Monday, March 24, 2008

Jack Kevorkian for Congress

Honest to God, he's running.

There is no better commentary on this than the time that Michael Moore spent with Dr. Kevorkian on TV Nation in 1994.

A Day with Dr. Death

Monday, March 17, 2008

Cindy Goes to a Party - 1955

[deep sigh.]
Cindy, a tomboy unsure of her social status, dreams of a party where her fairy godmother gives her etiquette lessons, and wakes up to receive her very own invitation.
Just this very weekend I had an extended conversation with a group of people about the complex and wondrous diversity of the interplay of biological sex, gender identity, gender roles and sexual orientation.

One of the participants sent me the link to this video. Alas, if only I had a fairy godmother when I was a child, with my short hair and jeans and an untucked boys' shirt, I too could have been blinked into a frilly dress, and learned how to Obey the Rules of The Game.

My favorite line:
You can't see or hear fairies unless you need them.

of course, you could try looking here...

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

What prompted yesterday's post about racist opposition to Barack Obama

In all my flurry to get out yesterday's post taking apart some of the racist opposition to Barack Obama, I neglected to nod over to smijer over at tete-a-tete-tete where he posted a link to an email that's making the rounds. That's what prompted my post, and I'm copying it here in case you missed it, (and to strip out the email addresses, which makes it easier to "see" the message and not put people's email addresses out there.)

Subj: Fw: NEXT FIRST FAMILY Say "HI BRO" to the next First Family?

Barack stands behind Kezia (stepmother) in a Kenyan family shot.

(Including brother Abongo "Roy" Obama who is a Luo activist and a militant Muslim who argues that the black man must "liberate himself from the poisoning influences of European culture."

"Abongo's new lifestyle has left him lean and clear-eyed, and at the wedding, he looked so dignified in his black African gown, with white trim, and matching cap, that some of our guests mistook him for my father," Obama wrote in Dreams From My Father.

(in the original, you have to page down past a couple of hundred email addresses to get to the rest of the email.~cranky)

Source Associated Press

Senator John McCain and his wife, Cindy, in a
1999 family photograph with, from left,
Meghan, Bridget, Jimmy and Jack.



and that's it. That's the visual email.

Any Questions?

Monday, March 03, 2008

The Racist Opposition to Barack Obama

Sigh. I'm tired of this, and it's only getting started. And I can't imagine how he and his family stand it.
Let's look at all of the mud being slung, shall we? Much of it comes in emails, but some through video. (Following is lots of embedded video and pictures - watch your bandwidth and download time).

1. His childhood attendance in elementary school in Indonesia
2. Senator Obama - the Flag and the Qur'an
3. His church affiliation - Afrocentric Christianity in a Mainline Denomination
4. Thinly veiled - or not so thinly veiled - racist images of Senator Obama
5. His African relatives

1. He did not attend a Radical Islamic School. This is old, but showed up in my in-box as recently as a month ago. Insight Magazine ("In Indonesia, the young Obama was enrolled in a Madrassa and was raised and educated as a Muslim.") and FOX news liked to claim that Barack Obama attended a Madrassa in Indonesia. CNN and the AP debunked this, though the emails continue to fly. Snopes page here.

2. Obama does so salute the Flag, and he did not take the congressional swearing in ceremony on a Qur'an. All kinds of photographic evidence here. Obama says
"My grandfather taught me when I was 2.
During the Pledge of Allegiance, you put your hand over your heart.
During the national anthem, you sing."
Keith Ellison, of Minnesota, is a practicing Muslim, and used the Qur'an for photos after the swearing in.
It's only a teeny tiny itsy bitsy teeny weeny bit racist to not be able to tell them apart.
3 His church affiliation

In October 2007, reported that
a CBS News poll in August found that, in response to an open-ended question about Obama’s faith, 7 percent of Americans identified him as a Muslim — more than any other response. The right answer, Protestant, was second at 6 percent. (Most didn’t know or wouldn’t say.)
(see also a longer article at the Washington Post.)

He is a member of the UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST denomination, in an Afrocentric Congregation, Trinity UCC. It is a Mainline Denomination, and his views, particularly on salvation, are progressive.

Mission Statement: What Trinity Is About

Trinity United Church of Christ has been called by God to be a congregation that is not ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ and that does not apologize for its African roots! As a congregation of baptized believers, we are called to be agents of liberation not only for the oppressed, but for all of God’s family. We, as a church family, acknowledge, that we will, building on this affirmation of "who we are" and "whose we are," call men, women, boys and girls to the liberating love of Jesus Christ, inviting them to become a part of the church universal, responding to Jesus’ command that we go into all the world and make disciples!

We are called out to be "a chosen people" that pays no attention to socio-economic or educational backgrounds. We are made up of the highly educated and the uneducated. Our congregation is a combination of the haves and the have-nots; the economically disadvantaged, the under-class, the unemployed and the employable.

The fortunate who are among us combine forces with the less fortunate to become agents of change for God who is not pleased with America’s economic mal-distribution!

W.E.B. DuBois indicated that the problem in the 20th century was going to be the problem of the color line. He was absolutely correct. Our job as servants of God is to address that problem and eradicate it in the name of Him who came for the whole world by calling all men, women, boys and girls to Christ.

An article that covers most of the material in the following inflammatory videos, should you prefer to read, can be found here.

Right Now America Needs to Take Notice: Change we Cannot Believe In.

Here is a brief clip by one of the "wiggers" mentioned in the above video by JTF:

A great article on Senator Obama's Faith Journey is
So, I have a deep faith," Obama continues. "I'm rooted in the Christian tradition. I believe that there are many paths to the same place, and that is a belief that there is a higher power, a belief that we are connected as a people.

"That there are values that transcend race or culture, that move us forward, and there's an obligation for all of us individually as well as collectively to take responsibility to make those values lived."

Obama on Farrakhan (to whom the above video alleges he is connected, via his Pastor at Trinity United Church of Christ) (By this logic, I am actually a world class fencer):
“I have been very clear in my denunciation” of Farrakhan’s history of anti-Semitic remarks, Obama said at the Democratic debate in Cleveland, “I did not solicit his support.” Obama said he “can not censor” individual endorsements but said there is no affiliation with his campaign and Farrakhan. “I can’t say to somebody that he can’t say that he thinks I’m a good guy,” Obama said, citing his support among Jewish Americans and stating that he would make it a priority to soothe historically tense ties between the African-American and Jewish communities in the nation. “I have some of the strongest support from the Jewish community in my hometown of Chicago and in this campaign,” he said, describing himself as a “stalwart” on supporting Israel.

4 and 5.
Thinly veiled (and not so thinly veiled) racist images and His African Relatives.

Ted Sampley, of Swift Boat Veteran "fame"

When it comes to imagery, choosing to show him with his extended family [of Muslims],

or in [frankly, any type of] traditional garb

is so much more useful in feeding the basest fears of white Americans.

Why don't people use images of his relatives who are identified as white people? Because that wouldn't be seen as damaging.


nope, doesn't work.

This photo doesn't work, he looks too... too...

American. You can tell by how tired his kids look.

The caption reads: Sen. Barack Obama, his wife Michelle, daughters and niece watching dancers at CARE/OBAMA project. Obama donated $14,000 to help fund a program assisting grandmothers raising grandchildren who are AIDS orphans. (Lynn Sweet/Sun-Times)
Yea, not so fear inducing.

Oh I have an idea! Someone could use
this photo which provides solid evidence that he's part of the African Straw Hat Brigade, out to destroy the American Straw Industry!

Lastly, the claim that he is close, friendly, and by implication, in kahoots (yes, kahoots, a really white people word) with Kenyan opposition leader Raila Odinga is mixed.

Obama is a supporter of Kenyan Muslim Raila Odinga, who recently lost in that country’s election, and who wants to institute Islamic Sharia law as the law of that land. Raila claims to be Obama’s first cousin.
This one pops up many places, but this particular quote is pulled from Jews Against Obama at

Well, the man claims to be Barack Obama's cousin, tho' it's not clear if he is. Odinga is a member of the same Luo tribe as Obama. And, as of 1994, the number of Luo was 3,185,000l so there's some latitude there in the DNA pool.

More notably, imho, Odinga's an Anglican, not Muslim, and of "ambivalent religious conviction." There was what appears to be a smear against him, designed to alienate Evangelical Christian voters in Kenya. does a lovely job pulling that one apart.

And when he introduced himself to the nation in his 2004 Democratic National Convention keynote speech, Obama said he was

"grateful for the diversity of my heritage."

"I stand here knowing that my story is part of the larger American story, that I owe a debt to all of those who came before me, and that, in no other country on earth is my story even possible."

But in this country it's damn hard to tell the story at all.

There is a follow-up to this post, really a prequel, about the anti-Obama email that prompted the above.
Subj: Fw: NEXT FIRST FAMILY Say "HI BRO" to the next First Family?

"We are forever desperate to believe that this time the government is telling us the truth"

War Made Easy -- The Use of Propaganda to Sell War.

Sometimes it's difficult to decide where to post -- I could post this on HappyCindy b/c it's a great educational program, or here because propaganda makes me Cranky.
I flipped a coin...

The Institute for Public Accuracy, partially funded by the Unitarian Universalist Veatch Program at Shelter Rock, has produced this great video on propaganda has been used to sell wars. Featuring Norman Solomon and narrated by Sean Penn.

This documentary is slow and thoughtful, carefully laying out ideas with lots of supportive footage from wars, press conferences, and clips of all US Presidents and news stations, lots of reporters, looks at the news media as partners with Capital Hill -- "US officials say..." and failure to look deeper than public statements.
It's 1 hour 10 minutes long.

(Title quote was Sydney Schanberg.)

Sunday, March 02, 2008

"The Word of God is Potent. The Word of God is His

"The Word of God is Potent. The Word of God is His



Bishop Eddie Long, via the Wittenburg Door : can't embed, click this external link.

There's really nothing else to say.

Saturday, March 01, 2008

What I didn't know about Testosterone

could fill a syringe.

This American Life last week was incredible (a repeat from 2002 I've missed all these years.) Everyone should listen to it.


220: Testosterone

Stories of people getting more testosterone and coming to regret it. And of people losing it and coming to appreciate life without it. The pros and cons of the hormone of desire.


This American Life producer Alex Blumberg explains that he wanted to do this show because of his conflicted relationship with his own testosterone. He tells host Ira Glass that the reasons go back to a girl in his eighth-grade homeroom and the 1970s seminal feminist novel The Women's Room. We also hear from a man who stopped producing testosterone due to a medical treatment and found that his entire personality was altered. (9 minutes)

Act One. Life at Zero.

The interview with a man who lost his testosterone continues. He explains that life without testosterone is life without desire—desire for everything: food, conversation, even TV. And he says life without desire is unexpectedly pleasant. The man first wrote about his experiences, anonymously, in GQ Magazine. (7 minutes)

Act Two. Infinite Gent.

An interview with Griffin Hansbury, who started life as a woman, but began taking massive testosterone injections seven years ago, and now lives as a man. He explains how testosterone changed his views on nature vs. nurture for good. (17 minutes)

Song: "To Sir With Love," Lulu

Act Three. Contest-osterone.

The men and women on staff at This American Life decide to get their testosterone levels tested, to see who has the most and least, and to see if personality traits actually do match up with hormone levels. It turns out to be an exercise that in retrospect, we might not recommend to other close-knit groups of friends or co-workers. (12 minutes)

Song: "What Kind of Man Are You?," Ray Charles

Act Four. Learning to Shut Up.

Novelist Miriam Toews, author of The X Letters (which appeared in an earlier episode of the show), tells the story of a recent road trip she took with her fifteen-year-old son. (11 minutes)

Song: "That's Alright, Mama," Elvis Presley