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    • What Protests in Lebanon, France, Chile and Ecuador Have In Common
      There’s some important events happening today: another Brexit vote, and the Canadian federal election (whose results are not obvious), but we won’t know how either of those end till later, so let’s discuss some popular protests of massive size. In France the protests were sparked by an increase in diesel taxes. The demands included an […]
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Drunken Rant Open Thread

“George Bush is an a**hole and a c**t”"

“George Bush is an a**hole and a c**t”

MODERATION RULES FOR THIS THREAD ONLY:

1.  Six drink minimum

2.  Profanity required

3.  No insulting or attacking other commenters (unless they are trolls)

4.  No racist or sexist comments (small penis jokes okay)

5.  myiq2xu is sole judge, jury and moderator

6.  Thread closes in two (2) hours or when the moderator passes out

Go for it!

Where's my f**king cheeseburger?

Where's my f**king cheeseburger?

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Open Season On Women

sittingduck

misogyny, misogynic, misogynous:
1. A hatred of women.
2. In psychiatry, when the hatred of women is part of a morbid mental state, it may be associated with a wide variety of nosologic entities. The most common explanation for the condition has to do with the events of childhood, particularly those relating to the parents.

Via Murphy at Pumapac, last night Lynette Long and three of her friends were attacked with misogynistic language while waiting for a table in a popular Washington, DC restaurant. One of the women was brutally assaulted and dragged by her hair across the floor.

When I arrived my friends were already there. One was sitting at the corner of a packed bar while the other two were standing behind her. Beside them three guys would not release two seats they were saving “for friends” for at lease 30 minutes. When I arrived, one of my friends eager to find me a seat, tried to take one of the seats held by the guys, saying she would be happy to return the seat once his friends arrive. He pulled the seat back and yelled, “You are just a bunch of C****.” What??? Haven’t we seen that word emerge during the very recent Presidential Campaign? I was flabbergasted. I have never in my life heard a woman called the C word. Ouch.

Continue reading

You only get out what you put in

well-behaved-women

To follow-up on Riverdaughter’s and Stateofdisbelief’s posts, I want to point out that it is vital that we not let Obama get away with merely appointing a few women to high profile positions.  As I noted in the comments of RD’s post, there is only one woman on either the DFA lists.  One freaking Vaginamerican!  Democracy for America believes that WE ONLY HAVE ONE WOMAN IN THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY THAT IS QUALIFIED TO BE SECRETARY OF STATE?

In DFA’s defense (playing the Devil’s Public Defender) there aren’t many women in either party with the credentials and experience for that job.  But the reason for that (removing my court-appointed dumptruck hat) is that women can’t get credentials and experience if they can’t get in the goddamn door!

There is at least one pipeline into every important job.  For the Supreme Court the main source of appointees is the Circuit Court of Appeals, which in turn is filled primarily with judges from the Federal District Courts.  If you want to sit on the federal bench before you’re old and grey you’ll need to be a lawyer from a top law school.  While that is not by any means the exclusive path to SCOTUS, it does demonstrate my pipeline analogy.

If admissions into top law schools are disproportionately male, the entire pipeline will be disproportionately male as well.  Male lawyers means male judges, justices and SCOTUS appointees.  Anyone who works around the legal system knows that it is still a male dominated profession.  The best long-term solution is not to promote women disproportionate to their overall numbers (although it is a valid and important short-term remedy) but to focus on increasing the admission of women to top law schools and their appointment to the bench at the lower levels.  Feed the pipeline at one end and you’ll change the results at the other.

It doesn’t start with post-graduate programs or even college admissions.  It starts at the “K” end of the “K-12” system.  When girls receive subtle (and not-so subtle) messages that their future roles in society include babymaking, housework and support staff, but not leading or decision making, you’re feeding the pipeline incorrectly. 

Do not cut Barack Obama any slack, do not “wait and see” what he does before you say anything.  Demand equality.  Misbehave.

never-underestimate

The Persistence of Patriarchy: Women in the Workplace

saber-tooth

As you read this post, please be forewarned, its message is about the perceptions that drive our current worldview.  In writing it, I was less concerned with the nuances of historical exceptions than I was with the general stereotype that women have been and continue to be saddled with.

In reviewing history of women’s role in society, we find discussions of both matriarchal and patriarchal cultures.  Ours is and has been for centuries, a patriarchal society.  The election of 2008 has exposed the result of this patriarchal worldview – a persistent belief that women are somehow subordinate to men in the workplace and in society.  Since the time of the first settlers, men brought with them to the new world a patriarchal worldview that was unfortunately embraced by many women and persists into the present.  For some time now, many of us had been lulled into a sense of false confidence that this worldview was evaporating.  There were now women in Congress, female state Governors, high-level Cabinet positions, and female CEOs, demonstrating to us that the old adage “a woman’s place is in the home” was outdated and irrelevant…or was it?  The election of 2008 opened many of our eyes.

One of my favorite parables is one told by a former Sociology professor about some cave dwellers who built fires in front of their caves to ward off the Saber-Tooth Tigers.  Centuries after the extinction of the Saber-Tooth Tigers, this same community was still building fires in front of their caves.  Those who stopped doing so were considered rebels, deviants, and harmful to society.  It’s been many years, but its message still resonates with me today: that people begin a practice for one reason and many times continue the practice despite having long forgotten why it was done in the first place.  Is this the problem with our society?  Are we still “lighting fires in front of our caves” and blindly continuing a practice that may have been developed of necessity and then carried forward out of habit?  Where is the genesis of this worldview and how do we turn a new page?

There is sufficient archeological evidence to show that there may have been matriarchal societies where women were revered for their life-giving abilities.  Nomadic, egalitarian, and peaceful peoples found strength and leadership in the ability of women resolve conflict diplomatically, problem-solve in a way that met multiple needs, and join in equal effort to find shelter, food and other resources.  These women were able to meet the needs of society regardless of their gender AND bring forth the children needed to populate future generations.  Their breasts were not sexualized, their intelligence not dismissed, their clothing was not evaluated and their beauty or lack thereof was not considered in the equation of their value; and while matriarchy was not the structure adopted by the majority of nomadic groups, at a minimum they embraced the equality of the egalitarian culture.

Soon however, tribes began to settle and remain in a single place for longer periods.  The ability to plant and grow foods, coupled with animal husbandry, made nomadic roaming unnecessary for survival.  These innovations brought with them the challenge of securing and protecting their settlements and a new gender distinction became fodder for changes in society:  size and strength.  Males, who were the bigger and stronger gender, were more equipped to provide this protection to the group.  Their testosterone-laden system made them ripe for battle and a transformation of worldview occurred.  Men were now “the protectors.”  This made them, by their own official proclamations, the more valuable of the genders.  Women were considered weak and vulnerable and in need of protection so that they could continue their child-bearing duties.  These vessels of life were constrained to the walls of the settlement and their homes while the men went out for food, armed and ready for battle in the event that other tribes sought to take their bounty, thus creating the concept of domestic work as women’s work.

This vulnerability of women soon became an exploitable commodity.  Males began to see women as property with value for trading and increasing their wealth through offspring.  Polygamy was seen as a sign of the male’s wealth –more wives meant more children, which meant more work could be performed on the farm to grow more food for both sustenance and bartering.  Dowries, tribal negotiations and contests were all ways that men exploited the life-giving capacity of their women tribal members.  Within the tribe, women were the property of the husband and crimes perpetrated against them were considered a crime against the husband.  Kidnapping and sexual assault of women by other tribes was seen as not a crime against their humanity, but a crime against the tribe.    The value of a woman was now reduced to her ability to produce offspring and carry out the duties of the home.  Sound familiar?  It should.  Many people still hold this worldview today.  It has been carried through into the present by organized religion and “holy” texts written by men who wanted to preserve their status as patriarchs, populate the earth, and retain control over their most valuable baby-making commodity -women.

The greatest challenge to the patriarchy of our culture has been the entrance of women into the workforce.  Initially, as the majority of settlers sought out economic independence through business investments, craft artesian work and/or land ownership and farming, women remained domiciled in the home.  Their work still consisted primarily of domestic needs and some in-sourced sewing, but they remained confined to the home in this method of production.  The only women who ventured out into the new jobs of the industrial age were those who were unmarried and seeking to build a valuable dowry.  In doing this, they could someday have a husband and become the domestic goddess they were ordained by God to be.

But the two great wars changed all of this and a revolution happened in the American workplace. Women entered the workforce in greater numbers than ever before.  Both married and unmarried women worked side by side, filling the enormous number of positions left vacant by men (ever still the battle warriors) who left to fight the war.  Initially, men and the unions that represented them, fought back against women entering the workforce, calling such activity “an evolutionary backslide…a menace to prosperity [and a] foe to our civilized pretensions.”(*1)  However, to preserve the wage progress that had been made leading up to World War I, the AFL promoted the concept of “Equal Pay for Equal Work.”  Unfortunately, this was in no way an acknowledgement of equality in the workplace; in fact the AFL’s official proclamation that “Every labor organization in the country should be keenly interested in the welfare of women in industry…Equal pay for equal work should be the slogan” was tempered by the caveat that “women are [currently] being employed in railroad shops and other forms of employment entirely unsuited for them.” (*2)

Male supremacy was swiftly restored after both wars as women were removed from this “men’s” work and scuttled back to their obligations at home or at a minimum to the more “feminine” positions like clerical and nursing work.  These experiences however gave women a taste of economic independence.  Having a paycheck and the independence to determine spending priorities while their men were off fighting exposed a new life to women; one they were not eager to relinquish so easily.  Little by little, women made their way back into the workforce, struggling at each juncture to meet and exceed the barriers set by women before them.

And so we arrive here today.  Looking back at the election of 2008 we find ourselves pondering how we as a culture could have allowed this sexism and misogynistic worldview to survive sufficiently to rear its ugly head in the degree we’ve witnessed – at levels not seen for decades.  Both Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin were subjected to slurs and violent imagery portraying them as deviants of society, subordinate to men, and vulnerable to egregious assault.  Each of these individual acts, seeking to push women back into subservience, must be recognized, challenged and met with firm resistance.  We must not shield our eyes or the eyes of society from the blatant and many times brutal attacks on women who dare seek equality at all levels of the workplace and in our government.  Are there areas where physical size and strength still matter? Certainly; however we are not challenging those barriers.  We must work towards creating a new mindset – one that acknowledges equality of standing in society for both men and women.

So, since we no longer need our baby-making abilities protected by the “warriors” and Saber-tooth Tigers are extinct, can someone please blow out those fires???  It’s just too damn hot in here.

Sources: Campbell, Joseph.  Transformation of Myth through Time. (1990). NY: Harpers.; (*1)O’Donnell, Edward. “Women as Bread Winners: The Error of Age” American Federationist. 4, no. 8 (October 1897); Shaw, Susan, and Lee, Janet (2001). Women’s Voices, Feminist Visions: Classic and Contemporary Readings. California: Mayfield Publishing.;(*2) “Slogan of Equal Pay for Women.” Jewelry Workers’ Monthly Bulletin. (July 1917); Lichtenstein, Strasser, et al. Who Built America. Vol 1 and 2. (2001).

maxine-woman-president1

Obama and the SOS selection: What is he up to?

It should come as no surprise that I don’t trust Obama.  Not. One. Bit.

I don’t like the corrupt, “slash and burn” way he ran his campagin.  I don’t like the deal he made with the DNC (yes, Howard, we think you’re a liar).  I don’t like the way he rode his way to the nomination and presidency by using racism as a weapon and misogyny to ridicule and diminish his female rivals.  I don’t like his speaking style, his High Broderism or the fact that he is already a failed president in my book for failing to anticipate the financial mess and proatively doing something about it instead of prancing around Europe as the Fresh Prince of Bill Ayers (H/T myiq2xu).  While Hillary was trying her best to actually *do* something about the bailout bill, Obama just couldn’t be bothered with suspending his campaign to take care of that important business.  He just expected that Congress would “get it done”.  Thank you Pre-failed President Elect Obama.

So, it should come as no surprise that I do not trust what is going on with the persistent rumors that Hillary Clinton is being considered for Secretary of State.  Actually, its more of a rumor, considering I just got a “push” email from Archad Hasan of DFA, but I’ll get to that in a minute.

Obama must be pretty anxious about the upcoming Senate session if he is trying this hard to get Hillary out of there.  Either that or he has a woman problem.  Or both.  I’m going with both, since his campaign repeatledly belittled her foreign policy experience while she was First Lady, women’s accomplishments ebing inconsequential at best and a mere sideshow to a man’s at worst.  Let’s imagine what would happen if Hillary was allowed to make this decision without all of the pressure that the media is about to rain down on her to “guilt” her into taking this position:

  1. She has to work for Obama.  He would be her boss. Well, that right there is in the minus category.  I don’t care what stupid Lincoln narrative his campaign is pushing, suggesting Obama is doing the same as Honest Abe by hiring his rivals for his cabinet.  Obama is NOT anything like Lincoln, who from what I have read was an extremely principled man.
  2. If Obama asks her to do something stupid or counterproductive, she has three choices: do it and look as powerless as Condi Rice, not do it and get fired or resign.
  3. If she takes SOS, she is no longer a Senator and her chances of ever being elected to anything again approach the limit of minus infinity.  (The BFF is amazed I remember calculus given that I can’t do simple addition in my head)
  4. The issues that she was planning to champion in the Senate are officially DOA.

Ding! Ding! Ding!

I think we have a winner in item 4.  If she is no longer in the Senate making noise and legislation, he has no competition for the limelight. If she is SOS, the minute she steps out of line, her ass is glass and he tosses her out.  The media is just waiting for her to screw up so they can stick her with the knives they are already sharpening in gleeful anticipation.

Women aren’t that stupid, Barack.  You think you can knock out two birds with one stone but even if I had no power in the Senate, I wouldn’t take SOS for anything if I were Hillary Clinton.  I’m betting she turned you down flat.  Otherwise, why would your personal army of droogs in the DFA start circulating this stupid email?

DFA Member –

The media has been filled with pundits and talking heads guessing who Barack will pick for his cabinet. I keep hearing one thing and then another about every position you can think of and that got me to thinking…

Why not make a game of it?

So, take a few minutes and tell us who you want our next President to pick for Secretary of State, Attorney General, Defense Secretary, or to head the Environmental Protection Agency.

CLICK HERE TO MAKE YOUR CHOICES

You can pick who you think Obama will actually choose too. And, if you get all four of them right, you just might win a free “You Have the Power” T-shirt from DFA.

Who doesn’t want to win something free?

So, stop by the website this weekend and make your choices. If you submit your vote, we’ll send you an update once Obama makes his choices.

-Arshad

Arshad Hasan, Executive Director
Democracy for America

And here are the all-to-predictable results of the SOS question, where Hillary’s name is always at the top of the selection list:

Current Top Choices:

Will pick results:
Hillary Clinton
Bill Richardson
John Kerry
Tom Daschle
Richard Holbrooke
Chuck Hagel
Richard Lugar
Sam Nunn
Hilary Clinton
Anthony Zinni
Should pick results:
Hillary Clinton
Bill Richardson
John Kerry
Richard Holbrooke
Tom Daschle
Chuck Hagel
Richard Lugar
Sam Nunn
Anthony Zinni
Dennis Kucinich

Do people really fall for this crap? Well, given the current election results, yes. But it looks like NOW is finally coming out of its Kool-Aid induced stupor, probably because Amy Siskind of The New Agenda is actually in charge of a good portion of the women’s movement. From the Politico’s Will Men Dominate the Obama Administration? (as if the answer isn’t already obvious), NOW’s Kim Gandy says, “I agree with those who are concerned that it would have been nice to see more women”.

Well, there’s your problem right there, Kim. Women with real power do not settle for “nice”. Nice is what we want when we go shopping for clothes or boyfriends. But let this be a lesson to you. Next time a man running against a woman asks for your support, hold his feet to the fire before you give it to him. You know, “Don’t hand me no lines and keep your hands to yourself”? Or better yet, give it to the woman because she will be more likely to be responsive to the concerns of women. Jeez! I mean, it seems so obvious it’s amazing that Gandy couldn’t see it, what with all the misogyny in the way. Thank God for Amy or I’d completely lose it with the idiots from NOW and NARAL. But I digress.

It’s time we pushed back against this SOS thing. I could be wrong but I don’t think there’s anything in it for Clinton, not that she wouldn’t bring her usual standard of excellence, intelligence and dedication to the job. Besides, she’s given enough to the failed presidency of Barack Obama. Let someone else step up to the plate and be the perpetual scapegoat. Hillary’s got health care and equal pay to worry about.

Let Obama do the work for a change.

Paging Miss Cleo!

I see an empty suit . . .

I see an empty suit . . . taking an oath

So I’m reading this post by a sane Correntian and I follow a link to find this from the NYT:

THE time has come, Senator Barack Obama says, for the baby boomers to get over themselves.

In taking the first steps toward a presidential candidacy last week, Mr. Obama, who was born in 1961 and considers himself a member of the post-boomer generation, said Americans hungered for “a different kind of politics,” one that moved beyond the tired ideological battles of the 1960s.

[…]

While the Obama-Clinton generational dynamic will mostly play out in the primaries, Republican voters will be weighing the candidacy of one of the oldest men ever to seek the presidency, John McCain, 70, the only member of the likely field born before the baby boom’s unofficial start in 1943.

 That Obamafluffer article was published on January 21, 2007 by John M. Broder.  Let’s review:

As of that date, Barack Obama had written two “memoirs, given one nationally televised speech, appeared on Oprah, cake-walked into the Senate when his main competition in both the primary and general election had dropped out, had not chaired any subcommittee meetings or authored any important legislation.  He also had not won a single caucus or primary, been endorsed by any super delegates, nor reported any campaign donations.  There were several Democratic “heavyweights” besides Hillary Clinton that were expected to run, including Al Gore, John Edwards, Chris Dodd and Joe Biden.

Yet somehow Mr. Broder correctly predicted that the primary campaign would be a contest between Obama and Hillary.  Even though the dynamic turned out to be genderational (penis vs. vagina) rather than generational, this guy should be on the Psychic Friends Network.

Either that or he should be indicted for insider trading.

Call 1-800-BIG-FAKE

Call 1-800-BIG-FAKE

Saturday: The Beast Obama Unleashed

iran_air1Anyone who thinks that the misogynism and sexism that was unshackled this year will go back to its dungeon now that it has done it’s work should have his or her head examined.  The beast that has been unleashed can very easily lead to unintended consequences.  A cautionary tale comes to us from ikbis, where we find this account (and video on the site) of Mini Skirts in the Middle East:

The short skirt was not really worn by many women until 1966 [when Mary Quant introduced short mini dresses and skirts that were set 6 or 7 inches above the knee] and not nationwide until 1967. The mini skirts reached their hayday in the year 1970. At that time,they were worn worldwide by the vast majority of women ,even in many Islamic, Arab, and Middle Eastern countries.In the Middle East ,women wore mini skirts as their daily apparel. From Kabul in Afghanistan to Iran and Bahrain in the Persian Gulf,Egypt,the Levant,North Africa,etc, mini skirts were the trend and it was generally acceptable for many women to wear them, even in the most religious and conservative families and societies.Among women who wore the mini skirts,were most school and university students , teachers and university staff members ,house wives,working classes,employees in governmental institutions,doctors and nurses in hospitals ,etc.This might be surprising to newer generations who never expected mini skirts to have been, at one point in time [1966-1975], so common in the Middle East.Many of younger generations were really astonished,when I happened to show them old photos of their grandmothers,aunts and other older relatives [above 50 ] wearing mini skirts through out their youth .The quick decline of the mini skirt in the middle East began from late 1975,and was virtually non existent by 1977.

Some might argue that the reason for the demise of the mini skirt is quite clear and simple: In Islamic Middle Eastern societies, women are expected to dress modestly and conservatively. Even women, who choose not to cover up completely, do make the conscious choice of covering as much skin as possible by avoiding, among many other things, short skirts.But the question is still the same.[Why,in spite of the previously stated factor,were mini skirts so abundant between 1966-1975 among ordinary Middle Eastern and Arab women from conservative backgounds?]. Why were mini skirts generally tolerated by the society and most families at that time ? More scientific researches are still needed on this topic,[ mostly in the fields of sociology,psychology and other related aspects].

The sharp descent of the skirt in the middle east happened about 1977.  Now, what happened in the late 70’s in the middle east that would cause this?  Well, we know that that was about the time of the oil embargos, OPEC and the fall of the Shah of Iran, brought about by the rise of Ayatollah Komeini and his rabid band of young and naive followers who took over the US Embassy in Tehran in 1979.

I had an Iranian roommate at one point in time.  She left Tehran right after the revolution to live near her brother who was a resident at a local hospital in Pittsburgh.  The image I got of Iran from her was that of a country caught between cultures even before the revolution.  The culture was still conservative but dress most certainly was not and few women wanted to go back to wearing the chador.  But the revolution was brought about by primarily young followers of the new Islamic revival in the middle east who were rejecting the growing autocracy and aristocratic corruption of their rulers.  Neither socialism nor capitalism was improving the lives of the average person.  The return to religion and conservatism seemed like resetting the clock and starting over.  And women were the first ones thrown under the bus.  Out came the heavy black coats and babushka style headscarves.  Now, 30 years later, women in Iran are still struggling to get back what they lost and the religious leaders have a similar autocratic deathgrip on the country.  In Afghanistan after decades of war with Communism and civil war, the results have been much worse.

Could it happen here? Well, probably not as dramatically as in Iran or Afghanistan.  But I could see us regressing back a couple of decades in the workplace. Let’s think about it a second.  We have a country where real wages haven’t really improved since the 70’s, after adjustment for inflation.  Women and men compete for jobs on a more or less equal footing, that is, unless you are in the elite level of politics and business.  And now the economy is taking a sharp dive brought on in part by the inability of wages to keep pace with the price of grown-up adult acquisitions, like houses for your current or future family.  There is pervasive corruption and a bleak future for the newest adults.  What better time for our new First Lady to become Mom-in-Chief and lead by example back into domesticity so that the guys can suck up the jobs and become breadwinners, decision makers and future autocrats?  If conpetition is going to get a lot tougher and meaner, women will become the first casualties.  It has ever been so.

In fact, it has already happened at least once in our nation’s history.

Rosie the Riveter got sent back to the kitchen after WWII (Check out those biceps)

Rosie the Riveter got sent back to the kitchen after WWII (Check out those biceps)

Bostonboomer reminds me that after World War II, many women who entered the workforce to take up the slack when men went off to fight were given the boot as soon as those men came home.

The c*nt T-shirts may have been aimed at the women who were bold enough to carry and pick up the banner this year but there will be a scattershot effect.  Misogyny may have started in the media, but don’t be surprised to see it in an office cubicle near you.  This week, I received an unusual email from human resources in my inbox that firmly reiterated the “Equal Opportunity and Sexual Harrassment Policy”.  They only run that baby out when there’s been an incident.

Lower those hems, ladies.

H/T to Nell for this article, Hating Hillary, now 6 months old, about sexism unleashed in the primary season.  Remember, only one person benefited from it.  Hey, if it was working for Obama, why say anything about it?  So, when the sexism $#@% hits the fan, you will know exactly who is at fault.

One more thing: Check out Swanspirit’s Goddess Radio today at 1:00PM EST for music to drylock your basement to.

Update: Our Pine Ridge Blizzard Fundraiser pulled in more than $1000!  On behalf of our friends at Pine Ridge, I would like to thank all of you for your incredible generosity.  Some of you went beyond the call and bought a significant number of Causmos.  Well done.  Give yourselves a pat on the back!