Monday, May 26, 2008

Rest in Peace, Utah



Utah Phillips, folksinger, activist, Wobbly, and freight rider, passed away on May 23rd. You can read his obituary and life story here.

Part 1:

and then part 2, with one of my favourite songs:

Sunday, May 25, 2008

DON'T PANIC!




Happy Towel Day everyone!

More Numbers

Hillary's support has steadily grown in March-May while Obama's has dropped in all categories except African Americans (so all you commenter's who say it's only old white women (apparently I and many other Hillary supporters don't exist) can shove it). There are numbers and charts and everything. I may be a mathematician but I prefer pure mathematics. Ask me how to invent square roots, not do stuff like this.

She certainly has gotten more votes since March 4th. Don't you think that the presumptive nominee should have been winning all those, since he was inevitable? Obviously, no one told the voters.


Oh and to Keith Olbermann: Stop using "Good night and good luck" as your sign off. You are a misogynist gasbag that is not even a fraction of the journalist that Edward R. Murrow was. He's rolling over in his grave every time you say that. If anyone in the mainstream media came even close to doing what he did (HA!) they would be fired in a heartbeat. There is not a modicum of honesty or integrity in your reporting. You uphold the status quo, he sought make sure that the truth was exposed, even if that meant bucking the status quo and putting himself in jeopardy. YOU, sir, are NOT him, and are besmirching his legacy.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Women's Media Center Petition against sexism in the media



Sign it!

No surprise here

How to Win a Fight With a Conservative is the ultimate survival guide for political arguments

My Liberal Identity:

You are a Working Class Warrior, also known as a blue-collar Democrat. You believe that the little guy is getting screwed by conservative greed-mongers and corporate criminals, and you’re not going to take it anymore.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

To my Florida friends (an MI, though the video is about FL)

But I think those of you in MI will feel similarly, minus the recent GE stuff.



"I've been cheated, been mistreated, when will I be loved?" (Got that song in my head now)

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

NBC Protest in Burbank

Pictures can be seen here.


Take your sexist, one sided coverage and shove it NBC.


(I like the punk kid with the "Iron your own shirt" sign.)

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The backlash continues

Lynette Long has a new Op-Ed in the Baltimore Sun entitled Painful Lessons

Women voters are not factored into the decision making of the Democratic National Committee. The DNC is concerned that black voters will protest and stay home if Senator Clinton gets the nomination, even though she is the stronger and more electable candidate. But the DNC doesn't worry that white women, three times larger than the combined black vote, will stay away from the polls if Mrs. Clinton does not get the nomination. They expect the white women of the party to fall in step and vote for Mr. Obama in the general election.

The rules for women candidates are not the same as the rules for male candidates. Sen. Edward M. Kennedy adamantly supports Mr. Obama, even though Mrs. Clinton won his home state, Massachusetts, by 14 points. Mr. Kennedy has repeatedly called for Mrs. Clinton to pull out of the race, yet when he was running for president in 1980 he took his bid for the Democratic nomination to the convention floor, trying to change the rules to unseat Jimmy Carter, who already had enough delegates to clinch the nomination. And let's not forget that this year Mike Huckabee stayed in the contest for the Republican nomination when he had no chance of winning. He was committed to stay in the race until Sen. John McCain reached the number of delegates needed to win. At the end of the contest he had a total of 267 delegates, more than 900 behind Mr. McCain. No media barrage pushed Mr. Huckabee to withdraw. Barack Obama has not reached the needed number of delegates to win the nomination, yet Mrs. Clinton - who is fewer than 200 delegates behind Obama - is being pressured by commentators and the DNC to withdraw.


People, including some of my friends who are Obama supporters are having a hard time understanding why there are so many of us who won't vote for Obama. (Me, I've never voted party line, in fact I have not been a registered Dem since I registered in NY in 2000 and registered as a Green and I still don't vote exclusively Green in that case anyway though in WA we do not register by party. I signed a paper at the caucus saying that I would not caucus for any other party and I did not, I had a friend who refused to caucus because he thought it meant he would have to vote party line and found that unacceptable.) This is a backlash against the Democratic Party as much as it is a vote of nonconfidence in their selected candidate (if he does indeed get the nomination). I, and I think others like me, feel that the DNC and party leadership made clear who they wanted and since then have tried to push our candidate out of the race unfairly. No other candidate in history has been pushed to step down, to whit:
• In 1988, Jesse Jackson took his hopeless campaign against winner Michael Dukakis all the way to the convention, often to great media praise.

• In 1980, Ted Kennedy carried his run against Jimmy Carter all the way to the convention, even though it was clear he had been routed.

• In 1976, Ronald Reagan contested the “inevitability” of Gerald Ford all the way to the convention. Few, then or since, have ever thought to criticize Reagan’s failure to step aside and let Ford assume the mantle.

• Also in 1976, three candidates — Mo Udall, Jerry Brown, and Frank Church — ran against Jimmy Carter all the way through the final primaries, even though Carter seemed more than likely to be the eventual nominee.

• Even in 1960, Lyndon Johnson and Adlai Stevenson fought the “certain” nomination of John F. Kennedy all the way to the convention floor.

Hillary's closer to Obama then any of them were and no one was screaming at them to step down "for the good of the party." Why? I have my theory. She's not in the penis club, and I think that many other people feel the exact same way about this as I do. If we hold our nose, again, and vote for someone we don't really like just because he's better then the other guy, again, it's worse this time. This time we have been knocked about by the media, the party, everyone. We have seen just what they think of women. They have told us what they think about the working class and the Reagan or lunch bucket democrats. But the backlash is coming strongest from the women. The democrats tell us they are the party that will stand up for us, for our rights. The Dems have not fought for abortion, for womens' rights, for anything that would actually help women, in a long, long time. Abortion's pretty much already illegal. The Dems in Congress rolled over on Alito and Roberts and now my right to choose is being held over my head. If the Dems I elected (though my Senators stood up and said no) can't grow a fucking spine and stand up for my rights why the hell should I keep voting for them? And why should I reward them by voting for someone I don't even trust?

And now they lie there, complicit as we are insulted daily, hourly. Insults flung at Hillary that are flung at her because she is a woman are flung at all of us. And we've had enough. We're saying no more. To roll over yet again and reward a party that has done nothing but pay lip service to women's issues for years (finally people get this) means that we are telling the Democratic Party that they never have to take us into account again, and that, my friends, is unacceptable.

EDIT: A Commenter at The Confluence said it best:
Jeralyn said tonite that “It’s about putting a Democrat in the WH” or words to that effect. Not true: it is about putting someone who shares your values in the WH. Some may argue that requires a Democrat, but I would rather suffer 4 more years of Republican presidency than give up my ideals of what the Democratic party stands for (like, f’rinstance, ANYTHING) forever for some short term gain.


NOTE: If you are an Obamaphile who cannot be arsed to READ THE POST (especially the part about people taking things to the convention) then you will most assuredly not get published. If I can mark it off on my Bingo Card just keep it to yourself. Now excuse me I need to go wash my dentures, polish my walker, and hump my cousin.

Also

to everyone going "Obama drew 75K in PDX!" It couldn't perhaps be in part because The Decembrists were playing for free at the rally? Hell, I'd go to his rallies to see them.

I just had to share this

I’m hardly a feminist but I’ve been aghast at the attacks Senator Clinton has been subject to. I’m not sure I can vote for obama come November.

If enough women stand up and don’t vote for Obama, maybe the Democratic Party will recognize that their largest voting bloc isn’t going to just stand by and be ignored any more. This is not just about soccer moms. Every woman was diminished by the treatment of Clinton during this election, and there was no outrage, not even a hint of recognition by those in power. It was made quite clear that racism was unacceptable, even if it was so vague that it had to be explained to people, while overt sexism was an acceptable method of attack. Every time someone dismissed “old school feminists”, I cringed, not because I am part of that group (I’m in my early 40’s), but because I know that I owe my job and my home to those women. They broke down the barriers. I just walked through. But there are barriers yet. I run into them every day. And we need to address this. I’m adding this to the reasons I’m not voting for Obama.


from donna darko

Monday, May 19, 2008

Everyone needs to sign this!

Don't rename Wrigley Field!

<1 minute and this (and many other Cub fans) undying love.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Friday, May 16, 2008

One thing you can do to make the Dems listen

I wrote my Rep today, short, to the point letter.

Dear X
I do not need to remind you that this is an election year. I voted for you last time, but I will only vote for you again if you do one of two things:

1) Publicly denounce the sexism that has been rampant during this primary season. It is an atrocity and an affront to the largest voting block of the Democratic party. You, along with the rest of the party have stood idly by and in your silence have made it perfectly clear how you feel about women. If you do not feel this way you need to say it and you need to say it now.
or
2) Take back your endorsement of Obama and endorse Hillary Clinton before June 3rd.

You may choose either of the above, but you must do something or else you will not have my vote come Novemeber.

Sincerely,
me


The local, state, and national parties may not be listening, but if the pols who need to get elected get enough of these you bet your ass they'll be listening.

NOTE: This is not to say that all Obama supporters are sexist (though if you are not speaking out, especially about his demeaning behaviour towards women (see sweetie comment, PA kiss comments, etc) you are in my book) I just threw that in, though I'm about 99.8% sure he won't.

Someone's going to Portland tomorrow

WOO WOO. Unlike when I went to Indiana I will not be stuck in an office and I will (hopefully) be pounding the pavement. (Well I'm hoping that I won't be in the office, I'm assuming there's a crap-load of people in the office.)

I will be visiting and staying with my friend Sam as well, but I'd love to go out drinking with the Hillary crew since it's so much fun. WHAT TO DO????

Hopefully I can combine the two, I think once I hit the office my crazy political side will take over and hopefully some after hours carousing will take place (and maybe Sam can be persuaded to come out?)

Oh well, I love getting out of town and other then the pornographization of PDX I love it. (Perhaps there will be some mischief?)

Anyway, Mischief is demanding my attention. Have a good weekend everyone!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Electoral matchups EDIT

Taken from state by state polling (2 different data sources):

Clinton 237 (290)
McCain 198 (241)
(map #1 here. map #2)

Obama 228 (237)
McCain 237 (290)
(map #1 here. map #2)

Obama starts off much weaker against McCain. But then there's the analysis of the swing states. But why should I do it when someone else has done it so well? Jeralyn at Talk Left has a a post in which he talks about the swing states, but also, and probably more importantly to some, uses articles from William Arnone, long-time Democratic party activist and also has posted his state by state analysis (this is a long and very detailed and in depth reports). (NOTE: You can also find his entire key state series linked from the post.)

Both I and Jeralyn strongly recommend you read Arnone's stuff. It's much better then something my overworked brain could pump out at one in the morning.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

National Conference for Media Reform

OK, they could do so much better at marketing this. Seriously.

They have people from the Black Agenda Report (see blogroll), Byron Hurt (you can watch his documentary about misogyny and homophobia in the hip-hop community and I HIGHLY recommend it. Here's all 56 minutes of Beyond Beats and Rhymes), someone from Prometheus Radio Project (I was really happy to see this as I'm friends with some of the founders and I love that they're doing so well and it's close to my heart since I'm supposedly banned from the airwaves due to being in the booth during a pirate radio raid (though I have been on WBAI several times, but I doubt that the FCC pays *that* close attention)), and on and on. But I am staring at a flyer for it (I'll put it back) and they use Arianna Huffington. Really? What has she said lately that is so different then mainstream media? I guess it's a big name thing.

Looks pretty interesting due to the other presenters and panelists. Anyway, it's put on by Free Press, so check it out here.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

*snort*

From my friend, who's "not an Obama fan" on my last post:

Except for a minuscule amount she doesn't get AA votes, that's the point.

You really refuse to accept that Hillary might have a race problem, don't you?

Obama regularly gets around 45% of the female vote, he campaigns towards women, he campaigns towards Latinos. Hillary has written of the black/AA vote.

Of course you seem to be on the whole, women and working class white people are more important than Blacks/AA so I guess it doesn't matter.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

What is going on with the "party?"

Sometimes my friends say things in a much more succinct, and oftentimes, much more understandable way then I can. So I've all ready seen the FOX news interview. I knew that neither candidate was liberal. Moderate is about all we can hope for from these parties, but after Edwards and his populism and single-payer universal healthcare dropped out (I may have finally admitted that we will never have Edwards as an actual Presidential candidate. But he made the press follow him to very poor rural areas of Appalachia. UHC is something that the Clinton's tried, but failed miserably because the dems in congress wouldn't back them because they didn't like the Clintons then and even though Bill was the only 2 term democratic president since FDR (LBJ if you count that he got re-elected after 2 years serving after JFK was assasinated). Guess what, they still don't like them. One can only guess why. Bill changed the base, he actually changed the bloc of voters that went for a Democrat. (more on this in a little bit)

Want to hear my theory? I'm sure you do. Democrats nowadays don't think of themselves as that. Look at our recent nominees, excluding Bill. Kerry, Gore, Dukakis. What do they all have in common? They are seen as elites. No matter what Jon Stewart says, people don't want someone like that in the WH. Even if they do have progressive reform for working class and poor people (which I firmly do not believe that Obama has) they're going to take it as you telling them what's best for them. The reason that Bill was not painted as such is because he grew up working class, he went to public school, even though he eventually made it into the power elite.

And of course last night there was Donna Brazile on CNN
BRAZILE: Well, Lou, I have worked on a lot of Democratic campaigns, and I respect Paul.*** But, Paul, you’re looking at the old coalition. A new Democratic coalition is younger. It is more urban, as well as suburban, and we don’t have to just rely on white blue-collar voters and Hispanics. We need to look at the Democratic Party, expand the party, expand the base and not throw out the baby with the bathwater.

(Sidenote here: Except you can't depend on blue collar and latino voters. If they don't feel that you are working, and I mean actively working, for their financial well-being (health-care, unions, etc), then they will be values voters. You are one of the people IN CHARGE OF THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY. HOW THE HELL DO YOU FORGET ABOUT "REAGAN DEMOCRATS" AND THAT OBAMA'S SUPPORT BASE IS THE SAME AS (10 state) DUKAKIS!!!! Stop blowing off the people the dems need to win in the fall, ffs. )

(I mean, even bigoted morons know that.
"Barack Obama has shown he cannot get the votes Democrats need to win – blue-collar, working class people," Limbaugh also said. "He can get effete snobs, he can get wealthy academics, he can get the young, and he can get the black vote, but Democrats do not win with that."-Rush Limbaugh
)

This fucking Unity Pony thing is pissing me off. Unity only if you're a latte liberal, oh sorry, the "creative class," a college student, or African-American. He's a uniter. Does everyone feel united? Because what I've heard from the Democratic leadership and Obama's campaign this cycle is 1) the largest minority in the country doesn't count (neither does any other minority except AA's: gays, asians, etc, all under the bus for you!), 2) women will always come crawling back since we have no where to go (fuck you!), 3) same with the working class, but who needs them since they tend to vote Republican anyway (Axelrod, and btw that's why you need them dumbass.)

But I have one question, and I'm sad to say it actually hadn't occurred to me until a friend of mine brought it up, what has Obama been doing for the black community? She hadn't heard anything. Hell, he didn't even bother to show up to black dominated areas of IN. What a fucking prince. I mean, Hillary obviously has the hick blue collar vote sewn up so why does she keep showing up? The week leading up to the primaries she was speaking in places that the only way she could have lost is if everyone suddenly died and dead people started voting. Why abandon your most loyal constituency?

Unity pony my ass. Here's why: the dems do know what unity looks like. We saw it in '92. We saw states vote dem that had not done so ever/in a very long time. (I mean Lincoln was a republican so you can only go back so far with these things.) Bill did it. That's right, the Big Dawg gave us states no other democrat has even come close to carrying. We could have done it again, but now one of our core constituencies hates him and therefore Hillary. Why? Because he got called racist for this:
"Second, it is wrong that Senator Obama got to go through 15 debates trumpeting his superior judgment and how he had been against the war in every year, numerating the years, and never got asked one time, not once, 'Well, how could you say, that when you said in 2004 you didn't know how you would have voted on the resolution? You said in 2004 there was no difference between you and George Bush on the war and you took that speech you're now running on off your website in 2004 and there's no difference in your voting record and Hillary's ever since?' Give me a break.
"This whole thing is the biggest fairy tale I've ever seen...So you can talk about Mark Penn all you want. What did you think about the Obama thing calling Hillary the Senator from Punjab? Did you like that?"

Which was twisted into "Bill Clinton calls Obama's campaign a Fairy Tale!" Because what better way to shake away a group that so solidly supports your opponent (and who is still very wary of you, they weren't all love and kisses at first) then in this case to call him a racist. Because even his seemingly reality challenged handlers seemed to have understood that the AA community were among the strongest Clinton supporters. Now he's a racist. Huh.

And the Democratic leadership is completely, 100% A-OK with smearing our base expanding, tried to get progressive social change done but couldn't because the dems don't like them because they're not one of the elitist latte drinkers and the leadership doesn't like that. And they don't want to see the Clinton's or anyone else so unlike them in office if they can help it. They'd rather lose in November, which is what the numbers are telling us will happen with Obama as the nominee. They seem to think that us non-black and/or non-young and/or non-rich people don't matter.

I gotta ask, why is this race so black and white? Seriously? What about the indigenous, asian, latino peoples? Do we not care about that. Are there only two races that matter in this country? And what is up with my latino friends being called racist for not voting for BO? Especially when they're giving you reasons why they didn't. Again, fuck you.


Anyway:
It's obvious why dems are falling all over themselves for Obama, even though right now nationally he has a 10% of beating McCain. (And the Rezko trial wraps up next week.) His purported 1 million name donation databank. Not to mention his immense backing from Wall Street. (Note: That site is the Black Agenda Report. I'm really glad my friend pointed it out to me and I highly recommend sticking around and reading other articles there.)
Seven of the Obama campaign's top 14 donors consisted of officers and employees of the same Wall Street firms charged time and again with looting the public and newly implicated in originating and/or bundling fraudulently made mortgages. These latest frauds have left thousands of children in some of our largest minority communities coming home from school to see eviction notices and foreclosure signs nailed to their front doors. Those scars will last a lifetime.

I think this about money and not change. WHy would I ever take off my cynic cap and believe that someone, let alone a whole party, was in politics to help people. Yeah, I know that they'll definitely be helping themselves out while they do it, all politicians do, but turning on someone because they have an actual progressive social agenda? Afraid Hillary will succeed and will actually do better with social reform then Bill? Because that's all I can think. It can't all be white guilt and greed. It's not like he'd drop out of the party. He'll still fundraise for you. Though with all the people you keep dismissing I doubt there will be any democratic party left come January.

I haven't voted for a Democrat for President since I voted for the Big Dawg (and yes I think he's a sexist ass), but since I've been accused of being some sort of "fan" I thought I'd clear it up. (And let Taylor Marsh actually do it since I read this and just went YES YES YES!)

The reason Clinton is my candidate is not because I'm simply some fan. Hillary is my candidate because she's got a brilliant mind, is a fighter, and I believe the only candidate who can bring Americans back who have been voting against their economic interests for decades. I believe only she can expand the party to Latinos, as well as bring women out in droves, including Republican women, independents and women who have never voted before. If I didn't believe Clinton was a winner I would never have backed her in the first place.

I leave it to the venerable Dr. Violet Socks
“If the Obama contingent succeeds in taking over the Democratic party, then we will have, in effect, two Republican parties.

“Who, then, will speak for the women of America? Who will stand up for our rights? Who will hold fast against sexism and misogyny?

“Who will fight for the middle class? Who will fight for working people? Who will fight for universal health care? Who will protect Social Security?

“Who will hold fast against polluters and thieves?

“Certainly not the new Obama-style Democratic party. The Obamabots are just like Republicans: swimming in sexism and utter disdain for anyone but themselves.

“If progressives want to have a voice at all in national politics, our only hope is to keep the Obamabots from taking over the Democratic party.”

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Something smells fishy

First off, there's a great post (with video!) about Obama supporters campaigning INSIDE polling places, which everyone should know, especially them, is I-L-L-E-G-A-L. And a blog about the entire weirdness that is Indiana voting.

Watching CNN regarding the IN primary. Anyone who was watching should know that Lake County (the one next to IL) didn't have any precincts reporting until after 10PM PST. Average of several polls had her up by at least 5 points, yet it's all of the sudden a nail biter. Hmmmmm, I'm not exactly convinced that this is above board.


Good analysis from BDBlue:
He’s making it look worse.

The Mayor of Hammond says they knew what the machine votes in other cities were at 7:30. It’s midnight and we don’t have any information and it looks bad. This looks improper. I’m not saying it is, but it looks. We don’t need this kind of negative exposure in Lake County. He’s telling the Mayor of Gary to release the numbers.

Here’s a question, why does the Mayor of Gary have the ability to hold the votes.

Now the Mayor of Hammond is trying to get the Mayor of Gary to tell why he hasn’t released the machine votes. Mayor of Gary says it’s absentee counting. Mayor of Hammond is grilling him. Has no answer why it is taking so long to count the vote.

Now they’re reporting 98% of the vote in Lake County, Clinton still leads by 22,000 votes with 99% of the state reporting.

So maybe it’s not fraud, the Mayor is just an idiot. Or else it is fraud, they realized they were going to get caught and stopped it.

You know you've got a problem when the mayor of another large Indiana city is questioning just what the hell is going on with your ballots and you have no explanation whatsoever. Seriously. Why did they have to take them to the airport? That sounds super shady to me. The hold up was the absentee ballots? What about the electronic results? Is it really a "Chicago county?" Because that's not what you want to import from Chicago.

I seriously hope I'm wrong, but hey Mayor Rudy Clay what the fuck happened in Lake County? I'm not the only one who wants to know.

More at By the Left, and Talk Left has stuff here and here

I will add updates (like video/transcripts/etc) as the become available. First there was FL and MI, the the TX caucuses, now IN? Who are we? The republicans?

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Need to tell the truth

Before I get into it I just have to say that all over the blogosphere people are crying "censorship" and saying that sex workers are being silenced. Bull. Sam was the only one not in attendance at the conference. The women that were put on the panel at the last minute, one of which is a sex worker, were *at* the panel, not Sam. The whole "silencing" thing is bull. Sam's was the only voice that was silenced.

The following is written by Ms. Sam Berg, anti-pornstitution activist and speaker.

On March 19th I was invited to a panel debate on pornography at William and Mary College. My contact for the organizing group was Constance Sisk, who told me funding assistance could likely be found to fly me 3,000 miles across the country so I agreed to be penciled in until enough money could be raised. A call for donations among anti-pornography feminist colleagues covered airfare, and I had just enough vacation days earned at work to take off.

On March 24th I confirmed that I would gladly join the two other two confirmed panelists, on the anti-pornography side, John D. Foubert, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Higher Education at the College of William and Mary, and on the pro-pornography side Amanda Brooks, a former escort and sex work advocate.

Constance told me April 2nd that they moved the panel date to the 21st and the rest of April slid by without communication until April 16th when an anti-porn friend informed me that Jill Brenneman and RenEv blogged they would be on the panel. I had received no word from Constance of this and was dumbfounded that wholesale changes were being made to the panel just five days before the event without informing me. I had agreed to do the panel with John and Amanda, and I hadn’t gotten any emails saying she couldn’t attend or that they were looking for a replacement.

If they had told me Amanda couldn’t make it I would have suggested that pornographers and strip club owners are very easy to find through legal channels so they could have been asked to appear on the panel. I would have also suggested that the number of porn-using men on campus should have been able to produce just one pornsturbator willing to defend his porn consumption. Because I was under the impression that Constance & Co. were being honest with me about their intentions, I chalked up the lack of a pornographer or porn-using man on the panel to inept organizing and the extreme amount of publicity given recently to sex work advocacy at William and Mary.

How much sex work advocacy has been given a voice there can be answered with the name Constance. I spoke with John Foubert for the first time Thursday and he told me that Constance is a big pro-sex work advocate on campus and she brought the sex worker show to campus the past three years. A woman named Audrey invited John to the panel because Constance didn’t think he would agree if she asked him. Constance was a guest on Jill's radio show a few weeks ago, and Jill did a pro-sex work chat with William and Mary college folks a few weeks ago, but in her emails Constance claimed ignorance of the lengthy pro-porn and radical blogosphere debates on this contentious subject.

Constance. Constance said she was excited to have me coming and offered to let me spend Monday night at her place, where she planned on cooking dinner for a group of people post-panel. How do you think it would feel if a pro-choice feminist were invited to a predominantly pro-life campus by a predominantly pro-life group and the pro-life organizer did everything Constance did without revealing her pro-life politics to her pro-choice panelist and house guest?

Little story: Heading home from presenting at a prostitution conference I was in the airport shuttle with a middle-aged black social worker with her name tag still pinned to her blouse. I’m a young, white, tattoo-bearing woman and at the time I think my hair was blue. We exchanged delicate pleasantries and danced around how we talked about the conference until she sat up earnestly and cut to the chase, “So, are you for or against?” When I replied, “Against,” she slouched down and sighed and we grooved on the same anti-prostitution track until we got to the airport.

I agreed to do the panel with John and Amanda three weeks ago. Though it was unethical to make major lineup changes at the last minute like that without telling me and things started feeling really fishy due to the lack of notification about the event anywhere besides pro-john blogs (it’s not listed on W&M’s events calendar or advertised around campus), I agreed to debate Jill. I could not agree to debate Ren, and I don’t suppose I have to tell most of you reading this why but I’ll touch upon it a tad anyway.

Here are Ren’s thoughts on sharing a panel discussion table with me:
“So serious I am taking it very seriously. And looking forward to it in my uniquely grim and serious way. Planning and preparing with a very serious, serious sneer on my face.

And also laughing like a super villain the whole time. Why?

Once upon a time, I had a wish, a dream, a surely wank worthy fantasy of some anti-porn sex work types having to face down, in a forum, and debate those from the other side. And I wanted to be there.”

“And, yes, oh yes, I am seriously looking forward to it. I have so lusted for such an opportunity. Very seriously. And yes, if possible, I will have the whole thing on video. Get your cerebral wanking tissues ready.”

Serious serious sneers, super villain mocking laughter, wank worthy fantasies, whole thing on video, get your tissues ready.

Those are the words of a malicious person licking their chops in anticipation of a messy, humiliation-inducing scene they will relish. Those are the words of a person trying to waste my time with personal attacks when my time is best used educating audiences about the facts of human trafficking, prostitution, and pornography. The trash talk began within hours of being surreptitiously offered the spot on the panel, and that sort of smug pugnaciousness and disrespectful engagement was instrumental in prompting John to cancel his appearance on the panel and he suggested to me that I do the same. I believe we were right to cancel. I refuse to pose for the pornographically spiteful scene being painted.

What to do when a woman who says she’s happy in prostitution says, "Take me, for example” when you know if you actually do take her as her own example by quoting her own words and deeds she will complain, "How dare you make an example of me?" Say you’ll speak with her about prostitution as a global system and of all women’s oppression as the core problem but you don't want to talk about her personally and she'll reply, "You refuse to hear my truth." If you talk about her personally like she insists then you're the baddie radfem who makes it personal. It’s a lose-lose ruse.

I’d love to debate a porn-user, and there are tens of millions of them. I’d love to debate a pornographer and there’s no lack of those either. I’d love to debate a john. They don’t want to debate anti-pornography and anti-prostitution feminists. They want women in the prostitute supply pool to subjectively defend them against the objective mounds of testimony and undeniable data that anti-pornstitution feminists can produce proving pornography and prostitution violate women and girls human rights immensely. Most of you have seen how deftly I wield the wealth of information I’ve collected in my noodle to make the case against men’s right to economically coerce sex from others. Some of you have seen me do it before with Ren.

Saturday morning I woke up to an email from a professor asking if I can come speak to a few women’s studies classes of hers in May. It turns out I can make the date. Life skedaddles on and so do I.

Sam

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Friday, May 02, 2008

Someone needs a geography lesson

So both Hillary and Barack have Oregon statements. And someone's not paying attention.

Barack tells Oregon that he will "Require 25 Percent of Electricity to Come from Renewable Sources by 2025." Which is all good, except it was passed in 2007

Hillary states:
the Bush Administration has tried to stop states like Oregon from taking action to address this pressing problem. Against this headwind, Oregon has made progress, joining with its neighbors to develop a plan to reduce greenhouse gases, and setting a 25% renewable electricity target. Where President Bush has attacked and stymied Oregon's efforts, Senator Clinton will partner with Oregon and protect Oregon's right to lead the way in reducing greenhouse gases. And where President Bush refused to take action at the federal level, Senator Clinton will implement a bold plan to attack the growing climate crisis.


But here's where it gets REALLY fun.
On veterans:
As president, Obama will ensure we honor the sacred trust to care for Pennsylvania's 1.1 million Veterans.

Hillary:
Oregon's National Guard has contributed significantly to our nation's actions in Iraq and Afghanistan with 7,000 individual mobilizations. More than 3,500 Oregon Guard members are scheduled to go to Iraq in 2009. In addition, Oregon has 359,000 veterans within its borders, which is higher than the national average. Yet unlike many states with this level of military involvement, Oregon has no active duty bases, which routinely provide health care for military families. This means Oregon's veterans, Guard members, reservists and their families have limited access to the health care they deserve, making reliable health care through TRICARE even more critical in Oregon than in most states.


Here's my personal favourite. Seriously, it's AWESOME.
Clean up our Water: Barack Obama.....will continue his leadership in
protecting national treasures like the Great Lakes from threats such as industrial pollution, water diversion, and invasive species. Obama will establish policies to help high-growth regions with the challenges of managing their water supplies.


Awww, Oregon, you feel loved? Coincidentally, I always thought that that was the ocean, not a Great Lake (seeing as how those are, y'know, by Chicago and all.

7 former DNC chairs (and a deceased one's family)release a letter about why Hillary is the better choice.

I'm going to scream

Anti-white racism?

Who has the power? Really? Don't give me some specific scenario. In society who has the power?

It's called discrimination and if one more person calls it "racism" or "reverse racism" or "anti-white racism" I'm going to start breaking things.

You, as a white person, are given privilege in our society because you were born with the colour skin you were born with. Look at congress. How many people of colour are there? Hmmmmm? CEO's of companies? Think of positions of power and think of how many of these positions are filled by a person of colour. Who controls the power. Guess what? It's people who look like you, and because of that you directly benefit from it. You ARE part of the power structure.


By the way, replace "person of colour" with "woman" and "racism" with "sexism" and the argument is the same one I would make, because that argument's bullshit too. Prejudice a woman has against a man is not sexism.

Don't believe me? Ask yourself these questions:

-Does my prejudice against you suddenly create a culture in which you will be likely to experience violence from an intimate partner?
-Does it devalue your work so that you are making less money then women for equal work?
-Are you suddenly the victim of racial profiling since it is known that white people commit all sorts of crimes?
-Are you now going to see people of your own race depicted in the media less often?

Um, no, no, no, and, well looky here, NO.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Go go Indiana!

A new poll, which apparently is eerily accurate in predicting the outcomes of election results* shows Hillary 48, Obama 38, 14% undecided. Before you go, yeah well those undecideds, blah blah blah, I would like to remind you are a great thing since the undecideds in PA broke for Hillary.

I will be in Evansville, IN all weekend helping out with the pre-election day weekend madness, but will sadly miss the celebration party as I have that pesky thing called school (and a midterm on Tuesday). Hopefully this will be one of many times I will get to be able to campaign as I am (for the first time in 2 (3?) years NOT taking classes this summer) and I must say I miss the rush.

GO HILLARY GO!
*TeleResearch's polling ahead of the last two Indiana gubernatorial elections proved to be an accurate predictor of those races' outcomes. In 2000, the firm's results matched the eventually winning margin of Frank O'Bannon, and its 2004 results came within 1 percentage point of Mitch Daniels' winning margin.

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