Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Conflation of Race and Class

So true. As long as white people think black = poor, then they don't need to be particularly concerned about poverty-related social services - after all, it's just for "them."

The Conflation of Race and Class

Girls Need Less Power?

"Leigh snapped this picture of a Toys ‘R Us catalog. He noticed that, for both microscopes and telescopes, the version coded “girl” (i.e., the pink one) is the least powerful one (600x magnification vs. 900 or 1200x and 90x vs. 250 or 525x). Coincidence?"

Girls Need Less Power?

Feminizing Women’s Sports Teams

I think this is really interesting. It is about the ongoing trend to "feminize" female athletes. College recruitment materials like the one shown below picture women athletes in evening gowns and, well, doing things OTHER than playing their sports, which is clearly NOT the case with male players.

Feminizing Women's Sports Teams

Monday, December 28, 2009

OH, too funny...

Mary Matalin says BUSH INHERITED 9/11. How would that work? She is HILARIOUS! Is she TRYING to be funny?

Nine Deuce on New Burger King ad

Nine Deuce at Rage Against the Man-chine blog analyses a new Burger King ad - and it seems someone really is in need of some analysis. The title of the piece is "Burger King to Customers - Eat a Dick." Do check it out - seriously!

Penny Red: Carnival of Feminists, 23/12/09: Tidings of Comfort and Joy

There is great stuff at the new Carnival of Feminists.

Penny Red: Carnival of Feminists, 23/12/09: Tidings of Comfort and Joy

Penny Red on the retro fetish for women's crafts

This is really good. She calls it "Here, Have This Humorless Festive Rant." The actual article is a wonderful rant, very interesting. She discusses how, in these tough economic times, there is a media push to make baking and crafting appealing new money savers - but only for women!

A Great New Post From Twisty

A new post from Twisty over at I Blame the Patriarchy.

I started hearing the phrase "man up" about a year ago, I guess. What the hell? I hate it. Like "having balls," "manning up" has no female equivalent. Of course, no one congratulates a woman on showing some real ovaries (well, actually, I have been known to do so from time to time) and no one tells a woman to "woman up."

A.P. Puts Pandemic of Anti-Female Violence in Quotation Marks

So, the U..N. wants to do something about the widespread abuse of women worldwide, and the A.P. article about the effort calls it a "pandemic," with the quotation marks coming from the original. It's a QUOTE pandemic of violence against women? Really??? Like the A.P. isn't sure? Really???

Life magazine is back

Life magazine is back, but only in an online version. Some of their classic photos will be published online.

Video: Jon Stewart on the Health Care Debate

Video: Jon Stewart on the Health Care Debate - funny.

New Website Responds to Stupak and Nelson

A new website called Not Under The Bus has been launched in response to the Senate (and House, for that matter) bill throwing our health under the bus. It looks like it is really going to be a good site to follow.

Monday, December 21, 2009

"Love in the Depth of our Disagreements"

Melissa Harris Lacewell:

"Standing on the Side of Love: Harnessing Love's Power to Stop Oppression:"
immigration, LGBT rights and more, sponsored by the Unitarian Universalist Association.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

I think

I think that during the year I stopped blogging, I lost all my readers!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Sweet Jesus I Can't Stand Joe Lieberman

video - "Blue Boat Home"

I think this is truly lovely. In an all too stressful world, this goes right to the soul; it's my version of religion. Please take a few deep breaths and then relax and enjoy this:

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Cheating Husbands' Bingo Card

I wonder why this comes out with a huge space at the top. Damn you, HTML (shakes fist)

I made a terrible mistake. It was a lapse in moral judgment.

You're too controlling / sickly / busy.

Everyone knows I love my wife, who is beautiful / smart / the best.

It was so flattering. I couldn't help it.

I guess I wasn't sure I wanted to be married anymore.

I fucked her, but I didn't love her.

I thought I loved her, but I didn't fuck her.

You know you're the only one for me, baby.

I guess I thought I just didn't deserve you.

Well, she wanted it. I kind of felt sorry for her.

I guess I was jealous that you were becoming so successful.

Really, my family means everything to me.

“I don't know …”

It only happened once.

I don't know why it happened. I only know it won't happen again.

It isn't you baby, it's me.

This is the first time it's ever happened.

I was drunk / stoned / sad / lonely / depressed.

I didn't feel close to you since the baby came / your mother died / you started school.

It has nothing to do with our life together.

I guess I was starting to feel old. It was flattering.

I tried breaking it off, but she kept calling me, like "Fatal Attraction."

I had her hang out with us so she could see how happily married I am.

You KNEW our marriage was unhappy at the time. What did you expect?

Hey, wait, it's sexist for you to point out that all the men you know have done it!

Johnny Cash - "I Won't Back Down"

Someone posted this regarding the health care "reform" in Congress - what is left of it. I don't know at this point how we manage NOT to back down, since our leadership has caved, but I enjoyed the sentiment all the same.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Good Standup Comedy: Becky Pedigo

h/t Hoyden About Town (tigtog)

SitCom Role Reversal

You know how every sitcom has a hot and together wife married to an incompetent, oaf of a husband? What would it look like with the roles reveresed? This shows how the stereotypes are insulting to both men and women. In fact, I have long thought that this genre in particular is unfair to men. Who ARE these men who can't cook or clean or remember a wedding anniversary? These male characters don't represent any men I know.

from Sociological Images.


The Coat Hanger Project - Trailer


Cracks me Up - "Barbie Eat a Sandwich" Video


Sexist New Reebok Commercial & Other Ads

Some things just drive me crazy!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Barney Frank Says Repugs Not Like Colonials but Bourbon Kings

From Congressman Barney Frank
Friend --

The extremists who control the Republican Party have engaged in one of the most implausible masquerades in history by trying to identify themselves with the American Colonials who revolted against British rule.

In fact, as I prepare to go to the floor of the House this week to defend a package of tough financial reforms and consumer and investor protections, I confront a hostile, virtually unanimous Republican Party, which has a major characteristic in common with a different set of eighteenth century figures - the kings of France. When the French monarchy was restored to power in the 19th century, it was said that "The Bourbons have forgotten nothing because they learned nothing."
more here

Have a Very Feminist Christmas: Feminist Books for Kids

at the UK's Guardian

abyss2hope: Carnival Against Sexual Violence 82

abyss2hope: Carnival Against Sexual Violence 82

Apparently, I am waaay behind on my reading. Please check out the previous carnival as well.

abyss2hope: Carnival Against Sexual Violence 83

abyss2hope: Carnival Against Sexual Violence 83

Please do check it out.

"Papa Noel" Louisiana Christmas song

Louisiana Christmas video (embedding was disabled). The scenery really does not match the Louisiana theme (we DON'T get white Christmases here on the bayou!), but it's still fun. A few words in the song are in Cajun French. When my husband joined the military and we moved to California, I was eighteen. It took me a while to learn how unique my home state really was, that my new friends from other places did not know what a "pirogue" or a "banquet" was. "Papa Noel" is Santa Claus in Cajun country.

Papa Noel

Ron Paul's "What If" Speech

Well, my heavens. Good questions. Is anyone actually allowed to ask these questions? Out loud? And from the floor of the House of Representatives? I am not a libertarian because I am, rather, a communitarian, but, hey, GO RON PAUL, GO.

More Biden

from thie White House webpage (although I've linked through youtube because the White House version keeps cutting off after about a minute)
Vice President Biden Dispels Myths Around Medicare and Health Reform

Is it sensible to think that the heirs of those who created Medicare would destroy it? The Vice President thinks not and restates that health insurance reform will protect Medicare, not hurt it.

From USA Today:

Biden: Whom Do You Trust on Health Care?

Well, I like this quote from the USA Today article!
As of late October the White House still had the upper hand in the health care debate. A Gallup Poll showed Americans trusting President Obama more than both Democrats and Republicans in Congress. According to the poll, “Fewer than 4 in 10 political independents have much faith in either political party in Congress on health care reform; however, the majority of independents do trust Obama.”
(link to the Gallop Poll is provided at the USA Today article)

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Biden on 2010: If GOP Succeeds, It's The End of the Road for What Barack and I Are Trying to Do - Political Punch

Biden on 2010: If GOP Succeeds, It's The End of the Road for What Barack and I Are Trying to Do - Political Punch
Biden said Republicans are pinning their political strategy on flipping these seats.

“If they take them back, this the end of the road for what Barack and I are trying to do,” the vice president said at a fundraiser for Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ) today in Greenville, Delaware.

Republicans need to pick up 40 seats next November to take back control of the House.

There are 49 seats currently held by Democrats in districts that Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz) won in last year’s presidential election.

Biden said these House seats are Republicans' “one shot” at breaking the Obama administration’s agenda. But if Democrats can hold on to those seats, “the dam is going to break,” he said, and a new era of bipartisanship will begin.

“All the hidden Republicans that don’t have the courage to vote the way they want to vote because of pressure from the party … it will break the dam and you will see bipartisanship,” Biden said.
I know he's quirky, but I still love Joe.

abyss2hope: Investigation Into Sexual Assaults On College Campuses

abyss2hope: Investigation Into Sexual Assaults On College Campuses

In this post, Marcella writes about the sickening shortcomings of established procedures for reporting on-campus rapes.

When I was at Gonzaga, we had several rapes happen in the dorms during the first month of school. One male student accused of rape was an eduation major who was nearly finished with his program. The rape charge would leave him unemployable as a teacher in the future, as Gonzaga was going to be required, if the rape was established as fact, to report to the Washington State education authorities; the student would then not be eligible for teacher certification.

So, the stakes were high.

The female student accusing him of rape was discouraged from contacting police. Campus policy was to do something along the lines of an arbitration. Hmm - in how many other types of crimes is the victim required to sit in a meeting room, without armed police presence, to try to "work things out" with her attacker? This approach still assumes that there was some "misunderstanding" that can possibly be sorted out - some sort of "he said, she said" that a wise third party might be able to resolve.

So, she showed up for the meeting. She did not have legal representation, as she had been told by campus authorities not to bring anyone. The young man, however, had two attorneys with him, and no one made them leave.

Not long after that, we in the Women's Studies club sponsored a "Take Back the Night" rally which included a speak-out on rape. Some of us noticed someone filming the entire speak-out, and at first everyone thought SOMEONE ELSE in our group had authorized it. Over the coming days, however, we learned that school officials had, without permission, set up a video camera to film these women speaking out about their rapes. The video then went to Robert Spitzer, priest and president of the university, who watched it, he said, to be sure the school was legally protected over anything any of the women claiming to have been raped on campus might say. The idea of this priest sitting alone in his office watching that tape wants me feel like vomiting even as I write this, several years later.

The Women's Studies department did succeed in getting shool policy for rape accusations changed after that. We also started doing things to protect women on campus, such as offering escorts for walks home across campus after dark and having many escorts available following school dances and any other organized events.

Part of the problem with reporting rape is that universities are required by the feds to maintain statistics about on-campus crime, and that information must be made available to parents of potential enrollees. Schools, of course, seek to minimize their crime stats, thus they have a strong incentive to keep rape charges quiet, away from the police, in "arbitration," etc. I don't know what the answer is to that one, I really don't.

(I just went to add tags to this post and realized I have NEVER before used "rape" as a tag in one of my posts. WHAT THE HELL?)

Monday, December 7, 2009

Shakesville: It Was Twenty Years Ago Today...

Shakesville: It Was Twenty Years Ago Today...:
"Twenty years ago today, a savage misogynist threw himself into L'école polytechnique de Montréal with a rifle, chose out the women among classes of engineering students, and shot fourteen of them to death. He also wounded fourteen others, ten women and four men, before killing himself. Twelve of the dead were engineering students, one a nursing student, the other an administrator.

While he was doing this, he shouted about how he was fighting back against feminism, saving society, and getting revenge for how women had mistreated him.

The long-range effects were also grim: several of the survivors have since taken their own lives, unable to cope with the events of the day, according to notes."

Senators cheer touchdowns during healthcare negotiations - The Hill's Blog Briefing Room

Senators cheer touchdowns during healthcare negotiations - The Hill's Blog Briefing Room

Does this seem problematic to anyone but me? They are getting paid by us. Why are they watching football? Ordinary workers don't get to watch football at work - except, of course, for football players!

Always Remember to Close All Parentheses. We’re Not Paying to Air Condition the Entire Paragraph.

The daughter of an English teacher, I have always enjoyed puns and other word games, vocabulary, and grammar.

A friend of mine from high school is part of a team that has developed a Twitter feed called "AP Fake Stylebook." My friend is brilliant and witty; the "AP Fake Stylebook" is great fun. One need not be a member of Twitter to view the page and enjoy the wordplay.

Here is my friend's story as he tells it:
Always Remember to Close All Parentheses. We’re Not Paying to Air Condition the Entire Paragraph.
Wednesday, November 4, 2009 at 8:15pm

At last my secret can be told!

A couple weeks ago my pals Ken and Mark decided to start a Twitter feed called "Fake AP Stylebook". In it, they’d make fun of the Associated Press Stylebook, a guide to grammar, punctuation, and usage that journalists and other professional writers rely on. They invited me and a bunch of other people to join in. We had some laughs, posted some stuff, and successfully entertained ourselves. Here are some of the things we posted:

Robots should only be referred to by gender-neutral pronouns, no matter how sexy they may be.

The correct spelling is ‘Mr. T.’ People who type out ‘Mister’ are fools to be pitied.

The noun “Wang Chung” should be capitalized, but not the verb.

If you’re short on space, “fake” may be used in place of “psychic” or “homeopathic.”

Some of mine were:

The interrotilde is used to denote an ‘n’ that is pronounced as “WHUUUUUU?”

The plural of ‘dracula’ is ‘CHRIST GET OUT OF THERE!’

Avoid using the letter G as it is unlucky.

Two days later, we were successfully entertaining 20,000 other people. Somehow this thing just took off like a shot, and we were getting follows and retweets like crazy. And if that weren’t enough, that’s about when the first publishing agent contacted us. The short version is: we are working with an agent and putting together a sample chapter for a proposed book that a number of publishers are interested in.

That, my friends, is crazy stupid.

We were semi-anonymous, in that the Fake AP was itself, and we were focusing on it, keeping it separate from our other stuff. Ken and Mark would happily tell people who asked whatever they wanted to know. A would-be “investigative reporter” “unmasked” us over at Wired’s website, and at that point we went ahead and admitted who we were. (Considering that we’re all a bunch of nobodies, it’s hard to say that there’s any difference between us being anonymous and us being outed.) The full list of contributors is here.

I’ll keep you posted with new developments. In the meantime, here are a couple of articles about the whole shebang:

Should "anal retentive" be hyphenated?

New York Magazine: the Approval Matrix (we're both "brilliant" and "lowbrow.)

and, once more, the actual Twitter feed.
I hope you will go visit!

On "The Color Purple"

I sent a youtube copy of "Miss Cellie's Blues" to all my women friends on facebook, telling them "I think you're something special, sista, I hope you think that you're something too."

A friend replied that the same message was for me too, which really touched me, especially as it came at a moment when I really needed it.

So, here is my response to her about the movie "The Color Purple:"

Well, thanks - I just so happened to really need that right when I read it! My mother always says there are no coincidences! When I was younger, I thought it was just some silly thing she said, since I didn't have that much faith that things were happening for a reason but rather felt like I was getting tossed around in some storm of universal chaos, you know, but in recent years I am learning she is onto something...I needed your message RIGHT when I read it - THANKS!

Several woman to whom I sent this said this movie had meant a lot to them, that they have always loved it. This movie really speaks to so many of us, I think, because it is, in its quiet way, about a woman's heart (Cellie, Shug, Sophia, and Squeak) - women's exploitation, our being silenced in a man's world, our inner longings for love and respect and equality - our basic desire to just fucking SING, even if we are off-key, to start to be SEEN - our real selves - even if we feel ugly, in a world that, in many ways, still conspires to silence and hide our kind. You know, it's like Maya Angelou named her autobiography, which detailed her years of silence following her childhood rape, "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings." At its core, Cellie's story is about the caged bird who finally flies away and sings. Some of us, perhaps even most of us sistas, are living as Miss Cellie, but secretly longing to be Shug - to sing, to travel, to feel guiltlessly, even indulgently sensual and comfortable in our own skins, maybe to stick with a man as long as he pleases or amuses, but then move on when we are ready...I think that's where I am. I'm forty one and one day soon (well, actually, in the next two or three years, as I still have a teenager at home), I hope, I am going to move out and go "sing" (my own metaphorical version of singing, whatever that ends up being), go travel with my own inner Shug. I AM going to tell Mister that until he does right by me, everything he touches gonna turn to dust. And it is going to happen too; I feel it in my bones.

Thanks. I really did need your message right when it came. It was a rough evening. Mom is right (she's always right!). There are no coincidences.

This is no place for a woman's heart.

"A bird doesn't sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song."
--- Maya Angelou

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Young Man Asks Obama re Legalizing Prostitution

I imagine he doesn't know that women who end up working as prostitutes were usually molested as children, often through incest. I guess he doesn't know how often battering is done by the charming Richard Gere-esque johns (sarcasm). I guess he doesn't know about the damage done to a woman's body, not to mention her spirit and her heart.

The young man included prostitution on his list of "victimless crimes." Well, I think it's time to give R. Mott her say; I don't think her stuff can really be linked to too often - do you?

from the blog of R. Mott

video: Not For Sale

and from me to R., because she came into the world already complete and beautiful (which is what a rose traditionally symbolizes):

Do All Guys Watch Porn?

How depressing is this? Study seeks men who have never before watched porn, can't find any.

Do All Guys Watch Porn?

Friday, December 4, 2009

Gibbs takes a swipe at the GOP - The Hill's Blog Briefing Room

Gibbs says GOP approval rating barely higher than the national drinking age

Gibbs takes a swipe at the GOP - The Hill's Blog Briefing Room


Ooh, I want this t-shirt. Seriously. Katrina radar image superimposed with Saints logo on the front. On the back, a fictitious weather report, with the names of the best loved Saints players worked into the paragraph. For example, a heavy BREES is expected. It's $20. I WANT. I MUST HAVE....

great Saints shirt here

The New Cell Phone

I got a new cell phone today. I think I am going to need to take some night course or something to learn how to use the thing. I am shocked at how complex these things are getting. I keep thinking about the Jetsons and thinking that if I just raise my arms, the phone will magically dress me.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Had to Miss my Therapy Appointment Today

but then later in the day, I found...BUBBLE WRAP! I'm popping the bubble wrap and, hey, life is good.

Here is some virtual bubble wrap - thought I should share:

Racism on the Elevator?

I don't care for calling the woman "stupid bitch," (I don't think using sexism is good for fighting racism), but this is funny.