Knee-Jerked into the Mouth

 

 

Oh Sigh.

There is a lot to be said for the argument that the Religiosity Righties don’t really care that much about life. One is forced to conclude that they really don’t. They say they do of course, because it is an issue they think they can stick it to liberals with.

So they crusade. They speak for the unborn, the “might be’s” of America and arguably the world, though I’m not sure how excited they get about Arab abortion (not that it is likely high of course). They, pushed to their logical noose, now mostly claim that there are no exceptions, except maybe, for a few, the “life the of mother”. The devil of course would be in the details as to what constituted an appropriate “life of the mother” episode. One doctor? Two? A panel? A court hearing? Who knows.

Those of us on the side of choice, do so for many reasons, not the least of which is that with better health care for women, and better contraceptive care, more effective and available alternatives, the need for the abortion alternative can be effectively reduced. Who wouldn’t want that?

One would assume no one, but that is not the case. These people who trip over themselves to out Jesus each other, place no truck in Jesus’ statement, “those who are not against us, are for us.”

The Right has demonized the left to a degree that it is anathema to work with them on anything, even on things that they would mutually agree with.

Ignore they will,  the polls that for years tell them that the bible belt contains the largest portion of unwanted, single mother pregnancies. The same polls suggest that these bible belt southern regions produce the most unwed teen girls. States that insist upon “abstinence only” as their basic “sex education” have the highest levels of pre-marital sex and pregnancy. They also have the most divorces but that is a whole ‘nother issue.

The politicians who have tied their wagon to the hue and cry Christianist*  movement are worse still. Many of them don’t give a tinker’s damn about the issue at all, it simply suits their election demographics. And when you marry fervent emotional morality issues with tickets to election bliss, you get insane legislation that on the surface attains the desired goal, but in reality just makes a mockery of the entire thing.

Case in point.

Texas.

Now, based on the law of gravity, stupid, undisturbed, sinks, so it stands to reason that more stupid people live in the south than in the north. I say that of course maintaining that my town is a grave exception to the rule, being inhabited both by myself and the Contrarian, but seemingly other bright, good folks. (I’d also exception out any number of blogging friends too of course, since they are often times brilliant!)

I digress.

Back to Texas.

Texas is un-blessed with one of the more stupid of governors. You need not take my word for it. Remember the Republican debates? Enough said.

Well, in the name of stopping that filthy abortion, Dumb Butt Perry stopped funding state clinics that he deemed too tied to those bad abortion practices. By doing so, he automatically made his state ineligible for federal funds, denoted as “Women’s Health Care” funding.

Following the SG (stupid governor), the state legislature then cut off all funds in public health clinics for “family planning” –you know, like contraceptive care.

As a result according to a New England Journal of Medicine study, poor women are unable to secure the better forms of contraception, having to rely on older less effective methods. Do they realize what that means?

Okay, let’s make it easy:

  1. A desire to screw Planned Parenthood and get in good with the crazy right voter, leads to lower funding for all women’s health care clinics.
  2. Less funding means clinics can’t provide free of charge the best forms of contraception.
  3. Poorer forms of contraception lead to more pregnancies.
  4. More pregnancies mean are unwanted.
  5. More unwanted pregnancies lead to—–wait for it—-HIGHER FREAKIN’ DAMN ABORTIONS YOU MORONS!

Okay, this leads me to request that forthwith, the public demand of anyone running for office that they prove they can READ and WRITE, and can ADD and SUBTRACT, and can correctly identify simply SYLLOGISMS–you know if A and B, then C you freaking stupid dork NOT F.

This shit makes me see purple. It’s so idiotic. It’s beyond idiotic. It’s unworthy of a cadre of chimpanzees to come up with.  I pod of whales could do better. Hell my dog could reach a better result just by sniffing a few butts.

Women are people! They are not your special plaything to experiment on while you test out what gets you elected the fastest. And to those who claim this is a religious moral issue? You can’t define moral issue. You define immorality. Now go play with some snakes and talk some tongues, while the rest of us get on with developing a community of care for the citizenry of this country.

Really, I mean it.

Go sit down.

Really.

** Christianist is a term that I define as those on the fringes of the religious right who have used the Gospels to perpetuate their own aspirations for power, control and oppression. (This is Andrew Sullivan’s definition)

 

Boatloads of Poo Comin’ Down the Pike

Well, another week in the bag, and I feel quite literally buried in poo from the politicos among us. Thankfully, or not, we got about three inches of fluffy white that has covered everything in sight and made it all look rather clean. For the moment.

I note that Willard is giving a speech about economics today. His 59-point plan was pretty much a dud, so it’s time to do something a little more flashy. In order to do this Willard’s thinkers have secured the Ford Field, home of the Detroit Lions. Fearful that they might not be able to fill up that arena, they have toyed with a number of ways of setting it up, finally settling on placing The Willard on the 30-yard line and with some nifty camera angles, figuring it will look like all of humankind has come to listen to the wisdom that will pour forth. *Yawn*

We are told that The Willard has “reassembled” the Bush economic team. Now I feel secure. I remember that as working quite well, don’t you?

The Willard decried that abstinence only wasn’t being taught in our schools enough. It’s something that has been proven to work. Except that it hasn’t. Except that it is provably not working. Except that where it is used, namely the deep South, is where the highest levels of teen pregnancy occur. And the Ragin’ Rick interjects that teen pregnancy is soaring, when it is in fact, declining. And the declining is in those states that teach a full-range sex-education, including contraceptive alternatives.

Just to set the record straight.

Like just about everyone has noticed that Dr. Paul, the “principled” one in the race, is steering clear of ever criticizing The Willard. He has no just problem with criticizing Ragin’ Rick or Neutered Newt. In fact he crucifies them. And everybody is pretty darn sure that Dr. Paul and The Willard have struck some agreement. Does it have to do with the FED? Or is it more personal, like being kind to the weird-o Rand? Only time will tell. Of course both sides are shaking their heads vigorously in DENIAL. That’s convincing–no one.

Said Karen Santorum: “I did always feel in my heart that God had big plans for Rick. Eventually it was there, tugging at my heart. When Obamacare passed, that was it. That put the fire in my belly.”

Awwww, ain’t that cute? And I thought the only thing her belly was good for was growing babies. God works in mysterious ways–I guess.

As I mentioned the other day, you can read a copy of The Authoritarians, by Robert Altemeyber online. I thought I would share a bit here and there as I get along in it. Those who are authoritarian followers are more fearful in general that the rest of us. They were taught to be so by their parents. They see boogeymen around every corner, a crisis in the making at every turn. People are dangerous and out to get them. Now overlay this with the propensity of the GOP leadership and Fox Noise to interject FEAR as a main ingredient in all they say. Getting it now?

Did you miss it? The polls poles flipped once again. I know this because the new mantra of the crazies is that Democrats are anti-science. None other than the tea-drunk Michelle Malkin has jumped on the Ragin’ Rick bandwagon. The White House has a anti-science theology that is destroying Amerika folks. Environmental-Nazis!

I think the real religious menaces are those in the White House, in the Department of Interior, at the National Park Service who pretend that they are on the side of rationality and objectivity while they are politicizing and corrupting Science for their own radical ends.

Yeah, and now can you explain to us what is their purpose in deliberately doing this Michelle with two L’s? Are they working for SATAN???????

Meanwhile, the ever busy Beelzebub, dips his horns in education. Ragin’ Rick, his head usually a swim with sexual perversion, imagined and fantasized, took time to demonize the President’s attempts to help kids get to college. Why nothing but a utopian plot to groom more radical theologians of the Marxian flavor.

“I understand why Barack Obama wants to send every kid to college, because of their indoctrination mills, absolutely … The indoctrination that is going on at the university level is a harm to our country.”

Except for Liberty U I bet, huh Ragin’? (H/T to Angry Black Lady Chronicles.)

Are you out of sorts? Are you too pooped to poo? Need a pick-me-up? Well, no Vitametavegimin here folks but some mighty good commentary follows:

Paul Krugman sorts out all of  Willard’s economic lies  in a NYTimes Op Ed.

“If you just cut, if all you’re thinking about doing is cutting spending, as you cut spending you’ll slow down the economy.”

Think Obama said that? Well The Willard did. And they are walkin’ back that one, fast and furiously.

Steve Benen points out all those pesky “friends” who are kinda not sometimes so “helpful” to Willard. And the worst Surrogate Award goes to:

“Santorum connects with people. Unfortunately, my guy has a hard time doing that.” (AR state party chairman and Willard backer)

And the Detroit Free Press endorsed The Willard, while pretty much disagreeing with him on everything, finally admitting that what he stands for is, ummm, kind of hard to figure out? Well, he’s better than the others anyway.

… for the past 12 months, Romney has been refashioning himself as something other than what his record suggests. He has made gestures toward economic and social radicalism, and eschewed the common sense of cooperative governing that made him a success in Massachusetts. Romney was also dead wrong when he opposed government bailouts for the auto industry (Michigan’s most vital economic engine) in late 2008. And he has since adopted a recalcitrant and, at times, revisionist defense of his position in the face of overwhelming evidence that the bailouts he opposed were necessary…. But Romney, unlike the zealous Rick Santorum, the impulsive Newt Gingrich and the backward-thinking Ron Paul, is preferable to the rest of the field. [h/t to the Commentariat for this section of links]

And with that, another day sets on the Feather. Let’s look for some laughs tomorrow shall we?

Getting on My Catholic High Horse

Ok, so I’m getting on a lot of high horses today. This is an editorial comment and I’m thoroughly pissed.

For months, if not years, the GOP Ring-Wing blithering toads have served up red meat to a certain slithery segment of the evangelical crowd. Namely, the desire, usually in the name of JE-sus, to control women’s bodies.

Issues that have long been settled by decades of law and implementation are again being assaulted on a regular basis by Republican-dominated legislatures, by insane GOP presidential campaigns, and by all those evangelical whigs who seek to create a Pavlovian response in foggy heads around the country.

It comes under the guise of “big government dictating your lives, to religious freedom, to “right to life” and any other bell-ringer that they think might trigger a favorable response from those who are either unable or unwilling to actually learn the truth.

I have watched as GOP panderers have introduced and in some cases passed, legislation requiring women to view “sonograms” of their fetuses before proceeding with an abortion. Such legislation is ugly by its very nature, suggesting that women have no clue “what is in there,” and need be shown by benevolent men (in most cases) that “it’s a baby!” for God’s sake.

The Right has fought the use of “morning after pills” for those women who have been violently assaulted (in most cases) or otherwise find themselves compromised and unable for any of a hundred reasons to contemplate having a child. And they have attempted by every means to roadblock and delay women’s ability to seek abortive assistence.

While not a single person I know “favors” abortion, many of us are determined not to make that critical decision for someone else. It may be a religious issue for you, or a moral one, or neither. And it is not my right to decide, no matter my personal beliefs. Instead of helping women and girls to engage in practices that make abortion the last avenue of pursuit, the Right has sought to deny girls the right to learn about their bodies and contraceptive alternatives. They have insisted and successfully required that girls in some states be subjected only to “abstinence only”, a practice that is documented time and time again to not work.

Instead of working with “choice” people to help women in every way short of abortion, with the real result of their being less abortions, those opposed to abortion have dug in their heels and become even more draconian, denying abortive relief to victims of rape and incest. Some even question whether “the mother’s health” is a sufficient reason to terminate a pregnancy.

The Komen Foundation;s attempt to destroy Planned Parenthood was thinly disguised, apparently a result of their utter misreading of the public’s opinion. This, of course, is no new thing, as Republicans who have long supported Planned Parenthood and their life-giving assistence to women, especially poor women, have one by one, slipped into the more comfortable position of being against them. Comfortable I say, because it is a simple reponse to the rabid Right-Wing who has decided to make PPH the whipping girl for all their pent up anti-abortion hatred.

I need not report what is already well known. Planned Parenthood spends 3% of it’s budget on abortion services. The rest is largely spent on breast care, and other women’s health issues, providing women with no health insurance their only life-line to any health care at all in many instances.

Now we come to another “fake” crisis. That is the decision by HHS to require that all organizations, Catholic included, must provide contraceptive benefits within their insurance policy programs. This includes Catholic hospitals and universities.

First, some actual facts:

  • 28 states already require that Catholic (or other religious) hospitals and universities provide this through their own insurance regulatory provisions.
  • The mandate requires that the institution purchases a health care insurance that provides contraceptive care. It does not require any person to actually use it.
  • Such hospitals and/or universities employ tens of thousands of persons across the country (1 in every 6 hospitals in the US is Catholic), and a good percent of them are not themselves Catholic and should not be denied normal benefits by their employers.
  • Something in excess of 95% of all Catholics use contraception. It is disingenuous for the Church to claim that the government is attempting force them to “violate” their conscious. Contraception, right or wrong is considered to be a “matter of conscience” by the average Catholic, and they have so determined since the 60′s, when this issue first came forth. Tens of thousands of Catholics left the Church over precisely this issue, and the Church was seen to back off it’s insistance of compliance with a solution called “primacy of conscience.”
  • Before Mitt and Newt start bellowing, both Massacusettes and Georgia are of the 28 states who already require such adherence by religious organizations.
  • Note: by religious organizations, we do not mean the church. The offices of Dioceses and Archdioceses do not fall within the provisions.
  • So called “morning after pills” are not included.

The fact is, that as to the HHS mandate, most Catholics could probably care less. This “outrage” seems to be coming only from the Catholic hierarchy–namely the priesthood and those extreme Right-Wing commentators such as Bill Donahue.

While the Catholic institution can be expected to carry on about this, it will be seen as an opportunity by the GOP Right (which apparently is all there is now) to screech on about government control of religion, wars on religion, ad nauseum, when of course it is anything but.

It is time, ladies and gentlemen to stand strong against the extreme right wing and their desire to drive us back to the stone age of health, and to stand strong against the blatant pandering that the GOP is engaged in simply to gain votes. Of course, they don’t, by and large, give a rat’s ass about any of this stuff anyway. It’s just a means to gain control of the government reins in order to further their economic plans to keep us all serfs. Love a woman today, support her right to health!

And that’s what I think.

The Definitive Answer to the Greek Economic Meltdown

9-9-9!

Oh wait.

Seriously. If you come to this blog for international news, you are in a world of trouble.

I can barely make sense out of what is going on in this country, and I’m a life-long resident.

It’s not that I don’t pay attention. I sit quietly and politely each evening as the PBS News Hour attempts to explain all this EU ruckus.

Frankly, in my naiveté, I thought it was all fixed last week, but this Greek Prime Minister, George Papandreou fellow seems to have gummed that up. I think he’s up for a vote of confidence tomorrow. I can tell you that I have no confidence in him. If that matters.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch.

We are in an economic crisis of our own, and people would like to eat. And to eat, they need jobs. So our brilliant Congress spends my tax dollars re-affirming that it is in God We Trust. I was confused. I thought it was Krishna, or The Earth Goddess. But, even though confused, I get unconfused real fast whenever I pick up any MONEY, you idiotic fools.

I was born and raised in Michigan.  Michigan is in an economic crisis, in case you missed it. They people who are relatively more hungry than say Iowans are, across the board at least. And to eat, they need jobs. So their brilliant Senate passed what is universally defined as a “blueprint for bullying.

Basically it bans bullying, and then explains that if you bully for the right reasons, it’s not a crime at all. This piece of dog poo was dreamed up and supported by. . . . (drum roll). . . .yes you guessed it, the GOP! Voting along strict party lines, the GOP pushed through the bill, which now goes to the House for its consideration. The right reasons? Anything that has to do with moral or religious beliefs.

Along with brains (see yesterday’s post) the GOP suffers from an absence of heart.

Once upon a time, there was a woman. She was hungry for attention, and more importantly money. So she looked upon the political landscape, and found a place for herself. As an extreme political pundit. And she worked hard to be extreme.

But, other women came along, and suddenly she wasn’t unique, and her books started to lay gathering dust.

So, she got more extreme.

Hermie Cain is struggling with the sexual harassment thingie. And the Right, is “playing the race card” claiming that the Left are just a bunch of racists trying to destroy the real deal black man because they fear him so much. So our intrepid “trying to remain relevant” pundit lady says:

 “our blacks are so much better than their blacks” because “you have fought against probably your family, probably your neighbors… that’s why we have very impressive blacks.”

“Obama… is not a descendant of the blacks that suffered these Jim Crow laws,” that he was “not the son of American blacks that went through the American experience,”

Ann, dear, you awful excuse of female gender, psst, we don’t OWN people any more. They aren’t “our blacks” you racist b**ch! Return to under your rock now, please you little grifter. Oh, and if you think Ann might just have been having a “moment” you can read her extensive defense of “her blacks” here.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch.

Rushin’ for drugs Limpaugh is not to be out done by the likes of Annie, my time has passed, Coulter. No, Rush doesn’t think much about sexual harassment at all. It’s just a bunch of liberal clap trap, used by women to score some money.

LIMBAUGH: You know what sexual harassment is? You know what it really is? It’s a political tool. It is a political tool invented by the left. And — for the express pur– just like political correctness is a political tool of the left to shut people down, sexual harassment is a political tool of the left to get rid of people, or to score money gains, whatever is most desired.

How are ya, folk– no, I’m not saying sexual harassment doesn’t happen. I’m just saying that it doesn’t happen a whole lot of times people admit to it happening. They’ll make a settlement out of court rather than go to court to litigate it just to get rid of it. It’s become an accredited way for malcontent women to score some money. There’s no question about it. [Premiere Radio Networks,The Rush Limbaugh Show, 1/11/11]

We hear ya Rushin’. We hear you loud and clear. Look up the word misogynist okay?

Michele Bachmann said some things. . . . .

Economic woes are being felt in the state of Wisconsin. Lots of people are hungry there. They need jobs to make some money to feed themselves. The GOP controlled Senate spent tax money to institute an abstinence only” requirement in teaching sex education and NOT speaking a word about contraception.

As anyone who bothers to check would know, a full discussion of ALL manner of prevention works best and in states where abstinence only is required, there is universally a higher incidence of teen pregnancy. But the vote when on, predictably, along party lines.

** I cleaned up the sidebar yesterday, removing the link categories of crafting, food, gardening, and religion. Obviously this blog has changed over time, and basically revolves around all things political with a smattering of personal interest posts. I have a faith blog and a food blog, and so retaining links here seems unnecessary. To those very few who were lopped off but are followers here, never fear, I have not dropped you from my reader and continue to read your lovely blogs.

Just a Little Off the Top?

I stopped after church yesterday to get my hair cut. It’s a fancy place, La Cost Cutters. French I think. They are intent on bringing high coiffure to the average jane, so they locate in Wal-Mart.

Now let me explain that my hair grows like the worst weed you’ve ever encountered. I imagine zillions of little guys on bicycles pedaling away, spinning out my hair.

For years I solved this problem by not getting it cut and wearing it loooooong. This finally grew tiresome and I started whacking it off around the shoulders and then just twisting it up and clipping it. I am tres chic.

Finally I grew tired of this, so I decided to get ‘er done in a short style, something most old women (which I’m now approaching) finally do. I wanted it short. The first stylist did a great job. That was several months ago. Since then, I’ve had a line of stylists who seem to have difficulty with the word “cut.” They nibble around at the edges.

“Go ahead and cut it. It grows so fast that no ‘to short’ will last more than two weeks,” I encourage.

But they don’t get it. They are afraid. Or, it’s a conspiracy to get more money out of me by getting me there more often.

But what gets me is the strange questions. “Cut it about one inch,” I order, while showing them with my fingers.

They cut the crown, and then ask, “Do you want any taken off the sides?”

“I dunno,” I want to say, “does it not all grow at the same time?”

I mean if it needs an inch cut off, wouldn’t that mean all over? Or from their perch above me, are they seeing something up there that I don’t? Am I a genetic abnormal?

I probably could solve all this by requesting the same stylist. But I go on Sunday after all, and they rotate those schedules. And further more, I really don’t give a flying floozy much about my hair, just want it presentable. I like the convenience of “walking in” and have no desire to make stupid appointments.

Perhaps I have the wrong insider language. You know, hair lingo. Help me here. Am I somehow saying things wrong?

Anyway, mostly I like my hair. A quick wash, a little “do” and let it dry, and brush it. And, well, it’s good to go. All this because the Contrarian assured me that he never was with a group of men who saw a great looking woman go by where anyone exclaimed, “look at that hair-do! wow, isn’t it great?” They seemed, he noted, to be more enamored of certain other features, mostly on the front end above the waist, if ya get my drift.

My hair thanks them for this.

***

I don’t have links to this but I read it over the weekend. Someone reported that John McCain is talking about “regime change” in North Korea. Now that sends a major chill down the spine doesn’t it? Thank God he is not the CIC.  And on the DADT front, John, who cannot get anyone in the military to agree with him, came out with this nasty mean remark:

There was never anything wrong with DADT. It was working fine, until an inexperienced” candidate for President decided to mess with it. (paraphrased)

John is just the worst sort of sore loser I’ve come across.

***

I’m not sure how I feel about the “wikileaks” thing. I guess my government is more incompetent than I thought. Generally I’m not in favor of secrets. But I recognize that sometimes very sensitive negotiations require it. In the end, I guess openness all the way around works best. But I’m persuadable on this issue. What say you?

***
Another thing I noted in reading over the weekend. STD’s are way up in Southern Alaska, home of “just say no” abstinence. HIV infection is up in the South where states embrace abstinence only and other tactics to make it difficult for people to get HIV inhibitor drugs. Doncha just love the compassion of the religious right? How’s that abstinency thing workin’ for ya Sarah, as someone noted.

***

A new Palinism:

I want to help clean up the state that is so sorry today of journalism. And I have a communications degree.”—To Sean Hannity, in a Fox News interview, Nov. 22, 2010.

***

Palin continues to demonstrate her complete lack of comprehension about much of anything. She apparently recently tweeted that since she was able to stop publication of parts of her latest ghostly written book, the government should be able to stop the wikileaks. To equate her silly book and government secrets in the same breath is breathtakingly stupid. The laws and court cases governing are NOT remotely the same. But of course, she doesn’t read so we can’t expect her to know that.

Okay, so my fascination with this train wreck continues. I find her laughable, but I also find her dangerous should she continue to manipulate the public for her own personal aggrandizement. AlterNet provides you with some provocative reactions to Sarah’s testing of the waters.

***

If it comes as a surprise that the GOP has so many women in the mix these days, think again. This doesn’t mean that women are finding their voice in the GOP. They are there because they assist in the Repucklian plan to reduce women to the stay at home little non-entities they think they really are. Read the Republican War Against Women.

The Big Lie of the Anti-choice Right

contraceptionIt is probably true that there is no basis of compromise between the two sides. One either believes that there is a fundamental right of a woman to control her own body or one believes that  conception and the resultant life trumps all other issues from the moment that sperm meets ovum.

We can all agree to that. What choice people profess, and most anti-choicers refuse to acknowledge, is that choice people also want to reduce abortion in every effective way possible short of legally restricting the right. Nobody is “for” abortion as the “pro-lifers” are want to insist.

Reasonable heads should prevail, one would assume. The question should become, “what can we do to effectively work toward reducing abortions?”

It would seem obvious that we can get together to work on that, right? Wrong.

Because that is part of the big lie of the right. They are not so much interested in reducing abortions as they are in winning on this issue, and controlling women’s bodies. And that suggests that it is not some “overriding” moral conclusion that is beyond religion as they claim. Make the argument that abortion is a religious issue, and wait for them to begin howling. No they claim, it’s not religion, its simple morality. Odd, since they will surely claim that all sense of morality comes from God, thus non-believers cannot be “moral” exactly.

If abortions are immoral, then reducing abortions must be more moral than merely  stubbornly objecting to abortions as being immoral. And the dirty little secret is that abortion is only part of the agenda for the religious right. The other item on the agenda is “contraception.” And this of course is very much a religious issue, and depends on a very specific type of belief, namely that sex is only for procreation and that to use any type of barrier to conception is a slap in the face to God.

No matter of course, that an omnipotent God can presumably frustrate the best efforts of humans to defy his wishes. It is the internal desire to take conception out of God’s hands that is objected to. And most every if not all the right to life organizations are anti-contraception.

There is a fascinating article by AlterNet on the subject, and with some amazing statistics. Tim Ryan, (D-OH) and pro-lifer, has been removed from a pro-life board of directors because he favors means to reduce abortion, including contraception. He has gone public and is underscoring that the real war is between a tiny segment of the “pro-life” movement, and the vast majority of pro-lifers who are like him, fine with contraception.

The realities are stark. Abstinence only programs are a failure, at best postponing for a few extra months, teens experimentation with sex. Worse, when they do begin having it, they don’t use protections and have a much higher incidence of STD’s and pregnancy, thus abstinence only programs actually result in increased abortions.

Study after study shows that broad based sex education works. States are moving away from AO after watching their statistics start to re-climb, back to comprehensive sex education, a proven method of reducing STD’s and unwanted pregnancy. Joining with Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Ryan sponsors the “Preventing unintended pregnancies, Reducing the need for abortion and supporting Parent’s Act,” which aims at instituting practices found useful from the “The Third Way,” a left-center think tank.

Various anti-choice organizations now call Ryan “so called” when it comes to being pro-life. But when polled 80% of those who self-identify with a pro-life stance, also are pro-contraception. The bill supports contraception, help for poor women who wish to carry to term, comprehensive sex education, and help for adoptive families. No pro-life group supports the legislation.

Only the Catholic church 0pposes contraception, even though 90% of its faithful use it or are in favor of its availability. There is no denomination whose support of contraception is below 88%. Jewish support is at 97%.  Even 70% of Republicans and Independents favor contraception and only a measly 2% of them don’t.

According to Ryan, only 20% of the pro-life movement favors no contraception, but they seem fully in control of the movement. Ryan urges that those within the movement need to hold that 20% accountable now.

It is obvious that this minority has an agenda separate and apart from reducing abortion. And I contend that that agenda is religious in nature and is theocratic in intent. It is nothing less than to impose religious concepts of sexual behavior onto the public at large, regardless of what their religious believes are or are not.

Certainly, it is perfectly fine for anyone to believe personally that contraception is wrong for them, and somehow against God. One’s personal theology is sacrosanct. However, to allow it to intrude to the point that one will not work for a  legitimate goal of reducing abortion, is telling to say the least. It in fact shows all too clearly that something else is at stake. The article is a real eye opener. It is what I have been contending for some time, and what no doubt others have realized as well.

It’s not just about “life” its also about controlling women and their sexuality.

Short Takes on the Day, 03/21/09

bballIt’s the beginning of March Madness, and we are deeply ensconced in the games. We are through the first round and today we begin the second. Being a graduate of MSU, I have a dog in the race, but of course many others I root for. The upsets have been fast and furious this year, much better than last, when the whole thing seemed a yawner to me.

No matter, this is not about basketball, but we are returning after a hiatus of sorts to the “Short Take” format. I never intentionally left, but it can be a tiresomely pedantic post to write, and I prefer the subject matter types.

A bit about how I do this, which has changed recently and will, hopefully explain why my visits to your blogs is a bit disjointed and irregular. (forgetting of course the week+ without computer capability and the oh so old story of dial up slowwwwwwness).

I use a reader, Google to be specific, and daily, I arrive to find 1000+ waiting for me. The reader doesn’t identify past 1000, so I have no idea how many really. I hit show all, and proceed to go through them as presented, latest first. I proceed in this manner, starring items that I find interesting but don’t seem to generate a full post in my head, until something does, and then write. What is starred remains for another day. As I run into a blogger friend, I read, and then bring up the website if I have a comment to leave.

I used to set aside specific time to read friends blogs, and leave comments, but found all too often that I ran out of time, and some people seemed to be perennially left out. If I’m searching for a blog idea, I start usually with the “political” ones and proceed. This meant I missed a lot of good “religious” stuff, and well, science and so forth.

This way, its indiscriminate and everything gets a fair chance to come across my eyeballs.  As I said, before, there were sources, yours and professional ones that I was consistently missing. At the end of the day, I mark everything I don’t get to as read, and start again the next day. That can be problematical. If you generally post in the early evening, you end up at the end of the list, since I clear at 5:30 Central DST. Thus, I may still miss you a lot, but never fear! Weekends are much better, and I can often get through everything! So hopefully, I’ll see you there if not during the week.

Anyway, I found my starred box getting full, so here’s a potpourri of stuff, some of which you might find interesting, informative or amusing. Some of it is just plain weird!

brit-humeWe start with the amusing and always snooty, Mr. Brit Hume, who was receiving a award (Wm. F. Buckley Jr. Award for Media Excellence) from the conservative group, Media Research Center.

Mr. “fair and balanced,” warned that as blogging increased, the idea of fair and balanced was errr, threatened? Gasp, we are in danger of being presented news that is biased? and presents only one “political point of view?”

Oh gosh, scary huh? I’m thinking that Hume should have been presented with the chutzpah award for “saying things with a straight face”. With thanks to Think Progress,  follow the link for all the details. And shake your head, I mean really Brit, you can’t really say that with a straight face can ya?

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As long as we are on the subject of wingnuttery, and we were, don’t forget Glenn Beck, the new totally off the wall nut case at Foxy. It seems that the Missouri State Police worked up a profile of what an All-American terrorist might look like, and dang if it didn’t resemble some of our friends from the reactionary religious and otherwise right.

Well, Glenn got his shorts in a twist over that, and ponders what we are doing profiling honest Amarcans like that! Just another example of bad govement sneaking around and spying on good ole boys.

Glenn specializes in totally misunderstanding most of what he reads and then spewing it out as in his normal fear mongering way. Read this in full at Crooks & Liars.

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If ya got some time, stop by Katie Schwartz’s blog. She received a “sisterhood” award. But she has a nice list of blogs that she adores. Many are old favorites and one’s a read anyway, but there were several I was unaware of, and Katie’s taste is well, good. So if you  want to add to the list of things you read daily, (and don’t we all) stop by and take a look.

I haven’t seen Katie posting a lot lately, but that may be more me than her. She is irreverent, witty and a great writer. Worth always reading!

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Speaking of some of our favorite bloggers, Jennifer at In the Meantime . . . has some updates on the “Art Book Project” Paws for Charity, for breast cancer. Give her a look and see what you can do to help out.

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If religious art is your thing, don’t miss the Episcopal Church’s Visual Arts online. This one features a favorite of mine, Tobias Heller, from In a Godward Direction. Tobias will direct link ya.

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Okay, I promised you weird, and this would be the one. Alaska and Florida are considering banning bestiality by statute. Well, one we can see, I guess. After Sarah, we’ve all come to know that there are some might strange folks up in Alaska. As to Florida, hmmm,  does this have to do with dementia and failing eyesight? We aren’t sure, but seems both states are having epidemics of folks who are doing the nasty with animals, and some folks want ‘em locked up.

I can appreciate that. I’t creepy in the extreme without considering the poor exploitation of the animal. Beware, though examples used were a guide dog ( how damn unthankful can a person get?) and a goat!.

Seriously, I guess there is some strong correlation between abusing animals and abusing people. Sick it is.

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The Intercollegiate Studies Institute offers you a civics test. The results which they list are discouraging, Most Americans score 49% as an average, while even the college educated get only 55%. I’m gonna take it a bit later when I finish with this.  We thank Theology Web for the heads up.

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pope

Robert S. McElvaine, is the author of Grand Theft Jesus: The Hijacking of Religion in America, thinks its high time the Catholic Church impeach its pope and move into the 21st Century. He does examine a rather long list of gaffes,the latest of which has been lighting up the blogosphere.

Benedict, as you may have heard, has told the African continent, where he is on an official visit, that they should not use condoms because condoms only make the problem worse. This to a continent suffering terribly from the AIDS epidemic.

While I can follow the logic of Benedict’s argument, it is based on what everyone surely knows is simply not reality. People do not refrain from sex when faced with NO contraception. They do it anyway, and have since the dawn of man and woman. When the Vatican finally admits that NFP (Natural Family Planning) is nothing more than contraception under the table, offered to placate a congregation that was leaving in droves, then I might listen.

Whatever you might think, the article is worth a look. Even the Vatican is beginning to worry.

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