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A thread… and a bit 16 June 2008

Posted by marisacat in 2008 Election, Culture of Death, DC Politics, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, Iran, Iraq War, Israel/AIPAC, WAR!.

A U.S. soldier makes a retina scan of an Iraqi man in the Shiite enclave of Sadr city, Baghdad, Iraq. [AP from UK Telegraph]

Silber has a piece up on horror

But then came 9/11. We reacted as any deeply neurotic narcissist bent on world domination would, in the manner of a violent nation suffering from “superpower syndrome” as described by Robert Jay Lifton: “You can’t do this to us! You can’t attack us here! We kill you bastards there, and we love it, but you can’t come here!”

The second half of his post is spent in some thoroughly pleasing slaps at Frank Rich, across a few columns…

And Raimondo at Anti-War, continues his walk back from the rather too sweaty endorsement… and looks at AIPAC and WINEP:

[I]n short, what the Lobby wants is a new means to pressure America’s chief executive into going to war with Israel’s principal enemy in the Middle East, an official channel through which Jerusalem can transmit its orders to Washington. If President Obama gets out of line, he’ll have this “aide” by his side baby-sitting him, ceaselessly hectoring him to eat his broccoli.

Obama’s supporters – a sincere and strongly antiwar lot – are going to be sorely disappointed by all this, but, don’t worry, the Lobby has a plan. Citing the WINEP report, Rosner writes:

“And here is another interesting nugget, signed by the two most senior Obama advisers: The president should begin ‘a national conversation with the American people on the challenges, risks, and dilemmas posed to U.S. interests by the potential Iranian acquisition of a nuclear weapons capability, and on ways to prevent it – to raise popular awareness of the fact that Iran’s nuclear ambitions are likely to trigger a surge of nuclear proliferation and raise the potential of terrorists gaining nuclear weapons.'”

Obama is being given his marching orders, and if anyone can get the war-weary American people hopped up about the alleged “threat” posed by nonexistent Iranian nukes, then surely it’s the Great Orator himself, the candidate who wants to talk to Tehran – if only to communicate an ultimatum. ::snip:: [bold is mine — Mcat]

I see that as The Plan. One of them, in any case.

Yes… he’ll need Good Luck (and friends like AIPAC and WINEP), much more than endless, self-serving moral squishy-ness.



1. JJB - 16 June 2008

132, previous thread,

Since you’e either unwilling or incapable of understanding the points I’m trying to make, I’ll just leave you to continue passing gas in your own little hermetically sealed Cave of the Winds (in which I’m sure you’re delighted with the rarified atmosphere). As to what effect the 2000 election had on the Green Party, where are they now, what are they doing, how many votes will they get this year?

2. Intermittent Bystander - 16 June 2008
3. CSTAR - 16 June 2008

2. I guess no good christian wants to be left behind.

4. marisacat - 16 June 2008

it is AP and Nedra Pickler… but if this is in any way true… Well. I had been waiting for something like this, he was flatly disinterested in Ohio in the primary.

I found it thru Geraghty at The Campaign Spot. Yesssssssssss… NRO.

5. Intermittent Bystander - 16 June 2008

3 – Heavens to Murgatroyd no!

Funnily enough I found the item (also a Pickler special) when I went online to check the trajectory of a passing storm with damaging hail.

All hail!

6. marisacat - 16 June 2008

Ben Smith (he links to the same AP report) on knocking Ohio and FL from the battle:

He’s [Plouffe] obviously right on the math, though without those two states Obama would have to run the table from Colorado to New Hampshire, and win other states that currently look no more automatic than Ohio.

I think it is ‘off on the RT world tour’. More speeches and huge crowds. THo I have not heard that State nor DOD has Ok’d a visit to Afghanistan or Iraq.

7. NYCee - 16 June 2008

Well, I could only swiftly sweep the Silber on the Rich, but I got the gist. (The point about intelligence, how it is viewed and used and talked about around war, is an interesting one – not part of the Rich critique – I may return to read with greater attention later… )

Yes, “mismanage” and “bungle”… well, count me out when using those terms to criticize our war. Now if you apply them to the MORALITY of making such a war (Silber’s case), then yes, you have mismanaged and bungled your morality – your moral code, whatever the hell you call it, is fucked.

But the mention of morality is absent these days. You cant weave it into this warp we call our national discussion, whereas patriotism slips in like silk.

They cant talk about all the Iraqis who die. On and on and only do they talk about the 4,000. If I miswrote it and said they only talk about the 40,000, you’d still know who I mean, because the only ones who count in the body count are those labeled American. Not out of actual respect for their lives, either, of course, but at least the idea that they existed and now do not is given a number.

I tivoed a Cspan caller recently, who angrily made this point about only the 4,000. The voices are so few, just had to hear him again.

8. ms_xeno - 16 June 2008

JJB, #1:

Fuck YOU, too.

9. moiv - 16 June 2008

Re: The Faith of Barack Obama

“For Obama, faith is not simply political garb, something a focus group told him he ought to try. Instead, religion to him is transforming, lifelong, and real,” Mansfield writes, going on to compare Obama favorably to Christian Democratic presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton, who he says erected a “wall of separation” between their religion and their governance.

By contrast, “Obama’s faith infuses his public policy, so that his faith is not just limited to the personal realms of his life, it also informs his leadership,” Mansfield writes.

The book is published by Thomas Nelson, the world’s largest Christian publisher. It’s due out August 5. “The Faith of Barack Obama” is expected to retail in Christian outlets and the Wal-Mart chain of stores, as well as secular bookstores. A motivational speaker and former pastor, Mansfield is the author of several books on faith as well as the co-author of former House Republican powerhouse Tom DeLay’s 2007 book “No Retreat, No Surrender,” a defense of his tarnished legacy sprinkled with fierce attacks on his opponents and on liberal causes.


In his Fathers Day speech at a Chicago church Sunday, Obama again spoke explicitly of his personal Christianity: “We do what we can to build our house upon the sturdiest rock, and for me that means building that house on the foundation of Jesus Christ.”


There are also passages in Mansfield’s book that may give Obama’s secular supporters pause. In particular, a theme from his book on Bush—the suggestion that the president’s rise was itself an act of God-reappears in his coverage of Obama. He approvingly quotes Obama’s old rival Rep. Bobby Rush saying that Obama’s Senate win was “divinely ordained.”

“Increasingly, words such as called, chosen, and anointed are being used of Obama,” he writes.

10. marisacat - 16 June 2008


oh fuck his faith. Really.

May he too wear a broadtail capelet made from fetal skins.

So sick of them all.

11. marisacat - 16 June 2008

Maybe as is done with the coronation of the ruler of England, we should have a special moment, behind a curtain, when the elevated Jesus President, is anointed to serve the heavenly host.

12. moiv - 16 June 2008

From the endorsement of über-Catholic Doug Kmiec, that piece of much sought-after high-hanging fruit:

The discussion dwelt at some length on abortion. Obama said he earnestly wants to “discourage” the practice—despite the distortions of some who think if they affix the “pro-abortion—won’t overturn-Roe-label” to the senator, pro-lifers like myself won’t give him the time of day. Sorry, good friends, not this year.

Not to understand that there is more than one rather indirect and elusive judicial way to address an intrinsic evil understates the ingenuity of the devout.

13. lucid - 16 June 2008

Not to understand that there is more than one rather indirect and elusive judicial way to address an intrinsic evil understates the ingenuity of the devout.

I think the ‘ingenuity of the devout’ is an ‘intrinsic evil’ that needs to be addressed…

14. marisacat - 16 June 2008


Obama still offering just one TownHall on July 4. Meanwhile McCain throws down the suggestion of a TH with la Raza.

15. ms_xeno - 16 June 2008

…Obama said he earnestly wants to “discourage” the practice…

But– but— NARAL calls Obama a “strong pro-choice” candidate !!

[fans self]

16. Heather-Rose Ryan - 16 June 2008

JJB, from last thread: Ventura was and remains a jerk.

So he’s not refined enough for your exquisite tastes. Who cares? He says things that need to be said. He’s unashamedly, outspokenly pro-choice and pro-gay rights, and he wants to keep religion out of politics. On that basis alone, he trumps the major party candidates.

Nuf sed.

17. JJB - 16 June 2008

no. 8,

Thanks for the admission you have no argument. That’s a response worthy of David Byron. 🙂

hrh, no. 16,

You do realize that he didn’t dare run for a second term as governor because he’d proved himself to be loudmouthed idiot who’d offended just about everybody all along the political spectrum? The people who were foolish enough to buy his act learned the appropriate lesson, you should too.

As to my “exquisite tastes,” I assume you mean my favorable mention of Bobby Kennedy and George McGovern (my first presidential vote, and still the one of which I’m proudest). If you mean your enthusiasm for Mr. Ventura to stand in shining contract to those two, I hope you enjoy whatever kick you get from it. Just don’t confuse cheap thrills with doctrinal purity.

18. moiv - 16 June 2008

Kos is predictably excited over “The Faith of Barack Obama.”

19. Heather-Rose Ryan - 16 June 2008

My dear JJB, I lived in St Paul for several years and Jesse was my governor for all four years of his term. His decision not to run was not because he had offended people. (He actually thrives on offending people, in case you hadn’t noticed.) In fact many Minnesotans I know, from all parties and walks of life, were disappointed he didn’t run again. He was well-liked by a lot of people, except for the uptight pretentious folks (e.g. the profoundly irritating Garrison Keillor), the same ones who never stopped complaining about Fargo and how unfair a depiction of Minnesotans it was. They felt that having a pro wrestler as governor made Minnesota a laughing stock among the elite coast-dwellers (as if the elite coast-dwellers really gave a rat’s ass about who was the governor of Minnesota). These are the same type of people who a century ago put a statue of Nathan Hale up in their posh neighborhood, trying to make sure that everyone knew they were wealthy Easterners, yessir, not some prairie yahoos in covered wagons.

They are very tiresome, boring people.

The fact is that he was disgusted with the political process, by the obnoxious Twin Cities media, and by the thankless task of being a governor without a party machine to support him. As most normal people would do, he simply said “Fuck it.”

Now he’s saying “Fuck it” from the sidelines, which is more lucrative and less stressful.

I hope that clears things up for you! 🙂

20. ms_xeno - 16 June 2008


I’d advise standing before the mirror when you say that, Bucko.

Just because you don’t like my argument, it isn’t there ?

Christ. Take that shit back to DK. That’s about the level of discourse I’d expect there, right down to the Rightie-talking-points-in-brittle-new-skin approach. (ie– Say, “hermetically sealed” instead of “elitist.” Oh, my. Soooo clever. Soooo novel.)


Or are you merely John Kricfalusi in disguise ? That would certainly explain your interest in fart joke non sequiturs.

Ren/Stimpy 2008. That’ll look great on the back of your car, JJB.

21. Arcturus - 16 June 2008

Government by lawsuit

wow, jjb. just wow.

22. Arcturus - 16 June 2008

inquiring minds wanna know, are the rumors true that Obama will be giving his next foreign policy speech atop Khyber Pass?

23. marisacat - 16 June 2008

On a happier note… right on the dot: 501 PM and SSM begin in California…

24. marisacat - 16 June 2008


my guess Dept of State is willing to say YES, but DOD (who I gather have to approve as well, as this is not a CODEL visit) will be the tougher nut.

Sure to pick an Himalyan peak for his next pronouncements…


25. Madman in the Marketplace - 16 June 2008
26. ms_xeno - 16 June 2008

I totally need one of those Jesus dolls on hand to provide support the next time my talking Barbie doll complains about Math class being hard. :p

27. Madman in the Marketplace - 16 June 2008

One of the things that consistently bugs me about the whole IRAN IS DANGEROUS thing is that NO ONE bothers to mention that Iran has a right to enrich uranium under the Non-Proliferation Treaty. A treaty that it actually signed and for the most part followed. Unlike the US allies Pakistan, Israel and India. The whole argument that the Bushies offer (when they bother to do less than scare mongering) is that the Iranians are only abiding by the NPT until right before they’re able to produce weapons-grade uranium, then they’ll quit like N. Korea did. Of course, N. Korea took that move when the Bushies renegged on agreements set up under Clinton, but what’s the point of arguing about what monstrous liars they are?

Just once I want to hear an honest description of ALL of the nuclear players in that part of the world. Of all of them, Iran is the LEAST threatening to general stability.

28. Heather-Rose Ryan - 16 June 2008

Speaking of the movie Fargo, here’s a heartwarming story about stupid inept people trying to do something illegal, this time, selling tigers in a Texas mall parking lot:

McALLEN – Police and federal authorities are investigating the sale of six Bengal tiger cubs in a Wal-Mart parking lot Sunday afternoon.

The animals appear to have been bound for Mexico and neither the buyer nor seller had the permits needed to legally transport the endangered species across national borders, a federal agent said.

A group from Spring Hill Widlife Ranch in Bryan was selling the cubs – four white ones and two orange ones – in the parking lot of the Wal-Mart near Jackson Avenue and Expressway 83.


Police learned of the transaction when a McAllen Police Department patrol officer became suspicious of the truck with Mexican license plates in the Wal-Mart parking lot, police said.

When the officer approached, the group moved to the parking lot of the nearby Mervyn’s department store, prompting him to follow and ultimately discover the tiger cubs.

Oh that makes a lot of sense. “Quick, let’s move over to the Mervyn’s lot – the cop will never notice the tigers there.”

It’s like something out of Carl Hiaasen.

29. ms_xeno - 16 June 2008

I love Fargo, but I’ll watch anything with William H. Macy in it. I even sat through a huge portion of [shudder] Boogie Nights for his sake.

Keillor is all right in verrrrrrry controlled doses. :/

30. marisacat - 16 June 2008

Get yer hot tigers…

31. Madman in the Marketplace - 16 June 2008

Religious faith is a mental illness. The more I hear about Obama’s submission to that virus, the more he frightens me. Say Amen when the nation of Iran is set alight in nuclear fire.

Really, fuck them all. I say let all the egos loose. Lets have Jesse and Nader and everyone else raise the temp and speed along the coming collapse. The longer we drag it out the less there will be left to try to rebuild from the ruins. Balkanize the damned place … lets quit pretending that this country is anything other than a series of loosely allied company towns that exist solely to make a relatively small percentage of people very rich and to salve the rest with the holy cum of religious spew. Holy Roller Love, Reign O’er Us.

I’m really just done, as the celebration of St. Timmeh continues apace … with his male heir already given more airtime this weekend than any opposition figure will EVER get. If Jesse’s ego gets some things said, then great. If Nader manages to make one more person hear the words “public square”, then great. Maybe those folks will survive the collapse and help build anew. Hopefully the nuts and nitwits being pandered to now by our “two” parties will kill each other off.

I’m going to happily vote for McKinney like I did Nader in 2000, and anybody who wants to tell me it’s a waste can go and fuck themselves. They’ll be all opened up and ready for it, as they’ve already submitted themselves to the tender thrusting of the throbbing donk.

32. Heather-Rose Ryan - 16 June 2008

Bonzo Dog Band, “Hunting Tigers out in India”

or in McAllen Texas, for that matter.

33. marisacat - 16 June 2008

I just heard him say that marriage is between a man and a woman (ABC with Tapper). Nto sure how that squares wtih his supposed stance/promise/election slobber of rolling back the DOMA.

I wonder if he would bother. He’d have to explain to all of his new bestest friends.

34. ms_xeno - 16 June 2008

…Really, fuck them all. I say let all the egos loose. Lets have Jesse and Nader and everyone else raise the temp and speed along the coming collapse…


Like Obama, McCain, and whatever cardboard cutouts appear to serve as their respective running mates have been cleansed by Jeebus of any pesky ego problems. :p

35. Madman in the Marketplace - 16 June 2008

More the merrier ms_x, let all the straw men set each other aflame.

Oooh, speaking of empty shells, Gore is about to endorse St. Funny Name.

nation as messy circle jerk …

Sorry to be so carried away w/ the masturbation metaphors tonight!


36. Madman in the Marketplace - 16 June 2008

hmmmm, how do you make the angry face?



37. Heather-Rose Ryan - 16 June 2008

Madman, I always liked this Hairraising Horror one: =8-0

Not sure how it’ll turn out when WordPress converts into a face….

38. Madman in the Marketplace - 16 June 2008

Get your obamaide shots ready:

Gore: Elections matter, I know!!!


Gore: Supreme Court


Gore: China toys!


gonna be lots of people drunk on the obamaide after this long list of dog whistles.

39. Heather-Rose Ryan - 16 June 2008

Aha, I’ve thwarted WordPress! 😉

40. Madman in the Marketplace - 16 June 2008


First, the spectacle of the cable nets, led by NBC, gorging on Russert’s corpse was disgusting to witness, each mourner sobbing as they tore into the meat. Hyenas have more respect for the dead. Still, it was a prime example of how insulated the corporate media remains, their mutual self-regard forever polluting the ether. And this was only Russert. Imagine the collective stench we’ll have to endure when Cronkite, Brokaw, and Koppel hit the slab. At least Barbara Walters had the good taste to reanimate herself after she died, postponing the cannibal feast for at least another decade, or until her private stash of Tana leaves runs out.

Of course, many liberals were saddened by Russert’s sudden exit, focusing on his personality instead of his systemic function. Like most Americans, liberals prefer being lied to by amiable figures like Russert, for when the state goes on a murderous spree, you want its mouthpieces to smile and assure you that the mass graves are in everybody’s better interests. That some people seriously believe that Russert spoke truth to power merely heightens the grim absurdity, especially when it’s the powerful who insist their feet were singed by Russert’s “tough” queries. If these tributes emanated from prison cells or work release programs, then perhaps Russert would deserve a measure of respect. Instead, those elites fond of Russert remain unafflicted and comfortable, remembering the man as they would a favorite pet.

41. Heather-Rose Ryan - 16 June 2008

29. ms x: I agree, William H Macy is great.

Keillor is all right in verrrrrrry controlled doses. :/

Hmm. I’m trying to think of an example. The briefest dose of Keillor, the Writers Almanac, is even more unbearable than the PHC skits.

OK, I remember a couple of the Lake Wobegon pieces, for example, the one where Pastor Lundqvist goes to Italy, and the one where the young guy loses the Winnebago in the hole in the ice, were fairly amusing.

I once interviewed a Finnish musician who had just appeared on the show. He was baffled by the whole PHC/Keillor thing – couldn’t see the appeal. He said to me very gravely, “And…. he sings!

42. Madman in the Marketplace - 16 June 2008

Don’t know if there are any other Firefly/Whedon fans here, but just in case: See Serenity on the Big Screen and Fight for Lady Power

Starting this Thursday, and going through August, you’ll have a chance to see Firefly spinoff flick Serenity on the big screen again — and your admission money goes to director Joss Whedon’s favorite charity, Equality Now. The charity works to end discrimination and violence against women around the world.

Sadly not coming thru Milwaukee.

43. Madman in the Marketplace - 16 June 2008

Antarctica Is Shrinking Before Your Eyes

The European Space Agency reported on Friday that satellite photos taken over the past several months reveal that the massive Wilkins ice shelf is crumbling, even in the depths of antarctic winter. The scary part is that the bit that’s crumbling, as you can see in these images, is a small bridge attaching a massive, thousands-of-square-miles sheet of ice to another. Once this tiny bridge falls apart, it will unleash one of the biggest chunks of ice to break off the frozen continent ever. The ESA estmates the bridge will break up within the next few days.

44. ms_xeno - 16 June 2008

hrh, I tend to prefer Keillor when he has somebody else to relate to, so the Writer’s Almanac thing doesn’t work for me, either. I do like those dopey commercials for pie, or whatever, where he’s pompously relating some absurd story of some poor slob getting deeper and deeper into trouble because they’re too witless to stop themselves– punctuated with the cheesy old-time music and the Spike Jones like sound effects.

Not very original, but amusing when they’re not allowed to run on too long. Sort of like the deal with SNL sketches. Brevity is the key.

[skulks off in shame]

45. Madman in the Marketplace - 16 June 2008

Not a huge fan of Keillor either, but the Altman movie was wonderful.

46. marisacat - 16 June 2008

Keillor’s entertainment routine is not my thing… tho I can see where it was cannily devised for the US market. he has said that people assume he likes small towns but in fact does not… LOL.

One thing he did do tho, when the Demcrats retreated like bugs in bright light following the memorial service for Wellstone, he got a few things said (he was on CNN pretty quickly in the mess that followed). Some fo them about Coleman, who, while I am not a fan of Franken, Coleman deserves to be brought down and hard. Kinda doubt that will be happening tho. More’s the pity.

47. Arcturus - 16 June 2008

via Common Dreams:

On May 13, 2004, a novel euphemism was delivered into the public lexicon by anonymous “counterintelligence official” sources cited in a New York Times article. The piece reported the CIA had been using “a technique known as ‘water boarding,’ in which a prisoner is strapped down, forcibly pushed under water and made to believe he might drown.” The technique was described by the Times as one of several “methods [that] simulate torture.”

Before long, Alan Dershowitz (Boston Globe, 5/15/04)-the Harvard law professor who advocates for a system of “torture warrants” (San Francisco Chonicle, 1/22/04)–had coined a brand new catchphrase by stringing the two words together into one: “waterboarding.” As Dershowitz himself acknowledged to Times columnist William Safire (3/9/08), “When I first used the word, nobody knew what it meant.”

Indeed, a search of newspaper archives reveals that until May 2004, the term had actually meant an aquatic sport similar to surfing. Meanwhile, the technique now known as “waterboarding”-in which the person being tortured is actually drowning, aspirating fluid to the point of being unable to breathe-had previously been called “water torture,” or simply “torture,” by the media.

Water torture had cropped up in media reports on several occasions prior to the New York Times’ revelations about CIA “water boarding.” During the insurrection against the U.S. occupation of the Philippines (1899-1902), the U.S. military tortured suspected members of the Filipino resistance with a similar technique that they referred to as the “water cure.” FAIR

48. moiv - 16 June 2008

‘Pro-Life’ Drugstores Market Beliefs

When DMC Pharmacy opens this summer on Route 50 in Chantilly, the shelves will be stocked with allergy remedies, pain relievers, antiseptic ointments and almost everything else sold in any drugstore. But anyone who wants condoms, birth control pills or the Plan B emergency contraceptive will be turned away.

That’s because the drugstore, located in a typical shopping plaza featuring a Ruby Tuesday, a Papa John’s and a Kmart, will be a “pro-life pharmacy” — meaning, among other things, that it will eschew all contraceptives.

The pharmacy is one of a small but growing number of drugstores around the country that have become the latest front in a conflict pitting patients’ rights against those of health-care workers who assert a “right of conscience” to refuse to provide care or products that they find objectionable.

“The United States was founded on the idea that people act on their conscience — that they have a sense of right and wrong and do what they think is right and moral,” said Tom Brejcha, president and chief counsel at the Thomas More Society, a Chicago public-interest law firm that is defending a pharmacist who was fined and reprimanded for refusing to fill prescriptions for birth control pills. “Every pharmacist has the right to do the same thing,” Brejcha said.


The pharmacies are emerging at a time when a variety of health-care workers are refusing to perform medical procedures they find objectionable. Fertility doctors have refused to inseminate gay women. Ambulance drivers have refused to transport patients for abortions. Anesthesiologists have refused to assist in sterilizations.


Robert Semler, the pharmacist who will run DMC Pharmacy, plans to start each workday with a prayer with his staff, which at first will just be his wife, Pam, a nurse.

“Being a faith-based workplace, it’s a logical thing to do,” Semler said.

49. moiv - 16 June 2008

Ouch! The link works, but sorry for the typo in the format.

50. moiv - 16 June 2008

Say it ain’t so … not a remake of The Prisoner.

Some things just ought to be by god left alone — and besides, there’s nobody around anymore who can seethe like MacGoohan.

51. Madman in the Marketplace - 16 June 2008

they’re remaking anything that isn’t nailed down. I’m expecting a new Monkees any day now.

52. marisacat - 16 June 2008


OK then!

Can I assume they also won’t fill Viagra? (what if it is only used for —- gasp! Onanism?)

LOL I bet they will. Aids for Jesus birthing, or some such selling point. On target to sell to the Quiverfull gangs.

What a joke.

53. moiv - 16 June 2008

Thanks for the first aid on the link.

And if Viagra ensures that a woman will need the Plan B she can’t buy, I’m sure they’ll stock and dispense it.

54. Madman in the Marketplace - 16 June 2008

I suddenly had the thought that the Iraqi man in the pic above is seeing America very clearly for what it is, armed and intrusive.

55. marisacat - 16 June 2008

via Ben Smith… who mentions that Obma had Edwards endorse him in MI as well. LOL:

“Take it from me,” Gore said, “elections matter,” and listed a series of events from the last eight years, from the invasion of Iraq to the response to Hurricane Katrina to the importation of tainted pet food from China.

“Even our dogs and cats have learned that elections matter,” he said.

He endorsed Obama as a “young leader” who holds that “we are not a red state America or a blue state America, we are the United States of America.”

“We have such a leader,” said Gore. “Ladies and gentlemen, the next president of the United States — Barack Obama!”

Obama’s crowd was a bit rough on the speakers. They booed Governor Jennifer Granholm for praising Clinton and Gore for praising John McCain.

56. moiv - 16 June 2008


That’s the Texas border for you, Heather. If Hiaasen ever runs out of material in Miami (which is doubtful, I grant) we could provide him with plenty of material, even farther north.

Last spring a teenage girl tried to sell me a wolf pup as I was going into Target.

57. Madman in the Marketplace - 16 June 2008

Chomsky Speaks By WAJAHAT ALI

ALI: Recently, an U.S. intelligence report concluded that Iran had successfully stopped a nuclear weapons program 4 years ago. Iran maintains it never advanced a program in the first place. Regardless, President Bush, Israel President Olmert and ranking officials in Washington claim Iran remains a “dangerous threat” and is still in pursuit of “nuclear weapons.” How tenable are both parties’ claims (U.S. and Iran)? If it is unsubstantiated, why then the aggressive and confrontational rhetoric against Iran, and how does this benefit U.S foreign policy in the Middle Eastern region?

CHOMSKY: The claims should be evaluated by the International Atomic Energy Agency. I have no special knowledge, of course. It would hardly be surprising if it were discovered that Iran has some kind of nuclear weapons program, perhaps contingency plans. The reasons were explained by one of Israel’s leading military historians, Martin van Creveld. He argued that Iran would be “crazy” if it were not developing a nuclear deterrent in its current predicament: with hostile forces of a violent superpower on two borders and a hostile regional power (Israel) brandishing hundreds of nuclear weapons, both calling loudly for “regime change.” Nevertheless, the available evidence indicates that if Iran had such a program, they stopped pursuing it several years ago.

From the U.S. perspective, Iran committed a grave crime in 1979. As we know, in 1953 the U.S. and UK dismantled Iranian parliamentary democracy and installed a brutal tyrant, the Shah, who remained a pillar of U.S. control over the energy-rich region until 1979, when he was overthrown by a popular uprising. That was rather like Cuba’s overthrow of the Somoza dictatorship in 1959, or other acts of “successful defiance” of Washington’s principle, to borrow the terms used in internal documents. The Godfather cannot tolerate “successful defiance.” It is far too great a threat to what is called “stability” – that is, obedience to the master.

Iranian independence is no slight problem. It threatens U.S. domination of one of the most valuable prizes in the world, Middle East oil. Accordingly, from 1979 the U.S. has been bitterly hostile to Iran. Washington backed Saddam Hussein’s vicious and murderous assault against Iran, and even after the war, continued to provide strong support to its friend Saddam, even inviting Iraqi nuclear engineers for advanced training in nuclear weapons development in 1989. It then turned to severe sanctions against Iran, along with regular threats to attack Iran and overthrow the government.

That continues to the present. As I write (June 15, 2008), Reuters reports that ‘Analysts believe that offering Iran security guarantees, an idea floated by Russia, could help end the deadlock, seeing such guarantees as Iran’s fundamental goal given the Bush administration’s “regime change” policy toward it. But the United States last month said major powers had no plans to make such security pledges to Tehran.’

In simple words, the US insists on maintaining its stance as an outlaw state, dismissing core principles of international law, including the UN Charter, which outlaws the threat or use of force in international affairs. Bush is joined by both 2008 presidential candidates and by elite opinion in the U.S. and Europe – but not by the American public, which by a large majority favors diplomacy and opposes the threat of force. But public opinion is largely irrelevant to policy formation, not just in this case.

The political class, across the spectrum with rare exceptions, is committed to maintaining U.S. control over the world’s major energy resources, and to punishing “successful defiance.” Therefore, the U.S. has tried very hard to mobilize an anti-Iranian alliance among the Sunni states of the region, though without much success. Bush’s two trips to Saudi Arabia in early 2008 were complete failures in this regard. The Saudi press, normally very polite to important visitors, condemned the policies proposed to them by Bush and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice as “not diplomacy in search of peace, but madness in search of war.” The Gulf monarchies are no friends of Iran, but appear to prefer accommodation to confrontation, a bitter blow to U.S. policies. Washington is facing similar problems in Iraq and Lebanon. In the background lies a much broader concern: that the energy producers of the region may turn to the East, perhaps even following Iran to establish links to the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, which includes China, Russia, and the Central Asian states, with India, Pakistan, and Iran as observers, a status denied to Washington.

58. CSTAR - 16 June 2008


Small correction: Fulgencio Batista was overthrown by Castro in 59, not SOmoza. Somozas were still around in Nicaragua until 1979

59. wu ming - 16 June 2008

27 – ah, but treaties are made between nations of legally equal status. “we’re an empire now, and make our own reality” – we’ve become the (historically false) image of the qianlong emperor incensed that the macartney mission refused to kowtow before him. disciplining iran is about reasserting the right to discipline; the particulars aren’t terribly important.

late victorians with nukes.

60. lucid - 16 June 2008

I even sat through a huge portion of [shudder] Boogie Nights for his sake

Ms_x, I know your opinion of pron, and we agree to disagree, but that movie was brilliant. Starting from the script, the way Anderson pulls disparate character stories together in a fictional piece with specific historical referents, is something few directors ever manage to accomplish… the way in which that film worked in the Wonderland killings was nothing short of genius – especially in the way it did… to the soundtrack of ‘Sister Christian’.

The direction was superb. It made three non-actors into actors – namely Marky Mark, Burt Reynolds and Heather Graham. And it encompassed a kick ass repertoire of real actors: Julianne Moore, William H Macy, John C Reilly, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Don Cheadle & Luis Guzman.

It is up there in my favorite films list… give it another [unshuddering] view.

61. ms_xeno - 16 June 2008

…“Even our dogs and cats have learned that elections matter,” he said…

Our dogs and cats generally can settle their territorial pissing contests without murdering one another. Generally there’s a whole lot of noise and threats and a few scuffles, but nobody’s seriously hurt.

Maybe we should let them pick the fucking President.


Shut the fuck up, Al.

62. ms_xeno - 16 June 2008

lucid, in addition to my objection to the whole idea that porn was so soulful and happy in the 1970s and it only later went to shit from too much video and too much nose candy*, that damn film was about forty fucking minutes longer than it needed to be.

But yes, the acting was excellent.

*I’ve watched some of that shit and a little goes a long way. Feh.

63. lucid - 16 June 2008

Gore is about to endorse St. Funny Name.

nation as messy circle jerk …

Reminds me of the South Park Brown note episode.

64. lucid - 16 June 2008

Keillor is all right in verrrrrrry controlled doses. :/

Alas, I grew up in a Lutheran NPR ‘economically liberal, socially conservative’ home in which we listened to PHK every Saturday night during dinner… even the reruns.

65. lucid - 16 June 2008

Robert Semler, the pharmacist who will run DMC Pharmacy, plans to start each workday with a prayer with his staff, which at first will just be his wife, Pam, a nurse.

“Being a faith-based workplace, it’s a logical thing to do,” Semler said.

That’s illegal… Hell, if they can issue fines to cigarette smoking bar owners working their own bar in NYC for allowing smoking, they sure as hell can fine drug store owning jesus freaks for making everyone pray… I am serious though. That is illegal. Get in an undercover and sue his ass for religious discrimination when he tries to fire them.

66. marisacat - 16 June 2008

the dogs and cats comment drove me nuts. THat was the main reason I popped it up…

Julianne Moore was terrific in Boogie Nights… hell they all were. Several of those actors I can no longer stand (over fucking exposure, and not from public fucking either, mostly from POLITICS) but that movie was amazing.

67. lucid - 16 June 2008

the whole idea that porn was so soulful and happy in the 1970s

not the point of the movie remotely… or did you miss the William H Macy shooting his wife, her then lover and himself scene? It takes the idealized idiom the general public has of that time and turns it against itself, by drawing out stories about the individual character’s lives which directly contradict the prevailing wisdom. You really should give it another watch. It has nothing to do with ’70’s vs ’80’s. It’s about manifestations of validation, egoism and desperation and how they play out within the specific milieu of the story. And it is very well done… way better done than Magnolia – which is his rip-off of Short Cuts.

68. marisacat - 16 June 2008

omigod. How did I miss the Wonderland murders. I have no distinct memory of them… which is odd.. jsut the sort of story, esp set in Los Angeles, that I love (so to speak, that is).

Thanks for the wiki link…………………

69. marisacat - 16 June 2008

well I thought Boogie Nights showed how aimless and lost people become inside the industry… and how soul sucking and empty it all is.

Talk about strung out, that was where the amazing acting happend, or so I thought. I only saw it once.

70. lucid - 16 June 2008

No prob… John Holmes was never cleared. He just ‘died of AIDS’ despite the fact that his many year partner, Dawn Schiller, [who eventually turned him in] never developed AIDS and still lives today… go figure.

In all reality, John died of drug addiction – and that is another thing I thought was very well done in Boogie Nights – the transition from fun to addiction. I know that transition within myself, with friends – it was one of the best ‘soft transitions’ ever done in film… because that is what it always is, a soft transition.

71. marisacat - 16 June 2008

…as I finished reading the Wiki it began to come back slowly. I must have stowed that particular killing somwehre inside my brain…

72. lucid - 16 June 2008

69 – yes. It was the latter part of the film where the acting became even more phenomenal. As an audio engineer I have to confess, that the recording studio scene with John Reilly & Marky Mark is one of the most brilliant things I’ve ever seen on film, not to mention the Julianne Moore custody scenes, or the Rachel Graham ‘fuck someone in a Limo’ scene, or the ‘donkey dick’ gay ass kicking scene, or the recreation – within that desperation – of Wonderland, or the Don Cheadle scene, trying to get a legitimate loan.

The whole movie is painful, even when it is fun.

My point above though, was that was prefigured, not because the director wanted to show some divide, but within the first hour, all of the exploitation and failure is already there – exemplified in the William H Macy’s character, who doesn’t exist past hour 1.

73. lucid - 17 June 2008

68 – it was a high profile killing that never reached national media because it was the onset of ‘gang wars’… not to mention it involved the highest profile nightclub owner in LA.

We all know, they always protect their own.

Money is money.

74. lucid - 17 June 2008

Though, at least he he did some time.

75. marisacat - 17 June 2008

Salon has a recap of the murders and surrounding events… I got the link from the wikipedia link above, from lucid.

76. marisacat - 17 June 2008

hmmm I wonder, has either McC or Ob bothered to go to the Mississippi River flood area, or the Cedar River? (I don’t know, drawing a blank) I will poke around see what i Find. They (news overnight) are saying the flood levels in some areas will remain for WEEKS, up to three weeks. An ”unchartable” event, it is being reported.

Quite aside from the farm issues.

77. wu ming - 17 June 2008

i remember seeing some dKos diary, heavy on the pix, that showed obama in iowa filling sandbags. granted, it’s theatre, but if it was anywhere near the flooding, smart theatre.

no link, but is was in the past couple days, perhaps before russertapalooza.

78. wu ming - 17 June 2008

as for the flooding, i am getting rather tired of the word “unprecedented.” given the crap coming down the pipe climate-wise, it’s better that we just retire the term now.

it’s all going to be fucking unprecedented for a very long time, that’s what happens when you disturb a very old equilibrium, people.

how many “unprecedented” “500-year events” do we have to have before someone picks up on the fact that it’s our new reality?

to be fair, i’m really not looking forward to the “unprecedented” “500 year” summer heat wave that is undoubtedly eventually coming my way. riyadh west, here we come.

79. NYCee - 17 June 2008


I so agree about Boogie Nights. Some movies, rare movies, I perceive as having achieved close to perfection. That is one. I watched it for the second time on TV a while ago, and realized that in the second viewing. For what it set out to do, it did it GREAT. The only bump in the otherwise flawless rollout of footage for me was the slice of Dirk with Mom. That was like a weird, poorly written, poorly acted (considering what there was to work with) insert by someone else. Otherwise, great.

Another movie I had that sense about was Ghost World. Very different flick, of course, but it had that successful, all of a piece quality to it.

80. Madman in the Marketplace - 17 June 2008

I don’t think anybody has any idea of the impact of that flooding. Exports, for example … the barge traffic down sections of the Mississippi has just stopped. TONS of stuff goes down that river. Corn doesn’t just go into food and high-fructose corn syrup … it’s a component of some plastics. there are places where there just will not be corn planted. A whole planting season gone.

81. JJB - 17 June 2008

lucid, no. 70,

If you’re interested in a much more fact-based film about the Wonderland Murders than Boogie Nights (which I think is an excellent move), there’s a film called Wonderland with Val Kilmer, Lisa Kudrow, Eric Bogosian, Kate Bosworth, and Dylan McDermott you should check out. It deals only with the lead up to the murders and its aftermath, showing Holmes (very well played by Kilmer) as a burned out junkie from the start.

As to Holmes’ AIDS and it not being passed on to his girlfriend, he might have contracted it after they’d split up? In 1981, AIDS was still unknown (the very first cases were reported just a few weeks before the Wonderland killings), and he probably hadn’t contracted it yet. My guess is he got it via needle sharing.

82. JJB - 17 June 2008

Those who remember the build-up for Nixon’s invasions of Cambodia and Laos in 1970 and 1971 will experience deja vu all over again while reading this story:

As a renewed sense of crisis grips the war here, fueled by reports on Monday that Taliban had overrun districts in southern Afghanistan after a huge jailbreak last week, these new networks have given the insurgents a broader pool of recruits and added power and sophistication to their attacks, American military officials say.

The bomber in the March attack, for instance, turned out to be a German citizen of Turkish origin who was trained in Pakistan, according to European officials in Kabul.

The combined terrorist-insurgent networks have flourished from sanctuaries in Pakistan. In a sign of the increasing frustration of the president of Afghanistan, Hamid Karzai, with the challenges to his government, he threatened on Sunday to send Afghan troops into Pakistan to hit militant leaders who have vowed to continue a jihad in Afghanistan.

The combination of sanctuary in Pakistan, deep links on both sides of the border and steady support from Arab and other jihadist networks has made Maulavi Haqqani a formidable threat to the stability of Afghanistan.

So just who is this guy, and how did he get his start as a terrorist?

A quarter-century ago, Maulavi Haqqani was a favorite of American and Pakistani intelligence agencies and of wealthy Arab benefactors because of his effectiveness in organizing mujahedeen fighters from Afghanistan, Arab nations and other Muslim regions to attack the Soviet forces that had occupied Afghanistan in the 1980s.

Today he has turned his expertise against American and NATO forces. From his base in northwestern Pakistan, the aging Maulavi Haqqani has maintained a decades-old association with Osama bin Laden and other Arabs. Together with his son, Sirajuddin Haqqani, 34, he and these allies now share a common mission to again drive foreign forces from Afghanistan.

In Pakistan’s tribal areas of North and South Waziristan, Maulavi Haqqani and his son run a network of madrasas and training bases and provide protection for foreign fighters and terrorist groups, including Al Qaeda.

They also provide logistics and intelligence for attacks in Afghanistan, according to a United States military public affairs officer, Sgt. Timothy Dinneen, who is based at Bagram air base in Afghanistan and wrote a paper on the Haqqanis last year.

So why hasn’t our wonderful, steadfast ally in the War On Terror, Pervez Musharraff, gone after this evildoer?

Meanwhile, Pakistani forces have been reluctant to move against the Haqqanis. According to European officials and one senior Pakistani official, Maulavi Haqqani has maintained his old links with Pakistani intelligence and still enjoys their protection.

Asked in 2006 why the Pakistani military did not move against Maulavi Haqqani, a senior Pakistani intelligence official, speaking on condition of anonymity, acknowledged that it was because he was a Pakistani asset.

Maulavi Haqqani has by now become so powerful in his redoubt that a Western military official who has worked in both Pakistan and Afghanistan said the problem of going after him was that the Pakistani military was not capable of taking him on and feared failure if it tried.

So I guess we need to “unleash” the Mayor of Kabul and his mighty war machine to take care of this problem.

Of course, if this AP story has any validity (who can tell if it’s meant as honest reporting of a grave situation or simply a bit of propaganda meant to rationalize an expansion of hostilities in that part or the world?), the Mayor has a lot of work to do in the country he supposedly rules before sending troops into an area another nation only nominally controls:

Taliban militants destroyed bridges and planted mines in several villages they control outside southern Afghanistan’s largest city in apparent preparation for battle, residents and officials said Tuesday.

More than 700 families – meaning perhaps 4,000 people or more – had fled the Arghandab district 10 miles northwest of Kandahar city, said Sardar Mohammad, a police officer manning a checkpoint on the east side of the Arghandab River. Police on Tuesday stopped and searched every person passing on the road.

On the west side of the river, hundreds of Taliban controlled around nine or 10 villages, Mohammad said.

“Last night the people were afraid, and families on tractors, trucks and taxis fled the area,” said Mohammad. “Small bridges inside the villages have been destroyed.”

Almost seven years in, and the slaughter continues, with no end in sight.

83. lucid - 17 June 2008

JJB 81- seen it several times. Interesting movie given that it tells the tale from several perspectives in order to try to land on the truth.

As for AIDS, you know where I stand on the issue & Holmes was the poster boy for the Duesberg take.

84. lucid - 17 June 2008

NYCee – ah Ghost World – another film that can be painful to watch. Great flick.

85. JJB - 17 June 2008

More on the soon to occur Battle Of Kandahar, courtesy of the NY Times:

Hundreds of Taliban fighters have swarmed into a strategically important district just outside Kandahar, the biggest city in southern Afghanistan, apparently in a push for control just days after 400 Taliban members escaped in a spectacular breakout from the Kandahar prison, officials said.

By Tuesday, a tribal elder from the area reported, Taliban fighters had taken control of 18 villages, dug trenches and laid mines. The elder did not wish to be identified by name for fear of jeopardizing the safety of family members in the Arghandab area. It was unclear whether any of the prison escapees were among the fighters.

Afghan military reinforcements arrived in Kandahar on Monday and have already deployed in Kandahar Province, said a NATO spokesman, Mark Laity. The soldiers flew from Kabul and more can be expected to follow, he said. NATO forces based in Kandahar Province have also redeployed to be better prepared for any potential threat, he said.

Mr. Laity said NATO aircraft dropped leaflets urging residents of the area to remain indoors. He denied reports that the leaflets urged people to flee. In any event, the tribal elder said, Taliban forces were preventing people from leaving after an early exodus of villagers fleeing in fear of hostilities. Earlier reports from families in the area said they had been told by the Taliban to leave, an indication the Taliban intended to make a stand and fight.


The move by the Taliban on Arghandab, a district that is critical to the security of the city of Kandahar and therefore to the entire south of Afghanistan, comes amid an increased sense of crisis in Afghanistan. Kandahar is still reeling from Friday’s brazen attack by the Taliban on the prison, in which they released some 1,200 inmates, 400 of them members of the Taliban, including some district commanders.

In a sign of his increasing frustration with the threats to his government, President Hamid Karzai raised the possibility Sunday of sending Afghan troops into Pakistan to hit militant leaders who had vowed to continue a jihad in Afghanistan.

His comments, which Pakistan protested Monday, were welcomed by Afghan tribesmen gathered for a council meeting in the southeastern province of Paktika. “People here have long been asking the government to solve the problem of infiltration from Pakistan,” the provincial governor, Muhammad Akram Khapalwak, said after the meeting. “People were saying today that Mr. Karzai has been too late in saying this, and it should have been said two years ago.”

It should be noted that the border between Afghanistan and present-day Pakistan was drawn by British mapmakers who were eager to provide British India with a buffer zone of traditionally Afghani territory between the Russian Empire and themselves if the Russians ever succeeded where they had failed in conquering and holding on to significant portions of Afghanistan. That’s how Pakistan ended up with those tribal regions they’ve never actually been able to govern.

BTW, I really like the Eisensteinesque photo of the Afghani soldiers in their US-supplied unis and helmets. They’re even more impressive looking than the ARVN units, mostly because the average ARVN soldier was about 5 inches shorter and roughly 40 pounds lighter than his American counterpart, and they looked like undersized 13 year-olds when weighted down with the typical GI’s uniform and equipment burden.

86. ms_xeno - 17 June 2008

#67, lucid:

…You really should give it another watch…

Well, I’d gladly watch parts of it again, for sure. The Scorcese-esque final half/third, maybe not. But I do recommend it to people with that in mind.

When the film came out, I was doing a mostly-volunteer thing for a local art rag, and Boogie Nights seemed very much a part of that artsy, puzzling, if not unusual, phenomenon where everyone’s nostalgiaic for certain elements of something that happened two decades ago– but the reading of what happened two decades ago always feels lacking somehow. As if they hoped that reproducing the surface would provide truth and depth, but often it doesn’t.

Of course in the 1970s, they were doing that with the 1950s. I’m old enough to remember that. :p

The other curious, but not unusual, aspect of the film is the morality play aspect also common in both good and bad gangster movies. The viewer’s partaking in what the characters do, no matter how questionable it is (ie– Macy’s character killing his actress [??] wife) is acceptable because you know that in the end they’ll pay dearly for the way they’ve been living. Most of them, at any rate.

So, no. I don’t think it’s a terrible film at all. Not perfect, but not terrible. It’s an interesting splice of some very unusual ideas in American film with some that seem very, very traditional.

87. ms_xeno - 17 June 2008

As for Ghost World, it was fun and the performances were excellent, but it was a very different animal than the original comic book graphic novel.

I’m guessing a lot of viewers who saw the movie and then read the comic book graphic novel were frustrated, and vice versa.

88. wu ming - 17 June 2008

look at how fresh and clean those uniforms and helmets are.

89. wu ming - 17 June 2008

additionally, given that pashtun kandahar was the regional base of the taliban state, the headline that they’re “infiltrating” the city is as tellingly ignorant as claims that hezbollah “occupied” south lebanon.

that’s where they’re from.

90. lucid - 17 June 2008

Never read the graphic novel. I’m guessing it is somehow in the American Splendor vein?

91. marisacat - 17 June 2008


From the first moment of reading of this … what to call it, event in Kandahar… seems certain this is with our say so. And what else is being prepped here, imo, but wider war.


Doug Kmiec has been having a back and forth with NRO/Ponnaru and I guess now uber Catolica KJLopez re his support for Obama and his Chicago Trib op piece yesterday….


I noticed this in his lastest go round:

With the help of the Holy Spirit, the moment has the potential for giving respect to unborn life in ways that transcend overturning Roe on paltry federalism grounds, and of course, the Senator’s effort is light years more important than acrimonious blog entries.

92. lucid - 17 June 2008

91 – well we know how the Democratic nominee feels about war with Pakistan…

93. ms_xeno - 17 June 2008

#90– lucid, only in the sense that neither AS nor Ghost World are full of superheroes and explosions.

The original story is much drier and cooler than the movie, like most of Clowes’ work. The male characters are much less prominent and the estrangement of the female characters is much more at center stage for that reason.

Give it a try.

94. marisacat - 17 June 2008


He wants it. Seems the Eternal Government does as well.

95. JJB - 17 June 2008

Huge car bomb kills over 50 in Baghdad:

A car bomb set to explode during the busiest time of day killed at least 51 people and wounded 75 Tuesday evening as shoppers were strolling through a Shiite neighborhood market in Baghdad. It was the deadliest attack in the Iraqi capital in more than three months.

The blast struck a crowded bus terminal near a market in Hurriya, a northwest Baghdad district that once had a large population of Sunnis but after the American-led invasion saw horrific ethnic cleansing by Shiite militias and death squads, who killed or drove thousands of Sunnis out.

Survivors and relatives of the victims in the Tuesday blast were enraged and on edge. One man lost 11 relatives, including five female cousins. At a courtyard in front of the Khadamiyah Hospital morgue, people screamed, wept and shrieked. Some cursed the government for allowing the blast to happen while others called on God for revenge.

96. lucid - 17 June 2008

93 – Cool. I’ll keep my eye out for it the next time I’m shopping for books.

97. marisacat - 17 June 2008

The interview with Obama in WSJ (and accompanying article) – on economy and realted issues – seems to be sparking much back and forth …

98. CSTAR - 17 June 2008

91. It’s beginning to look like NRO is now becoming a catholic rag.

The day is fast approaching when the pope will have his divisions.

99. marisacat - 17 June 2008

NRO, esp The Corner is very Catholic (and they have had nothing to say about Jindal and exorcism, LOL). They do have a couple of atheists or agnostics wandering around… Wasn’t Buckley Catholic

I can only take the conservative rags during elections when the shreds of the left / Democratic propaganda just turns to a mix of sludge and sugar. Slow moving mudslides.

100. CSTAR - 17 June 2008

Buckley of course was catholic. With the help of the Holy Spirit,

101. marisacat - 17 June 2008

Kathryn Jean Lopez really ups the omnipresence of the Holy Spirit, however.

For a minute I could not remember if Buckley was not not. Just a brain blank.

102. wu ming - 17 June 2008

gay marriage in bakersfield, woodland and sacramento.

i really think this will have a bigger, more transformative effect on central valley attitudes towards this issue than people assume. when gays and lesbians are just some exotic thing a long ways away in san francisco, it’s easily dismissed, it’s just an idea. when it’s your neighbors and coworkers getting married, regular people from your community, it changes the context somewhat.

coming out has been a hugely successful campaign over the past several decades, in how it changed the perspective of friends and family. i can see these marriages this summer having a similar effect, alebit in a much shorter and contentious timeframe.

103. marisacat - 17 June 2008

hmmm fwiw

Tapper on bounce/no bounce.

Issues around $$$$ for Denver convention. Some tidbits near the end. Not sure what is wrong, I would think corps on board with Dems would wnat to cash in, support the convention.. Plus Obama ha, all thru the Dem primary, at least what I read, out raised Hillary (significantly) in the inner mountain west.

Who knows.

104. marisacat - 17 June 2008

The holdouts are Butte, Kern and apparently Calaveras.

From the report I heard, they have all agreed to issue licenses, but won’t do the actual marriages. Any marriages, that is.

KGO spent another hour this am on it… today they got the white religious callers, and did have Lou Sheldon (backer of the November ballot measure) scheduled.

I have lost track of the hours they have spent on SSM, actually running whip work, as I saw it. The loons come out of hte woodwork.

105. Arcturus - 17 June 2008

10-some years ago we met a couple at a dinner party in Davis who wound up as plaintiffs in the SSM lawsuit. They were like an ‘old married couple’ back then. This morning they were married (again!) in San Francisco by Judge Thelton Henderson, who I’ve mentioned here before. Very active in the fight, & planning on getting out there for the fall campaign, one quite possibly in a wedding dress 🙂

The NYT ran their pix the day the decision came down:



& what was on at least one of their front page stories here

& a l’il profile I came across this am:

In 2004, Stuart and his partner of 17 years, John Lewis, were among the first same-sex couples to marry in San Francisco City Hall. After these marriages were voided by the California Supreme Court, Stuart and John joined 11 other couples as plaintiffs in the Woo v. Lockyer case for equal marriage rights now before the California courts. This event followed his family’s history as Stuart’s parents were an interracial couple who were only able to marry because of the California Supreme Court’s landmark 1948 Perez decision overturning the state anti-miscegenation law.

Stuart and John are activists with API Equality and Marriage Equality USA. In October 2004, they joined 44 other couples and supporters on the National Marriage Equality Express bus caravan from San Francisco to Washington, DC in October 2004. Caravan riders held 11 rallies in 8 days as they crossed the country on their way to the National Rally for Marriage Equality in DC. In February 2005, they were one of two couples on the first-ever marriage equality float in the San Francisco Chinese New Year Parade. In this year’s Chinese New Year Parade, their niece Meredith joined them on the float featuring same-sex couples and their families. Stuart Gaffney has been making films and videos about his Queer and Hapa identities since 1994 and his works are regularly featured at the San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival. His most recent video, “Muni to the Marriage,” documents the events of February 12, 2004, the day San Francisco began to make marriage history. A short Muni ride to City Hall suddenly turns partners of 17 years into newlyweds. During the ride, Stuart reflects on the difficulties experienced by his Chinese-American mother and white father more than 50 years ago, when they were only able to marry after California’s law against interracial marriage was overturned.

106. Arcturus - 17 June 2008

but of course this is just gov’t by lawsuit . . .

(&, err, strike “to man” above . . . or add “the info tables”

107. Arcturus - 17 June 2008

o, API = Asian Pacific Islanders

108. marisacat - 17 June 2008

Arcturus… I saw an interview some months ago (think as part of a documentary shown on PBS) with that couple… with photos of his parents at their wedding….

Fantastic! Thanks for the links.

Actually that only three counties are rebelling is great. It could easily be more.

109. Arcturus - 17 June 2008

I’m kinda surprised it’s only three as well. Will be interesting to see how/if it plays in the fall elections (for office) – it’s already caused Kevin Johnson (who doesn’t quite support) some trouble in his bid for mayor here.

It’s funny – we’re of the generation that didn’t ‘need no stinkin’ document from the State’ – & lived together over 10 years before a catastrophic mountain accident forced us to the light. Insurance being the #1 reason, followed closely by Taxes. Took another 3 years to tell anyone, even our parents.

110. Arcturus - 17 June 2008

una mas of John & Stuart, from SF City Hall this am – John had clerked for Judge Henderson back in the day . . .

111. marisacat - 17 June 2008

well I never wanted to marry anyone really… so long ago I did not ”get” the whole thing. But the first Gulf War re educated me in terms of gays. Why should they pay taxes, be called to war, if they do nto have ALL of the benefits. Whether they wish to avail themselves or not.

AND I got re educated to outing. The San Francisco I grew up in had so many gays living closeted but for small circles of friends… and my instinct is to leave people alone with whatever peace they make. But … oh no. Take the country to war, with that whatshisname working for CHENEY (think he is with one of the networks now I alwyas forget his name) oh no … gays in high office, gays benefitting from forcing people into the closet, oh no they get outed

112. marisacat - 17 June 2008

new thread…..


hmm just heard that the anti gay marriage ballot measure slated for November in Ca will be mirrored in Florida.

Buckle up.

113. Arcturus - 17 June 2008

I really became aware of it as a Political, not just Kulture War issue, in ’78 w/ the Briggs’ Initiative ( #6 – had to look that up, sure don’t remember 7-12 that year) – had a gay friend teaching in Soquel School Dist that made it more than just theory/argument. Great fear it would pass. & I certainly blanked this bit of history out – credit wherever I s’ppose (from wiki):

For a time the ballot measure was ahead in public-opinion polls, with about 61% of voters supporting it while 31% opposed it — a week before the election. The movement against it succeeded little in shifting public opinion, even though major organizations and ecclesiastical groups opposed it. Then former-governor Ronald Reagan a week before the election announced his opposition, and the anticipated landslide for the initiative became a landslide against the initiative, losing even in Orange Country, in the largest shift of public opinion ever recorded within such a short time frame.
.. .
Reagan’s actual letter allegedly stated, in part, “Whatever else it is, homosexuality is not a contagious disease like the measles. Prevailing scientific opinion is that an individual’s sexuality is determined at a very early age and that a child’s teachers do not really influence this.”

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