Friday, October 13, 2006

How I know we're related

Conversation just had between my little brother and me. This is proof that there is some genetic tweak where we love morbidly gross humor.

Me:Modesty is for people with nothing to brag about
Bro: Huh
Me: I'm trying to be Dorothy Parker so after I'm dead people will quote me
Bro: You want people to call you Dororthy parker after your dead
Me: No, you know, Dorothy Parker, writer from the 30's, famous for saying things like "If you don't have anything nice to say come sit next to me". I want to be quoted like that after I'm dead, and I'm starting with "Modesty is for people with nothing to brag about"
Bro: We'll put it on your tombstone
Me: That would be cool except that I'm getting cremated.
Bro: Then we'll make your ashes spell it out
Me: Oh I've got an idea- you could get my ashes compressed into a diamond and have those people who write names on rice write it on the diamond.
Bro: Sure, that's what we'll do
Me: You're totaly going to get me cremated at the local bar-b-que place and then dump me in a trash can, aren't you?
Bro: No, it would be cool if you were a diamond, I could wear you in a ring and say "Hey you want to meet my sister- here she is"
Me: This is my sister, Bling Bling
Bro: Yeah, first name Bling, last name Bling
Me: You could tell them we have different dads and that's why I'm a bling bling. But if I'm going to be a ring I need to be the most ghettofabulous giant creation ever.
Bro: Sure, we'll make it like 19 carats,

Darling you've got to let me know

Do you need more clues to win the giant galleta, I mean cookie?

Come on and let me know
Should I give you a clue
or Should I go

Out of character

I have found myself thinking and doing things that would have been completely out of character for me 6 months ago. For example, I am actually considering marriage (to someone who is not Cary Grant, but is about as charming). Until recently I didn't think I was the marrying kind, but maybe I grew up a little. It's a bit strange (in a very good way) to be considering a relationship where marriage is the ultimate goal.

What's even weirder is that I am considering the life of a stay at home suburban housewife. This is a much further stretch. I'm urban and except for 2 years after my son was born I've worked since I was 14. I'm hopeful that there is negotiating room on this one, like say a cool urban townhome instead of a sprawling suburban ranch and I stay in school. So basically, my life now only in a place with a sunnier climate and having to share decorating decisions with another grown-up.

There is a political side to this. Am I good little progressive feminist even if I enter into a very traditional style relationship? I know that if I stayed home all day I would be driven to chewing my hair and muttering strange things in corners, but I also don't particularly care about making money. And then there is the issue of privilege. There is privilege in being able to marry while so many gays and lesbians are not. There is also privilege in having the choice to stay home and live in a family where one income is enough. Am I a complete sell-out for taking advantage of those privileges? Would it make me lose some credibility? I have always been independent and very capable of handling things on my own. If I had someone making things easier would I lose some of that toughness?

Oh yeah- and come this Sunday night I am quitting smoking. Totally out of character, but recently cigarettes have started to taste bad (you non-smokers won't understand how they ever tasted good, but trust me). I have smoked more than half my life, I think it's time to be done now. I just hope that I don't kill anyone during nicotine withdrawal and that my friend Ruth was lying when she said that the foggy-headed stupidness you get when you quit doesn't go away. I think quitting smoking may temporarily turn me into red-state personality, you know, stupid and mean. Wish me luck.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Best Ad Ever!

Shakespeare's Sister calls this the best political ad ever. I have to agree.

The giant cookie goes multi lingual

Galletas is Spanish for Cookies!

I have loved this song forever, but it wasn't until a few years ago that I figured out all the background lyrics are in Spanish (so much for my language abilities). The lyrics in Spanish are a rough translation of the English, so either you can interpert for yourself or see what kind of mangled jargon Babelfish spits out at you.

Siempre - coqueteando y engañando
Me arrodilla y estás feliz
Un día bien el otro negro
Al rededar en tu espalda
Me tienes que decir
¿Me debo ir o quedarme?

Chorus (I'm not giving you the lyrics here cause they're the title of the song)

La indecisión me molesta
Si no me quieres, líbrame
Dígame que debo ser
¿Sabes qué ropa me queda?
Me tienes que decir
¿Me debo ir o quedarme?

Hoopty of the week

Deek and I have been slacking on bringing you the most ghettolicious vehicles to every cross an intersection. I thought I'd bring back hard with this hoopty of a station wagon.

Fursday Fun stays below the belt

Ya'll know I'm still dreaming of a threesome with John Stewart and Stephen Colbert. In the mean time I will have to content myself with clips from their respective shows dealing with the Foley scandal. Is it to naughty to admit that I am hoping the close up pants shot on the Stewart video is of Stewart's own pants?
Stewart's Hot Pants

Colbert's Dirty IM's

Fursday: Just a hair off

From my new dreamboat of a man Keith Olbermann:

But our winners, whoever in the Ottawa County Clerk’s Office proofreads the ballots in Ottawa County, Michigan, a typo will cost the county $40,000 to print new ballots because the old one misspelled the word, public. Left out the “L.” You can enunciate for yourself how the mistaken version of that word sounds.

Obviously the County Clerk’s spelling was just a hair off.

The Global Immigration Issue

The Economist posted and article about immigration issues that Europeans face. You think we have problems, understand that Europe has much less space and provides a greater attraction to immigrants (better social support systems). This issue revisits a point I made during our immigration tiff: that immigration is a two way street that involves both the countries that shed populations and ones that take them in. I am not encouraged by the agency being proposed simply because it is being headed by Peter Sutherland, chairman of BP and Goldman Sachs, but at least the topic is on the table.

Almost all of us our products of immigrant. Let's see it as the global, rather than local, concern that it is.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Halleluja! The line between church and state sure is fuzzy!

I'm sorry, but just because you're holier than thou doesn't mean your ass should be taking tax breaks simply because of your religious standing.

Seriously, maybe it's time we all declared ourselves preachers in the church of the individual and took a tax break for our housing costs.

Let's see, tax breaks for preachers, but not their less well paid staff. And no tax break for us non-religious types that do the same kind of work. I work in the inner city teaching vocational students how to write business letters and resumes so they are productive members of society, it's alot more practical than saying prayers and has better results in the long run. Where's my tax break for that?

Oh and the churches not paying unemployment crap- ah no. Seriously, just cause you think you got God on your side doesn't mean shit. I think even Jesus said "render unto Ceasar".

Everyday I hate organized religion just a little more.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Since when did Haiti become critical?

I'm doing research on a new college grant that Bush instituted for critical math, science and language programs. It's an extra $4000 a year for college juniors and seniors, and I could use the money. Besides, I'm bored studying political science (turns out there are really only 2 philosophies in the end) and learning a new language would make me a happy camper.

The deal is this- you study a critical area, they pay you. With the languages it's pretty obvious why they picked the ones they did to call them critical. You have the languages of the places we are currently or soon to be at war with (Arabic, Farsi, Urdu) as well as the languages the BRIC countries (fastest growing emerging economies) Brazil, Russia, India and China. There are also grants for African and other Asian languages.

So I'm searching ye olde web and come across this program at UConn that has been funded by the Defense Department. It's actually a really cool program to fund, giving students laptops and access to native speakers to increase their fluency.

But why is Haitian Creole on the list? It's a language spoken by only 12 million people (compared to 220 million Portuguese speakers). Despite Haiti's violent history (and present) it is not a military threat to the US. It is not an emerging economy, in fact it is the poorest country in the western hemisphere with poverty rates more in line with sub-saharan Africa. And, most of the people who speak Creole also speak French, a decidedly non-critical language (us Americans with our disdain for multi-lingualism don't seem to have a problem taking a high school French or Spanish class).

What gives?

I should admit that I have a huge soft spot for Haiti. It is one of the 3 countries to have a successful democratic revolution in the 18th century. The other two were the US and France. We were instrumental in ousting Aristide (both times). The last time was when he was about to raise the minimum wage. Companies like Disney who had been getting their souvenier t-shirts made for cheap didn't like the idea of having to pay reasonable wages. But that kind of stuff happens all the time. None of the Maya languages of Chiapas are on the program even though there are continuing struggles by the Zapatistas for land reform and an end to NAFTA (I should post some of the Zapatista propaganda photos I took and tell you all about the eljido tax- but that's off topic).

So my little paranoid brain is tying to figure out why the defense department might need American citizens who can speak Haitian Creole. First person with a sensible theory gets a lip smacky kiss.

PS: I was looking for programs in Portuguese in a place where I might want to live, like say the Bay Area (has nothing to do with the boy who is making me grin, really;) and they are virtually non-existent. Which means I either have to study Russian or risk life and limb learning Farsi. I guess all I've got to say about that is "Dosvedanya comrades".

Monday, October 09, 2006

The First Step to Real Reform

Everyone on every side of the political spectrum knows the system is broken. Special inetersts trump voters in garnering attention of lawmakers. Now, even winning the popular vote does not assure victory. But even if we get "our" people in the lawmakers are more likely to listen those who lobby the best (i.e., can offer the most money and perks). The constant lament, with reasonable justification, is that our two parties have become one: the Republicrats. So how do we change this increasingly dangerous situation? Massive turner vote.

I know this seems counterintuitive since in the last thrity years we only seem to get to choose the 'lesser of two evils'. But think of our situation this way. Politicians are doing everything to control who gets to vote for them. Between ballot rigging, gerrymandering and manipulation politicians want only enough people to vote for them to get elected. This assures them election and eases their job by letting them appeal to a limited base. This should offer the clue to our strategy as voters.

Another thought that should motivate us. Most of us realize that two parties, even if run optimally, are not enough. That is why most other democracies chose proportional voting. Getting proportional voting to even be considered we need viable third, fourth and fifth parties. Do any of you think these parties will come around with the paltry numbers that currently constitute our turnout? The first answer to change is to double turnout and maintain it. Then as a more representative populace we can demand changes.

The current state of low turnout is purposeful. Politicians do not want everyone to vote. Let's scare the hell out of 'em.

Sunday, October 08, 2006


This was forwarded to me by my friend Omari after he found it posted on Craigslist. A few disclaimers- I have not verified these at all, and Republicans aren't the only ones with histories of child abuse. But because they claim to be the only party of family values I feel completely justified in posting this. Apparently Jesus loves the little children, but Republican politicians love the little children longer and harder.

Ted Bundy worked for the Republican party, Republican bigot anti-gay Jim West is a pedophile.......
Republican Hypocrisy Revealed

Republican Congressman Mark Foley abruptly resigned from Congress after "sexually explicit" emails surfaced showing him flirting with a 16-year old boy.

Republican executive Randall Casseday of the conservative Washington Times newspaper was arrested for soliciting sex from a 13-year old girl on the internet.

Republican chairman of the Oregon Christian Coalition Lou Beres confessed to molesting a 13-year old girl.

Republican County Constable Larry Dale Floyd was arrested on suspicion of soliciting sex with an 8-year old girl. Floyd has repeatedly won elections for Denton County, Texas, constable.

Republican judge Mark Pazuhanich pleaded no contest to fondling a 10-year old girl and was sentenced to 10 years probation.

Republican Party leader Bobby Stumbo was arrested for having sex with a 5-year old boy.

Republican petition drive manager Tom Randall pleaded guilty to molesting two girls under the age of 14, one of them the daughter of an associate in the petition business.

Republican County Chairman Armando Tebano was arrested for sexually molesting a 14-year-old girl.

Republican teacher and former city councilman John Collins pleaded guilty to sexually molesting 13 and 14 year old girls.

Republican campaign worker Mark Seidenstickeer is a convicted child molester.

Republican Mayor Phillip Giordano is serving a 37-year sentence in federal prison for sexually abusing 8- and 10-year old girls.

Republican Mayor Tom Adams was arrested for distributing child pornography over the internet.

Republican Mayor John Gosek was arrested on charges of soliciting sex from two 15-year old girls.

Republican County Commissioner David Swartz pleaded guilty to molesting two girls under the age of 11 and was sentenced to 8 years in prison.

Republican legislator Edison Misla Aldarondo was sentenced to 10 years in prison for raping his daughter between the ages of 9 and 17.

Republican Committeeman John R. Curtain was charged with molesting a teenage boy and unlawful sexual contact with a minor.

Republican anti-abortion activist Howard Scott Heldreth is a convicted child rapist in Florida.

Republican zoning supervisor, Boy Scout leader and Lutheran church president Dennis L. Rader pleaded guilty to performing a sexual act on an 11-year old girl he murdered.

Republican anti-abortion activist Nicholas Morency pleaded guilty to possessing child pornography on his computer and offering a bounty to anybody who murders an abortion doctor.

Republican campaign consultant Tom Shortridge was sentenced to three years probation for taking nude photographs of a 15-year old girl.

Republican racist pedophile and United States Senator Strom Thurmond had sex with a 15-year old black girl which produced a child.

Republican pastor Mike Hintz, whom George W. Bush commended during the 2004 presidential campaign, surrendered to police after admitting to a sexual affair with a female juvenile.

Republican legislator Peter Dibble pleaded no contest to having an inappropriate relationship with a 13-year-old girl.

Republican advertising consultant Carey Lee Cramer was sentenced to six years in prison for molesting two 8-year old girls, one of whom appeared in an anti-Gore television commercial.

Republican activist Lawrence E. King, Jr. organized child sex parties at the White House during the 1980s.

Republican lobbyist Craig J. Spence organized child sex parties at the White House during the 1980s.

Republican Congressman Donald "Buz" Lukens was found guilty of having sex with a female minor and sentenced to one month in jail.

Republican fundraiser Richard A. Delgaudio was found guilty of child porn charges and paying two teenage girls to pose for sexual photos.

Republican activist Mark A. Grethen convicted on six counts of sex crimes involving children.

Republican campaign chairman Randal David Ankeney pleaded guilty to attempted sexual assault on a child and was arrested again five years later on the same charge.

Republican Congressman Dan Crane had sex with a female minor working as a congressional page.

Republican activist and Christian Coalition leader Beverly Russell admitted to an incestuous relationship with his step daughter.

Republican Judge Ronald C. Kline was placed under house arrest for child molestation and possession of child pornography.

Republican congressman and anti-gay activist Robert Bauman was charged with having sex with a 16-year-old boy he picked up at a gay bar.

Republican Committee Chairman Jeffrey Patti was arrested for distributing a video clip of a 5-year-old girl being raped.

Republican activist Marty Glickman (a.k.a. "Republican Marty"), was taken into custody by Florida police on four counts of unlawful sexual activity with an underage girl and one count of delivering the drug LSD.

Republican legislative aide Howard L. Brooks was charged with molesting a 12-year old boy and possession of child pornography.

Republican Senate candidate John Hathaway was accused of having sex with his 12-year old baby sitter and withdrew his candidacy after the allegations were reported in the media.

Republican preacher Stephen White, who demanded a return to traditional values, was sentenced to jail after offering $20 to a 14-year-old boy for permission to perform oral sex on him.

Republican talk show host Jon Matthews pleaded guilty to exposing his genitals to an 11 year old girl.

Republican anti-gay activist Earl "Butch" Kimmerling was sentenced to 40 years in prison for molesting an 8-year old girl after he attempted to stop a gay couple from adopting her.

Republican Party leader Paul Ingram pleaded guilty to six counts of raping his daughters and served 14 years in federal prison.

Republican election board official Kevin Coan was sentenced to two years probation for soliciting sex over the internet from a 14-year old girl.

Republican politician Andrew Buhr was charged with two counts of first degree sodomy with a 13-year old boy.

Republican legislator Keith Westmoreland was arrested on seven felony counts of lewd and lascivious exhibition to girls under the age of 16 (i.e. exposing himself to children).

Republican anti-abortion activist John Allen Burt was found guilty of molesting a 15-year old girl.

Republican County Councilman Keola Childs pleaded guilty to molesting a male child.

Republican activist John Butler was charged with criminal sexual assault on a teenage girl.

Republican candidate Richard Gardner admitted to molesting his two daughters.

Republican Councilman and former Marine Jack W. Gardner was convicted of molesting a 13-year old girl.

Republican County Commissioner Merrill Robert Barter pleaded guilty to unlawful sexual contact and assault on a teenage boy.

Republican City Councilman Fred C. Smeltzer, Jr. pleaded no contest to raping a 15 year-old girl and served 6-months in prison.

Republican activist Parker J. Bena pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography on his home computer and was sentenced to 30 months in federal prison and fined $18,000.

Republican parole board officer and former Colorado state representative, Larry Jack Schwarz, was fired after child pornography was found in his possession.

Republican strategist and Citadel Military College graduate Robin Vanderwall was convicted in Virginia on five counts of soliciting sex from boys and girls over the internet.

Republican city councilman Mark Harris, who is described as a "good military man" and "church goer," was convicted of repeatedly having sex with an 11-year-old girl and sentenced to 12 years in prison.

Republican businessman Jon Grunseth withdrew his candidacy for Minnesota governor after allegations surfaced that he went swimming in the nude with four underage girls, including his daughter.

Republican campaign worker, police officer and self-proclaimed reverend Steve Aiken was convicted of having sex with two underage girls.

Republican director of the "Young Republican Federation" Nicholas Elizondo molested his 6-year old daughter and was sentenced to six years in prison.

Republican president of the New York City Housing Development Corp. Russell Harding pleaded guilty to possessing child pornography on his computer.

Republican benefactor of conservative Christian groups, Richard A. Dasen Sr., was found guilty of raping a 15-year old girl. Dasen, 62, who is married with grown children and several grandchildren, has allegedly told police that over the past decade he paid more than $1 million to have sex with a large number of young women.

Republican Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld authorized the rape of children in Iraqi prisons in order to humiliate their parents into providing information about the anti-American insurgency. See excerpt of one prisoner's report here and his full report here.