abstinence, Barack Obama, blogging, Bush, creationism, Election 2008, electorate, evolution, fundamentalism, Iowa, Iran, Iraq, Israel, John McCain, Media, Military, minority rights, Nelson Mandela, Palestine, sociology, voting, Women's issues
This gem was done by Annie Lebowitz, famed photographer and is of Alice Waters, Restaurateur. No date was provided. The enigmatic expression about says it all for me today. I care not, I have retired to my inner self where all is peace and the world winks out of existence. A purposefully do nothing day, punctuated by a good wine and no more, is all I ask.
The forecast is for seven more days of rain. We now have a lake outside our backdoor where once there were ruts of water. I surrender, knowing that I really don’t care any more. I assume the summer will be unbearably hot with or without additional rain. It matters not. I will do as one does, replant the garden in a couple of weeks if it dries, give it up entirely if it does not. I am not particularly distressed, that comes with the surrender.
Instead, I turn my attention to cooking and other pursuits. I’m making foccacia bread today. I have wonderful olive oil, fresh rosemary, calamata olives and salt marinating for the topping. The dough is on the rise. We are having Pasta Carbanara with it. I’ve sauteedthe bacon and onions already, and will finish it off just before we eat withthe pasta and fresh cheese. I think some sun-dried tomatoes will go nicely slivered up with it. Perhaps a light salad, but that may be a bit too much.
Let’s see what intriguing news stories we can find today:
Well I don’t mean to start out by scaring you, but this story certainly woke me fully from my self-imposed grogginess. There is a nasty rumor moving throughout Washington that Bush is intent on attacking Iran and sooner rather than later. As you remember, some months ago, reports were issued by the NIE that Iran had abandoned its nuclear weapons program. This started the Bushite war machine working overtime to undermine that report. It is reported he told Omert, Israeli prime minister, that the report did not reflect his own views. Read more at Alternet, and be scared, very very scared.
I think I mentioned recently that Bush’s Abstinence only plan was failing badly. Here are the facts to back that up. A non-partisan group, the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and unplanned Pregnancy, states:
“At present there does not exist any strong evidence that any abstinence program delays the initiation of sex, hastens the return to abstinence or reduces the number of sexual partners.”
What does work? the Report also makes this most clear:
“In contrast, the positive outcomes of comprehensive sexuality education programs included: delaying the initiation of sex, reducing the frequency of sex, reducing the number of sexual partners and increasing condom or contraceptive use.”
Our puritanical approach leads us to have double the teen pregnancy rates of Canada and seven times that of Japan, Sweden and Denmark.
You have to admire the man for his chutspah in the end. John McCain who is telling anyone who will listen that he is not McBush, seems to find Bush’s rich friends more than okay if they will give him money which he so desperately needs to fund his McSame campaign. Will Durst has the humorous story for you, as McMac sucks up to the super rich kept super rich by Bush himself. A conscience, a conscience, has anyone heard Old John crying for one of his own lately?
In the ongoing battle for the minds of our children, Texas tries another tack. This time, no words like creationism or intelligent design. No the new code words are “strengths and weaknesses.” Thus those bastions of intellectual acuity, the state’s education board has decided to frame the issue of Evolution. Blue Girl Red Statecalls it wingnuttery, and I agree.
Many of us decry the growing conformity that seems to be required of us each day. Dissent, whether in public affairs, our churches, or even our neighborhoods is frowned upon as “unpatriotic, lacking in obedience, or just plain stupidity. This is not the way to run a society that is free and vibrant. Read an excellent article entitled “More on Certainty; or is it Moron Certainty?” today at Brittanica Blog. The media? Oh they are not helping either.
If I Ran the Zoo reminds us that John McCain is no friend to women and never has been. Oh he said all the nice things the other night in his utterly forgettable speech, but Mac, like on nearly every issue, cannot hide his past statements which are so very telling of how he really thinks. It ain’t pretty, folks, but John ain’t pretty either. A run down of his misogynist quotes are listed for your perusal should you be in any way unsure at this point.
I can’t help it, but tears started to well in my eyes as i read this next post from Iraq. This my dear readers is what we have done, collectively in the name of the US of A. Can you even begin to imagine asking such questions yourself? This is what it means to be an Iraqi these days and the choices they are called upon to make. The shame I feel is overpowering at this report from Inside Iraq.
Inside-Out the Beltwaypoints us to Glenn Greenwald who points us to Ian Walsh for this great story. As we all in the blogging world point our wagging fingers at the mainstream mediafor its lack of independence, and its willingness to follow the herd mentality, we notice the same awful tendencies in ourselves. Oh first let me say, I in no way think of my poor little blog as in any way up there in the stratosphere of the political biggies. But the tendency to be so very partisan is surely not lost on you is it? Are you in any way confused as to where I stand on anything? No I thought not. We all need to be very careful that we report as best we can factually and honestly. Perhaps that is why i singularly didn’t post much about the Obama/Clinton race. I was simply too close and not at all objective. I’m not objective about McCain either of course, but I think I am right. LOL.
Women did well in Iowa primary contests earlier in the week.Becky Greenwald won the Democratic primary in the 4th district and will go against Latham in November. Miller-Meeks won in the second although that is likely to be disputed and a recount called for as the votes she won by are around 109 as I last heard. Still, a good chance at least from my prospective that a woman will finally be elected out of Iowa to our US House.
Gosh, I feel so much better now. Kathryn Jean Lopez, wingnut of the first order at NRO, tells me that the very fact that a woman can run for high office is more than enough. Winning is not required. Same for African Americans. They should be satisfied with the opportunity, whether it actually means anything in the end or not. The legal right itself is the goal after all, not the actual winning of the post. I mean, does this woman sleep in a very high bed from which she falls out of often and hard? Sometimes I really would like a physical to prove some folks are the gender they claim they are don’t you?
The Electronic Intifada gives us a look at the Jordon Valley as seen through the eyes of displaced Palestinians.From the seemingly benign picture at the start of the article to the end with its listing of all the difficulties of daily life where Israeli meets Palestinian, one is left with a heartfelt sigh. One wonders how this problem can ever be solved to anyone’s even partial satisfaction.
Are you too dumb to vote?So asks Rick Shenkman in his new book of the same name. Well, as the reviewer suggests, that title alone is not likely to garner Mr. Shenkman many readers, and he ought not to think of running for any office either. The review is excellent however, and it’s surely worth a good ponder over a glass of wine as I read my comic book this evening. Hey, I am not dumb, just in need of belly laughs. Oh wait, I can get that from the news most any day anyway. I do love the Salon for its funky stories.
I’m guessing that the disconnect is that when McShame was a youth, there were no such things as tape recorders or other means of recording one’s statements. That would explain why over and over again, McCain is caught having changed his mind in the last few months on virtually every issue that one can name. This time it’s his take on wiretapping and other surveillance methods used by the Bushites in contravention of the LAW. McCain used to be against it, but now he’s for it. Read Glenn Greenwald excellent report on the flip-flopping of the landed carp we call the Mac.
SusanPosner is back with another installment of Fundamentalist. Today’s topics include McCain’s warm reception from AIPAC, his new buddy Ralph Reed, late partner of none other than Jack Abramoff of lobbyist fame, Hagee and more.
The securing of the nomination by Barack Obama was something that I had for so long expected, that it passed with little notice by me. It was a bit shocking to realize that of course it did not pass so for millions of African Americans. And of course, I felt a bit guilty in my casualness when I realized how incredibly important and seminal this moment actually is. I cannot help but feel a bit sorry, for I too was waiting for that same feeling to come to me as a supporter of a viable woman’s candidate for the very first time. Alas I shall have to wait, but those who want to review a bit the history that got us here, could do worse than travel to Byron William’s piece at the Huffington Post, “Taking a moment to look backwards.”
A majority of Iraqi legislators want America to set a time table for getting out of their country. They also are not in favor of the long-term agreement Bush and Maliki are trying to push into law wherein we would have those military bases in Iraq forever and a day. Wonder what McCain will say to this? I guess they aren’t smart enough to know what best for them?
The Nation reports in too, asking Will the Real McCain please stand up?Our Mav is as we say all things to all men and some women. He can’t find an issue he can stay with for more than a few months before changing his mind. This is no slash and stab at post, but a thoughtful and provocative look at the man who is just plain illogical in every respect. It smacks to me, as always of someone who is determined to get his “due” and he will say whatever it takes at any moment in time. Scary man.
Muqtada al-Sadr continues to be the wild card in Iraq. Who is this man? What are his insides like? What is he likely to do? What does he want? For a better understanding of this Shii’te cleric, visit The New Republicand read a lengthy but highly informative post. This is an excerpt from a new book by Patrick Cockburn entitled Muqtada: Muqtada al-Sadr, the Shia Revival and the Struggle for Iraq.
Good Lord, it is getting down to Laura and Barney. Think Progress reports that a recent CBS poll finds that Dubya’s approval rating is down to a meagre 25%. Well he can take comfort that Nixon’s was even lower at 24, and poor Harry Truman bottomed at 22. Nixon I can see, but Truman? Goodness knows what that was about–MacArthur maybe? Or Korea?
Urantian Sojourn has a play by play of McCain’s speech the other night, the one that was so lousy it was painful to watch? I mean the green backdrop made gramps look entirely peaked at best. He sounded worse, and read his teleprompter even worse. I love US’s cute term Phony from Arizoney! LOL.
I betcha ya didn’t know this? Seems Nelson Mandela has to get a special permission to enter the US because his organization, the African National Congress is still listed as a terrorist organization. You did read that right folks. It seems we agreed with the Apartheid government in that listing too. Read about the ANC, it’s history and so forth at Angry African on the Loose. It’s mind boggling the horrid things our government does that we mostly don’t even know about.
“You can only be young once. But you can always be immature.” Dave Barry
Talent hits a target no one else can hit; Genius hits a target no one else can see.” Arthur Schopenhaur
“Some have been thought brave because they were afraid to run away.” Thomas Fuller
“Baseball is 90% mental, the other half is physical.” Yogi Berra
“Never believe anything until it has been officially denied.” Claud Cockburn
“The most remarkable thing about my mother is that for thirty years she served the family nothing but leftovers. The original meal has never been found.” Calvin Trillin
What a day here in New York City — the weather, it’s 71 and hazy, kind of like John McCain. David Letterman
If you are really, I mean really really bored here are some suggestions:
Blink wildly and then close your eyes really tight for an interesting light show
(Amusement Potential: 1-5 minutes)
See a variety of blobs, stars and flashes. Try to make out shapes and see if your subconscious is trying to send you a message …
Try to not think about penguins
(Amusement Potential: 1-5 minutes)
This is especially hard, because by trying too much, you remember what you were trying to avoid thinking of. If you try too little, you end up thinking about penguins anyway.
Use your secret mind power
(Amusement Potential: 5-10 minutes)
Pick a passer-by and try to use your mind power to command them do something, like drop their bag or knock into someone. The law of averages dictates that sooner or later one of your mind commands will come true, so you can convince yourself that you really have super human powers and waste even more time trying them out.
Pretend you’re a robot
(Amusement Potential: 1-3 minutes)
Walk down the street with mechanical movements, adding ‘zzzzzt’ sounds with each motion. Pretending to have a motor broken in, say, your left hand can add at least 30 seconds more entertainment.
(Amusement Potential: 1-3 minutes)
Go ahead, scratch yourself now. Even if nothing itches, go ahead. Doesn’t that feel pretty good?
(Amusement Potential: 10-15 minutes)
Secretly award passers-by marks out of 10 as you go along, offering (unsaid) expert criticism over their clothing, hairstyle and footwear choices.
All from Laugh Lines and the NYTimes