Saturday, May 29, 2010

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Same as it ever was

I watched John Ford's wonderful 1939 western, Stagecoach, yesterday and got a kick out of this rant by the character of the crooked bankster, Gatewood:
Henry Gatewood: [clutching valise with embezzled funds] I can't get over the impertinence of that young lieutenant. I'll make it warm for that shake-tail! I'll report him to Washington - we pay taxes to the government and what do we get? Not even protection from the army! I don't know what the government is coming to. Instead of protecting businessmen, it pokes its nose into business! Why, they're even talking now about having *bank* examiners. As if we bankers don't know how to run our own banks! Why, at home I have a letter from a popinjay official saying they were going to inspect my books. I have a slogan that should be blazoned on every newspaper in this country: America for the Americans! The government must not interfere with business! Reduce taxes! Our national debt is something shocking. Over one billion dollars a year! What this country needs is a businessman for president!

Let's see if I've got this straight...

Congress just passed a bill that repeals a bill that was, itself, a compromise bill that took minimal steps in a progressive direction, and tells the Pentagon that it can enact the new bill whenever it feels like it, or not.

So there you go.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010


My local paper ran a story yesterday with the headline: "Oil Spill May Benefit Texas" all about how hoards of vacationers who are driven away from the eastern Gulf by the oil will flock to Texas beaches. Oy. But I was glad to see that they were roundly blasted in the comments, where one usually finds a generous sampling of wingnuttery. There were, as of this morning, 22 comments and all of them in agreement that the story was in poor taste and refected badly on the paper's editors.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Hatin' on hippies

There is a vehicle I have seen a few times on my commute home from work lately that is a spanking new dark green Hummer with a bumper sticker on the back that says: "I (heart) my carbon footprint!"

Ha effing ha. Clever, innit.

Anyway, I thought of that car and it's bumper sticker when I read this post of Amanda's the other day.

Personally, I think that carbon footprint-humping Hummer owner should have to spend the rest of his miserable excuse of a life cleaning the beaches, marshlands and wildlife along our once beautiful Gulf coast.

"an act of outrageous cowardice"

Amen, P.Z. Myers!

"Sometimes accidents happen"

Wow. Someone is looking less and less ready for prime time....

Thursday, May 20, 2010

"American Exceptionalism"

National pride is one thing, but stupidity and willful ignorance are nothing to be proud of.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


What. The. F**K is going on in CHINA:
The incident is the deadliest in a spate of at least six attacks on kindergartens and schools since March that have resulted in 18 murders, two suicides, an execution, and more than 40 children being injured by cleavers, knives and hammers.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Finally - some GOOD news!!

Baby steps, but we'll take what we can get!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Like flies to poop

Just to cheer myself up, I thought I'd check in on TexasFred and see what he has to say about the nomination of Elena Kagan and it should surprise no one that he is indeed right on script:
I can’t prove that Kagan is a lesbian, but the rumors have been out there for a very long time. Even Wikipedia had devoted a paragraph to that supposition, but it has apparently been scrubbed from their pages now.

Rumors continue, and when coupled with Kagan’s outward appearance, well, who knows?
'Course Fred's not satisfied with being just your average loopy wingnut and has to go the extra mile:
Sure, Kagan has great educational credibility, but has she ever been a practicing attorney? Has she ever tried a case before a Judge? Any Judge? Does she have ANY concept of what it’s like to stand before the bench? I would think that should be a requirement before you’re allowed to sit ON the bench!
Um, yeah. Seems if we look at that Wikipedia entry he quoted above, there's this (emphasis mine):
On January 5, 2009, President-elect Barack Obama announced he would nominate Kagan to be Solicitor General.[19][20] Before this appointment she had limited courtroom experience. She had never argued a case at trial,[21] and had not argued before the Supreme Court of the United States. This is not uncommon, however, as at least two previous Solicitors General, Robert Bork and Kenneth Starr, had no previous appellate experience at the Supreme Court, though Starr served as a Circuit Court Judge prior to acting as Solicitor General.[22]

Kagan was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on March 19, 2009, by a vote of 61 to 31[23], becoming the first woman to hold the position. She made her first appearance in oral argument before the Supreme Court on September 9, 2009, in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission.[24]
Does that count?

RIP Hope

I'm fairly certain that Change will always be with us, but Hope is rapidly becoming a dim memory.

If the nomination, by a Democratic president with a Democratic majority in the Senate, of a Supreme Court justice almost certain to pull the Court further to the right doesn't plunge you into despair, then

The Gulf oil spill disaster certainly should finish the job.

Liberals (and the world in general) are in dire need of a charismatic leader who is genuinely willing to fight for their values and principles. Unfortunately, a lot of people thought that would be Obama, and I'm afraid his failure to deliver on the hopes (however naive and misguided) of many newcomers to politics will result in disillusionment that future leaders will find very difficult to overcome.

RIP Lena Horne

These two videos don't tell enough about her civil rights activism, but they are a good summary of her remarkable entertainment career.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Oldie but goodie

Still my favorite for Mother's Day:

RIP Lynn Redgrave

Friday, May 7, 2010

Cinco de Mayo, two days late

Sorry I missed this great homage to Cinco de Mayo on my friend Gayle's blog but, as they say, Better Red Than Dead - or something....

Drill, Baby, Spilled

An allegory. Thanks Paul!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

If he asks you to "lift (his) luggage"....

....tell him you've already been hiking on the Appalachian Trail, thankyewverymuch.

Either that or it's time to talk price, up to you. I imagine some luggage is much more expensive to lift than others.

"Grave concern"

Child rape gets swept under the rug, but God forbid nuns engaging in feminism and activism! This requires action!
Three Catholic women's communities in Washington state are being investigated by the Vatican. They were chosen for review as part of an extensive investigation into American nuns. The Vatican says it's following up on complaints of feminism and activism.

The Archdiocese of Seattle says the Adrian Dominicans in Woodway, the Renton Sisters of Providence and the Tacoma Dominicans are on the list. Sister Joyce Cox is the Archbishop's Delegate for Religious. She says it's not clear what this latest development — or the entire investigation — means.

Cox: "Ordinarily visitations are made because there is something of great concern, or some place of scandal or not having integrity to the origins of our life."
H/T Pharyngula

Has anyone got any good news?

I'm at the point of sharing Digby's despair except not just for tasers.

John McCain thinks that it was a mistake to read the Times Square bombing suspect - an American citizen - his Miranda rights. And Rick Perry thinks the Deepwater oil spill disaster is an act of God, which I'm sure would please BP's execs who are peddling furiously to convince us all that it's certainly not their fault and, what the hell, maybe it's not.

Well, maybe Perry has a point - if you can call "Republicans" an "act of God", kind of like the black plague.

Anyway, this seems like a good day to commemorate the National Guard shooting of 4 students at Kent State University in 1970. Here's a good blog post about it and the Pulizer Prize-winning picture that no one should ever forget: