

--NY-20: John Sweeney

--NY-26: Tom Reynolds

--NY-29: Randy Kuhl

--NC-08: Robin Hayes

--NC-11: Charles Taylor

--OH-01: Steve Chabot

--OH-02: Jean Schmidt

--OH-15: Deborah Pryce

--OH-18: Joy Padgett

--PA-04: Melissa Hart

--PA-07: Curt Weldon

--PA-08: Mike Fitzpatrick

--PA-10: Don Sherwood

--RI-Sen: Lincoln Chafee

--TN-Sen: Bob Corker

--VA-Sen: George Allen

--VA-10: Frank Wolf

--WA-Sen: Mike McGavick

--WA-08: Dave Reichert

And while we're in the counting house...

Maybe I need to take a break from NPR. I just pisses me off that Karl Rove...oh, why even bother.

"I see several things," Rove says. "I'm allowed to see the polls on the individual races. And after all, this does come down to individual contests between individual candidates."

Oooh! Karl Rove is "allowed" to see super-secret poll numbers! Meanwhile some sillies among us are wondering why he's still "allowed" inside the White House...

In addition to polls not generally available to the public, Rove says the Republicans have a huge financial advantage in the home stretch.

Citing spending and contribution reports, Rove said, "at the end of August, in 30 of the most competitive races in the country -- the House races -- the Republicans had $33 million cash on hand and Democrats had just over $14 million."

I mean, I guess if anyone's gonna be an unapologetic this is a money game stinkhole, it's gonna be Karl. But hey, while we're in the counting house, looks like some other "planned spending" has gotten a little outta hand...

Well, hump-a-Hummer, Mister Vice!

Vice President "Last Throes" Cheney said on NPR this morning:

"I would have expected that the political process we set in motion -- the three national elections and so forth -- would have resulted in a lower level of violence than we're seeing today," Cheney told Juan Williams. "It hasn't happened yet. I can't say that we're over the hump in terms of violence, no."

That's right, Mr. Halliburton said "hump."

Tuesday, October 24

Having a bit of a hit parade here, folks...stand by

Ew. Thanks, Quaker Dave, for "finding" these.

Blue Gal is getting hits like only a mention by Mike can usually give her. But this time, it's people googling Loretta Nall. The post, from last March, is getting all this attention because Loretta's been written up by AP, CBS, etc. etc. in the past few days. There's apparently a lot of press to come. Her website has been down for too many hits on and off since Sunday.

I wish her all the best. As I've said many times before, this state needs shaking up, and she's a shaker, baby.

Happy Birthday Mr. Blue Gal. I love you.

It's frequent commenter Comrade Kevin's birthday, too. No relation. Have a good one, doll.

Monday, October 23

Please. Drop. Everything.

And go visit my fellow Aristocrat Paul Hinrichs. He had a subdural hematoma this past weekend. Nasty hospital yuck blech oh-my-god experience. He's home now.

Those of you who blog know. It does not matter that we've never met f2f. It does not matter. Paul is one of the family. He is one of the goddamn family.

Give a man some lovin. And thanks.

Paul, honey, these are for you. I hereby declare you comrade of the soft revolution:

Charity begins...

Isn't that fab? Click the image to order. It's from Two Political Junkies' Cafepress store.

And speaking of Cafepress stores, I wanted to let all of you know that thanks to your generosity at the Blue Gal Cafepress Store, I'm sending my first check to the Electronic Frontier Foundation. EFF gets at least 10% of my profits (in this case decidedly more because I'm also joining EFF this first round). Electronic Frontier Foundation is on the front lines in protecting the rights of bloggers. Thank you again.

I've also been giving a lot of thought to the comments at my post on Richard Dawkins. Particularly how can one be "of faith" and still support common sense for the common good. One way, as I've said before, is Americans United for the Separation of Church and State. I actually expect that MOST of their supporters, believe it or not, are church-going Christians who know that government endorsement of one brand of religion is against both the demands of the US Constitution and the teachings of Jesus.

AU is involved in a project which I've also pimped before: First Freedom First. (Don't mis-type it "Frist". That kinda goes against the whole point there.) If you look at the eight little balloons on their website you'll see they include "sound science" and "academic integrity." Stuff I'm sure is in Dawkin's latest book.

I'm all for what it says on the FFF site:

Safeguarding separation of church and state and protecting religious liberty ensures that public tax dollars will not be invested in teaching religion as science or funding private religious education.

Some advocacy groups want to change the science curriculum to reflect their religious beliefs. However, mainstream scientists flatly reject “intelligent design” and other forms of “creationism” as a thinly veiled attempt to bring religion into public schools. The battle here is political, not scientific.

...Sound science has also been limited in other ways. The FDA, for example, has overruled the findings of doctors and scientists and obstructed our ability to obtain emergency contraceptives. This action seems to have been taken based solely on the religious beliefs of political appointees and those who influence them.

Manipulating scientific advancements because of narrow religious beliefs endangers us all.

That said I doubt Dawkins and I would have very much to argue about.

Sunday, October 22

My first time.

And Drifty, honey, I'll do it with you if I ever move to Chicago. xoxo

Saturday, October 21

It's a good weekend when...

Dick Armey's bitch slap of James Dobson finally gets pasted on page one of the New York Frickin' Times. (Friday's issue)

To avoid Times Select, here's the skinny from Blue Bayou at the Houston Chronicle, emphasis mine:

In the interview, Armey responded pointedly when Sager asked why he thought Christian conservatives seemed more powerful now than in the 1990s.

"To a large extent, because Dobson and his gang of thugs are real nasty bullies," Armey said. "I pray devoutly every day, but being a Christian is no excuse for being stupid. There's a high demagoguery coefficient to issues like prayer in schools. Demagoguery doesn't work unless it's dumb . . . These issues are easy for the intellectually lazy and can appeal to a large demographic."

Rep. Mark Souder of Indiana commented on Armey's statement:

So why would Armey lash out? One theory Souder advanced is that his former leader hadn't really been committed to the social-conservative agenda.

"I heard him talk about his faith, and I heard him talk about these issues, and I have a tough time reconciling how he wanted to do things for the Christian conservative movement with turning around and calling us 'thugs,' " Souder said.

Oh, I don't know, he read a Bible and looked at the actions of groups like Focus on the Family and saw a bit of a disconnect?

Repubs "not really committed" to the social-conservative agenda. Ya know, the D for "duh" file gets thicker every single day.

Friday, October 20

Rushing to be first....

I usually don't post more than once a day, but somebody's going to beat me to this way obvious Tony Snow joke if I don't jump first.

From the White House Briefing October 19, 10:22 am EST:

MR. SNOW: Again, as I said, we have, in fact, considered -- we consider lots of things. We've thought about partition, for a series of reasons --

Q Phased withdrawal?

MR. SNOW: -- again, you don't -- you withdraw when you win. Phased withdrawal is a way of saying, regardless of what the conditions are on the ground, we're going to get out of Dodge.

Q The 5 percent solution --


Q Non-starter?

MR. SNOW: Non-starter.

...in a time of war you have shifting conditions, and you do have to adjust. That's the only way in which you can continue to pursue victory.

So we certainly are always considering new ideas, and we will reconsider old ideas to see if we think suddenly they have currency.

Q The best intelligence on when you may have something to assess is well after the election?

MR. SNOW: You're going to have to ask -- I think it's best to talk to Jim Baker and Lee Hamilton because they know the timetables on that.

Okay, say it with me, now: Shorter Tony Snow:

But Blue Gal, are your panties good for Israel?

I had to title it that because a college chum did walk up to the mike at my wedding reception and ask if my marriage was good for Israel. That's what happens to Brandeis graduates, folks.

The Atlantic Monthly
has a really cool feature where they ask a couple poll questions of a group of experts. The cool part is that they publish the results and additional comments without telling who said what. That relative anonymity allows for a more honest response, I suspect. There is a great deal of hesitation to go "on the record" against the Israeli government, for fear that the Jewish Defense League will start picketing your house or worse. The way Atlantic Monthly sets this up, and even has a caveat that "not all respondents answered all questions," any of the foreign policy experts answering the Israel poll for November can just say, "That was Zbigniew Brzezinski. Zbig said that."

How would you describe U.S. support for Israel under the Bush administration?

Too Strong: 62%
About Right: 38%

And do the math, people. Of 39 highly respected foreign policy experts, how many of them think the Bush Administration is supporting Israel too much? That's right, zero! (No, they didn't ask Condi this time. I said respected foreign policy experts.)

The comments are even funnier, if they weren't so sad.

...sometimes, the U.S. needs to point out when the Israelis are making a mistake.

We have now become so closely identified with Israel, ...as the result of the Lebanon conflict and our step away from systematic negotiation of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict—that we may actually be hurting Israel’s longer-range interests.

Filed under, "duh":

The Bush Administration has chosen to treat Middle East diplomacy as a win/lose or zero-sum game in which Syrian, Iranian, Hezbollah, or Hamas gains are, by definition, American losses, and vice-versa. The result, of course, is the United States always loses, because if you insist that the population of the region choose between Syria, Iran, Hezbollah, and Hamas, on the one hand, or the United States and Israel on the other, they are going to chose the other side every time.

Yeah, tough Shiite, our duet will never win the Arabic Idol cell phone vote, either. But here's my personal favorite:

[We've been] too uncritical (as in Lebanon), which doesn’t help the U.S.-Israeli alliance at all — friends don’t let friends drive drunk.

That Zbig cracks me up!

Thursday, October 19

Too much Media Matters can be bad for your butt.

Mark Williams: "if we vote Democrat, that just hastens the day we disappear in a nuclear holocaust."

Norah O'Donnell: "We now have Karl Rove indicating that he is confident of a Republican victory in November."

: "[M]aking sure Nancy Pelosi doesn't become the [House] speaker" is "worth ... dying for"

I'm serious. If any more GOP smoke gets blown up my ass, I'll be floating to the pissed-off-planet of Pluto.

Wednesday, October 18

Blue Gal hearts Richard Dawkins. Really.

Yeah, maybe calling myself a Christian is a little misleading. I love Richard Dawkins. He's bright and funny and such an excellent communicator. And I love Stephen Colbert, that good lil' Catholic boy, for having him on his show.

I'm sorry this youtube cuts off Colbert's opening joke: "My next guest says there is no God. Well, you know what? He'll have an eternity in hell to prove it."

I won't get into what yours truly, who still considers herself a believer, thinks about what "God" thinks of these two men. Suffice it to say Deity doesn't suffer fools, and appreciates intelligence. Going to hell? Feh. Divine Love won't let these two boys that far from her kitchen table. They're just too interesting.

Update: The wiki page on Dawkins has lots of links, including on-line essays by Dawkins. BG is looking forward to reading The God Delusion. Oh, and if you don't think he's cool yet, he's married to Romana from Doctor Who. There ya go.

Why they hate us, part 533...


Mumbai, India

Manila, Philippines.

301 Highland View Drive, Birmingham, Alabama

The house at 301 Highland View Drive is one of three participating in the 2006 Parade of Homes. Rolling hills and valleys make up the view from this four-bedroom, three-and-one-half-bath house with about 4,870 square feet.

Its exterior is brick with wrought iron accents and a multi-gabled roof. The house is listed at $1,204,000. [source]

Or, as the developer puts it:

No matter where you choose to build in Highland Lakes, you can be assured of gated, retreat-like privacy with executive convenience. Highland Lakes is a truly unique community of gracious homes, quiet streets and parks. It's a neighborhood in touch with today's world, but somehow slightly removed from it.

I imagine the "somehow" has something to do with the guard at the gate. This post brought to you by LowerMyBills.com:

Tuesday, October 17

Are you white? Just asking.

with thanks to entry level Sara for the image

I know, that's an extremely provocative question. But bear with me. [Full disclosure: Blue Gal is decidedly pink all over, burns a little too easily, and does not wear a bathing suit in public.]

I've been thinking about the attention being given to that 300 million Americans number and all the talk about how America is no longer majority "white" and is getting "browner" all the time, and how the race-hatred against Hispanics is only the latest in our nation's long history of suspecting the "outsider."

I recently read an article (it's on page 23 of this pdf file if you're interested) which introduced me to the concept of Critical Race Theory. If you want to tell me I've had my head in the sand for years having never heard of this before, go ahead, I'm STILL on Mommy-track and I don't give a rat's butt.

Critical Race Theory holds that racist behavior is not an aberration but normal practice. The theory suggests that elites only act against racist behavior when it serves their own purposes; that race is a social, not biological, construct; and that characteristics ascribed to a particular race change based on the needs of the ruling class. For example, according to this theory, during the era of plantation slavery African Americans were characterized as “carefree” and “childlike” in order to rationalize enslavement. Now, however, black Americans are characterized as “menacing” and “threatening” in order to justify current socio-economic policies.

"Socio-economic policies" like pulling over drivers for "DWB" -- Driving While Black. If Critical Race Theory is accurate, then the cultural majority is rationalizing the public policies endorsed by that majority, by portraying other races with generalities, i.e. if you're black, you are likely a criminal, if you're Arab, you are likely a terrorist, if you're Hispanic, you are likely an illegal.

Oh. That's what they are saying.

I did a little internet research and actually found an academic website discussing what "whiteness" means. All the bullshit meters went off in my head simultaneously, but I kept reading. And I kept thinking about that whole "race is a social, not biological, construct" thing.

Because you see, today, the cultural majority would say that Italians, Germans, most Jews (it depends) and the Irish fall under the grand category of White America. But listen up people. There was a time in the past two-hundred-and-thirty-year history of this nation when that was not the case. Benjamin Franklin complained in a letter about the influx of Germans and how they were not, and could never be, true Americans. Teddy Roosevelt decried the influx of high-birthrate southern Europeans (egad, Catholic too!) and that "white" America was committing "race suicide" by not matching them baby for baby. And during our Civil War and after, the Irish were used to load dynamite onto ships because slaves were too valuable to be used in a job where you could blow up any minute.

Where I take Critical Race Theory from here is that it is only a matter of time until the cultural majority, whether because they are totally outnumbered or because the economic clout of the Hispanic majority makes it in the best interest of the dominant to do so, simply accepts Mexican-Americans as white. Much will depend, I think, on whether the Hispanic community decides on the whole to cling to their language, specifically and as a badge of cultural honor. I think that the ecomomic pressure to use the official language of the internet is too great, and English will be the fire under the melting pot, but I could be wrong.

If I may adopt a gross generalization of my own? Americans never take the long view and rarely look down the family tree to see their own outsider origins.

And the elephant in the room is what this says about African Americans. I think that is the point. Without getting too bogged down in pseudo-intellectual theory (which still sets off the bullshit meters in my head and always will) we need to ask the question about Blacks and the American illusion of the melting pot. It's a big question, especially for us liberals, some of whom want to sing Kumbaya and believe that racial equality is a goal we can work toward. I'm not saying it isn't. But if we don't listen to what Blacks other than Oprah have to say about this, we're not going to get very far. I agree with Bill Clinton that addressing racial and ethnic conflict is as important to our future as tackling global warming and poverty. This pink chick's not gonna let the race issue drop.

Monday, October 16


The rats are really jumping off the ship, folks.

From the Oct 16 New Yorker, "Murdoch's Game" by John Cassidy, breathlessly subheaded, "Will he move left in 2008?"

The success of Fox News Channel, which Murdoch launched in 1996, has secured his reputation as a strident conservative, so it came as a shock to both his right-wing allies and his liberal enemies when, in July, he hosted a fund-raising breakfast for Hillary Rodham Clinton.

...The fund-raiser for Hillary Clinton took place on July 17th, at News Corp.’s midtown tower, which houses the Post and Fox News. Among the News Corp. executives who attended were Roger Ailes, the veteran Republican operative who runs Fox News, and Col Allan, the pugnacious, Australian-born editor of the Post. Clinton spoke for about twenty minutes, and then took questions. The breakfast raised more than sixty thousand dollars for Clinton’s senatorial re-election campaign—neither Ailes nor Allan contributed any money—and it led to speculation that Murdoch was preparing to endorse Hillary in the 2008 Presidential campaign.

Appearing on “The Charlie Rose Show” on July 20th, Murdoch said that an endorsement was “unlikely,” which didn’t exactly reassure conservatives. In August, they became more agitated after Murdoch played host to Bill Clinton and Al Gore at a News Corp. retreat in California. “The nature of the event . . . confirms our suspicion that Murdoch may be moving left as the 2008 U.S. presidential election approaches, and that he may bring his ‘conservative’ news properties with him,” Cliff Kincaid, an editor at Accuracy in Media, a conservative watchdog group, commented on the organization’s Web site.

Look, it should come as no surprise to anyone that Rupert Murdoch knows which side his crumpets are buttered on. If the Dems are gonna landslide anytime in the next couple, Rupert shall take care of Rupert. This thang with the Clintons, to my mind, is rich New York power lobby types taking care of each other.

But ooh it does sound delish. What happens if Murdoch turns left? (and yes, ma blogger hunnies, the Photoshop possibilities are endless. Be my guest.)

'Course many of us lefties are gagging at the thought that a fundraiser for Hillary is considered "turning left." If that's a left turn, you'd have to be right of east Je...oh, NEVERmind.

But if Murdoch is turning left, and wants cred with the lefties, he's going to have to atone. How, you ask? Oh, ma hunnies, Blue Gal has a list:

1. Show up at my front door each month for the next two years. Roll the cameras. Knock, and when I answer, drop to your knees and beg forgiveness for everything from the dawn of Reagan to the present. Then nicely ask if you may kiss my ass. Leave.

2. The rest of the month you will knock on doors not for Hillary, but for Kucinich and Feingold. Roll the cameras. Agree with everything they say. Then give a big wad of money to Al Franken and tell him to spend it however he wants and to come back to you when he runs out. Match dollar-for-dollar George Soros' contribution to Media Matters, then double that and give it to the Electronic Frontier Foundation. For a start.

3. Tell the Fox on-air "personalities" they require a wardrobe makeover:

Sunday, October 15

A quote from Emerson

I came across this speech by Ralph Waldo Emerson from 1838, and while it's too late tonight to slog through the whole thing, I loved this excerpt:

Jesus Christ belonged to the true race of prophets. He saw with open eye the mystery of the soul. Drawn by its severe harmony, ravished with its beauty, he lived in it, and had his being there. Alone in all history, he estimated the greatness of man. One man was true to what is in you and me. He saw that God incarnates himself in man, and evermore goes forth anew to take possession of his world. He said, in this jubilee of sublime emotion, `I am divine. Through me, God acts; through me, speaks. Would you see God, see me; or, see thee, when thou also thinkest as I now think.' But what a distortion did his doctrine and memory suffer in the same, in the next, and the following ages! There is no doctrine of the Reason which will bear to be taught by the Understanding. The understanding caught this high chant from the poet's lips, and said, in the next age, `This was Jehovah come down out of heaven. I will kill you, if you say he was a man.' The idioms of his language, and the figures of his rhetoric, have usurped the place of his truth; and churches are not built on his principles, but on his tropes. ...

Let me admonish you, first of all, to go alone; to refuse the good models, even those which are sacred in the imagination of men, and dare to love God without mediator or veil.

Shorter Emerson: Yo. Jesus wasn't God, wasn't saying he was God. He was just high on being, for all of us. And the church fucked. it. up. big time, primarily to suit their own sense of self perpetuation. Screw "The Church" and start over.

Emerson was one radical dude. But it's okay to just take my word for it. I'll get some real panties up tomorrow.

Saturday, October 14

Gerry Studds, RIP

As I posted over at Konagod:

I was really sorry to hear about this. I'm also sorry that Studds' name was abused by the right to counter the Foley thing. Living in Massachusetts in the early '80s, I knew of Studds as a vibrant, hyper-intelligent congressman who served the people of his district very well. That they re-elected him several times after the censure issue not only indicates what a good congressman he was, it also indicates that the enlightened voters of Massachusetts sincerely did not give a fuck who he was fucking.

I continue to feel that the real abuse in the Foley thing was not the age of his targets (though that's totally creepy), it is the hypocrisy of a man hitting on teenage boys while at the same time voting for the Protection of Marriage Amendment and getting positives all over the place from the Christian Coalition, not to mention the pure irony of serving as chairman of the committee on missing and exploited children. And his bosses covered up for his on-the-job hand jobs to protect a safe seat. The whole sanctimonious Republican crap has had its mask ripped off, good riddance.

Gerry Studds: one less intelligent person on the planet. You'll be missed.

Friday, October 13

The GOP panties are out of the bottle!

I'm not just talking about the David Kuo book.

With a tip of something tasty to Steve O at Bring It On! and a hug around the neck to MF for bringing this to my attention, comes this lovely story...

In a breach of privacy, the Republican National Committee erroneously e-mailed a list that contained the names, races, and Social Security numbers of dozens of top Republican donors — and that identified two of the contributors as Muslim — to this [New York Sun] reporter.

In the course of preparing for a Washington fund-raiser on Friday headlined by President Bush, an RNC staffer, Dee Dee Lancaster, intended to e-mail a security list of confirmed guests to other event planners and the Secret Service. But Ms. Lancaster mistyped one of the addresses, and the e-mail wound up in the Gmail account of this reporter.

...The attached spreadsheet of 76 guests included category headings with Social Security numbers, dates of birth, and "race." The race of all but three were listed as "Caucasian." One was identified as "Asian," and the race of two others, Malik and Seeme Hasan, was listed as "Muslim."

The classification drew criticism from Mrs. Hasan, who founded a group called Muslims for Bush and who, along with her husband, has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to Republican committees and candidates in recent years.

"The only word I can think of is not very nice," Mrs. Hasan said yesterday in a telephone interview from her home in Colorado.

Okay. Where do I begin?

Does anybody here need me to make a joke about Republican female staffers named Dee Dee? Didn't think so.

'Kay. Let's talk for a minute about Malik, Seeme, and "Muslims for Bush." How fortunate that all two of you have enough money to attend major league GOP fundraisers. Sumpin' tells me the other six gobzillion Muslims on the planet have better things to do with their money. Like change their religion into a "race." So they can be profiled for a fundraising party. I understand those Race the Muslim fundraising parties at Gitmo can get pretty rowdy.

Mrs. Hasan, "not very nice" is three words, not one. But since we now realize Republican women can't type or count, let me type for you and Dee Dee the name of one Republican I hope gets kicked out of office this fall: Rick Santorum, Dennis Hastert, and George Allen.

By the way Mrs. Hasan: thanks for all the money, and Dee Dee is really, really sorry about exposing you to possible identity theft. Plus now every Muslim in the world knows your name and that you give big money to you-know-who. Not to mention the Muslim thing, which as you say, is not very nice. (Hope your number's unlisted.)

UPDATE: OMG. I can't believe I fell down on the job and didn't google Muslims for Bush. Guess what? They're now called "Muslims for America." I guess the name change is to fix the little public relations problem "Muslims for Bush" was having outside the Green Zone. Good luck with that, Seeme. And if you need any clerical help, just send Dee Dee an email.

Off topic: David Kuo has started a blog over at Beliefnet, heavy on the Christian testimony. I've left a comment to try to point him to a higher calling. If you have something to say (and please, dammit, be respectful) it might make a difference in how this story plays out. I myself left him a long comment. Tell him BG sent you. And thanks.

Thursday, October 12

Sometimes you feel like a...

According to Kuo, Karl Rove's office referred to evangelical leaders as 'the nuts.'

I'm just trying to figure out who disagrees with him.

It's said that Christians should stay unspotted from the world. Many of them, I'm sure, don't read a newspaper or watch anything other than FOX and consider themselves informed enough for Jesus Christ. But Christians are not unspotted if their heads are so seriously up their ass as to think Pat Robertson is sane. (There's a good anti-Robertson pro-Christian post here, btw.)

So I went looking at the right wing blogosphere to see how they were spinning this. Didn't find too much, not surprising. If this is only being reported by KO and C&L then the left-wing choir knows about it and that's all. Did find this one, tho:

What We Got Instead of Faith-Based Initiatives

...we got something better than faith-based charities from this administration.

Their names are Roberts and Alito.

They tried that Miers crap on us and that would have been more faith-based charities sunshine up the rump, but we didn’t lay down for it and we got a real justice appointed.

In short, I think we came out ahead.

This is at southernappeal dot org. Nope, no linky.

Yep, drives me nuts, too. They're Right, and they're right. But I wonder if any of the wingnut Christians realize that putting their faith in Alito (or Robertson, or Bush) as a stand-in for Jesus is, um, HERESY. Meebe certain Christians are jus' paying for the sin of faith in false gods, ya think? Plus remember, you good lil' Baptists, he's Roman Catholic. Alito. Not Jesus. Oh, wait, depends on who you talk to. Well, discuss that little theological point off-blog, please.

On topic: Omnipotent Poobah wrote a great piece this morning called "An Atheist Defense of Faith", and said some very nice things about yours truly, thanks OP, over at Bring It On.

Off topic: My apologies to the blog stat junkies out there. My five hundredth post was a couple days ago. I wasn't paying attention. Sorry.

Wednesday, October 11

Wondering if the war on terror is permanent?

Alabama has a license plate. Here it is, unedited:


When I saw this on the car in front of me this morning, I thought, oh man. This is just like the Choose Life anti-abortion propaganda license plate issued by the state. Alabama claims this license plate is about supporting adoption, but um, the Center for Reproductive Rights thinks differently.

But anyway. Turns out the endless war on terrah license plates are only for veterans of the endless war on terrah, as if we aren't all veterans of this lie-fest. I'm just sorry I was on the interstate, and couldn't walk up to the owner of this license plate, with all due respect to our troops, and tell him his license plate was totally left-wing bloggable.

I had time to think on my school carpool commute and you know, photoshopping is fun. This with a tip of something tasty to those nasty folks at T-Shirt Hell:

Tuesday, October 10

Hey! Let's all go to college!

An article by Clive Crook in November's Atlantic Monthly argues that in a society like ours where the majority of young people now go to college, college itself becomes a cheapened commodity. Jobs that used to be entry-level from high school, to which one could work oneself "up," now require a college diploma. Crook gives the example of Hotel/Motel Management, but does not say whether the degree or the requirement for one came first.

More high school graduates than ever are going on to college. But rather than the rising tide of education raising all economic boats, as parents have always hoped, it is clear that job opportunity (and income) winds up being a result of who your parents are and what kind of college education they can buy for you. "[P]arental incomes better predict children's incomes in the United States than they used to...America is becoming less meritocratic."

What Clive doesn't discuss are two other factors: the decimation of both labor unions and the industrial base in the United States in the 1970s and 80s, and the fact that since that time, real wages have failed to keep up with inflation, particularly in the housing market. Unlike the days when factory jobs were more plentiful, a young person without higher education simply cannot make enough money in this country to live on.

More and more it seems to me the job market has two opportunities: computer programmer oops sorry, those jobs are being exported to India, and Wal Mart. Bank tellers have four years of college or at least two. You wind up spending at least $45,000 to make a starting salary of less than that amount before taxes each year if you're lucky.

There are some secrets in this story: college educated black women make more money in the course of their lifetimes than college educated white women, due to two factors: black women are less likely to stop working when they have a child, and are more likely to be hired to management positions in the public sector, where benefits are high and salaries good.

I think Crook's (sorry for that name, but that's really it) basic question is worth discussing. Do we really want a society where everybody HAS to have a college education? For one thing, it leads to college classes where a great many students want to know what ancient history, philosophy, and literature have to do with their getting a job, and no one wants to hear the article's argument that "enlightenment, not productivity, is the chief social justification for four years at college."

Then there are the college students who party their four years away. What is their contribution to society? My sister had a classmate in one of her history classes say, "I got a D-minus. Thank God! All I needed was the credit!" Credit for what? He's got the diploma now, so I guess he can work at Hampton Inn.

When I was getting my second master's degree (Don't get me started. I'm a blogger now. Enlightened, not productive! See?) my special education professor pointed out that one of the big problems with No Child Left Behind is that it expects each and every child to be a scholar. We don't expect every child to be an athlete, but we expect them to be scholars, even if they have mental retardation (MR students are tested and their test scores count toward the public school's overall average), and even without funding the mandate. We all must go to college, even to work behind the desk at the downtown Marriott. Our nation's future depends upon it.

Sunday, October 8

Trying to stay above the fray, but.

Breast Cancer Barbie.

Oh, I'm sorry. Pink Ribbon Barbie. Is she post-op? I wonder if she comes with stoma bags and a bill for the chemo drugs.

Coming soon, Hospice Patient Barbie, and Funeral Barbie (closed casket edition).

Breast Cancer is not pretty folks. All the pink ribbons in the universe will not make it so. 44,000 women die of breast cancer each year.

And what is all this "raise awareness" fuckness? If you are not aware of the pink ribbons, you are deaf and blind and there is a far less successful charity than the multi-million-dollar stock portfolio at Komen Foundation out there for you.

AL says it better than I can here and here. Just a snip:

If you think that breast cancer exists in a disease bubble with no political ramifications for its current and future victims, I urge you to shake the pink rhinestones out of your eyes. Read. Ask questions. Stop buying pink-ribbon crap.

Breast cancer isn’t making us stronger, despite the relentless campaign to celebrate “survivors”. It’s killing us.

Twisty put her chest out (and a real face to breast cancer, thank you) here. You can also read this. And "think before you pink" is here.

Sorry. I really didn't want to publicly choose sides against people with good motives, even if I think there's some attention-starvation psychosis going on. But it's time to move on to a new cause. Cervical cancer. Oh, wait, that might be (gasp) sexually transmitted. Can't make an awareness lipstick for that, now, can we?

Don't get me started.

Saturday, October 7

Blue Gal on assignment...

Posting here at Blue Gal and the Aristocrats may be light for the next four days.

I'm on assignment over at another blog called Crooks and Liars. (You may have heard of it.) One of the blogosphere's more studly members (his dexterity spans the timezones, trust me), Mike of the Blog Round Up, is taking a well-deserved vacation and has left me the tremendous honor of doing the round-up in his stead.

Yeah, yeah. I know what you're asking. "Who did she hafta 'instant message' to get THAT gig?!?" I may be out of my league, but John Amato owns that fine blog and will not let me go too far astray. For instance, I'm quite sure the following are verboten:

Which big name feminist bloggers also sell Mary Kay...
Round-up exclusive: Friday Cat Bloggers and the dawgs who love them...
C&L Bonus: free knitting patterns on the web!***
Mentos! Mentos! Mentos!

In all seriousness, I hope that regular C&L readers won't even notice I'm there. Regular readers to this blog are welcome to go completely batshit with glee. And please drop by over there for a visit and a comment. Thanks.

***Don't laugh. My second favorite google search after panties is knitting patterns.

Thursday, October 5

Dedicated to the GOP

After I saw KO tonight, and it was best ever, I think, I believe we should dedicate a lil' 90's number to the GOP. Concrete Blonde. "Everybody Knows." Seriously somebody should redo the song with current political images...

OH MAN! Youtube rocks! Somebody did it! Before the Foley bizness, but still.

Wednesday, October 4

Blue Gal's Mensa Minute

QUESTION: Waaaait a minit. Is the Smoot who won the Nobel Prize for Physics yesterday the same Smoot whose body was used by fellow MIT students to measure the Mass. Ave bridge in Boston in 1962?

ANSWER: Nope. Different Smoot.

George Smoot won the Nobel Prize this year because he "measured the cosmic background radiation that, according to the Big Bang theory, was created in the earliest phase of the universe." Not the same as measuring the Mass Ave. bridge. Close, but not.

Oliver Smoot was the bridge measuring guy.

This is not how a Mensan would go about this. We'd better get our facts from the online edition of Scientific American, people!

George Smoot, an M.I.T. graduate, famous physicist and author of the popular cosmology book Wrinkles in Time. George Smoot has nothing to do with the smoot.

Well, almost nothing--in an attempt to literally clear his name, George Smoot has made the history of the smoot available on his Web site.

But see? Nobel Prize Smoot went to MIT too. MIT is fulla Smoots.

This ends Blue Gal's Mensa Minute. Save it to your hard drive.

Tuesday, October 3

It's not really a candy panties kinda day, but...

Handknit licorice panties (sorry, pattern not included)
courtesy of "You Knit What Part 2".
Glad there's still a resource for unmitigated fug.

Quote of the day for the GOP:

"One of the primary symptoms of breakdown is an inability to cope."

Does anybody else feel like we're watching a train wreck? In slow motion?

Monday, October 2

Art and chaos day at Blue Gal

"Redistricting/2006" done on Scribbler by Blue Gal her own self.

Sometimes we need to take a break and look at some art. Besides, I just plain don't like Bob Woodward.

Carpe You Some Diem is a cool blog by an art teacher. We need more blogs like this.

Too bad she doesn't get as much traffic as David Byrne's art blog. His is cool, too, but it's not fair that celebrity trumps what's interesting.

If you just want to walk through a London gallery on your laptop today, the one at StART SPACE is a nice size, nice variety, not too much, and lets us all see what some artists are doing today. Just click through the list of artists on the left side. The candy/cupcake bras by Sarah Hall made me giggle and think at the same time, a good thing for art to do.

Sunday, October 1

Sunday Night Foley Follies

Wow, the Kossacks are having fun with this one. I just did a little research:

Congressman Foley's vote on Defense of Marriage Act: yay!

Foley's Christian Coalition Congressional Scorecard Rating (2004): 84%

At least Katherine Harris dodged a bullet: she can brag that Foley withheld his endorsement of her. Whew.

Update: Looks like she who shall not be named here is the chosen defender? Cleaning the GOP's toilets seems to be her job description these days.

And all this talk about Studds and Frank and Clinton is really pathetic. We have lost the focus that when an adult gets sexually involved with an adolescent there can be emotional damage to that young person. A sixteen or seventeen year old, even if they are sexually active with people their own age, simply does not have the emotional inventory to handle the advances of a mature adult. Foley's behavior was completely irresponsible and reprehensible. End of story.

Keep your armor on.

Well, shoot my butt, it's a thong for law enforcement!

But this is a serious post.

I can't take any more torture stuff.

Not the debate. I'm willing to read lists of Senators who voted the right way or the wrong way. I can type the words "torture is wrong" without fading. It's the images. I've had it.

This evening I was listening to a book on tape, fiction, which quoted the story of Penelope and the hanging of her twelve maids by Odysseus. It's Margaret Atwood, so at another time it would be blackly delicious, but tonight I couldn't take it. I can't listen to a narrative of one man harming another, or a group, because he doesn't like what they do or who they are or what they represent. I can't take it.

I want to give myself and my readers permission to put armor on against images of torture. Notice I said armor, not blinders. There is a difference. Armor allows the awful reality of torture to be acknowledged and denounced, yet also allows us all to continue to work against this awful practice without becoming mentally paralyzed. We must protect ourselves above all from paralysis in the face of this evil. It will not do to be paralyzed.

There is a mental space between being paralyzed by mental images, and desiring to be anesthetized against them. I will not view images of torture. I will also not watch Dancing with the Stars. I will turn off the images without turning off my brain.

I fear greatly that our, the Left's, insistence on denouncing torture, and our desire to impress voters that yes, this is happening, and yes, this is being done in your name, and yes, you are not safer for it...

I fear that America will change the channel. I don't fear it. I know it.

When Keith Olbermann began his special comments I read the C&L threads which said "stay safe, Keith," "don't go on airplanes, Keith," etc. I thought those were fantastic musings of young imaginists. Then the "anthrax powder puff" arrived and Goddammit he opened it. Opened his own Goddamn mail? Fuck. Anybody who fucks with Keith Olbermann is fucking with me, and I don't mean in the Aristocrats four-way manner, either.

We are not safe, in that much the President is correct. We are not safe because our Constitution no longer exists. There is jocular talk about "meet you underground" or "they're coming for us next" or "we're all next" out around the blogosphere. We are not next. That powder puff was mailed to all of us.

Put your armor on. We are not afraid. We are awake. We will not move to Canada or hide in front of our television or just turn off the set and go to bed. We will not stand silent while another human being is made to bleed so that we may be "safe." There is no "safe" here. And we are not afraid of that danger, the danger of madness that might deny us, indeed, has denyed us, our "safe" world in New York and Washington and that field in Pennsylvania, and ALSO at Columbine and Oklahoma City and just last week in that Colorado High School.

And we are not afraid of you, Mr. President. We will survive this, and we will be a better nation for it. I have faith in that with every fiber of my being. But we will not be silent.

Amygdala has a poem up about overthrowing the government by force called "Come Arrest Me." It's good.