“But my family and I…thick skin…we can take it, you know…we can take what the haters say despite the fact that there’s injustice in the situation. I mean, look at the other day. Willow, finally, my 16 year old, she had had it up to here with somebody saying very, very hateful things about the family and saying mean things about her little brother Trig, and Willow finally responded and she used a bad word when she responded in defense of her family. And her response became national news, even hard news copy it turned into, so that’s ridiculous and I had to explain to her, ‘Willow, there is no justice here but you have to just zip your lip and let’s move forward.’”—
Sarah Palin responding to her daughter Willow using the word “faggot” amongst other derogatory slurs on Facebook
Gee, Sarah, thanks for sticking up for the gays… and no one said anything about your son.
except that willow was responding to people not liking her mother’s habit of pimping out her children on television for a profit that is unimaginable and undeserved. i haven’t ever heard anyone say anything ‘mean’ about trig, except that his name is ridiculous. which it is. sarah palin often tried to rewrite history, and we need to remember that she called for rahm’s resignation for using the word ‘retarded.’ and we all definitely know if one of the obama daughters had said ‘faggot’ on a public forum, she would have spoken out against the obamas’ parenting. so…fuck you, sarah palin.
“I often do, without much enthusiasm. In the US, there is basically one party - the business party. It has two factions, called Democrats and Republicans, which are somewhat different but carry out variations on the same policies. By and large, I am opposed to those policies. As is most of the population.”—Noam Chomsky answering to the question “Do you vote?” in an interview with the New Statesman (via elchicoalmendra)
“So apparently Atheists can’t be thankful for something without having someone/something to thank for it?”
Here’s the thing: Atheists almost always have someone to thank, it is just usually a human (like a doctor, a friend, their family, or themselves) instead of a God. They probably say thank you more to people’s faces as a result.
The buildup in the corporate media supporting the corporatist wishlist on budgeting is growing. First there was the clamor about the Bowles-Simpson road map to conquering the deficit—depicted as a reasonable, middle-of-the-road approach. Bowles-Simpson is a neo-liberal/neo-conservative group of people with little understanding of the predicament of the vulnerable middle class in this economy, and apparently as little creativeness for moving the economy out of the stagnation from the four decades of Reaganomics and into a new era of broad-based growth that lifts all boats, rather than just the yachts of the already rich and famous.
Then there was even more clamor about the more “radical” plan put forward by Alice Rivlin and cohorts. Rivlin is another neo-liberal Clintonite who is perfectly willing to sacrifice the New Deal to get the neo-deal.
Obama doesn’t seem willing to fight any fight. He quits before he starts, disgusting liberals who understand that a democracy cannot survive based on the kind of “free market capitalism” espoused by the oligarchs who benefit from it. So there is already talk of extending the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy, which have nothing at all to do with jobs, entrepreneurship, innovation, or growth of the US economy and everything imaginable to do with elitism, power, and hording of productivity gains for the G.W. Bush fan club of have-mores.
So it is perhaps not so surprising that the WaPo is already declaring that a “consensus is forming on what steps to take in cutting the deficit.” Story by Lori Montgomery, WaPo, Nov. 22, 2010. Ms. Montgomery takes the pundits and neo-con/neo-lib descriptions as god’s truth as she describes “a surprising consensus” around ”the sacrifices necessary to achieve those goals [of less debt and smaller government]” being “Big cuts at the Pentagon. Higher taxes, including those on home ownership and health care. Smaller Social Security checks and higher Medicare premiums.” Once again, the neo-con faction has used its corporate-owned media to hone its message that there is no choice (false note of sadness) but to cut those deficit-causing “entitlements” like Social Security and Medicare.
1) People fret when they hear the word radiation, but there are lots of kinds of radiation, most of which is harmless.
2) One type of radiation is plain ol’ light. Radio waves are radiation. Microwaves are radiation. These types of radiation are essentially harmless.
3) The type of radiation cell phones emit is on the borderline between radio and microwave light.
4) Not only is the type of radiation from cell phones harmless, the amount of it is too small to hurt us. Regulations set the power of cell phones far, far lower than levels known to be even borderline noticeable.
5) There have been many careful studies looking at any connection between cell phones and health risks. None has been found. Note: this means direct risk, not things like phoning while driving, while using a buzz saw, while running from zombies, and so on.
6) Cell phone use has exploded worldwide, with hundreds of millions of users. Yet the rate of brain cancer detection has been steady for years. If there were even a tiny connection, we’d see a dramatic increase in brain disease. We don’t.
7) Therefore, cell phones don’t cause cancer or brain damage.
“The Dream Act is a simple idea. We’ve educated these kids, who were brought into the U.S. by their parents when they were very young. Why not get something back from them as working, taxpaying adults? Under the act they wouldn’t immediately become citizens but be granted permanent residency if they entered the United States before they were 16 and have lived in the country at least five years. They then would have to graduate from high school and complete either two years of college or two years of military service. Democrats promise to bring the Dream Act to a vote before the end of the year in the lame duck session, but those who oppose it already are busy demonizing the politicians who favor it and the people who would participate in it.”—E.J. Montini (via azspot)
“When they’re not worrying about banning contraception or demonizing gay people, it looks like the Republicans are finding time to form a tax policy that passes the burden to working families as a payoff to their corporate cronies.”—Democratic Party of Wisconsin Chair Mike Tate in response to the Wisconsin GO-Tea Party proposal to hike the sales tax on working families. (via mandington)
Joe Rehyansky, a part-time magistrate and Vietnam veteran, wrote on conservative news site The Daily Caller that lesbians should be allowed to serve in the military because straight male soldiers could “convert” them.
Mr Rehyansky, of Hamilton County, Tennessee, argued that men were naturally more promiscuous than women and “it fell to men to swing through the trees and scour the caves in search of as many women as possible to subdue and impregnate – a tough job but someone had to do it”.
Then, he claimed that the “promiscuity” of gay men, coupled with HIV, would have “the potential for disastrous health consequences” if gay men were allowed to serve openly in the military.
“Gays spread disease at a rate out of all proportion to their numbers in our population and should be excluded from the military,” he argued.
He continued: “Shouldn’t the overwhelmingly straight warriors who answer their county’s call be spared the indignity of showering with other men who achieve lascivious enjoyment from the sight of those lithe naked bodies, and who may be tempted to seek more than the view?”
Lesbian military personnel, who Mr Rehyansky praised for their “medical and administrative specialties”, should be allowed to serve because they apparently have low sex drives.
His final argument, which has now been removed by The Daily Caller, was as follows: “My solution would get the distaff part of our homosexual population off our collective ‘Broke Back,’ thus giving straight male GIs a fair shot at converting lesbians and bringing them into the mainstream.”
Mr Rehyansky was accused of advocating corrective rape for lesbians by some commentators.
File this under “people who should not be federal judges.”
Via Newshounds: Fox Nation probably knew it was a joke, but that they only post jokes that target Obama as the butt is telling.
Also telling is their readers inability to understand it was a joke. From the commentary;
If this story is correct, that he did send out this email, it is very concerning about his current state of mental health. I am surprised he would be allowed to send something like this out and if he is not functioning very well why there isn’t some attention being paid to his current state.
If the Christmas shopping season can start before Thanksgiving, so can “bah humbug” season.
Rush Limbaugh tried to rain on Barack Obama’s Thanksgiving Day parade, lashing out against a proclamation issued by the president to honor the national holiday and the story behind it.
He also went on the war path against Native Americans, calling for a look at the “scoreboard” of number of people killed since European settlers arrived, and insisting that “a bunch of Native Americans scammed us” in the deal to purchase Manhattan.
We were the invaders. The Indians are minding their own business. We were incompetent idiots. We didn’t know how to feed ourselves. So they came along and showed us how, and that’s what Thanksgiving is all about. Now, he says nothing about the Constitution in his Thanksgiving proclamation, because he’s got a problem with it … Every cliche that is wrong about Thanksgiving shows up in his proclamation
Obama did acknowledge George Washington, who declared the first nationally recognized Thanksgiving when the Constitution was enacted. Limbaugh didn’t further clarify why the document from 1787 required a mention, even though the holiday’s roots are generally traced back to at least 150 years earlier and it wouldn’t become a regular national holiday until more than 75 years later.
Insisting that he thought the presidential proclamation seemed like a “phony,” “parody,” “hoax” and “prank,” Limbaugh then offered his own interpretation of the holiday’s significance:
[Obama] said that Thanksgiving is about the Indians saving us, with their agriculture and everything else. The true story of Thanksgiving is socialism failed. Of course we showed them gratitude! We shared our bounty with them, not because we didn’t know how to make it. It was because we first failed as socialists. Only when we turned capitalists did we have plenty. The Indians didn’t teach us capitalism.
Limbaugh punctuated his pre-Thanksgiving show with shots at Native Americans, joking that Obama had said their “rich culture continues to add to our Nation’s heritage … at their casinos and on their reservations.” He immediately made it clear he was making that last bit up.
The host also argued that more people have been killed from lung cancer, “thanks to the Indian-invented custom of smoking tobacco,” than from the arrival of Europeans and their wars and diseases. “Where are our reparations?” asked the well-known cigar smoker.
And despite his problems evaluating the recent Manhattan real estate market, Limbaugh had another look at the one from 1626. “We got shafted when we bought Manhattan,” he claimed, saying that European settlers initially paid a Long Island tribe that didn’t own the land, then had to repurchase it from the actual owners. “We got scammed … we got hosed … we paid for Manna-hata twice because a bunch of Native Americans scammed us.”
In the long run, there hasn’t been much buyer’s remorse on behalf of the settlers.
On this day of thanksgiving, it is appropriate that we recall the first Thanksgiving, celebrated in the autumn of 1621. After surviving a bitter winter, the Pilgrims planted and harvested a bountiful crop. After the harvest they gathered their families together and joined in celebration and prayer with the Native Americans who had taught them so much. Clearly our forefathers were thankful not only for the material well-being of their harvest but for this abundance of goodwill as well.
Beck’s anti-food safety sentiments seem to boil down to three beliefs — that more government regulation is nearly always a bad idea, that the bill will raise food prices and that America already has a perfectly safe food supply.
On all counts, Beck is wrong. But his comments — along with new opposition from the Tea Party Patriots — are just the sort of thing that could wipe out the fragile, filibuster-proof coalition Sen. Harry Reid and others have finally cobbled together.
Let’s hope that doesn’t happen because this bill has the support of an incredibly diverse group of people involved in food. Which is how you know that Beck is way off base with his big, evil, bureaucratic government stuff. Normally the first people waging war against additional government regulation are corporate lobbyists — but in this case they’re marching up to Capitol Hill to lobby for it. The fact that much of the food industry is championing the the Food Safety and Modernization Act — which Beck repeatedly referred to on his radio show as the “farm bill,” no doubt confusing listeners who pay attention to the politics of the actual farm bill — is an indication of how badly America’s food safety regulatory structure needs to be updated.
Manufacturers and chain restaurants think the bill is a good idea because they’re sick of being hit with lost sales and heightened consumer fear whenever there’s a another salmonella, listeria or E.coli outbreak. Kellogg (K), for instance, said it lost $70 million because of the peanut butter salmonella outbreak last year. A bill that requires all food processing and storage facilities to have their own control plans and charges the FDA with doing more inspections is an opportunity to level the playing field and make sure everyone is adhering to higher standards. On the Grocery Manufacturers Association’s blog, chief lobbyist Scott Faber explains that it will also help with exports:
Restoring FDA’s global reputation as a food regulator is good for business…US food manufacturers need a strong partner at FDA if we are going to open new markets to our products.
Beck acknowledges that he hasn’t read the bill, which is understandable, but he also appears not to have laid eyes upon any of the dozens of news reports and web sites that have helpfully summarized the bill. He does appear to have borrowed a few talking points from Sen. Tom Coburn, the Republican from Oklahoma who is also trying to derail the bill. Becks sarcastically calls the bill, which is slated to come to a Senate vote after Thanksgiving, “an extraordinarily innocuous thousand page bill” — it’s 250 pages. And he accuses the Senate of “rushing” to get the bill passed before the end of the year, even though it was passed in the House over a year ago and has been knocking around the Senate in ever since.
As for the bill resulting in higher food prices, no one besides Beck and Coburn is suggesting this will happen, including the food industry. And there’s no report or study showing that America has the safest food supply in the world. Sure, it’s better than Mexico and Indonesia, but somehow I don’t think that’s going to be very comforting to all people who’ve lost family members or had their kidneys demolished from simply eating lunch.
It had been a good solid fifteen months or so. We were due for another one of these. Seems that Michael Bowden, a 77-year-old retired police officer and fire marshal who worked in NYC, had discussed a plan to kill Obama – and then himself – because he was not doing enough to help out African-Americans. (Bowden is white, by the way.) Police checked his Spartanburg, South Carolina home and found a ton of loaded semiautomatic weapons next to his bed, suggesting that he was well along with his plan. Obama has faced a handful of assassination plots like these, but generally it’s not because Obama is doing too little to help black people. So this is new. source
All this begs the question: Why would anyone put up with this? Ask any American and you’ll get the same answer: because America is the freest country on earth. If you believe this, I’ve got some more bad news for you: America is actually among the least free countries on earth. Your piss is tested, your emails and phone calls are monitored, your medical records are gathered, and you are never more than one stray comment away from writhing on the ground with two Taser prongs in your ass.
And that’s just physical freedom. Mentally, you are truly imprisoned. You don’t even know the degree to which you are tormented by fears of medical bankruptcy, job loss, homelessness and violent crime because you’ve never lived in a country where there is no need to worry about such things.
But it goes much deeper than mere surveillance and anxiety. The fact is, you are not free because your country has been taken over and occupied by another government. Fully 70% of your tax dollars go to the Pentagon, and the Pentagon is the real government of the United States. You are required under pain of death to pay taxes to this occupying government. If you’re from the less fortunate classes, you are also required to serve and die in their endless wars, or send your sons and daughters to do so. You have no choice in the matter: there is a socioeconomic draft system in the United States that provides a steady stream of cannon fodder for the military.
If you call a life of surveillance, anxiety and ceaseless toil in the service of a government you didn’t elect “freedom,” then you and I have a very different idea of what that word means.
If there was some chance that the country could be changed, there might be reason for hope. But can you honestly look around and conclude that anything is going to change? Where would the change come from? The people? Take a good look at your compatriots: the working class in the United States has been brutally propagandized by jackals like Rush Limbaugh, Bill O’Reilly and Sean Hannity. Members of the working class have been taught to lick the boots of their masters and then bend over for another kick in the ass. They’ve got these people so well trained that they’ll take up arms against the other half of the working class as soon as their masters give the word.
If the people cannot make a change, how about the media? Not a chance. From Fox News to the New York Times, the mass media in the United States is nothing but the public relations wing of the corporatocracy, primarily the military industrial complex. At least the citizens of the former Soviet Union knew that their news was bullshit. In America, you grow up thinking you’ve got a free media, which makes the propaganda doubly effective. If you don’t think American media is mere corporate propaganda, ask yourself the following question: have you ever heard a major American news outlet suggest that the country could fund a single-payer health system by cutting military spending?
this. all of this.
whenever i hear someone complain about the ‘liberal media,’ i am always wondering if they know that a truly liberal media would, oh, i don’t know, speak out against our oversized military.
AKIN: It might be helpful to think back and say, there’s more to Thanksgiving than the Pilgrims. They were a group of people who were willing to change the system, to think of different ideas. They came here and separated civil and church governments. They came here and created the model of a written constitution, the idea that the government should be the servant of the people. […] They came here with the idea that after trying socialism that it wasn’t going to work. They realized that it was unbiblical, that it was a form of theft, so they pitched socialism out. They learned that in the early 1620’s.
Of course, the Pilgrims did not come to America to flee socialism and embrace capitalism “in the early 1620′s.” Socialism as an idea didn’t really even come into popularization until the 18th century and socialist political parties did not start to gain power and influence policies until more than a century after that. And it is difficult to see how socialism is unbiblical, given that the concept did not exist at the time of the writing of the Bible.
The real reason the Pilgrims came to the New World was to flee religious persecution. Thanksgiving is based around remembrance of the tale of how, in 1621, Native Americans helped the Pilgrims at Plymouth Colony survive harsh conditions by sharing their food with them. In other words, Thanksgiving is a parable about how people should take care of eachother and not just look out for themselves.
History is a lot easier when you just pull it out of your ass.
I don’t know about you, but I don’t think nearly enough about the money that passes through my hands. All day long, we just pass money back and forth without considering whether what we’re buying is worth the work it took us to afford it. Tomorrow, I want you to notice something you spend money on habitually. Maybe it’s a morning coffee or newspaper, or eating out for lunch when you could be brown-bagging, or downloading a song from iTunes. Whatever it is, you’re going to make a decision not to buy it tomorrow. Then you’re going to take whatever the amount would have been and put it on the table in front of you in cash.
Some of you literally don’t have any extra cash. I know this. I talked to a woman last week who had $7.55 in her wallet to make it to payday, and I know how that feels. I’ve been there. So you guys? You’ve got some loose change in your couch or your car. Or you’ve got something lying around your house (a sweater, a pile of books, some DVDs) that you don’t use anymore, but is too nice to just throw away. Put that on the table instead.
Whatever it is, you’re giving it away. I don’t care if you send it to starving babies in Africa or hand it to the homeless guy on the streetcorner or donate it to a charity or make somebody’s day by dropping five bucks in their tip jar. Whatever. You’re going to make somebody’s day a little better and remind them that there are really excellent people in the world. And you guys are, all of you. Go do it.
every last one of you should be following this blog. we should all be working together to help people. it’s officially the holiday season, friends. no time like the present to help others in any way that we can.
even if you don’t have extra money, you can always find things that you do not need that you can donate to good will or your local crisis center or shelter. maybe some canned food that you know you’ll never use? or maybe just a few hours of your own time to volunteer. there are people in need around the world, but there are people in need in your town. help them.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid vowed Wednesday to bring a repeal of the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” legislation to the Senate floor sometime in December. In a statement, Reid said the pending defense authorization bill – which contains language ending the ban on openly gay servicemembers – has the White House’s support. White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs also said Wednesday that the repeal is a “priority,” but that President Barack Obama has not lobbied any senators for support. Sen. Joseph Lieberman (I-CT), who usually caucuses with Democrats but is considered a swing voter on this issue, is expected to hold a press conference Thursday morning with Senate Democrats to “show broad support” for the repeal.
“It’s supposed to be extremely difficult for the Government to win the right to put someone in a cage for their entire lives, or to kill them. Having lived under a tyranny in which there were very few barriers impeding the leader’s desire to imprison or otherwise punish someone — and having waged a war to escape that oppression — the Founders designed it this way on purpose. And they did so with the full knowledge that clearly guilty and even extremely evil people would sometimes receive something other than the punishment they deserve. Here’s how Thomas Jefferson weighed those considerations, as expressed in a 1791 letter: “I would rather be exposed to the inconveniencies attending too much liberty than those attending too small a degree of it.”—Glenn Greenwald (via jonathan-cunningham)
By Aida V. Nieto, Bill Archer Fellow Fall 2010 for Amnesty International USA
On November 05, the United States appeared before the UN Human Rights Council for The Universal Periodic Review (UPR) conducted by the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) in Geneva. After this appearance concluded the U.S. Government held aTown Hall for activists and nongovernmental groups to ask questions and offer their criticism and recommendations regarding the U.S.’s human rights record. During the Town Hall various topics were discussed such as torture, detainee treatment, and the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of Native Americans, as explained in Article 25 of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights, but a topic that continued to come-up throughout the ninety-minute discussion was the lack of human rights protection in programs designed to enforce federal immigration law. Programs such as the controversial 287 (g) agreement and Secure Communities, a measure recently making headlines were widely criticized as they have proven to provide a venue for racial profiling, thus undermining the human rights of individuals. After the public exposure of the lack of human rights protections for immigrants and people of color in the United States, I hope that people and the government realized that immigration is a human rights issue, not a political issue.
While it is impossible to be fully certain of the priorities of the new leadership elected to Congress during the mind-term elections, there is a window of opportunity to respect the human rights of immigrants in the current congressional session. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi publicly expressed their commitment to bring up the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act for a vote during the lame-duck session. The DREAM Act would provide conditional legal status to thousand of undocumented students that finish high school, attend college, and meet other specific requirement. These young undocumented immigrants were brought to this country by their parent without proper documentation. They grew up in the United States and attended state schools, but once graduated from high school they face great obstacles to continue their education as they lack legal status. Hard working undocumented students have been waiting for too long to be fully participating citizens of this country. Their dreams and aspirations are in the hands of Congress and it is time to do the right thing, and take a step forward to humane treatment of immigrants in the United States by passing the DREAM Act.
Education is a right worthy of protection. It is also an indispensable means of realizing other human rights. All children, without discrimination of any kind, including on the basis of their status or the status of their parents, have a right to education. For the last decade, Congress has attempted to pass The DREAM Act, but politics have halted this effort. It is our duty to urge Congress to set party lines aside this lame-duck session and realize that inaction allows for the inhumane treatment of thousand of immigrant students in this country to continue. Politics must no longer be permitted to prevent the United States from fulfilling its human rights obligations. It is time to change the rhetoric from “illegal aliens crawling across the border that come here to take our jobs and commit crimes” to “individuals looking for a better life.” Programs like the 287 (g) agreement and Secure Communities are no substitute for a well-constructed immigration reform. Democrat or Republican, blue or red, it is time we bring change. Think purple and come together to respect the human rights of all and pass the DREAM Act!
there’s some shit in my queue, but i am having some pretty strong anti-tumblr sentiments lately, and it’s almost thanksgiving, which is my favorite holiday. and then i am moving across the country. and then i start school. so i don’t know when i’ll be back, or if i’ll be back. i don’t know. i could cave and be back on here in 5 hours. i just don’t know. what i do know is that when i started this blog, it was fun. and now it’s not.
maybe i can come up with some ways to make this blog more interesting and fun. maybe i will stop engaging raving morons who have no clue about how the world works. conservative bloggers raise my blood pressure. and i don’t actually care what they think, anyhow. i will ever meet them, what do i care if they feel good about themselves because a few dozen people agree with their specific brand of hatred? i don’t. maybe i will just have to come up with some kind of structure or blogging schedule.
“For some, the fact that the world is imperfect and dangerous means that we need not make decisions based on some religious ideal. Reinhold Niebuhr, the exemplar of “Christian realism,” and Jewish politicians who place the security of Israel above the commitment to justice (“Jewish realists,” if you will), suggest to us that the world has simply fallen too low for us to attempt to take the high road. We may sometimes be forced to embrace things we would normally consider evil in the protection of our societies, families, and homes. But Jesus, the founder of my faith, presented a truly hyperbolic call to compassion and to challenging ethical standards in his life, teachings, and sacrificial death. Perhaps I cannot live up to that calling; perhaps as a culture we cannot live up to it. But that doesn’t mean that call, embodied in Jesus’ life and words, doesn’t still resound.”—W’s Traveling Torture Show (via azspot)