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Conflucian Cocktail Party: The Door in the Wall

Does anyone remember the book by Marguerite DiAngeli about the boy who was to become a knight until he was crippled by polio?  I read the reviews in Amazon and a lot of reviewers think it’s really boring.  But this little book has stuck with me since fourth grade when I first read it for Miss Nishiguchi’s class.  The proverb, “when one door closes, another opens” is a bit trite.  The real power of the story is in the seeking for Robin, the nobleman’s son who finds he no longer has a clear career path before he even hits his teen years.  What’s left when the job you’ve been training for all your life is suddenly out of reach?  He struggles with his pride, he learns to swim, and he takes the opportunities presented to him to prove himself useful to his lord.  He takes the initiative and delivers the message that will save the castle in a way that only he could do.  The point was not to find a door as a consolation.  The point was to find a way to fulfill one’s goal.  And the goal for Robin was to serve his lord so he found the door.

Hillary is doing the same thing.  We will miss her in the Senate.  She could have accomplished great things there.  But she was crippled by her leadership and a seniority system that left her few avenues to success.  But her goal has always been public service and this has lead her to find her door in the wall at the State Department.  We know this is a job that she and she alone has the unique abilities to perform to an exemplary degree.  We wish her well.

So, at this Conflucian Cocktail Party, let’s lift our glasses of champagne and sparking cider high and sing Wassail to the New Year and to Hillary’s new path.

Welcome to the Conflucian Cocktail Party, that time of the week when we kick off our shoes and toast to one another.  Everyone is welcome.  The bar is to the left of the door.  Our bartender, Rico, our faithful companion through thick and thin during last year’s primary and general election season, will concoct the cocktail of your dreams.  Tonight’s special cocktail is an Upstate Manhattan, ‘cos that is where LadyBoomer NYC is.  She’s attending the Bon Jovi concert for Hillary to help her retire her debt.  The Confluence chucked in $125 for a cheap seat and LadyBoomer is partying for us.  We hope to hear from her later on how the night went.  If you would like to help retire Hillary’s debt, because Obama isn’t doing it for some reason, you can buy a Causmo for $10.  Purchase your Causmo here.

Tonight’s entertainment is a little bit of rock, a little bit opera?  In 1998, Jon Bon Jovi and Luciano Pavarotti got together to do a benefit for Liberia and sang Let it Rain.  Enjoy:

Ladies, and I do mean “LADIES”, and gentlemen, this ain’t no dive blog like “The Site Who Must Not Be Named”.  We run a classy joint here.  So, if you feel like entertaining a troll, take it outside or hang your trigger words with Florence our lovely checkroom attendant.  The waiters will be circulating shortly with cheese puffs, chicken satay with peanut sauce and boiled new potatoes with chipotle hummus. Please drink responsibly and tip your wait staff generously.

And join me at 10PM tonight for Conflucians Say on PUMA United Radio (PURrrr)

Operation Pantsuit: A Play In One Misguided Act.

Can't Touch This

Can't Touch This

THE SCENE: DAVID AXELROD’S conference room. We are witnessing a meeting with the Obama team’s inside-iest insiders. Attending are AXELROD, DAVID PLOUFFE and VALERIE JARRETT. RAHM EMANUEL is attending via teleconference from Paraguay, where he is hiding out from Patrick Fitzgerald and his ongoing investigation. His face is shown on a screen on the far wall of the room. The other three participants are seated in cream leather executive chairs around the black granite table, which is polished to an immaculate sheen. The walls are sage green and covered with pictures of Obama looking beneficent and Presidential.

AXELROD (addressing the wall screen): Rahm, can you hear us? I know things are kinda primitive in Paraguay.

EMANUEL: Not where I am. Our man Barack has made everyone feel so post-partisan that George W. has been hosting me. (a Paraguayan houseboy, wearing a large nametag that reads “Hello, my name is Juan” brings him a tropical drink) Thanks, Miguel! (The houseboy leaves, rolling his eyes; EMANUEL sips his drink) Mmm…nothing like fresh mango.

JARRETT (sarcastically): Gosh, can I be the target of a federal investigation too?

PLOUFFE (looking around) Shhh! For god’s sake, Valerie, don’t jinx it! Everyone, make the sign of the “O”!

(The following ritualized actions are done with a precision that would put synchronized swimmers to shame.)

(ALL raise their arms and make an “O” sign with their hands)

ALL TOGETHER: Obama, protect us! Obama, protect us! Obama, protect us!

(ALL lower their arms.)

AXELROD: Ahhhh, that’s better. It looks like we’re ready to start now.

(ALL put on their “serious” faces)

AXELROD: As you know, today was a big day for our President. Several of his appointments went to confirmation hearings, including…HER.

(ALL nod solemnly)

AXELROD: Now, none of us wanted HER, but thanks to those damn voters in the primary and those idiotic PUMAs, she had the leverage to elbow her way into the Cabinet. A moment of silence, please, for our brother John Kerry, who deserved the Secretary of State position so much more.

(ALL bow their heads solemnly)

Continue reading

Smokin’ Hopium, Naomi Wolff puts out for Obama

Ooo, get her some pom-poms! “Obama’s so dreamy. He said he loved me.”

Naomi has her orgasm at about 2:30:

Hey, Naomi, why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free?


Obama Pr0n – 1/15/09

obamaporn Conflucians – it looks like this is going to be a regular feature for me.  Obama Porn is EVERYWHERE!   Shesus Cripes in G-String, I thought the 9/11 Memorabilia Porn was bad.

There’s even a website called The Art of Obama, where talented (yet delusional from the Hopium) artists can submit their Obama inspired works.   If you want to see more unicorns, rainbows, cherubs and of course the PEBO in all his  propagandist glory, please visit their site.  One word of advice:  Don’t have dinner 1 hour before going there.

What I don’t get is, and we Conflucians have been struggling with this:  Why so much adulation for someone who’s accomplishments have YET to be seen?  I can understand the cult status of an Elvis, Tupac Shakur or even Marilyn Monroe, but Obama?  Doesn’t somebody have to DO something before all this worship takes effect?  And why am I suddenly transported back to January 2001, awash with apprehension all over again when Bush 2.0 and Jesus were buddies?

Here’s today’s Obama Porn moment, and yes, this is an actual news item from Agence France-Presse (AFP) :

Obama tells daughters he ran for president for them, all children

WASHINGTON (AFP) – In an open letter to his young daughters, US president-elect Barack Obama said Thursday that he entered the race for the White House “because of what I want for you and for every child in this nation.”

“When I was a young man, I thought life was all about me — about how I’d make my way in the world, become successful, and get the things I want. But then the two of you came into my world,”Obama said in the letter published in Parade magazine, a weekend newspaper color supplement.

AAARUGH!!!!  I have a daughter.  If I had all the money in the world and wanted to write her a poignant note dedicating a significant moment or achievement to her, would I actually publish in an ad on Parade Magazine?  Hell no.

“I realized that my own life wouldn’t count for much unless I was able to ensure that you had every opportunity for happiness and fulfilment in yours.  In the end, girls, that’s why I ran for President: because of what I want for you and for every child in this nation,” wrote the soon-to-be Dad-in-chief.

ACK!!!!!!!  “In the end, girls,…?”  And Ms. Magazine calls him a Feminist?   Being that the O is already exploiting his children, wasn’t there enough copy space to add their names?   And what about this “Dad-in-Chief”  business?  What type of sentimentalism is that supposed to garner?  Are they trying to make Obama into everyone’s daddy now?  Moving on…

Obama’s wish-list for children includes challenging and inspirational schools; equal opportunity to go to university, regardless of their family’s financial standing; and well-paid jobs with benefits such as health care and a pension plan that will allow them to “retire with dignity.”

Ahhhh, so this was the motive, to push policy points through a cutesy-wootsy, he’s-such-a-good-dad moment.   BTW, I have nothing wrong with Obama’s “wish-list,”  I have a problem with HOW it’s being pushed under the guise of this “Hallmark Card to his children but BTW published in Parade Magazine” moment.

The 47-year-old father of Malia, 10, and Sasha, 7, said he wants to “push the boundaries” of discovery to encourage the development of new technology and inventions that improve lives and protect the environment.

Here we go again with the cutesy dad routine.  People are losing their jobs left and right.  Do you think Americans are going to fall for this schmaltzy crap for 4 years?

And he spoke of his vision of a United States that has reached “beyond the divides of race and region, gender and religion that keep us from seeing the best in each other.”

He would strive to send young Americans to war “only for a very good reason”, trying first to settle differences with other nations peacefully.

“These are the things I want for you — to grow up in a world with no limits on your dreams and no achievements beyond your reach, and to grow into compassionate, committed women who will help build that world,” wrote Obama.

“And I want every child to have the same chances to learn and dream and grow and thrive that you girls have. That’s why I’ve taken our family on this great adventure,” wrote Obama, who on Tuesday will move into the White House with his two daughters and wife, Michelle.

And they lived happily ever, while Rome burns or freezes to death.

I don’t know about you, but this repulses me.  Children, and I don’t CARE if it’s the PEBO’s children, should NOT be exploited to push support of government policy this way.   Is this somehow a way to try to melt the hearts of stonehearted voters (i.e., me!) who didn’t support Obama?  What is the point to this level of smarminess?  Because if anything, it’s pissing me off even more.

Bush 2.0 gave life to Sinclair Lewis’ famous phrase: “When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross.”

Obama is not only doing that, but he’s throwing in his children as bait.

CNN interview: Amy Siskind attempts to educate; Ms. Mag editor uses airtime as commercial

(cross-posted from Heidi Li’s Potpourri)

Watch the video here. Listen to The New Agenda’s executive director Amy Siskind succeed as she raises pertinent, relatively mild objections, to the Ms. Magazine cover for its special inauguration issue.  Then listen to Ms. Magazine’s executive editor Katherine Spillar as she first a) dodges the issue, which is not whether men can be feminists, but whether there is any basis for referring to this man, President-elect Obama, as “what a feminist looks like” and then b) tells people to read the magazine so as to understand the cover (read = buy the magazine) and then c) evidently indicated to the CNN anchors that subscriptions to the magazine are up because of the inauguration cover, and thus the cover was a good idea.

Successful covers do not require a magazine to explain or justify their meaning. For example, most thoughtful criticisms of The New Yorker’s satirical cover of the Obamas faulted the cover for being failed satire: for its failure to broadcast its satire and thus its potential to be taken too seriously. In other words, that cover, in many people’s opinion, failed on its own terms. Similarly the Ms. Magazine cover fails on it own terms. The intention was not to satirize the claim that Barack Obama, who has not one achievement in public life that can be considered as his own contribution to advancing feminism, is the paradigm of a feminist. No, the intention was tell us just what the cover said: that Barack Obama is a feminist, indeed a heroic – if closeted – one (note it is only his undershirt that reveals the truth of his feminism). If the intention was to say that men can be feminists, they should have put Bill Clinton, who put his career on hold to assist his wife achieve greatness in hers, on the cover. Or they could have put Terry McAuliffe on the cover, for his unwavering devotion to a candidate who happened to be female but who also had a record of standing by the once-core Democratic Party principles that have, in the past, made many of us proud to be Democrats. No way was Ms. Magazine’s intent  to suggest that men can be feminists, a point that anybody who has given two thoughts to feminism gets.

Apart from an intent to laud and fuss over President-elect Obama, the intent of the Ms. Magazine cover is the intent of most magazines: to sell the merchandise.  Fair enough, some will say. What’s wrong with trying to sell the merch? Generally, in the case of magazines not much. But Ms. Magazine was founded to lead a cause. If it simply wants to bump up subscriptions – assuming there’s enough data in yet to support the claim that the current cover does that – then Ms. Magazine should, straightaway, start with centerfolds labeling whoever is trendy at the moment as a stealth feminist. For those with more salable physiques, have them pull the over-clothes apart a little more widely; or maybe pose them with the slogan on the back of their panties, briefs or boxers, and wearing nothing else. They can shyly peek over their shoulder, indicating that they themselves are as surprised as the rest of us that Ms. Magazine has singled them out as archetypical feminists.

In the CNN interview, Ms. Spillar says “some people” have “overreacted” to the cover. This sounds an awful lot like the sexist tropes used by the cover subject’s language during the primary season, such as his imagery about Senator Clinton’s “claws” and “fangs” coming out. Just who is Ms. Spillar calling “some people”? Women. You know, the people whose claws and fangs come out when they get periodically down.

Ms. Spillar, you are completely correct that a man can be feminist. And in your interview today you demonstrated the corollary, that a woman can be a misogynist, belittling the concerns of those who once depended on publications like Ms. Magazine to give voice – and the front cover – to matters central to equalizing opportunities for 51 percent of this country’s population.

Amy Siskind on CNN re: Ms. Magazine

(h/t Egalia at TGW)

Too Hot For Television – 60’s Edition

This campy 1966 video was once considered “too racy” for daytime television.  Nancy Sinatra is now 68 years old, and the rest of the women in the video have to be about the same age.

Check out the hairstyles, the outfits and the dance moves.  By today’s standards the dancers are all “too fat” because they have actual curves.

You might notice that none of the women are minorities (unless you count the red-head in the back row.)  Television wasn’t integrated yet.

Thursday: The New Agenda takes on Ms.

Obama used Jay-Zs 99 Problems but a Bitch Aint One at campaign rallies

From Violet's list: Obama used Jay-Z's "99 Problems but a Bitch Ain't One" at campaign rallies

If you have a chance, set your dials to CNN’s American Morning today at 8:10am.  Amy Siskind of The New Agenda will be taking on Ms. Magazine and their offensive inaugural edition cover.  For those of you who don’t understand what the fuss is all about, Dr. Violet Socks of The Reclusive Leftist and editor of The New Agenda blog has a post up this morning that gives plenty of reasons- in detail.  Here are some of them:

  • He ran a campaign against Hillary Clinton that was suffused with sexism, from his own casually belittling comments to the unchecked misogyny of his supporters.
  • He exploited 15 years of misogynistic antipathy towards Clinton, allowing his subordinates and enablers to paint her as a witch, a bitch, and a monster.
  • He repeatedly referred to Clinton with sexist language: claws, tea parties, periodic moods, feeling down, “likable enough.”
  • He allowed his campaign manager to get away with ridiculing Clinton for “crying” in New Hampshire “about her appearance.”
  • He strode into his Iowa victory party to the strains of “99 Problems (But A Bitch Ain’t One).”
  • He consistently minimized Clinton’s historic achievement during the primaries, even referring to her as a “conventional candidate” (in contrast to himself), thus echoing the sentiments of his spiritual mentor, Jeremiah Wright, who is on record with his claim that women have never been second-class citizens.
  • He ignored women’s rights in his speeches, and delivered a major address on rooting out bigotry without even mentioning sexism.
  • He dismissed the concerns of women disturbed by the treatment of Clinton, insisting that they needed to “get over it.”
  • He accused the women in the pro-choice movement of not treating abortion as a serious moral issue, and compounded the insult with the remark that women should not be allowed to have abortions just because they’re “feeling blue.”
  • He orchestrated a grotesque smear campaign against Sarah Palin, pushing the bogus rape kit story to reporters, among other falsehoods.
  • He never reprimanded his supporters for their astonishingly misogynistic attacks on Palin — just as he never reined in his supporters when they attacked Clinton.
  • He ventriloquized women’s groups to spread outrageous misinformation about Palin’s record and feminist beliefs.

And that was just during the primary and election season. In some respects, Senator Obama’s exploitation of our culture’s underlying sexism has been worse *after* the election. His cabinet is 75% male and he’s got Jon “The Groper” Favreau as his head speechwriter.

That last bit really frosts my crockies. Here’s why: Hillary Clinton, Carolyn Maloney and many, MANY, other notable Congresswomen and senators (and some men), have worked tirelessly for the Lilly Ledbetter and Paycheck Fairness Acts in the past couple of years. These bills were blocked by Republicans before last year’s election but they recently passed the House and have been reintroduced into the senate by sponsors Hillary Clinton and Tom Harkin. Where was Obama for the work on these bills? I dunno. As far as I can recall, he spent most of his 142 days of Senate service in training to campaign for president, shmoozing with the Kennedys and Kerrys. *If* these two bills are passed this week in the Senate, Obama could, as his first act as president, sign them into law. Then, he fulfills the Ms. Magazine cover and comes off looking like a hero. BUT unlike LBJ who pulled strings and worked his senate colleagues over for Civil Rights legislation in the 60’s, Obama won’t have to lift one of his perfectly groomed fingers to do it. It will not require any sacrifice, hard work, controversy or difficult political choices from him. No, once again, fate smiles beneficently on him as he graciously takes credit for the work of his Secretary of State. Her accomplishments are, once again, brushed under the rug so he can have his historic moment.  And Jon Favreau will write one of the smarmiest, most insincere speeches ever so that Obama can bask in the glory.

This is what has angered many of us since the primary season began last year.  Women’s accomplishments are consistently downplayed by just about everyone associated with Barack Obama’s campaign starting with the candidate himself and assisted by the media who was relentless in drowning out Hillary and Sarah’s hard won, lifetime achievements.  We’re still here because we will never let Obama, his enablers or the media forget that women will hold them accountable for the damage they have done to the primary electoral system and women.  The effect of his “historic” candidacy will trickle down to women everywhere for years.  We may have achieved paycheck fairness but now it will be open season on us in conference rooms, shop floors and public forums everywhere where the sniggering and dismissive behavior we put up with everyday will now be seen as acceptable.  It affects the work we do, the respect we are given and our productivity.  And THAT will affect how the country fares, since we make up 51% of the population but only a mere 17% of elected officials who run the place.

That’s why this cover is so offensive. He is no hero. He is a political opportunist. Ms. Magazine is rewarding him when he hasn’t done a damn thing for women. Not only has he not done anything for us, he’s actually managed to shift us back into Mad Men territory with the openly hostile environment in public.  It’s time for Ms., complete with anachronistic name, to drop the cover and join the 21st century.

H/T to WherestheLine

Question: If Barack Obama reminds you of Richard Nixon…

then who does Timothy Geithner remind you of?

Spiro Agnew, anyone?

Spiro_AgnewOn October 10, 1973, Spiro “Ted” Agnew became the first U.S. vice president to resign in disgrace. His resignation was part of an agreement with the Justice Department in which he pleaded no contest to income tax evasion charges stemming from contract kickbacks received while he was governor of Maryland and vice president. Fined $10,000, Agnew was placed on three years’ probation. (source)

More on Agnew:

After Nixon and Agnew were elected to a second term, Agnew became the focus of an investigation by the U.S. Attorney’s office in Maryland for financial irregularities while he held state office. Rather than face trial, Agnew resigned and entered a plea of no contest to charges of evading income tax. He was sentenced to three years probation and fined $10,000. After he left office Agnew avoided publicity and went into business as an international broker. In 1981 he was ordered by a Maryland court to repay more than $248,000 to cover bribes he took while in state office. (source)

I know, I know it is early days to be noting the resemblance.  Geithner has not yet held elected office and he’s already admitted to dodging the tax man. Difference from Agnew noted: Agnew didn’t pay up until investigated by DOJ and sued in Maryland. Yes, yes, Geithner paid up before a court ordered him to do so or a DOJ settlement has become necessary, but Geithner waited to pay his taxes until he got caught. Indeed he waited twice: first he paid up only upon an IRS audit; then he paid up again when it looked like this gig he wanted – Secretary of the United States Treasury – might be in the offing. (For clear reporting on the nature of Geithner’s failure to pay taxes – which types he did not pay, for example – go here.) And yes, I do understand that Agnew was a tax evader who did not claim any special expertise on financial matters, which makes him very different indeed from Timothy Geithner, somebody currently aspiring to be Secretary of the Treasury. If he does get the nod, I am sure that whoever becomes Commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service – a post whose occupant reports directly to the Secretary of the Treasury – will gladly note all of these dissimilarities.

So let the record reflect: I am not saying that Timothy Geithner is as corrupt as Spiro Agnew proved to be or as unfit for the office to which he, Geithner, aims. It would be far too premature to make these claims.

(Cross-posted from Heidi Li’s Potpourri)