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A crazed dancer – at the edge of the inferno… 4 July 2008

Posted by marisacat in California / Pacific Coast, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, San Francisco, WAR!.

Bis Sur Fire, Basin Complex fire, July 3

Out-of-control Big Sur fire destroys 3 more homes
Firefighters Bob Frascona, left, and Glen Ewart of the Los Angeles County Fire Department look at the Pacific Ocean during a lunch break on fire watch at Post Ranch Inn as the Basin Complex fire – a complex being a series of fires that blend or receive one coordinated response –
continues to burn in and around Big Sur, Calif., on Thursday. [Chronicle photo by Kim Komenich ]

Among the fastest-moving blazes was the 2,400-acre Gap Fire, also in the Los Padres National Forest, which started late Tuesday on the coast side of the Santa Ynez Mountains between Highways 101 and 154. Officials said the blaze is chewing up chaparral and brush that haven’t burned in more than 50 years.

I did read a reference that Tassajara had a controlled back burn 25 years ago… tho with the remains of the “sudden oak death”, massive fire was a given. We’ve been set to explode… Additionally, with no blame to anyone as we know little right now, there seemed to be a several days’ long confusion (god knows, I got confused just trying to read along) that the major fires on Big Sur could be contained.. quickly, the last couple of days they are facing, there is little to no containment. The evacuations began……

From the 2006 Monterey Weekly Gazette link that Arcturus provided:

BETWEEN A RIDGE-POINT LOOKOUT called Buzzard’s Roost and the Big Sur River, a beautiful but haunting sight awaits the attentive eye. A noble, twisting tanoak stands tall in a clearing, reaching skyward with a pale trunk and a headdress of bleached, lifeless leaves.

It reaches toward a towering coast redwood, whose deep claret-red trunk and dark green needles contrast sharply with the ghostly contours and pale leaves of the oak. Because of a pathogen that has choked the life from the bone-dry oak—and the uniquely perilous fire situation it creates—the tanoak now threatens the towering redwood’s life.

This snag is not alone. In just the Big Sur region, hundreds of thousands of oaks stand dead or dying—or have already collapsed into the now-dry brush. The total count has been estimated at more than 1 million.

The murderous villain in this high-stakes eco-drama is mysterious, exotic and microscopic.

“Where sudden oak [death] came from and how it got here is speculative,” says UC Davis plant pathologist Dr. Dave Rizzo, a leading expert in the field.

Scientists can confirm that the spore Phytophthora ramorum is non-native. They also know it slipped into the US undetected, on ornamental plants, sometime in the 1980s. But they have not determined where it originated.

Once it arrived, Rizzo says, it wasn’t long before it was splashing though coastal forests. “Somebody, or many people, planted plants next to a forest,” he says, “and then it spread very well on its own without help.” ::snip::

Mike Davis, 2003, on the Southern California “Hallowe’en” fires of that year…….

These dead forests represent an almost apocalyptic hazard to more than 100,000 mountain and foothill residents, many of whom depend on a single, narrow road for their fire escape. Earlier this year, San Bernardino county officials, despairing of the ability to evacuate all their mountain hamlets by highway, proposed a bizarre last-ditch plan to huddle residents on boats in the middle of Arrowhead and Big Bear lakes.

Now the San Bernardinos are an inferno, along with tens of thousand acres of chaparral-covered hillsides in neighboring counties.

Big Sur fires..

Flames burn up a slope near the Ventana Inn and Spa as the Basin Complex fire continues to burn in and around Big Sur, Calif., on Thursday. [Chronicle photo by Kim Komenich]

Mike Davis: The imbalance of power is greater yet at the county scale. In the wake of the last round of firestorms in 2003, a grassroots alliance of environmentalists and old-time rural residents tried to slow the subdivision and trophy-home juggernaut by limiting residential density to one home per 100 acres: an initiative inspired by the famous precedent of Oregon’s Willamette Valley. They were, however, utterly crushed at the polls (65% to 35%) by a flood of developer money, which disguised itself in ads on television as the voice of embattled “small farmers.”

More recently, on the very eve of the new firestorms, county supervisors endorsed a so-called “shelter in place” strategy that will permit developers to build in the rugged, high-fire-risk backcountry without having to provide the secondary roads needed to ensure safe evacuation. Instead residents would be encouraged to stay in their “fire resistant” homes while fire-fighters defended the perimeter of their cul-de-sac. As scores of fire experts and survivors have pointed out in angry op-ed columns and blogs, this is a lunatic, if not homicidal, scheme that elevates developers’ bottom-lines over human life. Those who have actually confronted 100-foot-high firestorms, driven by hurricane-velocity winds, know that the developer slogan –– “It’s not where you build, but how you build” — is a deadly deception.

Tom Dispatch from Nov 1, 2007

After all, there’s nothing new about the burning phenomenon on what Davis then dubbed “the fire coast.” “A great Malibu firestorm,” he wrote, “could generate the heat of three million barrels of burning oil at a temperature of 2,000 degrees.” No wonder Cold War era researchers used those California fires to model the behavior of nuclear firestorms.

What remains eternally new (and yet utterly predictable, once you’ve read Davis) is the increasing amount of tinder we put in the way of such fires in “the suburban-chaparral border zone where wildfire is king” — and then the fierce fire-suppression campaigns that new, wealthy homeowners in their privatized, gated communities, McMansions, and McCastles demand, which only build further the fuel for the fires that, even in the 1990s, were “becoming ever more apocalyptic.” Oh yes, and another thoroughly predictable thing: After hundreds, or thousands, of houses burn, the search for villains begins not among the politicians and developers, pushing human habitation ever deeper into the lands of the firestorm, but for arsonists, “although probably not more than one in eight blazes is caused by arson.”

The shape of the shape-shifting arsonist has changed over the years: more or less in historical order, according to Davis, they have been Indians, sheepherders, tramps, Wobblies, Okies, “Axis saboteurs,” and, in our own time, environmentalists, (indirectly) endangered and protected species, gays, and terrorists [Did we leave anybody out? — Mcat].

The search for arsonists is, of course, on again — and one has so far been identified, a boy, possibly only 10 years old, playing with matches whose case is now being turned over to the district attorney for possible prosecution.

We’re down to blaming children. That sounds like us.

I am just wondering what the fall will bring with the Santa Ana winds. As soon as I finished typing I realised how blank that was………..

Every year, sometimes in September, but usually in October just before Halloween, when California’s wild vegetation is driest and most combustible, high pressure over the Great Basin and Colorado Plateau unleashes an avalanche of cold air towards the Pacific coast. As this huge air mass descends, it heats up through compression, creating the illusion that we are being roasted by outbursts from nearby deserts, when in fact the devil winds originate in the land of the Anasazi – the mystery people who left behind such impressive ruins at Mesa Verde and Chaco Canyon.

There is little enigma to the physics of the winds, though their sudden arrival is always disturbing to greenhorns and nervous pets as well as to lorry drivers and joggers (sometimes scythed by razor-sharp palm fronds). Technically, they are ‘föhns’, after the warm winds that stream down from the leeward side of the Alps, but the Southern California term is a ‘Santa Ana’, probably in ironic homage to Mexico’s singularly disastrous 19th-century caudillo. For a few days every year, these dry hurricanes blow our world apart or, if a cigarette or a downed power line is in the path, they ignite it.

From a piece of Davis’ on the cycle of burn in Malibu, The Fire Last Time… and the Time Before That, and the TIme Before That…:

From the time of the Tapias, the owners of Rancho Malibu recognized that the region’s extraordinary fire hazard was shaped, in large part, by the uncanny alignment of its coastal canyons with the annual fire winds from the north: the notorious Santa Anas, which blow primarily between Labor Day and Thanksgiving, just before the first rains. Born from high-pressure areas over the Great Basin, Santa Anas become hot and dry as they descend avalanchelike into Southern California. The San Fernando Valley acts as a giant bellows, sometimes fanning the winds to hurricane velocity as they roar seaward through the narrow canyons and rugged defiles of the Santa Monicas. Add a spark to the thick vegetation (frequently above 40 tons per acre in the Malibu area) on such an occasion, and an uncontrollable wildfire will result.

…At the same time, suburban firestorms are becoming more apocalyptic. Two-thirds of all the homes and dwellings, for example, destroyed by wildfire since statewide record keeping began in 1923 have been burned since 1980. And as Interior Secretary Bruce Babbit complained while visiting the Malibu fire scene, “fire-fighting is getting more expensive, more hazardous.” The new density of hillside housing has transformed the battle against wildfire from a war of maneuver into the equivalent of street-fighting. But larger firefighting armies by themselves are no solution. One national forest official observed:

“These fires in Malibu prove that you could throw in every fighter in the world and still can’t stop it.”

big sur private road near Ventana Inn

Fire near Big Sur burns on, fire crews short
A private road near the Ventana Inn and Spa is made impassable by a fallen tree as the Basin Complex fire continues to burn in and around Big Sur on Thursday. [Chronicle photo by Kim Komenich]




1. Arcturus - 4 July 2008

here’s a big surprise:

An article by the Colombian weekly magazine Cambio suggests the U.S. military base in Manta, Ecuador, will be moved to a new location in Colombia after the U.S. military’s contract with Ecuador expires in 2009. The likely new host for the U.S. base is Colombia’s Palanquero air force base in Puerto Salgar, 120 miles north of Bogotá.

Cambio cites an April 22 meeting between U.S. Ambassador to Colombia William Brownfield and Defense Minister Juan Manuel Santos in which the U.S. diplomat delivered some unexpected news. Brownfield told the minister the State Department had decided the Palanquero base was being “recertified.” Cambio mentions “military and diplomatic circles” interpreted the decision as the first step toward establishing the new U.S. base in Palanquero.

The base had been “decertified”-barring it from receiving direct U.S. military assistance-since January 2003, when a Colombian court implicated planes from Palanquero in the 1998 bombing of a town in eastern Colombia in which 18 innocent civilians were killed. (That same year, Palanquero received $352,000 in unspecified U.S. military aid.) The Colombian military first blamed the deaths on a guerrilla car bomb, but subsequent investigations found a U.S.-made rocket-only used by the Air Force-caused the destruction.

2. ms_xeno - 4 July 2008

Step right up and watch James shoot fish weasels in a barrel.

I knew it wasn’t just the free bbq that dragged me out of bed this morning.

3. bayprairie - 4 July 2008

hair club’s tiny foot stomps seem to boil down to:

barrack mccain light! less filling!

London Times gets it.

Barack Obama’s policy switches are giving the Left whiplash

Change, it turns out, wasn’t all that it was cracked up to be. Having campaigned for the past year as the agent of transformation, the man who would lead an historic shift in America’s political direction, Barack Obama is discovering that there is quite a lot he likes about the way things are.

Since securing the Democratic nomination a few weeks ago, the only change coming from the Illinois senator has been in what he seems to stand for. Last month he dropped his opposition to a Bill before Congress that would give telecoms companies immunity from prosecution for carrying out illegal wiretaps on potential terrorist suspects.

He told a cheering crowd of Israel’s supporters of his fervent commitment to the security of the Jewish state and added, for good measure, that an “undivided” Jerusalem should be the nation’s capital. He said that he likes free trade after all, and that his primary campaign pledge to dismantle the North American Free Trade Agreement was a case of “overheated rhetoric”.

Last week he expressed support for a Supreme Court decision that struck down a ban on handguns and opposition to another that outlawed the death penalty for rape of a child.

This week he promised to expand President Bush’s faith-based organisations initiative, a programme that channels funds to religious groups so that they can deliver social welfare services, which the Left regards as a heinous blurring of Church-State separation.

If next week he named Dick Cheney as his running-mate and revealed that he spends his spare time drilling for oil in wildlife habitats, the only surprise would be that it took him so long.

4. marisacat - 4 July 2008

LOL I can’t wiat for his acceptance sermon from the 50 yard line at Mile High. Wouldn’t surprise me if he wore football “shoulders” and a helmet.

Cheerleaders for Jesus, we must have lots of those already trained. Esp in CO.

5. Heather-Rose Ryan - 4 July 2008

from the previous thread, mattes:

I do have a problem with causing any “being” physical pain.

If so, why do you think it’s OK to force women to give birth?

Have you ever given birth? it’s impossible to do it without experiencing pain of one sort or another.

But of course women are supposed to love it – it’s their job. Their entire reason for being.

6. mattes - 4 July 2008

H-RR, it still bothers me.

No, no babies here….never wanted any.

7. mattes - 4 July 2008

…let me just add, two husbands later that did not believe me, still disappointed. Never changed my mind.

8. marisacat - 4 July 2008

Here is what I am sick of: That 90% of abortions in the US take place within the first few weeks (and it is broken out at Guttmacher Institute into more specificity than that, so many in the first 8, so many in the next several and so on, GI, a place you might want to spend time mattes, if you are so troubled). Women, given the opportunity and what is unreasonable access (only 13% of US counties have an abortion clinic) do take care of themselves. Properly. Why would they not?

The rest, roughly 9% take place later. Many of these are the very young, the poor and those who have to travel a distance to obtain an abortion. Around .9 take place in the final weeks. For this excessive interest in women and their pregnancies, we now have a banned medical proecedure (as of last year, widely reported and the SC hearings audio broadcast), which according to moiv is most used in MID TERM, and done when medically necessary. The SC heard that testiomy adn the fucked Catholics rejected medical opinion. Roberts in fact said the State has an interest in inserting itself in these matters.

so for that .9 we go thru so much hand wringing. And Canada, which has fully open abortion laws, no restricitions, up to the woman and her dr (google Dr Morganthaler) has fewer abortions per capita.

Here women are FORCED to special clinics, often ringed on a daily basis (ask moiv) by the religious, who systematically pay more attention to a white woman seeking an abortion than brown or black. Think on that, they WANT the white babies.

In other countries women can go to the front door of a general service hosptial. Walk out a few hours later, with no invasion of privacy.

I’d advise you to read mattes. A lot.

But it easier to think that women actively seek to torture their unborn. When the truth is that in RED states in many parts of the country women with still born babies are sent home from the hosptial to wait til the dead entity expels itself. No doctor will extract the DEAD material.

Yes, read up mattes.

9. mattes - 4 July 2008

Ok…you’ve convinced me.

10. moiv - 4 July 2008

Hi mattes,

There’s a really good paper on fetal pain perception at JAMA.

This is a snip from the abstract:

Evidence Synthesis Pain perception requires conscious recognition or awareness of a noxious stimulus. Neither withdrawal reflexes nor hormonal stress responses to invasive procedures prove the existence of fetal pain, because they can be elicited by nonpainful stimuli and occur without conscious cortical processing. Fetal awareness of noxious stimuli requires functional thalamocortical connections. Thalamocortical fibers begin appearing between 23 to 30 weeks’ gestational age, while electroencephalography suggests the capacity for functional pain perception in preterm neonates probably does not exist before 29 or 30 weeks. For fetal surgery, women may receive general anesthesia and/or analgesics intended for placental transfer, and parenteral opioids may be administered to the fetus under direct or sonographic visualization. In these circumstances, administration of anesthesia and analgesia serves purposes unrelated to reduction of fetal pain, including inhibition of fetal movement, prevention of fetal hormonal stress responses, and induction of uterine atony.

Conclusions Evidence regarding the capacity for fetal pain is limited but indicates that fetal perception of pain is unlikely before the third trimester. Little or no evidence addresses the effectiveness of direct fetal anesthetic or analgesic techniques. Similarly, limited or no data exist on the safety of such techniques for pregnant women in the context of abortion. Anesthetic techniques currently used during fetal surgery are not directly applicable to abortion procedures.

It’s hard not to notice that most public debate about abortion centers on later procedures (which, as MCat noted, account for only a miniscule percentage). That’s because late abortions, and the women who have them, are so much easier to demonize.

But the effect of further restriction on so-called “late-term abortion” (which means what people want it to mean) is to limit access to early abortion as well, the reason being that the “Partial Birth Abortion” ban makes no mention of the length of pregnancy.

It is not a ban on late abortion at all, but on a technique so vaguely described that it could apply to almost any abortion procedure after the first trimester.

In 1996, Henry Hyde and friends signed a letter admitting that the first version of the PBA Ban, the one Clinton vetoed, was intended to ban all abortions for that very reason.

“H.R. 1833 does not ban ‘D&X’ or ‘Brain Suction’ abortions…the ban would have the effect of prohibiting any abortion [that meets our definition]…no matter what the abortionist decides to call his particular technique.”

And people still are being fooled by these “pro-life” charlatans.

11. marisacat - 4 July 2008

Well when you waver, google Dr Tiller Kansas Abortion. Just freed by a Grand Jury who declined to find for the prosecution.. I would guess they will come at him again. One of the very very few drs who will perform late term abortion. often in the most sad, most tragic, most terrible, cases.

moiv has said for a long time, it is all about controlling women and their sexuality.

Yes, I’d agree. For the so called ”pro lifers” the rest is incidental.

12. wu ming - 4 July 2008

the whole third trimester debate really became clear as day to me when an acquaintance in taiwan was pregnant with a dead fetus, and while the doctor told her husband, refused to tell her. the husband and his family then decided, without her input, that it would be better just to not tell her until after their wedding reception. she was ill and green-faced and worried about the pregnancy for weeks before they told her, because she didn’t know it was dead.

were she treated like a fucking adult and not a child/chattel, there’s no way she’d have carried it to term, and no way that she’d have suffered more, physically or emotionally, had she just removed the thing earlier on in the process.

the whole process works best when the women most directly involved make their own decision, choosing as full and equal citizens what counsel they feel is necessary. no other path works as well, and no other path respects the right of women to make decisions regarding their own bodies (in some cases, life and death decisions; pregnancy is a fairly intense process).

the harm done when our legal system steps in and substitutes other people’s judgement for women greatly exceeds any imagined harm of women making those decisions.

before i’d seen the consequences of a patriarchal, sexist, inhumane legal regime in action, and before i’d really closely observed the immense pressures and stresses of the process of carrying a child to term (vicariously as well, as a husband), i was pro-choice in an abstract sense, but didn’t really “get” it. after watching the process play out in both contexts, there’s no way i’d accept anything other than an unambiguous “woman decides with however she feels best” pro choice position.

it’s just way too big a thing to entrust to pushy ignorant moralizing bystanders to decide.

13. moiv - 4 July 2008

Sorry, meant to link the JAMA paper, which is available w/o subscription.

Fetal Pain: A Systematic Multidisciplinary Review of the Evidence

14. wu ming - 4 July 2008

additionally, having gone through the process of raising a 2 year old with all the personal help and financial security from friends/family/colleagues that one could ask, with mothers-in-law staying and helping us through the process, with a loving relationship between me and my wife, with a very flexible work schedule and leave options, i have to say that there is no way that anyone who isn’t ready for this, who doesn’t want this child to come to term, whose situation is really dangerous or just unstable, should be forced to bear that child.

it is a rewarding thing, perhaps the best thing i’ve doen in my life, to raise an infant, but it is incredibly exhausting, mentally and emotionally taxing, and stresses every aspect of your life in the best of situations. obviously, as a society we should ease those burdens whenever possible with leave, guaranteed income, universal quality health care and prenatal support, couples counseling, what have you.

but even so, a child is an immense thing to raise. for someone in a bad situation, or who is simply not ready, that alone is reason enough not to carry the fetus to term.

15. marisacat - 4 July 2008

I think one of the saddest things i have ever heard or read, either in the Clinton term when I lsitened to the women and drs testify in support of keeping ALL pertinent medical procedures available for abortion, as well as again in 2003 (when 17 god damned fuckign Democratis senators, 4 in leadership in the Senate voted for the “PBA ban”] and when the case reached the SC, is that over and over, for women having dilation and extraction, it SAVED their ability to carry a baby again. It SAVED their uterus.

But, you know, BANNED. With criminal penalties attached for the drs.

Over the years I have come to end of any tolerance for the prohibitionists and the behavior modifiers and banners. Of any kind. I jsut don’t care anymore. It leads to just horror and invasion.

Go regulate corps. End of story.

16. moiv - 4 July 2008

Best thing I’ve ever read on the subject, a PDF from the UK Family Planning Association.

Why Women Need Late Abortions

17. marisacat - 4 July 2008
18. moiv - 4 July 2008
19. bayprairie - 5 July 2008

i just bet molly and lauren are going to have some kindafun tapdancing in the threads when they come back to blogforchoice after the holiday.

notice how the out-of-touch in that thread are all citing naral?

20. marisacat - 5 July 2008


when Barack Obama, Democratic nominee for President, prior possessor of an 100% NARAL rating and their endorsement, starts talking off Right to Life’s playbook?

Yes and that meant nothing. NARAL has also provided the cover for him on this bit of truth telling in Relevant I don’t remember much about dhonig. Pro Israel, maybe?

America raised all these little dumb as rocks rote believers. Shame.

Oh I love this from honig:

did I mention he was jerking hard right

no he was jerking off in your face. TRY TO NOTICE. Catch the drift, nto like it is subtle…. .

But of course:

I will vote for Vlad the Impaler for President if he’s running as a Democrat against McCain

And the Democrats know that. I LOVE that he will do a 50 yard line sermon in Denver. SO appropriate. I hope he wears a memorial jersey: “MLK+45: Dreams for Sale”

21. moiv - 5 July 2008

i just bet molly and lauren are going to have some kindafun tapdancing in the threads when they come back to blogforchoice after the holiday.

I fervently hope that they are forced to do exactly that.

Now that they’ve bought their pig in a poke, let ’em dance with the one what brung ’em.

22. marisacat - 5 July 2008

I wasn’t going to bother with the thread (298, so much!), but then I did, good going moiv.

23. moiv - 5 July 2008

That thread is hard slogging, with so much truthiness leavened by so little truth.

Some of them did go on record as detesting “soul-wrenching” and “gruesome” procedures, which will mean that they’ll have some hard slogging of their own to do between here and November.

24. marisacat - 5 July 2008

what a chuckle… they are going ot contact the campaign for a “clarification”.

25. marisacat - 5 July 2008

btw, KGO is spending a couple hours on his flip flopping. ‘Can he hold his base” with John Rothman. Some tough calls. People are angry.

26. marisacat - 5 July 2008

KGo is going into a third hour on ObamaRama and the flogflippering. I am laughing pretty hard.

Bring Back the Seal of State!

27. mattes - 5 July 2008

Thank-you all for giving me plenty of information.

wu ming….I don’t believe anyone should have to raise a child it they don’t want one, we completely agree.

AND all of you have completely convinced me.

A women body is her own. Period.

28. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 July 2008

wu ming, that story is heartbreaking. How horrible, and that her family would say they did it b/c they “loved” her makes it worse.

Good job on that thread, moiv. The astounding ignorance on display demonstrates how truly fucked this country is … they don’t even WANT to learn.


29. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 July 2008

one interesting thing about the latest dustup over Obama revealing his true colors … everyone on the cable shows is careful to only mention Nader and McCain as alternatives to voting for Obama. McKinney’s gonna have to find a way to make them pay attention.

30. Arthur Silber - 5 July 2008

Oh, c’mon, folks. The real problem is that women are EVIL. I know that’s true, cuz Augustine told me so.

Of Abortion, and Women as the Ultimate Source of Evil

Part of my conclusion:

Our culture today views the body as inherently sinful; this belief is treated as an axiom beyond challenge. Sex is especially sinful — and the final responsibility for the evil of sex and of the body is located in woman. Adam would not have sinned but for Eve’s initial transgression.

Evil is located in woman, and in her body and its potentialities. Such evil must be channeled and controlled: it must be brought under the whip of righteousness. The campaign to limit or even eliminate abortion is not about pregnancy or the fetus at all: it is about controlling the body, and controlling pleasure, especially sexual pleasure.

For the most part, men run the world. They are not interested in controlling themselves, and they will still pursue their own pleasure as they choose — but evil must be resisted. So they turn to their eternal scapegoat, and what they view as the final source of evil in this world, the barrier between themselves and redemption: woman. If our world and men are to be saved, they must be saved from woman.

This is, finally, what the battle about abortion concerns.

Well, women and fags. I probably should have mentioned fags. (I say that as a fag myself, obviously.) Actually, I did mention fags in other articles.

But if it weren’t for women and fags, everything would be absolutely swell.

31. ms_xeno - 5 July 2008

I just want to know this:

When does life begins if the unborn in question resides in the body of an Iranian ?

Then I’ll know for sure whether or not it’s moral to spend billions pounding the shit out of another country full of people who never did a thing to me just so my Bible-thumping overlords and their dear, dear friends in Big Oil can jointly get their ya-yas off one more time ?

Oh, woe. Is there nobody in Kosland who can help me ?


…But if it weren’t for women and fags, everything would be absolutely swell.

The horror that is Sex and the City figures in here somehow. I just know it.


32. ms_xeno - 5 July 2008


Madman, the national media’s been cherry-picking McKinney’s comments and actions for years to spin her as a delusional player of “the race card.” Unfortunately they probably feel that they’ve already ridden that particular carnival ride for all it’s worth;No need to do it again. Crazy women of color… that’s just soooooooooo last year. The horse race will have to become a lot more closely contested before she even has a prayer of getting any of the tastemakers to give a shit. Then they will give a shit for the wrong reasons.

Blogland is little better, of course. So much of it seems hell-bent on emulating the worst blind spots of the corporate media– even as it proclaims itself some kind of superior alternative.

33. aemd - 5 July 2008

# 29 “everyone on the cable shows is careful to only mention Nader and McCain as alternatives to voting for Obama.”

The simple sycophants in the media forget the other choice, “none of the above”. As I’ve said before, voting isn’t like a multiple choice test were the probability of a successful outcome increases if you check off every box. Vote for candidates you support else “skip” down to the next question. 😉

#30 “The real problem is that women are EVIL.”

Yep, damn right. If it weren’t for that EVIL fuckin’ dumb cunt Eve we would all be sittin’ pretty in paradise sippin’ teh nectar. How any woman can follow (cause that’s what we womens do, follow) any of the Abrahamic religions is confounding to me. Women are the source of evil in all of these religions. Women and their daughters and their daughters and their daughters and their daughters… must suffer for this Mortal Sin.

34. wu ming - 5 July 2008

madman @ 28 – it was the husband’s family. she was korean-american, he was taiwanese, they were living in taiwan with his family. to her family’s credit, they were pretty opposed to the marriage, because they didn’t like the guy. when koreans think you’re too patriarchal, you’ve pretty much pegged the scale.

terrible story. patriarchy is just plain evil. most (if not all) -archies are.

35. wu ming - 5 July 2008

is mckinney the official green candidate yet, or is the convention/decision later in the summer?

36. Arcturus - 5 July 2008

35. no – it’s next week: 10-13, in Chicago

37. marisacat - 5 July 2008

Obviously McKinney needs to give her acceptance speech from Wrigley Field. To fit in with Mile High 50 yard line nom.

38. ms_xeno - 5 July 2008

At the Sideshow Blog, two posts down, there’s a helpful assortment of the reindeer games the media plays with McKinney. Titled “The Crazy Woman,” of course.

BTW, she is the presumptive Green nominee at this point.

39. marisacat - 5 July 2008

LOL Maybe by the time he addresses us all from the Brandenburg Gate, he can explain June.

Bring back the Seal!

I have a suspicion that KGOam810 radio here in SF, will extend their call in show on Obama, “Is he risking his base?”, to tonight. It was supposed to be 2 hours last night and became the full 4, from 1am to 5 am. Deluge of calls and emails. FISA figured large as SF was the locus for a good chunk of the wiretapping.

40. marisacat - 5 July 2008

Secret report: biofuel caused food crisis

Internal World Bank study delivers blow to plant energy drive

Biofuels have forced global food prices up by 75% – far more than previously estimated – according to a confidential World Bank report obtained by the Guardian.

The damning unpublished assessment is based on the most detailed analysis of the crisis so far, carried out by an internationally-respected economist at global financial body.

The figure emphatically contradicts the US government’s claims that plant-derived fuels contribute less than 3% to food-price rises. It will add to pressure on governments in Washington and across Europe, which have turned to plant-derived fuels to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases and reduce their dependence on imported oil.

Senior development sources believe the report, completed in April, has not been published to avoid embarrassing President George Bush.

Supporters of biofuels argue that they are a greener alternative to relying on oil and other fossil fuels, but even that claim has been disputed by some experts, who argue that it does not apply to US production of ethanol from plants.

“It is clear that some biofuels have huge impacts on food prices,” said Dr David King, the government’s former chief scientific adviser, last night. “All we are doing by supporting these is subsidising higher food prices, while doing nothing to tackle climate change.”::snip::

41. marisacat - 5 July 2008


This Week: Sens. Lieberman, Jack Reed, Barr. Roundtable with Mark Halperin, Jonathan Capehart, Michelle Cottle, Ted Koppel

Meet the Press: Pre-empted (Wimbledon)

Fox News Sunday: “All-Star Panel Edition”

Face the Nation: Sens. Lindsey Graham, John Kerry

Late Edition: Celebrates Wolf Blitzer’s 10-year anniversary anchoring the program with a special two-hour edition.

42. marisacat - 5 July 2008


fwiw, for moiv and bay and whomever else.. Maha took on third trimester and mental illness. Maybe I missed it, but I see no mention of Doe in her analysis. Nor of how restrictions REALLY roll out in RL.

My own opinion Obama, a born again for Jesus, would take a run at Doe and will work to further what I believe is a conjoined goal of both parties, to return abortion to the states. Wash the Federal hands of Pontius Pilate of the bother of abortion at the Federal level.

BTW, one caller last night to KGO who has worked, he said ”in womens health” for 25 years, was very clear, the end objective of the right wing/pro life, is to ban birth control, to take a run at Griswold.

Dip the concept of “equal protection” in the hot sauce and masticate to consummation.


I also note he had a private meeting with the bishops of the AME conflab convention today, before he addressed the mass congealment of the faithful. IN STL, that thrillingly forward city.

43. wu ming - 5 July 2008

36, 38 – that’s good to hear. good to know there’s a decent candidate out there if i decide to jump ship. i was never very impressed with nader, for a host of reasons, but mckinney was pretty good in her stint in congress.

for those of you on the inside, has she been accompanied by any attempt to really campaign in earnest in black communities much? if the greens ever manage to pull that, a lot of good could come out of it.

are there any green equivalents of the BBBs, in terms of internal discussion and news if not the blogheeler aspect? with the general media blackout on left politics, it’s hard to keep tabs effectively, as a voter.

44. moiv - 5 July 2008


Maha’s piece conflates Roe with Doe, which so many people do because it’s easier. At least she got the basic information in there about a health exception, and addressed the creeping fuzziness of what “late-term” is supposed to mean.

The threads over there in ObamaLand are a marvel of misinformation. So many labor under the misconception that possession of a functional genital tract is all that’s required to inform one’s opinion on abortion.

45. moiv - 5 July 2008


Hi Arthur. I loved your piece when I read it last year (and yes, catchy title).

I posted something last year called Fighting Evil, One Eve at a Time.

If Eve had known how things were going to turn out — taking eternal blame for original sin, seeing one son murder another — she might have wished she could be a fag instead.

46. moiv - 5 July 2008


I have a suspicion that KGOam810 radio here in SF, will extend their call in show on Obama, “Is he risking his base?”, to tonight. It was supposed to be 2 hours last night and became the full 4, from 1am to 5 am.

Does that mean it would begin at 11 PM Central?

47. marisacat - 5 July 2008


well John Rothmann’s show (“Does he risk losing his base?” was the topic) who was on last night from 1am to 5 am (this morning) SF Pacific Time is on the same hours tonight. I am only guessing he might continue it, as the response was large.

Does that mean it would begin at 11 PM Central?

So, would that be starting at your time (CT) 2 hours later?

Rather than earlier?

Also because it got a large response I am guessing other show hosts will mirror parts of it or hit at it in different ways.

48. marisacat - 5 July 2008

LOL Speaking of AS,

He dropped me this in an email:

…her [Maha/Mahablog] whole approach is so…typically progressive-technocratic. “Well, we have these 53 rules on third trimester abortions, they’re really okay. And Obama is only disagreeing with the 47th, so what’s the Big Bleeping Deal? And WE HAVE TO HAVE RULES.”

She can’t just say: a woman’s body is HERS, period. Until she gives birth, ain’t no one gonna interfere with what she does. Dat’s all, follkes.

And of course, she won’t go near Obama’s wonderfully delicious religiosity. Christ. You should pardon the expression.

I tells you, abortion (and sex generally) and race are two subjects that almost everyone is completely insane about.

49. Arthur Silber - 5 July 2008

Many thanks for the kind words, moiv. Very much appreciated. And thanks for your link; I’ve saved it, and will read it when I’m more awake than I am right now, probably tomorrow. (Too hot here in LA, the cats and I are not happy…)

Of course, if Eve had been a fag, Adam probably would have gay-bashed her/him to death. In which case…

No, won’t say it. Someone will accuse me of the greatest sin of all — being a NIHILIST — because I don’t have a miraculous plan to FIX EVERYTHING BY NEXT FRIDAY.

But you know, I just don’t. It’s the damnedest thing…

50. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 July 2008

wu ming

It’s my understanding that McKinney has made working w/in minority communities a big part of her campaign. IIRC, it was one of the things she is focusing on w/ Cindy’s run in SF.

From her statement congratulating Obama on securing the nomination:

United for a Fair Economy (UFE) produces studies each year on the anniversary of the birth of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. entitled, State of the Dream reports. UFE has found that on some indices the racial disparities that exist today are worse than at the time of the murder of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. For example, infant mortality, where the overall U.S. world ranking falls below Cuba, Israel, and Canada. They also have found that, without a public policy intervention, it would take over 5,000 years to close the home ownership gap between blacks and whites in this country, especially exacerbated because of the foreclosure crisis disproportionately facing Blacks and Latinos today. They have found that it would take 581 years, without a public policy intervention, to close the racial gap in income in this country. UFE has found unacceptable racial disparities extant on economic, justice, and security issues. After analyzing the impact of the Democratic Party’s “First 100 Hours” agenda upon taking the Congressional majority, UFE concluded in its 2007 report that Blacks vote in the Blue (meaning, they support Democrats in the voting booth), but live in the Red (they do not get the public policy results that those votes merit). And UFE noted that Hurricane Katrina was not even mentioned at all in the Congressional Democratic majority’s 2007 First 100 hours agenda.

United for a Fair Economy is not the only organization to find such dismal statistics, reflecting life for far too many in this country. In a study not too long ago, Dr. David Satcher found that over 83,000 blacks died unnecessarily, due to racial disparities in access to health care and because of the disparate treatment blacks receive after access. A Hull House study found that the racial disparity in the quality of life of black Chicagoans and white Chicagoans would take 200 years to be eliminated without a public policy intervention. The National Urban League in its annual “State of Black America” publication basically concludes that the United States has not done enough to close long-existing and unacceptable racial disparities. The United Nations Rapporteur for Special Forms of Racism, Mr. Doudou Diene of Senegal, just left this country in an unprecedented fact-finding mission to monitor human rights violations in the United States. Dr. Jared Ball submitted to Diene on my behalf, my statement after the Sean Bell police verdict. The United Nations has already cited its concern for the treatment of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita survivors and the extrajudicial killings taking place across our country, that especially target Black and Latino males, and especially at the hands of law enforcement authorities.

I hope it is clear that the desire for change is so deeply felt because it is deeply needed. Politics, through public policy, can address all these issues and more in the favor of the people. We do not have to accept or tolerate such glaring disparities in our society. We do not have to accept or tolerate bloated Pentagon spending, unfair tax cuts, attacks on our civil liberties, and on workers’ rights to unionize. We don’t have to accept or tolerate our children dropping out of high school, college education unreachable because tuition is so high, or our country steeped in debt.

The 21st Century statistics for our country reflect a country that can still be characterized as Dr. King did so many years ago: the greatest purveyor of violence on the planet.

It doesn’t have to be that way. And the people know it.

I have accepted as the platform of the Power to the People Campaign, the 10-Point Draft Manifesto of the Reconstruction Movement, a grouping of Black activists who came together in the aftermath of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita to advocate for public policy initiatives that address the plight of Blacks and other oppressed peoples in this country.

Among its many specific public policy planks, the Draft Manifesto calls for:

* election integrity, if our vote is to mean anything at all, all political parties must defend the integrity of the votes cast by the American people, something neither of the major parties has done effectively in the past two Presidential elections;

* funding a massive infrastructure improvement program that is also a jobs program that greens our economy and puts people to work, and especially in New Orleans and the Gulf Coast, Hurricane survivors, treated as internally displaced persons whose right to vote and right of return are protected, play a meaningful role in the rebuilding of their communities;

* recognizing affordable housing as a fundamental human right, and putting a halt to the senseless destruction of public housing in New Orleans;

* enacting Reparations for African Americans, so that the enduring racial disparities which reflect the U.S. government’s failure to address the reality and the vestiges of slavery and unjust laws enacted can be ended and recognition of the plight of Black Farmers whose issues are still not being adequately addressed by USDA and court-appointed mediators despite a US government admission of guilt for systematic discrimination;

* acknowledging COINTELPRO and other government spying and destabilization programs from the 1960s to today and disclosing the role of the US government in the harassment and false imprisonment of political activists in this country, including Mumia Abu-Jamal, the San Francisco 8, Leonard Peltier, including restitution to victims of government abuse and their families for the suffering they have long endured;

* ending prisons for profit and the “war on drugs,” which fuels the criminalization of Black and Latino youth at home and provides cover for U.S. military intervention in foreign countries, particularly to our south, which is used to put down all social protest movements in countries like Mexico, Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, and elsewhere;

* creating a universal access, single-payer, health care system and enacting a livable wage, equal pay for equal work, repealing the Bush tax cuts, and making corporations and the rich pay their fair share of taxes;

* establishing public funding for higher education–no student should graduate from college or university tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt;

* ensuring workers’ rights by 1) repealing Taft-Hartley to stop the unjust firing of union organizers, ban scabbing, and enable workers to exercise their voices at work and 2) enacting laws for U.S. corporations that keep labor standards high at home and raise them abroad, which would require the repeal of NAFTA, CAFTA, the Caribbean FTA, and the U.S.-Peru FTA;

* justice for immigrant workers, including real immigration reform that provides amnesty for all undocumented immigrants;

* creating a Department of Peace that would put forward projects for peace all over the world, deploying our diplomats to help resolve conflicts through peaceful means and overseeing the orderly withdrawal of U.S. troops from the more than 100 countries around the world where they are stationed, and an immediate end to all wars and occupations by U.S. forces, beginning in Iraq and Afghanistan, and slashing the budget for the Pentagon.

The Power to the People Campaign has visited 24 states and I believe there is already broad support across our country for these policy positions. The people deserve an open and honest debate on these issues and more. I encourage the Democratic Party and its new presumptive nominee, Senator Obama, to embrace these important suggestions for policy initiatives.

I’m planning on voting for her or leaving the President ballot line blank.

51. marisacat - 5 July 2008

lol i am nihilist to the tips of my whiskers…

52. moiv - 5 July 2008

Obama has just clarified his remarks (0+ / 0-)

Obama backs late, mental-health abortion

Posted July 5, 2008 4:54 PM
The Swamp

by Frank James

Sen. Barack Obama clarified his position today on mental-health exceptions to late-term abortions, saying he supports such exceptions and that comments he made during a recent magazine interview shouldn’t be interpreted as opposing them.


But in a press availabilty on his campaign plane today on the flight from Butte, Mont. to St. Louis, Obama clarified what he meant.

Here’s a transcript of the interchange as provided by the campaign.

Reporter: You said that mental distress shouldn’t be a reason for late-term abortion?

Obama: “My only point is this — historically I have been a strong believer in a women’s right to choose with her doctor, her pastor and her family. And it is ..I have consistently been saying that you have to have a health exception on many significant restrictions or bans on abortions including late-term abortions.

In the past there has been some fear on the part of people who, not only people who are anti-abortion, but people who may be in the middle, that that means that if a woman just doesn’t feel good then that is an exception. That’s never been the case.

I don’t think that is how it has been interpreted. My only point is that in an area like partial-birth abortion having a mental, having a health exception can be defined rigorously. It can be defined through physical health, It can be defined by serious clinical mental-health diseases. It is not just a matter of feeling blue. I don’t think that’s how pro-choice folks have interpreted it. I don’t think that’s how the courts have interpreted it and I think that’s important to emphasize and understand.”

According to Linda Douglass, the Obama campaign’s senior spokesperson, the senator from Illinois was making a distinction in the magazine interview between medically diagnosed mental illness and the kind of mental distress that an unwanted pregnancy causes many a pregnant mother.

“Mental distress is not an illness.” Douglass said. “He absolutely believes and has always said there has to be a health exception for serious physical and mental illness.”

That makes sense and conforms to the senator’s co-sponsorship of the Freedom of Choice Act legislation which, among other things, would codify a mental-health exception to late-term abortion prohibitions.

That’s a significant change from what he said in his earlier remarks, when he specified, “I think it has to be a serious physical issue that arises in pregnancy …”

Who says pushback doesn’t work?

by moiv on Sat Jul 05, 2008 at 07:05:14 PM CDT

53. marisacat - 5 July 2008

air kiss. the check is in the mail, etc.

54. marisacat - 5 July 2008

This was a red flag, back when this bullshite first appeared, and there he goes again. A woman may decided after THE PANEL assists her:

“My only point is this — historically I have been a strong believer in a women’s right to choose with her doctor, her pastor and her family.

55. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 July 2008

Obama: “My only point is this — historically I have been a strong believer in a women’s right to choose with her doctor, her pastor and her family.

Fuck you, asshole. Let’s say that drinking to excess is immoral. A drunkard should only be allowed to get a new liver w/ the approval of his doctor, pastor and his family. How do you like that assertion, you authoritarian piece of shit?

56. Arthur Silber - 5 July 2008

But, moiv, it appears to me that this simply means he’ll say anything depending on which wind happens to be strongest at any particular moment. Which, I note, has now been established as his pattern, perhaps his most noticeable characteristic.

Sure, this pushback worked, if you want to view it that way. And what happens when he gets pushed back the other way, even harder?

57. moiv - 5 July 2008

Yup, he’s not lettin’ go of that preacherman, no ma’am, not about to.
But he damn sure crawfished off what he said a few days ago.

Problem is, no one’s going to challenge Obama on the pastor-as-counselor BS.

If he’d like to come by the clinic, I’ll be glad to show him how helpful the clergy can be in assisting a woman with her right to choose. We have a priest in attendance several days a week.

58. moiv - 5 July 2008

I added the “pushback” note only because I was posting that comment at dKos, where questioning the political wisdom of Obama is anathema.

Of course he’s only appeasing one lobby while meeting in secret with another. Wasn’t it Frederick Douglass who said something about the powerful not giving it away for free?

Doug Kmiec laid out the deal in April, he and Obama came to terms in June, and Obama made the first payment with promised expansion of faith-based initiatives — other players to be named later, I presume.

59. moiv - 5 July 2008

Sorry, I messed up the link to Kmiec’s June endorsement of Obama, even though I expect you’ve all seen it before.

60. Arthur Silber - 5 July 2008

Oh, dKos, yeah, got it. My basic view is that nothing Obama says is worth shit. He’ll say anything to anyone, to get what he wants.

And what he wants is power. End of story.

61. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 July 2008

Obama, like other politicians, will only move in a positive direction when they are forced to. As long as peace activists, healthcare activists, women’s activists, et cetera hook their wagons up to the donk, the donk will continue to show them his ass. Notice that the interest groups that he courts are ALL groups who refuse to promise support.

Gotta threaten him with losing, and gotta be willing to MAKE him lose if necessary so that the next donkle that comes around will recognize that the weapon of non-support is one you’re willing to use. You know, like the so-called “Reagan democrats” do over and over again. Either make him move left or lose. It’s the only way.

Of course, I repeat myself, and know that the herd animal known as Americans are too fucking cowardly to stand up for their supposed convictions.

62. Heather-Rose Ryan - 5 July 2008

Rock on, moiv!!! And Arthur Silber too.

In the past there has been some fear on the part of people who, not only people who are anti-abortion, but people who may be in the middle, that that means that if a woman just doesn’t feel good then that is an exception.

Wow, I thought Obama was supposed to be so amazingly brilliant and articulate – but this is just mindless blather. At least he did backtrack, but not at all elegantly.

Re: Arthur’s great article on “evil” women. I mostly agree, but I don’t think the He Man Wimmen Haters club is against sex – I think they love sex, are obsessed with it in fact. I think the reason they hate/fear women is because of women’s power over whether they get laid or not. My take is that misogyny is rooted in men’s hate/fear of women who say “no” – women who have sexually rejected them – women who have left them for other men – women who challenge the man’s traditional God-appointed role as owner and keeper of women’s bodies.

Eve’s real sin was not in eating the fruit, but in thinking for herself and doing something that the man hadn’t approved of.

What the anti-choice crowd is all about is control of women – not only their sexuality, but their sense of self-determination, their personal authority over all aspects of their lives. In the anti-choicers’ ideal worldview, women would be subservient to men in every way. In their eyes, there is no gender equality. There is only gender difference, and men are higher on the totem pole than women.

33, aemd: How any woman can follow (cause that’s what we womens do, follow) any of the Abrahamic religions is confounding to me. Women are the source of evil in all of these religions.

Mary Daly is excellent on this subject.

I don’t have the book because I’ve lent it to someone, so I can’t give the exact quote – but in her foreword to the newer edition of The Church and the Second Sex, she talks about how women are trapped in running around patriarchal mazes, deluded by the idea that there can someday be “real change”. But all the mazes, even though they may look different (e.g., different religions) are actually identical. The apparent differences are essential to keeping people locked in the delusion. She takes catholicism and liberal protestantism (her lower-case) as examples: although they appear to be very different branches of Christianity, they are basically just different flavors of the same patriarchy. The fact that different flavors exist gives women false hope – the protestant women look at the blatantly oppressed catholic women and think “Well at least we’re not as bad off as they are!” and the catholic women look at the protestants and think “Someday maybe we can get our church to reform its attitude toward women and we can make the same advances as women have in the protestant church.” But it’s all a delusion. The advances are mostly illusory. In order to make any real advancement, the whole structure has to be torn down and rebuilt – this time with better, more enlightened blueprints.

The same can be said of the political system. As we see at ludicrous cheerleading sites like DKos, there is a mass delusion that the Democrats are vastly different from the Republicans – they are our saviors, the cure for all our ills and we aren’t allowed to say anything bad about them. Republicans, on the other hand, are demonized. But in fact they aren’t really much different from each other. We are trained to focus on the differences in order to keep us occupied so we don’t realize that the entire system has to be overhauled.

In this analogy, I guess the Greens are sort of the UUs 😉

63. Heather-Rose Ryan - 5 July 2008

54/55 – yeah, it’s astounding, isn’t it? A woman can’t be allowed to make up her mind ON HER OWN.

moiv, you ought to post that “pushback” comment of yours to DKos as a diary.

64. bayprairie - 5 July 2008


i remember maha.

shes a donk partisan ward heeler type iirc. was involved in putting all the WOC bloggers in line, iirc, during the laughably embarrasing jane hamster blackface episode. i’ve a link to those embarrassingly ridiculous threads somewhere. if the hasn’t deleted them, of course.

probably gets her talking points from digby.

a. said

No, won’t say it. Someone will accuse me of the greatest sin of all — being a NIHILIST — because I don’t have a miraculous plan to FIX EVERYTHING BY NEXT FRIDAY.


obama can shove the doctor, pastor and family bullshit. thats the face of black american religious patriarchy showing.

and it’s not pretty.

65. Heather-Rose Ryan - 5 July 2008

57, moiv – We have a priest in attendance several days a week.

That’s interesting. I assume he supports the idea of choice? If so, how does that go over with his higher-ups?

I was told the other day about a local priest who presided over the funeral of a man who was brought up Catholic but turned more to nature-based spirituality later in his life. Reportedly the priest was conversant in these terms and talked about the Bear Spirit, etc.

I thought, Whoa, don’t let Ratzi hear about this!

66. bayprairie - 5 July 2008

catching up. i read from bottom to top. sorry!

terrible story. patriarchy is just plain evil. most (if not all) -archies are.

its really wonderful, aswellas sad, you share that wu. and its easy to see how you arrived at the place you are now. sad story, and in many cases probably as old as time. i was kind of an accidental child, my mother a lot older than she should have been. and i know in her early womanhood that was common in this country as well. i dimly recall her discussing women, who would have a malignancy, and the husband was told, etc.


67. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 July 2008
68. moiv - 5 July 2008


That’s interesting. I assume he supports the idea of choice?

Lordy no, H-R, that was an ironic reference to a priest I call Fr. Rudy, because he looks just like Giuliani having a really bad day. He covers his bald spot with either a watch cap or a fedora, depending on the weather.

The good father stands at the entrance to our parking lot in full cassock drag (you know he doesn’t wear that get-up when he goes to Wal-Mart), seething, scowling and snarling at arriving patients. Women often say to me that he’s the angriest, most hateful-acting man they’ve ever seen.

So much for pastoral counseling.

69. moiv - 5 July 2008


I have a comprehensive gynecology textbook published in the mid-40s. The standard of practice for treating married women with gonorrhea was to inform the husband fully regarding diagnosis and treatment for them both, but to tell the patient only that she had “a minor infection” that would clear up fine with a little penicillin. The doctor also warned her to wash her hands thoroughly before she touched her children, so that she wouldn’t unknowingly infect them via the mucous membranes of their genitals, eyes or mouths.

The rationale? Don’t punish the poor woman even further by destroying her trust in her husband, and perhaps even breaking up her marriage, if she learned that her husband had given her what the text called “a loathsome disease.”

70. moiv - 5 July 2008

According to ABC, Obama is still clarifying his clarification — and he should have quit while he was ahead.

Obama told a Christian magazine, Relevant, that only women with a “serious physical issue” should be able to get an abortion post-viability.

As I wrote yesterday, that’s contrary to 35 years of Supreme Court jurisprudence on the issue, which has always demanded that abortion bans contain an exception to allow the procedure to protect a woman’s “mental health,” as well as her physical health. Only Justices Thomas and Scalia have expressed the view that a “mental health” exception is not required.


In clarifying his remarks, Obama said this afternoon that he has “consistently” said health exceptions are required for laws banning or seriously restricting abortion. But he then goes on to try to carve out exceptions to the exceptions, and he ends up suggesting, again, he would support more limits on abortion than the law currently allows.

Speaking to reporters on his campaign plane, Obama said mental health exceptions—which are a real battleground issue in the abortion debate–can be “rigorously” limited to only those women with “serious clinical mental health diseases.” He said mental health exceptions are not intended permit abortions when a woman simply “doesn’t feel good.”

“It is not just a matter of feeling blue,” Obama said.

Here’s the problem with that, and why Obama’s remarks are so startling. Obama is trying to restrict abortions after 22 weeks to those women who have a serious disease or illness. But the law today also covers some women who are in “mental distress,” those women who would suffer emotional and psychological harm without an abortion.

This standard has long been understood to require less than “serious clinical mental health disease.” Women today don’t have to show they are suffering from a “serious clinical mental health disease” or “mental illness” before getting an abortion post-viability, as Obama now says is appropriate.

And for 35 years—since Roe v. Wade—they’ve never had to show that.

So Obama, it seems to me, still is backing away from what the law says—and backing away from a proposed federal law (of which he is a co-sponsor) that envisions a much broader definition of mental health than the one he laid out this week.

71. Heather-Rose Ryan - 5 July 2008

68 – Oh well… sorry to hear that. I was hoping there was a decent, honorable priest out there who supported women while they were having abortions, but I guess that’s too much to hope for.

69 – Aaargh that kind of thing pisses me off so much. My head is exploding now.

Regarding the subject of medical counseling – I remember hearing that in Japan, up until recent years, the custom was not to tell people when they had terminal cancer. But I think that applied to men as well as women.

72. moiv - 5 July 2008

Aaargh that kind of thing pisses me off so much. My head is exploding now.

What infuriated me most was the doctor scolding the woman about washing her hands, as if she herself were a child, pre-inoculating her with the guilty notion that it would be all her fault if her children became infected through her own carelessness — without ever telling her what her own infection was.

73. marisacat - 5 July 2008



Maha was also one of the 20 or so bloggers at the Sept 2006 lunch in Harlem with Bill… that All White Lunch…


74. marisacat - 5 July 2008


feeling bloooooooooooooooooooooo.

Remember, this is the man who claimed that he taught ”reproductive freedom” and made Roe “front and center” when he did. I posted a link yesterday to his speech to Planned Parenthood last year.

OK, Refrain: He taught what to whom, again?

Could he get something right????

I am sick to death of his sort. And Michelle’s sort. Same as Bush sort. Flabbily educated, taught to slobber.. Worse, he flabbily TAUGHT. Reeks.

75. marisacat - 5 July 2008

Only Justices Thomas and Scalia have expressed the view that a “mental health” exception is not required.

feeling bloooooooooooooooooo

76. Arthur Silber - 5 July 2008

70 – moiv: Okay, this is actually getting clearer, I think. Obama just needs to cut to the chase now.

Obama intends to be President, CIC and Pastor to the Nation. He will enter into individual counselling sessions with EVERY pregnant woman who is thinking of having an abortion. After however many sessions he thinks are required, HE will decide whether she gets an abortion on the basis of those standards HE decides are applicable.

All clear now? Just trying to be helpful and save some time. :>))

77. marisacat - 5 July 2008

He wants to be

Papa Rama I

78. moiv - 5 July 2008

I think you just might have a winner, there, Arthur. Do you happen to have the number for Obama’s campaign HQ?

79. wu ming - 5 July 2008

thanks madman, that’s a pretty good manifesto she’s got there. i hope she helps cindy with really organizing in the 8th, i would love to see pelosi really sweat that race., but it’ll take some serious on the ground stuff to work, and i was never sure if sheehan was really up to the task.

the way that majority-minority house seats have been gerrymandered in most parts of the country, it would not be all that difficult to get green party candidates into congress if they were running strong black or latino candidates. no threat of throwing the seats to the republicans, cuz they barely exist in those places. someone’s gotta make the dems work for it, the complacency just kills (literally, in many cases, domestically and abroad).

80. CSTAR - 5 July 2008

* “I hear weird sounds, even commands”

* “Oh really, What do these ‘commands’ say”

* “There are lots of commands. I can’t count them. Or I tried but theyr’re an infinite number of them and I lost track somewhere after the first infiinity, They confuse me. There are crowds saying things. They say lots of things They give me a headache. They tell me stories. Sometimes they suggest things.”

* “Like what do these crowds suggest?”

* “Weird things. Experiments. Aerodynamics, strength of materials, aeorobics. Dancing out that window. Smashing this chair over your head. ”

* “Do you think you can fly? Do you want to harm me?”

* “I’m not sure. I’ve worked out some equations. I can dance out that window. Dance out of this universe. That’s what Hugh Everett wanted to do.

* “Everett? Who’s he. How do I know you’re not making this up?”

* “You don’t. Neither do I.”

81. CSTAR - 6 July 2008

Etnia: Grupo Niche Tiene cada quien del otro su poquitico.

El anti-racismo a lo Colombiano.

82. cheezburger cheezburger cheezburger « Marisacat - 6 July 2008

[…] From the last thread, moiv’s comment… […]

83. marisacat - 6 July 2008

hmm new post………………


………… 8) …..

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