Why Farrah Fawcett Is A Feminist Issue

June 26, 2009
Farrah Fawcett

Farrah Fawcett

Farah Fawcett is dead.  The 1970’s blond bimbo Charlie’s Angels teevee star who transformed herself at mid career into a talented actress has died of a disease so horrible I’m almost glad I had never heard of it:  Anal cancer that spread to other vital organs.  This type of cancer has a high correlation with the human pappilloma virus, HPV.  To the Phyllis Schlafly’s of the world Farah Fawcett’s life and death must look scandalous.

That is why Ms. Fawcett’s death is a feminist issue.

For the right wing there are just two possibilities for women: Conventional man-on-top marriage or disease, disgrace and death.  Take your pick.

A couple of years ago there was talk of immunizing girls against the risks of HPV caused cervical cancer with Guardasil, a Merck product.  “Defenders” of the “family” such as Phyllis Schlafly contend that HPV can only be contracted from an unchaste, and presumably unmarried, partner.  Therefore, as expected, the religious right concealed its true anti sex education agenda with claims that Guardasil was bad for women’s health.  It put forward its usual antidote for all issues sexual.  Here’s what Phyllis Schlafly’s Eagle Forum had to add to the conversation on HPV:

A 100% effective means of protection against … diseases is freely available, and it is abstinence (emphasis mine).

This abstinence only proscription dealing with disease has also produced painful results in Africa, where religious zealots Rick Warren and Pat Robinson deliver the Gospel, dramatically increasing the HIV/AIDS rate among women, obliged to have sexual relations with their infected men.

The religious right fought convenient contraception and the post-coital drug RU 486 on health grounds as well. But their real aim is obvious.  Read the language describing the action of the drug:

That initial action causes the lining of the uterus to release the embryonic child. A second drug, known as misoprostol, is taken two days after mifepristone and causes the uterus to contract, expelling the baby, (emphasis mine).

Much of the “abortion” debate is cloaked in concern for health issues such as this alarm over FDA inspections in  China:

We do know that Shanghai is the sole supplier to the United States of the abortion pill, Mifepristone, known as RU-486. The FDA had previously concealed the source of RU-486…

Or this:

Free trade is not only bringing us contaminated drugs and foods, but soon could bring us the products of embryonic stem cell transfers (aka cloning).

Does Phyllis oppose free trade and globalization or just stem cell research?  Hard to figure.

The religious right’s argument in favor of abstinence also permeates their position against sex discrimination and animates much prejudice against public school  curricula, the teaching of evolutionary and biological science, as well as other “socialistic” subjects.

For the far right-

Marriage=sex=children=happiness=private enterprise=the controlling formula in the “choice” debate.  Here is Phyllis making the case for marriage+capitalism at all costs.  That’s why female conservatives fought and beat the ERA:

Another theory could be the increase in easy divorce and illegitimacy (now 40 percent of American births are to single moms), which means that millions of women are raising kids without a husband and therefore expect Big Brother government to substitute as provider. The 2008 election returns showed that 70 percent of unmarried women voted for Barack Obama, perhaps hoping to be beneficiaries of his “spread the wealth” policies…..

In the pre-1970 era, when surveys showed women with higher levels of happiness, most men held jobs that enabled their wives to be fulltime homemakers. The private enterprise system constantly produces goods that make household work and kiddie care easier (such as dryers, dishwashers and paper diapers).

Here’s a FOX channel video of Phyllis speaking about the defeat of the ERA:

STOP ERA rally

Wow.

I don’t know whose universe she’s living in (yes, I do) but there is no boundary here between sex and capitalism, with comfortable, stay-at-home women the consumers, and you know who running the world.

There is plenty of talk about women putting aside differences over abortion to form a neutral voting block that can simply advocate for women’s rights.  That sounds good.  But among other non-starter stumbling blocks on the road to non-partisan kumbaya (such as just about everything) is the barricade that must never be surrendered, choice.

Choice isn’t just Rove v. Wade.  Reproductive choice for women is the sine qua non of other choices: to be married or not; to have sex or not; to go to work or not; to have a career or not; to accept bad treatment within a relationship or not.  The prevalence of unmarried women in the workplace has removed much of the stigma associated with divorce, Lesbianism  and the terrible shame once known as “spinsterhood”.

What the religious right opposes is not just “choice”, it’s choices. That’s clear.

I wonder what Phyllis Schlafly would have to say about Farrah Fawcett.


FDR and the Black Legion

June 25, 2009

Talk about a vast right-wing conspiracy.  Most people born after the Nixon years have no cellular memory of the battle royal between the “left” and the “right” but  if ever there was a U.S. president who was implacably hated by the political right, it wasn’t Bill Clinton or even Hillary.  It is certainly not Obama.  It was Franklin Delano Roosevelt.  Aided by the depredations of the Great Depression, FDR turned the tide in American politics from the unregulated corporate freebooting of the “gilded age” to government control and oversight within a couple of years of his election in 1933. A group called the American League, the leading corporations of the day including General Motors, U.S. Steel, U.S. Rubber, Standard Oil, J.P. Morgan, General Foods and above all du Pont industries, conspired to overthrow FDR by replacing him with a proxy president.  Prescott Bush, grandfather of G.W. Bush, was a member of the group.

GHW and Prescott Bush

GHW and Prescott Bush

By the 1930’s du Pont, the largest gunpowder manufacturer and munitions maker in the nation and was assisting the rise of another political power bent on militarization.  From the article:

The du Pont Co., and particularly GM, was a major contributor to Nazi military efforts to wipe communism off the map of Europe. In 1929, GM bought Adam Opel, Germany’s largest car manufacturer. In 1974, a Senate Subcommittee on Antitrust and Monopoly heard evidence from researcher Bradford Snell proving that that in 1935, GM opened an Opel factory to supply the Nazi’s with “Blitz” military trucks. In appreciation, for this help, Adolf Hitler awarded GM’s chief executive for overseas operations, James Mooney, with the Order of the German Eagle (first class). Besides military trucks, Germany’s GM workers also producing armored cars, tanks and bomber engines.

The Black Legion

The Black Legion

Du Pont had already worked for a decade smashing nascent labor unions in its industries.  In the 1920’s it formed the perhaps 200,000 strong Black Legion, a nativist, anti-union band closely modeled on and affiliated with the KKK by its black hooded, skull and crossbones shrouds and terrifying car caravan night rides through labor camps.  Goons hired by the company beat, kidnapped and killed union organizers and leaders.  They torched labor halls.  They tortured and killed at least 50 union organizers in Chicago alone. Du Pont was carrying on the big capitalist tradition successfully begun by Andrew Carnegie at the turn of the 20th century: break labor union organizing and keep wages at the absolute minimum to sustain life.  Interestingly, Malcom X’s father, an auto worker, was among the victims of one of the Black Legion’s conflagrations. The article :

The organization was divided into arson squads, bombing squads, execution squads, and anti-communist squads, and membership discipline on pain of torture or death was strictly enforced. Legion cells filled G.M. factories, terrorizing workers and recruiting Ku Klux Klansmen.

Since 1933 the Black Legion’s power had permeated police departments.

Du Pont and Standard Oil teamed to provide the Nazi government with much needed high octane gasoline.  From Hopium:

Du Pont’s GM and Rockefeller’s Standard Oil of New Jersey collaborated with I.G. Farben, the Nazi chemical cartel, to form Ethyl GmbH. This subsidiary, now called Ethyl Inc., built German factories to give the Nazis leaded gas fuel (synthetic tetraethyl fuel) for their military vehicles (1936-1939). Snell quotes from German records captured during the war:

But I digress.

The Liberty League members contributed an astounding amount of money to the campaign against Roosevelt’s policies.  They created affiliated organizations against these policies, many of which sound similar to day:

American Taxpayers League
League for Industrial Rights
Minute Men and Women of Today ($1,400)
National Economy League
Sentinels of the Republic ($125)
Southern Committee to Uphold the Constitution ($14,600)
Women Investors in America, Inc.

They also used much the same anti-union rhetoric as today:

In 1935, when 40,000 national guardsmen were called out in nineteen states to put down strikes, he lashed into Roosevelt’s unemployment relief and farm subsidy policies. “The Roosevelt Administration,” he said, “practices the socialistic maxim ‘work like hell so that the parasites may get the benefit of your labor.'”

The League also accused FDR  with “fermenting class hatred.”

Roosevelt struck back with his backers in the press:

“the only liberty the League fosters is the liberty to water stock, rig the market, manipulate paper, and pyramid holding companies to the stratosphere. … it is the liberty to pay starvation wages and break strikes with hired thugs…. It is the liberty to warp the minds and bodies of children in textile mills and on sharecropping farms. It is the liberty to buy opinions of the pulpit and the press. It is the liberty which leads to death….accused it of

playing on the Ku Klux Klan prejudices of the South. When Raskob, a Roman Catholic, contributed $5,000, he was told his money would be used to stir up the KKK and finance a venomous attack on Mrs. Roosevelt.”

The Liberty League’s plan for overthrowing FDR involved a plot to enlist the military services of members of the American Legion under the direction of General Smedley Butler, a popular WWI war hero.  Unfortunately for them, they didn’t know he was a Quaker, or at least that he was tired of military campaigns against third world victims of exploitation.

General Smedley Butler

General Smedley Butler

He took their offer under advisement while secretly planning to denounce the conspirators.  This was the Liberty League’s Plan, as described by Butler:

[T]hey wanted General Butler to deliver an ultimatum to Roosevelt. Roosevelt would pretend to become sick and incapacitated from his polio, and allow a newly created cabinet officer, a “Secretary of General Affairs,” to run things in his stead. The secretary, of course, would be carrying out the orders of Wall Street. If Roosevelt refused, then General Butler would force him out with an army of 500,000 war veterans from the American Legion. But MacGuire assured Butler the cover story would work:

“You know the American people will swallow that. We have got the newspapers. We will start a campaign that the President’s health is failing. Everyone can tell that by looking at him, and the dumb American people will fall for it in a second…”

In the end, the scheme was foiled:

“McCormack-Dickstein” Committee (the predecessor of the soon to be infamous “House Un-American Affairs Committee):

No charges were brought against the nation’s richest conspirators.

As a footnote to history, it is often said that President G.W. Bush went to war in Iraq in order to compensate for some competitive or unresolved feeling against his father in the first Gulf War, President G. W. H. Bush. I doubt it. He was just finishing the great military experiment in freeing a state for “freedom”. All of the Bushes want the same thing, the same thing Prescott Bush wanted, a return to the freewheeling capitalist days before FDR, a final end to the great New Deal.

They just might get it this time.


Obambush State Secrets and Operation MK-ULTRA

June 21, 2009

Governments adore secrets. The uglier the government’s activities, the greater the likelihood a program of state secrecy will be be enacted to prevent the public from finding out how ugly it really is.

ObamBush

ObamBush

George Bush had his state secrets-kidnapping and torturing subjects he called terrorists -but who remained unnamed and uncharged. His activities were unlawful by most definitions other than his own, requiring the legal efforts of lackeys to compose a complex network of baffling and self-serving work arounds to provide the veneer of legitimacy. Bush/Cheney still makes the claim that there was no wrong-doing but the the CIA operatives who carried out the kidnappings and tortures have disposed of the taped torture sessions that would have confirmed their point.

President Obama, promising an end to torture and an unprecedented level of transparency within his administration, has instead reverted to Bush/Cheney style cover-ups (surprise!) and more legal demands for state secrecy regarding torture and perpetual detention without trial.

Some Americans express complete disinterest in the cloak of secrecy the government invokes when called to account for illegal acts. They assume they’ll be immune from negative consequences of the government’s use of so-called black ops because they’re law abiding citizens, above government suspicion.

For those who hold this view consider the MK-Ultra projects begun by the CIA during the last phase of WWII and continuing well into the 1970s and probably beyond.  Nazi scientists carried on advanced research on “worthless” test subjects:

Mengele experiments

Mengele experiments

Much of the preliminary experimentation concerning genetic engineering and behavior modification was conducted by Dr. Josef Mengele at Auschwitz, where he coldly analyzed the effects of trauma-bonding,

drug experiments

drug experiments

eye-coloring and “twinning” upon his victims. Besides the insidious surgical experimentation performed at the concentration camp, some of the children were subjected to massive amounts of electroshock. Sadly, many of them did not survive the brutality. Concurrently, “brain-washing” was carried out on inmates at Dachau, who were placed under hypnosis and given the hallucinogenic drug mescaline. During the war, parallel behavioral research was led by Dr. George Estabrooks of Colgate University. His involvement with the Army, CID, FBI and other agencies remains shrouded in secrecy. However, Estabrooks would occasionally “slip” and discuss his work involving the creation of hypno-programmed couriers and hypnotically-induced split personalities.

MK-Ultra was the code name the CIA, under the auspices of The Office of Scientific Intelligence, eventually gave to a series of secret experiments and projects carried out on unwitting citizens and foreigners.  Prostitutes, given get-out-of-jail “chits” lured johns to hotel trysts where they could more easily be drugged and observed. The experiments and projects included mind control and physical experiments using toxic and lethal substances on human test subjects.  The OSS (later the CIA) enlisted the services of indicted Nazi war criminals to continue the experiments conducted in concentration camps.  Code names such as Operation Paperclip, Naomi, Bluebird and Artichoke were subsumed under the rubric Ultra, indicating their super secret nature.  From Wikipedia:

MK-ULTRA involved the surreptitious use of many types of drugs, as well as other methods, to manipulate individual mental states and to alter brain function.

and…

The Deputy Director of the CIA revealed that over thirty universities and institutions were involved in an “extensive testing and experimentation” program which included covert drug tests on unwitting citizens “at all social levels, high and low, native Americans and foreign.” Several of these tests involved the administration of LSD to “unwitting subjects in social situations.” At least one death, that of Dr. Olson, resulted from these activities. The Agency itself acknowledged that these tests made little scientific sense. The agents doing the monitoring were not qualified scientific observers.[7]

To this day most specific information regarding Project MKULTRA remains highly classified information.

In response to mind control and other experimentation carried out by the post-war Chinese and Soviet Union the U.S. government, CIA, DOD and DOE did this:

Beginning in the early 1950s, CIA engaged in an extensive program of human experimentation, using drugs, psychological. and other means in search of techniques to control human behavior CIA has so far found no evidence that radiation experiments on humans were part of this program. CIA documents and a 1963 CIA Inspector General (IG) report. however state quite clearly that MKULTRA was a program “concerned with research and development of chemical. biological. and radiological materials capable of employment in clandestine operations to control human behavior.”

In another MKULTRA project, CIA secretly provided funding for the construction of a wing of Georgetown University Hospital in the 1950s so that it would have a locale to carry out clinical testing of its biological and chemical programs. Dr. Charles F. Geschickter, a Georgetown doctor who conducted cancer research and experimented with radiation therapy, acted as cover for CIA financing.

U.S. military personnel, convinced they were used as unwitting test subjects, sued the government.  Wired.com says

The experiments allegedly included “the use of troops to test nerve gas, psychochemicals, and thousands of other toxic chemical or biological substances, and … the insertion of septal implants in the brains of subjects in … mind control experiments that went awry, leaving many civilian and military subjects with permanent disabilities.” Subjects were tested without their consent, the veterans say. And when the trials were over, the government failed to “provide health care or compensation.”

These medical and psychological experiments were supposed to have ended but… from Wired:

In a 2003 memo, then-Justice Department lawyer John C. Yoo suggesting that
interrogation drugs could be used if their effects were not permanent or profound. Since then, evidence has accumulated that some detainees may have been drugged. “It’s coming back,” retired Colonel John Alexander told Sharon.


What Obama Really Wants For Women

June 13, 2009
Love is forever

Love is forever

What Obama wants from American feminists is peace and quiet, a pre-Betty Friedan yesteryear , the 1950’s and early 60’s, when women were decorous and undemanding.  He yearns for the days when men called  women “girls”  and “girls”shopped at colleges for husbands ; a return to the days of hoop skirts, heterosexual puppy love and women’s work, Jackie O and Jack.  No troubles.  No choices.jack and jackie

Happy nuclear family

Happy nuclear family

For Obama’s corporate sponsors The 2008 presidential election was the first battle for post-feminist America, a return to conformity, domestic contentment and lowered female expectations.  Women’s existential claims for human rights must be swept away in the new, pragmatic geopolitical, globalized order.  In third world countries, invisible women will provide cheap goods from field and factory.  In the first world, women buy those cheap goods and feel contentment.

Women must adjust downwards, to the lower tiers of the labor market and do what suits them best, behaving as caretakers and consumers.  This reassessment closely resembles the downshift of women’s rights and new-found freedoms after WWII, when Rosie the Riveter was required to return to the hearth and the secretarial pool to make way for returning veterans.  Women went home and bought things that men produced: refrigerators, washing machines, vacuum cleaners, cribs, and put their ambitions on the backs of their men.

In many  ways, the corporate answer for women’s aspirations dovetail neatly with the new  national party agendas, both Democratic and Republican. For the Democrats, it spells an end to fractious individualism, civil rights, Mr. Moms, and bleeding hearts, a pious embrace of  traditional roles to quiet the body politic and gain new members on the right who oppose the causes of feminism and sexual freedom. The Republicans have already claimed that territory and intend to defend it, taking neither offense nor notice of the women’s(oppression) issues.

The  2 minute “women’s issue” portion of Obama’s Cairo speech was a call to inaction.  Let us, he implied to women listening in the West, agree that life for women is imperfect everywhere but the differences among us, these perceived injustices against women are merely minor failures of understanding and acceptance, as simple as a head scarf.  Yes, Western women, no great representatives of equality themselves, must adapt to foreign views of moral virtue, unabashed inequality and oppression because globalized societies require standardization and uniformity, conformity and obedience. We must find common ground, he repeats, with those we oppose, on reproductive choices,  male dominance, women’s inferior status.  He will cobble us together, like it or not. If Westerners oppose the oppressive symbolism of the hijab, Obama won’t stand for it.  He warns

“The U.S. government has gone to court to protect the right of women and girls to wear the hijab, and to punish those who would deny it.”  Only women must make accommodation with subservience.  See, that prick says,even Hillary, the real president, gets it. Obama Hillary Cairo

On the other hand men must make a concession in return: women must be allowed to get some education.  But this will not be all bad.  Men will find that the remuneration of women’s work will benefit them with a more prosperous society without putting their female chattel beyond their control.  With just a few no-cost public behavioral adjustments toward their women to placate the West and men in the Middle East may be welcomed into the family of nations without interference, just as Saudi Arabia and Egypt are accepted. Obama called for

expanded literacy for girls, and to help young women pursue employment through micro-financing that helps people live their dreams.

Does he mean like this?

Shakti rural women’s empowerment is win-win partnership for women, consumers and Indian company

Shakti (“strength”) is a women’s empowerment initiative begun in 2001 by an Indian consumer products corporation, Hindustan Lever, which is creating micro-enterprise opportunities for rural women and thereby improving their livelihoods and status and improving the standard of living in rural communities as well as benefiting the company. The program targets small villages with population of less than 2000 people.

Shakti provides critically needed additional income to poor rural women and their families, by working with self-help groups to equip and train women to become an extended arm of the company’s operation. Started in 2001, Shakti now operates in about 80,000 villages in 15 states, covering about 15 million rural people, and has the support of state governments and a number of NGOs. HLL hopes that by 2010, there will be 1,000,000 Shakti entrepreneurs covering 5,000,000 villages, and touching the lives of 600 million rural people.

Hindustan Lever Limited, Hindustan Lever House, 165/166, Backbay Reclamation, Mumbai–400020, Maharashtra, India.

And they don’t have to leave the hearth to do it.  Obama said

I do not believe that women must make the same choices as men in order to be equal, and I respect those women who choose to live their lives in traditional roles.

And suppose they choose NOT to live “traditional” lives?  Is there an option?


Hillary v. Karl Rove’s Hit Squad

June 8, 2009

Oh Hillary. You were really up against it. Big time.  Beginning with your term as First Lady in the 1990’s the Rovians had it in for you.

The  Obama camp and its surrogates were so hideous in their attacks on Hillary they were difficult to forget. Nothing was too low to throw at the best qualified candidate in the presidential race. Nothing was too awful to get rid of Hillary.It’s easy to forget the capacities of Karl Rove’s operatives when it comes to slime.  It’s easy to forget their their long running war against Hillary.  Clearly, the Repubs preferred Obama to occupy the White House.  Hillary would have a chance to get hers back if she had taken the presidency.

This stuff is evil and pornographic.

Clinton’s Schedules as First Lady to be Released

Hmm I wonder if the morning of the Waco Branch Davidian Fire will be accounted for? Many people have concluded that Hillary might have been the one to force the confrontation – and Reno took the wrap.

The National Archives announced on Tuesday that 11,046 pages of Senator Hillary Rodham’s White House schedules will be released on Wednesday.

The records were the subject of a legal fight between Judicial Watch, a conservative watchdog group, and the National Archives, which has been slow to comply with a request to release the records, arguing that the vetting process takes time.

As Hillary was gearing up for her run in 2007, nohillaryclinton.com got out the sleeze.  The creator of this website advertised for an “army” of passionate bloggers ready to take Hillary down.  This whole site is Hillary hate. Hillary’s alleged involvement in the aleged murder of Vince Foster seems to be the main coverage, but there’s much more.Check out the Republican hit on Hillary:

Hillary’s history of lies and unethical behavior goes back farther, and goes much deeper than anyone realizes. Hillary has treated and continues to treat all working class Americans as a species apart, and screw them she did: http://theseedsof9-11.com

Ps. Say goodbye to the small blond man with breasts, boys.

Hillary in Bosnia

Hillary in Bosnia

The Repubs seem delighted with Obama’s prospects against Hillary in Texas and Ohio in mid March:

There was pandemonium this week when an image of Barack Obama in African garb appeared on the Drudge Report, sourced to the Clinton campaign. A day of witch hunts apparently yielded nothing, and Obama took Hillary’s word that as far as she knew her campaign was not behind it. Donning unusual cultural costumes is a diplomatic gesture, not a career-ender (like when Michael Dukakis wore a helmet and rode around in a tank to prove his national-security bona fides). The furor died down pretty quickly—for now—but it was one more element in a budding storyline, nurtured by conservatives, that is calculated to paint Obama as somehow “other,” not a red-blooded American, not one of us.

Republicans feeding the Hillary “racist” meme:

Sissy Matthews Sees Racism in Hillary’s Anti-Obama Ad

On Tuesday’s Hardball, MSNBC host Chris Matthews voiced agreement with New York Times columnist Orlando Patterson, a Harvard sociology professor, as he read a passage from Patterson’s latest column during which the Harvard professor declared that, in watching Hillary Clinton’s recent campaign ad questioning Barack Obama’s qualifications for handling a 3:00 a.m. emergency, he “couldn’t help but think of D.W. Griffith’s Birth of a Nation, the racist movie epic that helped revive the Klu Klux Klan with its portrayal of black men lurking in the bushes around white society.” Declaring that the ad reminded him more of “a 911 call than 9/11” with “a mother protecting her kids from a prowler outside,” Matthews declared such an ad “would be racist.” (Transcript follows)

Hillary ripped for special funding of ‘gay’ activist group

A pro-family group wants to inform voters about the depths of Hillary Clinton’s pro-homosexual activism before the upcoming Super Tuesday primaries.

Conservative watchdog groups exposed Senator Clinton (D-New York) last week for garnering 261 pork projects (“earmarks”) for her supporters — more than five times as many as any other presidential candidate currently serving in Congress. E armarks are vague, written instructions attached to federal agency budgets that are often used as a “backdoor” to fund pet projects. Now Peter LaBarbera with Republicans for Family Values is drawing attention to one $300,000 funding earmark Clinton secured.

gayhilly

gayhilly

Hillary ripped for special funding of ‘gay’ activist group

A pro-family group wants to inform voters about the depths of Hillary Clinton’s pro-homosexual activism before the upcoming Super Tuesday primaries.

Conservative watchdog groups exposed Senator Clinton (D-New York) last week for garnering 261 pork projects (“earmarks”) for her supporters — more than five times as many as any other presidential candidate currently serving in Congress. E armarks are vague, written instructions attached to federal agency budgets that are often used as a “backdoor” to fund pet projects. Now Peter LaBarbera with Republicans for Family Values is drawing attention to one $300,000 funding earmark Clinton secured.

Those Repubs really hate their “gays”

Newsom may hurt Clinton more than he helps her in general election

San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom will join Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton on the presidential campaign trail when she comes to town on Tuesday – and Republicans couldn’t be happier about it.

The way they see it, the more face time the pro-gay-marriage, pro-sanctuary-city, pro-gun-control mayor of the most leftist, liberal city in America spends with the Democratic front-runner, the better.

A recent news release distributed by the Republican National Committee to political reporters around the country lambasted Newsom as “Hillary’s San Francisco Treat” and took a direct guilt-by-association swipe at Clinton by highlighting the mayor’s signature last month on a local law to issue undocumented immigrants ID cards.

AND STILL, she almost made  it.


Got religion? The Middle Way-Agnosticism

June 6, 2009

Somewhere in the Bible, I’ve heard, there is a story about the battle between Satan and his supporters and God and his holy host of supporters.  During or after the battle the neutral angels, those taking no part in the fight were the ones who chose the middle way, brought the Holy Grail to earth.  Of course I can’t swear to the facts on this story, as I am not a Bible scholar nor Biblical historian.  Nonetheless, the metaphor of the “middle way” is what I’m after.  The religious and scriptural battles in the world today caused me to ruminate on an old idea.

This is my point:

Islam v. Christianity

Christianity v. Islam

Judaism v. Islam

Islam v. Judaism

Christianity v. Judaism

Judaism v. Christianity

monotheists v. pantheists

heathen v. believer

theists (meaning everybody) v. atheists

shirts v. skins

As Rodney King said, after he recovered from his beating, “Can’t we all just get along?”  The answer to that question must be a resounding “NO”. The battle against reason has been joined by the multitudes and it is not going well.  The evil angels of other faiths and those of too little faith are destroying the world. OK, if you say so.

Is the antidote for fanatical religion even more of  or a different fanatical religion?  I don’t think so. Why not just chuck it all?  That’s a dangerous concept since the most hated of all of the religions, one great uniting principle of all religious maniacs is a common goal,  the suppression of reason and the non-believer.  If one stubbornly resists indoctrination in one area, he/she may reject it in others.

There is a strong argument to be made for agnosticism, atheism or secularism in the public sphere.

I don’t mean fall back rigidly on dialectical materialism or communism, at its worst worshiping statism and materialism or fascism, worshipping occultism, racism and romantic nationalism.  I mean the abandonment of “isms” as much as possible as illogical and obscuritanist.

Debates about “faith” or the lack of it, can be disturbing or amusing.  Here’s a fascinating discussion between Rick Warren (confirmed hypocrite) leader of the Saddleback evangelical church and Sam Harris, neuroscientist (don’t know if he’s a hypocrite).  And yes, for the Islamophobes in the house, the Qur’an is included in the debate, no monotheistic religion is neglected.

Let the agnostics and atheists have their say.  Good video here.

Atheism and agnosticism are like homosexuality in that one can own up to it in a fairly safe environment. But there have been some famous atheists and agnostics.  A sample:

  • Jorge Luis Borges (1899-1986), Argentine writer. Borges said:
  • “Being an agnostic means all things are possible, even God, even the Holy Trinity. This world is so strange that anything may happen, or may not happen. Being an agnostic makes me live in a larger, a more fantastic kind of world, almost uncanny. It makes me more tolerant.”

Aaronovitch, Dav

David Arronovitch 1954–
Journalist
British journalist, author and broadcaster.
“Like most of the Godless (or Godfree), I have no desire to proselytise for atheism or to persuade people out of religions that may offer them comfort and companionship.” “What makes me think I “can reduce the function of religion to the provision of ‘comfort and companionship'” instead of seeing it as a “public truth”? Being an atheist, I suppose. I see religion as a cultural and psychological construct, which fulfils certain almost universal needs and which, as a consequence, I am disinclined to condemn.”

Ali, Ayaan HirsiAyaan Hirsi Ali

1969–
Activist
Dutch feminist and politician, a prominent critic of Islam, whose screenplay for the movie Submission led to death threats.
“Too much reason can reform a faith away, which would be fine with Hirsi Ali, who regards herself as an atheist.”



Obama-To Hijab or Not To Hijab

June 5, 2009

It should have been Hillary giving the speech, but it wasn’t.

ObaJunk on sale Egypt

ObaJunk on sale Egypt

But Uh Oh.  Looks like the Middle East is getting misty eyed over the same Obama speechifyin’ rope-a-dope  and pretend fire walking  American progressives are now used to.  From Alarabiya:

President Obama’s visit to Saudi Arabia and Egypt is met in the Arab world with unprecedented wave of optimism and hope bordering on the fantasy and the ridiculous.

Does this BBC video mean at least somebody noticed the symbolic, short on solutions sophistry that’s Obie’s stock in trade?

Obama Aida size spectacle

Obama Aida size spectacle

On the way to deliver his umpteenth Lincolnesque, fanfared, speech-of-a-lifetime  with a backdrop resembling the elephant scene in the opera Aida, PrezObama stopped off in Saudi and Egypt, two of the Middle East’s most repressive regimes, and made  sure the speech porridge was just right for the decapitation King O’Oil Abdullah and President-for-life, Mubar-the-rack.  As a result of the friendly chat, he wiped his speech clean of all references to democracy, freedom, rule of law, human rights or women’s rights, all touchy subjects to our allies in that part of the world.

In case you missed it, here’s the text of the speech:

Blablablablablabla, Palestine,blablabla,Israel,blablablablablabla,rockets,blablabla, settlements. More blablabla defending Muslim rights,blablabla.

Then he came to his 6th (yup most important) point.  The right of women everywhere to wear the hijab, a scarf-like covering for the “hair”, required in Taliban country for keeping a woman’s head attached to the neck.  This topic, and the right of Muslim women to not be discriminated against in America was something every woman was hoping he would take a courageous stand on.  Brave words, Obama.

Hillary and Obie in Cairo

Hillary and Obie in Cairo

The Feminist Majority thought so.  They called his speech “revolutionary”.  Check out his pose, Hillary behind him in the approved hijab in the midst of a day-glo (vagina) pink frame.  For chrissakes, what is this picture telling us?!  Co-optation is good! See Hillary!

Again, he stepped out on thin ice to propose enough education for girls;enough so that they can count the change when purchasing a cow or a Kalashnikov, and for their privileges to remain in traditionally (oppressed) “female” roles without feeling the yoke of their Western sisters‘ scorn.  Yay, Obie, you really understand the tiny, minuscule aspirations of half of the world’s population!  And you can expertly play the divide and conquer game.  Jeezuz! Let’s stop bickering over petty bullshit like women’s rights and get on with the business of business.

Clearly, women’s liberty, for Obie, is wrapped up (no pun intended) in the hijab.  The hijab-the must have accessory for the high fashion Muslim female with nothing but time on her hands. It’s just a scarf, after all.  Something women wear to cover their hair, like if it’s windy or maybe they’re  driving their pink convertible  burkas down the road to Mecca, rocking out……

He alluded to Benazir BhuttoShe wore a hijab and only a BULLET stopped her from becoming once and future prime minister of Pakistan. Benazir Bhutto_image

PrezOdumbass swore he would go all the way to the supreme court to defend a woman’s right to wear one unless the wearer is parked in the picture at one of his rallies.

from the Detroit Press 6/19/08:

Sen. Barack Obama’s campaign apologized Wednesday after volunteers asked two Muslim women not to stand or sit behind the candidate at a rally in Detroit this week out of concerns about the appearance of traditional Muslim dress in published and broadcast visuals of the events.

Wow.  He didn’t want an hijab within a hundred yards of him.  Someone might think he’s a Muslim.  Ouch.

But he wouldn’t cross the room to protect a woman, from a beheading, a bombing or a burial alive.

Women, our movement is over unless we take it back from these assholes.

Way to go, BO.