Things that exhaust me:

Praying for Obama

Psalm 109: “May his days be few; may another take his place of leadership. May his children be fatherless, and his wife a widow.”

Nice. Very nice.

But you know, the funny part? That's not King David praying for someone's else's death, you selectvely reading fucking ASSHOLES. It's Kind David QUOTING his enemies' words to HIM. So you align yourselves with the enemies of God's chosen. AWESOME.

To wit:

Psalm 109
For the choir director: A psalm of David.

1 O God, whom I praise,... don’t stand silent and aloof
2 while the wicked slander me and tell lies about me.
3 They surround me with hateful words and fight against me for no reason.
4 I love them, but they try to destroy me with accusations even as I am praying for them!
5 They repay evil for good, and hatred for my love.
6 They say,[a] “Get an evil person to turn against him. Send an accuser to bring him to trial.
7 When his case comes up for judgment, let him be pronounced guilty. Count his prayers as sins.
8 Let his years be few; let someone else take his position.
9 May his children become fatherless, and his wife a widow.
10 May his children wander as beggars and be driven from their ruined homes.
11 May creditors seize his entire estate, and strangers take all he has earned.
12 Let no one be kind to him; let no one pity his fatherless children.
13 May all his offspring die. May his family name be blotted out in a single generation.
14 May the Lord never forget the sins of his fathers; may his mother’s sins never be erased from the record. 15 May the Lord always remember these sins, and may his name disappear from human memory.
16 For he refused all kindness to others; he persecuted the poor and needy, and he hounded the brokenhearted to death.
17 He loved to curse others; now you curse him. He never blessed others; now don’t you bless him.
18 Cursing is as natural to him as his clothing, or the water he drinks, or the rich food he eats.
19 Now may his curses return and cling to him like clothing; may they be tied around him like a belt.”
20 May those curses become the Lord’s punishment for my accusers who speak evil of me.
21 But deal well with me, O Sovereign Lord, for the sake of your own reputation! Rescue me because you are so faithful and good.
22 For I am poor and needy, and my heart is full of pain.
23 I am fading like a shadow at dusk; I am brushed off like a locust.
24 My knees are weak from fasting, and I am skin and bones.
25 I am a joke to people everywhere; when they see me, they shake their heads in scorn.
26 Help me, O Lord my God! Save me because of your unfailing love.
27 Let them see that this is your doing, that you yourself have done it, Lord.
28 Then let them curse me if they like, but you will bless me! When they attack me, they will be disgraced! But I, your servant, will go right on rejoicing!
29 May my accusers be clothed with disgrace; may their humiliation cover them like a cloak.
30 But I will give repeated thanks to the Lord, praising him to everyone.
31 For he stands beside the needy, ready to save them from those who condemn them.

I need a nap.
Obama Criticizes Misrepresentations of Health Care Plan

For some reason, the Washington Post felt the need to put Quotes of Great Significance around the word "misrepresentations." Cute. Very cute.
I am reading insinuations about Mir-Hossein Moussavi that he imprisoned and killed thousands of Iranians (more than Ahmadinejad) during the Iraq-Iran war/his 81-89 tenure as prime minister (before the position was dismantled), but all I can find on official sources is that he steered Iran towards economic solvency during that time and is well-remembered because of it.

This is entirely beside the point of people getting to elect, well, the guy they actually elected. I'm not particularly concerned as to whether he's some big pro-Western reformer or whatever (the chances of this are pretty effing slim). But I'm leery of Western interpretation of events -- we as Americans have a horrible (and detrimental to our foreign policy) tendency to superimpose our own historical narratives (or at least, the versions we learned in grade school) upon other populations.

My point being, I guess, does anybody know more about this than I do/can find out right now while, ah, ostensibly working for my daily bread?

Also -- Kim Jong-il: seriously, why NOW? My cynical half is thinking he's jealous of Iran getting all the attention. =/ I suspect it is a tad more complex than that.

I will happily accept linkspamming.
...they told me my IQ was more than serviceable, so WHY did it only just occur to me today that in addition to bitching for days and days about the NOM "how do you feel about YOUR marriage" ads that keep popping up on, I could also WRITE TO MAIL2WEB.COM and tell them I am displeased with their partisan shenanigans?

(It's seriously gross -- you click on the ad (it's not immediately obvious what/who it's for) and it takes you directly to their site, which is all loaded up with a pre-drafted, ready-to-email letter to a New York State Congressperson on why the fabric of society is about to disintegrate if they don't quickly scrub the gay out of it. And you can't strategically alter the text. I tried. Where are the all prepped, pre-written and ready-to-go, New York specific, PRO-equal-marriage sites, please?)

Sent: )

(I'm not sure I sent it to the right place. :-( Will look into it. If anyone wants to borrow/tinker with this text and send it to the RIGHT place, you're welcome to.)

Addendum, four hours later )
Lance Manion draws surprising and ponderable links between the Kindle, AIG execs, and your average county fair. Essentially an assessment of alienation and the human need for that which is tactile, in order to remain human:

[E]ven if all [former AIG exec Jake DeSantis's] claims about himself aren't bullshit, they are claims about himself. He himself is his only object of concern. He shows no sign that he understands that his job was playing not just with other people's money but with their lives.

People lost their jobs, lost their homes, lost their life savings because of things AIG and the other big Wall Street casinos did. It doesn't matter that he was personally honest and competent, he was still part of it. In fact, his honesty and competence contributed to the disasters, because he helped keep that division, and AIG, going while the mess was being made. The mess was bigger, the harm was greater, because he gave his incompetent and dishonest colleagues cover and time to continue making messes and doing harm.

It doesn't matter if he didn't know what was going on at the time. He knows it now. And it should bother him. He should feel guilty, even if the actual blame doesn't fall on him. It should bother him that he's pocketing millions of dollars while the people who were screwed by his fellow wheelers and dealers are wondering if they're going to have enough money to buy groceries next week.

But I get no sense that he has a sense that other people besides himself were screwed or that they even exist to be screwed.

This led me here: DeSantis's NYTimes Op-Ed

And then here: Blogger Matt Taibbi takes it apart point by point

Before that, I was here: Slate: Why does Star Wars take over the minds of small boys? (Er, I would submit that observations of one's two own sons does not a viable "study" make, but whatever. Also, the title is actually "still take over" but I think the question the essay actually addressed is the one I typed above. Whatever, it's still pretty cute.)

Which led me here (hee!): Read more... )

WAH HA HA! Muppet Star Wars! )
Lance Manion: The Stories They Need to Tell Themselves (Re: The most recent Katrina spin)

[According to them,] New Orleans didn't drown because our feckless Republican President chose to play air guitar and attend birthday parties while people died, leaving what passed for rescuing the city in the hands of incompetent and heartless flunkies. New Orleans drowned because the people there relied on the Government to help them and we all know that the Government is a liberal entity even when it is controlled by conservatives.

In short, it doesn't matter that the President at the time was a Republican or that both Houses of Congress were in the hands of Republicans. They weren't in charge.

That being the case, Republicans are irrelevant to the story. There was a hurricane and the Government failed the people of New Orleans by trying to help them.

The Government was, and the Government is, Liberal, and therefore Evil.

For going on seventy years the National Republican Party has consoled itself, sustained itself, and kept itself alive by telling itself and anyone who will listen an alternative history of the United States. In this alternative history the New Deal didn't do any good at all, the Cold War was fought and won entirely by super-patriotic Republicans, welfare not racism or systemic poverty destroyed the African-American family, anyway racism ended when Martin Luther King's birthday became a national holiday (alternative to the alternative: racism ended with the election of Barack Obama), the 1960s are the root of all evil, the hippies and the liberals lost the War in Vietnam, 9/11 was Bill Clinton's fault, the financial crisis was Bill Clinton's fault, Barack Obama is turning America into a socialist dictatorship. [....]

The Republican Party shouldn't need to tell these lies. After all, it's the party of Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, and Dwight D. Eisenhower. Republican Presidents, Senators, Congressmen, Governors, and mayors---Fiorello LaGuardia was a Republican---have done good and great things for the United States. But, thanks to Herbert Hoover, and Franklin Roosevelt, the party lost a good chunk of its Progressives. Then thanks to Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan it lost the rest. The Party was taken over by the most retrograde and selfish members of its Big Business wing, which is to say by its would-be aristocrats who had to make common cause with Right Wing extremists, religious fundamentalists, and Southern racists in order to put together enough votes to win elections. These groups had and have only one thing in common, a belief that they are the only rightful inhabitants of America and inheritors of its blessings and that everybody else is out to take away their privileges and wealth. [...]
(Meant to post this last week. It probably would have had more words in it, then, though. So that's good.)

Soo...which is it? Leech or ideologue?

I suppose my issue is one of cognitive disconnect. Like everyone else, I've been trying to understand these people for about 8 years, and just when I think I've got it down...they talk more.

So which is it? I've pretty much put it all down to a nicely wrapped "suck as much cash out of this sweet deal for us and our buddies for as long as we can," sort of thing, hence Halliburton, hence "They call you the upper one percent, I call you my base" and so on, and so forth.

So...why this?

Sensitive Thugs -- Y'all need hugs

"[W]hat I see in that interview is the ramblings of a thin-skinned politician who's upset that he left office with the some of the worst approval numbers in history." --Ta-Nehisi Coates

What am I looking at when I look at you? The leech, in which case -- dude, you're rolling in it, what do you care if you're beloved?

Or the ideologue? In which case...dude are you CRAZY? Why do you still think...oh give me strength. Nevermind.

I don't expect I'll ever know the answer to this one.

At any rate this is the prettiest picture of Condi Rice I have ever seen. She looks so completely happy here.

And yes, I do in fact feel extremely weird posting that, and yes, the context is creeping me out beyond reason. But -- all context aside -- ALL context!! -- I mean it sincerely.
Data is in on blacks and Prop 8. To wit:
70 percent? Not so much

I don't see how this is going to impact much of anything at this late date, though. The sound byte I've seen on too many blogs et cetera already is that 70 of black Americans (sometimes not even adding the qualifier of "American," let alone "in California" or "amongst Californian voters") hate and despise gay people. (Or the scarier one, that it's Obama's fault, for mobilizing the black vote in the first place.)

This bit surprised me a great deal, actually:

3.) 58 percent is still higher than the 52 percent for the state, as a whole, but that difference is almost entirely accounted for by the fact that no ethnic group in California is as religiously devout as (as measured by church attendance) African-Americans.

4.) Among those who attended church weekly, African-Americans were support for Prop 8 was lower than amongst any other ethnic group."

Full report here (PDF download format)

[ profile] tablesaw spoke on it as well.

It's still not anything like great, but it does seem far less insurmountable now.

(I am still not attending any rallies. I'll continue vote correctly and do the letter campaigns to senators and wear my button in the 'hood and send money to the appropriate entities, but I am not bringing my physical form out there to be yelled at and made upset. Not with all my other issues about rallies -- and their utter uselessness and bad execution -- today. After 2000, I just don't do protests.)
This? This sort of thing? When we're all on loud and obnoxious shouting about "WE'RE NUMBER ONE"???

This sort of shit is what's going to make us Number Seven Hundred and Forty Eight. If LUCKY. In a world with only 200 odd nations to boot.

"Where does a lot of that earmark money end up anyway? […] You've heard about some of these pet projects they really don't make a whole lot of sense and sometimes these dollars go to projects that have little or nothing to do with the public good. Things like fruit fly research in Paris, France. I kid you not." --Sarah Palin

"This idiot woman, this blind, shortsighted ignoramus, this pretentious clod, mocks basic research and the international research community. You damn well better believe that there is research going on in animal models -- what does she expect, that scientists should mutagenize human mothers and chop up baby brains for this work? -- and countries like France and Germany and England and Canada and China and India and others are all respected participants in these efforts.

"Yes, scientists work on fruit flies. Some of the most powerful tools in genetics and molecular biology are available in fruit flies, and these are animals that are particularly amenable to experimentation. Molecular genetics has revealed that humans share key molecules, the basic developmental toolkit, with all other animals, thanks to our shared evolutionary heritage (something else the wackaloon from Wasilla denies), and that we can use these other organisms to probe the fundamental mechanisms that underlie core processes in the formation of the nervous system -- precisely the phenomena Palin claims are so important."
-- PZ Meyers


“The Olive Fruit Fly has infested thousands of California olive groves and is the single largest threat to the U.S. olive and olive oil industries,” he said. “I secured $748,000 for olive fruit fly research and irradiation in the (fiscal year 2008) appropriations bill for the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The USDA will use some of that funding for their research facility in France. This USDA research facility is located in France because Mediterranean countries like France have dealt with the Olive Fruit Fly for decades, while California has only been exposed since the late 1990s. This is not uncommon; the USDA has several international research facilities throughout the world, including Australia, China and Argentina." -- Representative Mike Thompson (D-Calif.)

Not just ignorant, but HOITY-TOITY AND PROUD therein.



I... I am not going to cry.

This is my country, and this cannot happen. I say no.
You, sir, are a never-ending font of awesome.

I'm an adoptive father as well, so please don't pull that crap with me. This has nothing to do with putting a kid up for adoption, nor is it about being "extreme pro-abortion"; it has to do with the clear and devastating effects another pregnancy would have on my wife. It has to do with not trusting a condescending old man in Washington to decide whether or not my wife is going to be permanently crippled. -- Jim Hines, author of "Goblin Quest"

And then there's this story. Which I am having to stop reading right now because I'm crying a bit.



December 2013

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