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Saturday, May 17, 2003

I guess it was inevitable, but it never even occured to me that is was even possible (or desirable) until I saw one driving down the 110 freeway today:

Hummer Limo

Lordy Lordy Lordy, I was in ignorance all this time.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 08:07 PM PST [Link]

"Take Mahabouba Mohammed, whom I met here in Addis Ababa. She had been sold into virtual slavery at the age of 8, raped by her master at 12 and then sent out into the bush at 13 to deliver the baby on her own. After a long labor, she delivered the dead baby herself but suffered crippling internal injuries, including a fistula. Ms. Mohammed crawled back to the village, but the baby's father was horrified by her smell. He confined her in a faraway hut and removed the door ó so that hyenas, attracted by the odor, would tear her apart at night. This girl fought off the hyenas and crawled for a day to reach an American missionary, who eventually brought her to the Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital that Dr. Hamlin heads. Dr. Hamlin was able to repair her fistula, and now Ms. Mohammed is a confident young nurse's aide at the hospital here."


"Last year President Bush, upset by abortions in China, cut off all $34 million in U.S. funds to the U.N. Population Fund, which sponsors programs to prevent fistulas. That was unconscionable, yet my point today is not to complain again about that, but to hail those like Dr. Hamlin who have stepped up to the plate. Dr. Hamlin is known even to cynical aid workers as a saint and has been mentioned for a Nobel Peace Prize, which she richly deserves (her hospital's Web site is www.fistulahospital.org). Meanwhile, two American women began the "34 Million Friends" campaign last year to get people to donate $1 each to make up the money that President Bush cut. They've just reached the $1 million mark ó the first half of which will go to preventing and treating fistulas in 13 countries (see www.unfpa.org). Then there's the tireless Dr. Lewis Wall, an American who has repaired fistulas across Africa and is now begging for funds to build a fistula hospital in West Africa (see www.wfmic.org)."

Alone and Ashamed
, by Nicholas D. Kristof, May 16, 2003 (NYT login ID hackenbush PW hackenblog or vice versa)

Women are half of civilization, why are we treated so badly in so many societies? Well, anyway, I ask myself that a lot and never get a decent answer. So, all I can say is, if you have any spare money, give some of it to one of the links above. The UN usually takes care of third world women's health when they have the money to do so, but, because of the way we live now, I have to ask. (Disclosure: I gave 34 Million Friends $10 and wished it was more.) Barbara Lee is trying to get the money back to the UN, but, because of the way we live now, it's not a cert. Sigh.

"The vote, I thought, means nothing to women. We should be armed."
O'Brien, Edna (1936)

Well, I hope I never get that nervous.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 10:14 AM PST [Link]

Friday, May 16, 2003

"With this kind of dramatic prosody, shouldn't we have a funereal bagpipe-and-drum corps marching in slow lock-step as well? Note the capitalization of "The" in "The Times," to make certain we know it's not some lesser Times, like the mere Los Angeles Times. But it gets better:"
Assignment America: Times' elephant gun, by John Bloom, UPI, May 15, 2003

Ah yis, the "mere Los Angeles Times" just about sums it up.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 11:16 PM PST [Link]

"'We have learned that we cannot live alone (and be) at peace; that our own well being is dependent on the well being of other nations far away,' Roosevelt said. 'We have learned that we must live as men, and not as ostriches, nor as dogs in the manger. We have learned to be citizens of the world, members of the human community.'"
Bush's Snub Endangers Existence Of U.N., by Helen Thomas, The BostonChannel.com

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 10:31 PM PST [Link]

"Since I was a kid and saw Mike Nesmith playing his red Gretsch hollow-body on Monkees reruns, I've had a bit of a guitar jones. Enough so that I learned to play the instrument, though not particularly well - as Lennon said, I'm not technically very good, but I can make it howl and move. Or at least, I can make listeners howl and move."
The text is here, it's from Smart Remarks, whose permalinks aren't working. Oh well, go read anyway, Gil Smart is very cool. He's a Monkees fan, a man after my own heart.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 10:23 PM PST [Link]

HIV-1 is still with us, but I never knew there was an HIV-2.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 09:41 PM PST [Link]

I highly recommend you click on this link: Blue Hawaiians - Savage Night. Then if you scroll down to the samples and click on "Flesh and Soul", you will feel incredibly hip and be glad you did.

Too busy at work to actually read, process and blog anything, sorry, a music rec is the best I can do for now.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 02:03 PM PST [Link]

Thursday, May 15, 2003

"This is the same Homeland Security Department that is supposed to be making America safe from foreign terrorists. It's the agency we were told would never be used for domestic political purposes."
Homeland Security Department Used to Track Texas Democrats, by Glenn W. Smith, commondreams.org, May 14, 2003 (via MWO)

My first thought was "It's starting" but then I realized I have no idea what "It" is.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 12:03 PM PST [Link]

Wednesday, May 14, 2003

... until the U.S. has an elected president again

Not unlike the deficit counter, alas, I could not get the applet to work here, but it works on the above link.

Also, Is it over yet?, so you can know what percent of the bush administration is over, thank God, it's over.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 02:31 PM PST [Link]

"AUSTIN, May 12 -- Moving with exceptional stealth and tactical coordination, more than 50 Democratic state lawmakers in Texas packed their bags and quietly slipped out of the state under cover of darkness late Sunday and early today."
GOP Plan Prompts A Texas Exodus Democrats Stall State Legislature's Redistricting Vote, by Lee Hockstader, Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, May 13, 2003

I must go to Texas someday, just to make sure it really exists.

Thanks, jonk, for the pointer to this story.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 02:07 PM PST [Link]

"As Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld noted, the battle plan that led to the American success was that of General Tommy Franks, an Army officer appointed to head the Central Command by the Clinton administration. More important, the military forces that executed that plan so boldly and bravely were for the most part recruited, trained, and equipped by the Clinton administration."
Thank Clinton for a speedy victory in Iraq, by Lawrence J. Korb, Boston Globe Online, May 13, 2003 (via MWO)

This can't be said enough. Please tell everyone you know that the Clinton administration ran a healthy, happy, and apparently, efficient military. And remind them that Clinton never sent a man out that didn't come back. Somalia was Bush I's parting fiasco to cover the Christmas eve pardons of Weinberger et al. and thereby cover his own ass. Niya niya niya.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 10:38 AM PST [Link]


And these guys probably believe the earth is only 10,000 years old, too.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 08:23 AM PST [Link]


Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 08:19 AM PST [Link]

Tuesday, May 13, 2003

"But what we really saw in that moment was a coup díetat. The president isnít supposed to wear a uniform.


"When George climbed out of that airplane in his shiny new war suit, he didnít just carry his own cute little self across the deck: son of privilege, chosen of God, and wearing a military uniform, he passed through the doorway from mere wickedness to fascism. Our struggle in the time ahead is to resist the urge to follow him.

"Ben Tripp is a screenwriter and cartoonist."
The Other 'F' Word, by Ben Tripp, AlterNet, May 9, 2003

Okay, I don't disagree with this essay, but I utterly loathe the way it's written and it was a struggle to read it. Are there no other voices, adult, serious, profound yet, voices to say these things? Alternet does the Left a disservice when they publish a guy who thinks he's cute and probably reads these things in front of a mirror, just to get the full effect. I was annoyed and I'm a broad with a broad broad mind (not, however, published in Alternet).

But who is ever going to say these things in a deep enough voice to get everyone's attention before it's too late? I wonder.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 09:56 PM PST [Link]

"In his book "The Carbon Wars," Greenpeace activist Jeremy Leggett tells how he stumbled upon this otherworldly agenda. During the Kyoto climate change negotiations, Leggett candidly asked Ford Motor Company executive John Schiller how opponents of the pact could believe there is no problem with "a world of a billion cars intent on burning all the oil and gas available on the planet?" The executive asserted first that scientists get it wrong when they say fossil fuels have been sequestered underground for eons. The Earth, he said, is just 10,000, not 4.5 billion years old, the age widely accepted by scientists.

Then Schiller confidently declared, "You know, the more I look, the more it is just as it says in the Bible." The Book of Daniel, he told Leggett, predicts that increased earthly devastation will mark the "End Time" and return of Christ. Paradoxically, Leggett notes, many fundamentalists see dying coral reefs, melting ice caps and other environmental destruction not as an urgent call to action, but as God's will. In the religious right worldview, the wreck of the Earth can be seen as Good News!" Glenn Scherer, E Magazine 5 May 03, "Why Ecocide is Good News for the GOP"

Did anyone have a doubt that this was coming? Read the rest of this article to find out how the Republican God (the mean, vengeful, xenophobic one) permeates all that his minions do, here and in the rest of the world. Gah.

Posted by Laurel Sutton @ 04:16 PM PST [Link]

"Patty Lewis, 42, is a video producer and meeting planner in east Dallas; her husband, Spencer Prokop, 45, is an actor. When son Chase arrived, her income was steadier, so Prokop stayed home. Dad feels isolated, and he's given up on lugging Chase along to occasional auditions. "This notion that I would have this time to work on myself - well, that goes right out the window," says Prokop, who misses the luxury of uninterrupted bathroom time." From "She Works, He Doesn't", the cover story of Newsweek 5/12/2003, and I'm sorry but you have to pay to read the whole article.

But wait, you don't have to read this article, because it's really fucking stupid! Why in god's name is it a COVER STORY when some men stay home to raise their children, like it's a concept out of science fiction or maybe Oz? Almost all of the couples profiled in this article decided it made more sense for the one with the better salary (i.e., the woman) to work and for the other partner to stay home and take care of the house and the kids. WHY IS THIS SO REMARKABLE? Why does it even count as NEWS, goddammit? Look at the title of this story - as if being a homemaker isn't WORK? The whole tone of this story infuriates me, treating these men like rare birds, oh so brave, oh so amazing for taking care of kids! And they cook too! Wow! Sometimes they even do laundry! And the subtext is so clear: how degrading for them to have a wife who supports the family!

Speaking as a woman who supports her child and her homemaker husband, let me just say that I would have raised holy hell if I had been portrayed that way in this story - the story of my tragic, upside-down-and-backwards family, and wouldn't it be so much better if I were just back in the kitchen where I belonged. And don't even get me started on single-parent and same-sex partner families, none of whom rated even a mention in this piece of tripe.

To Newsweek, and to the 41% of Americans polled by Newsweek who said "it is much better for everyone involved if the man is the achiever outside the home and the woman takes care of the home and family": Fuck You.

This concludes today's rant. Thank you for listening.

Posted by Laurel Sutton @ 01:11 PM PST [Link]

"President Bush swooped down onto the deck of the USS Abraham Lincoln, making a tailhook landing in his S-3B Viking jet, then made a speech about triumphing in Iraq--prompting 85-year-old West Virginia Senator Robert C. Byrd to speak of a "desk-bound president who assumes the garb of a warrior," using an aircraft carrier as "an advertising backdrop for a presidential political slogan," contrasting the Bush speech with "the simple dignity" of Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. Bush's reply: the joy stick looked really cool."

Leave it to Joe Bob Briggs to say what we were all thinking. I hereby nominate Ann Richards and Joe Bob as running mates for the next Presidential election.

Posted by Laurel Sutton @ 12:14 PM PST [Link]

Monday, May 12, 2003

Well, I did try to get over it, but nothing doin'. This has been bothering me since I read it on my lunch hour.

Billy Collins has a poem in this month's Poetry called "Geniuses". I think I can quote the part that's pissing me off under Fair Use. It is Collins, who obviously has nothing better to do, musing on swans, who are geniuses because they are. . . swans:

"Twenty-four geniuses in all,
for I numbered them as Yeats had done,
deployed upon the calm, crystalline surface -

"forty-eight if we count their still reflections,
or an even fifty if you want to toss in me
and the dog running up ahead,

"who were smart enough to be out
that morning - she sniffing the ground,
me with my head up in the light morning breeze."

As someone who works days, doesn't have or even want a dog and does not have time to count swans, even at night, because that's the only time I have to work on my own writing, I wish to say, most sincerely:

Fuck you and your poem, Mr. Collins.

Now that Poetry has that $100 Million from the Eli Lilly heiress, this type of poetry will swamp all others, simply because the journal has enough money to outlast all the other poetry journals. And I seriously doubt it would ever even occur to anyone at Poetry to take part of that money and give grants to smaller journals. That would be in the interest of poetry, not Poetry. Oh, and if Poetry is making grant to smaller journals, I'd like to hear about it. As you can see, I could use some good news.

I hope this mood passes soon, if I run out of arts to hate, I'll have to switch to sciences.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 08:32 PM PST [Link]

"Sky News Online can reveal that this time around Nicole plans to set pluses soaring with a new remake of the classic Hollywood musical 'Gentleman Prefer Blondes'. Of course, the 1953 film produced and made a star of Marilyn Monroe who sang the now immortal song 'Diamonds Are A Girls Best Friend'. But my spies reveal that Nicole wants the part of Dorothy, the brunette gold digger originally played by Jane Russell in the movie."

Tsk tsk tsk.

Although Jane has gone over the edge politically (talk about feeding the hand that would never have allowed "Jane Russell" to exist in the first place) I think this is unfortunate, even for her.


I just don't see how Nicole is going to fill those, um, boots. Eh, but who really cares?

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 07:45 PM PST [Link]

"A CAR packed with explosives has crashed into a residential compound in Riyadh, causing one of three explosions that have rocked the Saudi capital.

"The blast at the compound, which houses westerners, reportedly resulted in some casualties."


"Today's blasts come on the eve of US Secretary of State Colin Powell's scheduled trip to Saudi Arabia to promote an American-backed 'road map' for Middle East peace."
Car bomb blasts rock capital, By Hassan Jamali in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, The Australian, May 13, 2003

The 'road map' seems to have hit the fan, General Powell.

Lord, what a mess.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 04:33 PM PST [Link]

"LONDON, May 12 - Clare Short, Britain's secretary for International Development, today became the second person to resign from the cabinet over Iraq policy, ending her six years in government with a surprisingly personal attack on Prime Minister Tony Blair in the House of Commons.

"She assailed Mr. Blair for becoming a 'presidential' leader, formulating bad policy in secret with a small group of advisers, forcing it upon Parliament by 'diktats' straining party loyalty and undermining public trust."
Blair Aide Quits With Tirade, By Warren Hoge, NY Times, May 12, 2003 (login ID: hackenblog PW: hackenbush)

Oh great, now the bush admin has made "presidential" into a dirty word.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 04:12 PM PST [Link]

"Witness the case of Maher "Mike" Hawash, an Intel contract engineer and a Muslim who has pleaded not guilty to charges related to waging war against the United States. In some pictures he's clean shaven, and in others he has a beard. The two images have been used as fodder for political commentary in The Oregonian and on talk radio. The underlying issue has been, what kind of message does a beard send about innocence, guilt, stereotypes and political correctness?"
Faith & the face, by Nancy Haught, The Oregonian, May 12, 2003

Free Mike Hawash or at least give him a decent and fair trial. Well, at least he's still in the news.

His beard? Well, as George Carlin once said (more or less, the memory really is going to hell) about beards being un-Ammurikan, "Lenin had a beard; Gabby Hayes had whiskers."

But now, apparently, beards can be used against you in the media, if not court. Sigh.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 04:10 PM PST [Link]

"Look, if there are no WMDs in Iraq, it means either our government lied us to us in order to get us into an unnecessary war or the government itself was disastrously misinformed by an incompetent intelligence apparatus. In either case, it's a terribly serious situation."
Yes, Virginia, the idea of a lying government is serious, by Molly Ivins, Star-Telegram, May 11, 2003

This still matters because we still have the most dangerous government, elected or no, in living memory. So, I have to ask, was the destruction of Iraq done out of insanity or stupidity or both? And if both or either, why is bush still in the White House? Regime change in Iraq, yeah, right. No one in the bush admin gives a damn about the people of Iraq, so let's ask the real question: Why did the US military just commit mass murder and terror in a country that never threatened us and couldn't even threaten us? Just following orders? I think we've heard that one before, too.

Excuse me, military personnel, since you can't give the Iraqis back their lives, limbs, homes, museums, etc., the least you can do is pull you heads out of the sand and vote Democrat in 2004. The Republicans won't be through screwing you at that point, but by then you might be sore enough to see the forest and the trees.


Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 01:11 PM PST [Link]

Sunday, May 11, 2003

"Californians can now pre-register here for the nationwide Do Not Call list that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is expected to launch this summer. California is joining in the national Do Not Call registry which is FREE to consumers."
Pre-register for the National Do Not Call registry

It takes all of three seconds to do this. Aren't we Californians lucky?

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 09:45 PM PST [Link]

"In 1994, I wrote a column in Out magazine, an abridged version of which was later reprinted on the op-ed pages of The New York Times and which also prompted a 60 Minutes segment. In the column, I discussed how Iíd met a man in a bar and went home with him that night. Weíd both had a few drinks, and in the heat of the moment he didnít put on a condom before we had sex, and I didnít demand that he do so."
The Contradictory Faces Of Andrew Sullivan, by Michelangelo Signorile, May 2003 (I'm not sure how long this link will be working.)

Dan Savage is right and also right again.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 07:14 PM PST [Link]

"He said he would get as much pleasure from Mr Bush being forced out of office as he had done from the downfall of former Iraq leader Saddam Hussein."
Livingstone attacks President Bush - London Mayor Ken Livingstone has launched an astonishing attack on US President George W Bush, calling him "corrupt". BBC, May 8, 2003

Gee, it must be great to live in a country where people can say things like that.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 03:55 PM PST [Link]

"'Chrissy is a lesbian. . . . She's a social worker here in D.C., and I'm very proud of her and I want her help in the campaign, and she's going to help with gay and lesbian people, but she's going to help with people all over the country.'"
Democratic presidential candidate Richard Gephardt, discussing his 30-year-old daughter, Chrissy Gephardt, in an interview yesterday with Alan Murray and Gloria Borger on CNBC's "Capital Report"

So, let's see, there's one Democrat with a lesbian daughter vs. Dick Cheney's lesbian daughter, Mary, Newt Gingrich's lesbian half-sister, Candace, Phyllis Schlafly's homosexual son, John, and all the other Republican homosexual family members I don't know about. I wonder if this is significant or just interesting (to me). Or is it just the Right's anti-gay hypocrisy with a twist over ice that's so annoying?

On the other hand, it would be scarier if Dick Cheney said "... I'm very proud of her and I want her help in the campaign, and she's going to help with gay and lesbian people, but she's going to help with people all over the country." But I think the chances of that are anorexic to dead. Anti-gay hypocrisy with a twist over ice anyone?

Why doesn't Rick Santorum say something about Republican homosexuals, hm? Or is he too busy thinking about sodomy? Stop thinking about sodomy, Rick! Stop thinking about sodomy right now!

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 03:49 PM PST [Link]

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