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    • Week-end Wrap – Political Economy – October 20, 2019
      by Tony Wikrent North Carolina Democratic Party Progressive Caucus Strategic Political Economy Economist Mariana Mazzucato has demonstrated that the real driver of innovation isn’t lone geniuses but state investment. [Wired, via The Big Picture 10-19-19] ….Mazzucato, an Italian-American economist who had spent decades researching the economics of innovation […]
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Stupid Trolls


Sometimes you read a troll dropping that makes you wonder if the person could really be that clueless. I was over at Tennessee Guerilla Women where Egalia had a post about the Super Bowl Snickers commercial starring Betty White you see above. One of Egalia’s regular trolls named “Lance Thruster” posted this comment:

Betty White rocks!

Is TGW OK with her Sue Anne Nivens/Happy Homemaker charicature from the MTM Show (cuz you know she pretended to be a bit of a “strumpet”)?

Lance’s Crayola computer obviously doesn’t have spell check but what he really needs is an intelligence upgrade. Betty White’s character “Sue Ann Nivens” pretended to be the sweet “Happy Homemaker” but in reality she was a very different person, rude, sarcastic and sex-obsessed.

The role was groundbreaking because Betty White portrayed one of the first women on television that was not only openly sexual but sexually aggressive. The humorous aspect of the Sue Ann role was shock factor in that she was a middle-aged woman (Betty was 51 in 1973) who behaved very differently from the stereotypical “grandmother” role and from her well-established public persona. I have no idea what the real Betty White is like in private life but I bet she’s not two-dimensional.

White satirically fulfilled both of the two traditional roles for women under the patriarchy. Satire is often used to bring attention to social and/or political issues that our culture finds difficult to face directly. Most of the socially-conscious commentary in movies in television during the sixties and seventies appeared in comedies rather than drama.

It is ironic that the single and sexually active Sue Ann appeared in the Mary Tyler Moore show because just a few years earlier Mary and her television spouse Dick Van Dyke had to sleep in separate beds.




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RIP, John Murtha

Associated Press:


Tribune-Democrat:

U.S. Rep. John Murtha, the powerful Democrat who represented this area since 1974, died this afternoon in a Virginia hospital.

The congressman’s office released a brief statement saying Murtha “passed away peacefully” at 1:18 p.m. His family was at his bedside, spokesman Matt Mazonkey said.

[…]

On Saturday, he became the longest-serving congressman in Pennsylvania history.

McClatchy:

WASHINGTON — Rep. John Murtha (D-Pa.), the first Vietnam veteran elected to the House of Representatives and an outspoken critic of the Iraq war, died Monday of complications of gallbladder surgery, a spokesman for the lawmaker said.

He was 77. He died at Virginia Hospital Center in Arlington, Va., spokesman Matthew Mazonkey told the AP.

From Murtha’s official bio:

U.S. Representative John P. Murtha has dedicated his life to serving his country both in the military and in the halls of Congress. He had a long and distinguished 37-year career in the U.S. Marine Corps, retiring from the Marine Corps Reserve as a colonel in 1990.

He has been serving the people of Pennsylvania’s 12th Congressional District since 1974. Currently serving his 19th term, Congressman Murtha is the eighth most senior member of the 435-member U.S. House of Representatives. Of the nearly 10,600 men and women who have served in the U.S. House of Representatives since 1789, only 79 have served longer than he has.

NY Times Caucus blog:

A former Marine, Mr. Murtha, his office noted, was the first Vietnam War combat Veteran elected to Congress. Throughout his years, Mr. Murtha paid particular attention to defense spending and to the Pentagon and the military.

When he called for bringing the troops home from Iraq in 2005, after having voted for the war, his proposal stunned many in Congress and added a powerful voice to the growing forces demanding immediate drawdowns and or deadlines.

Murtha was not perfect, but I will remember him for speaking up when few in Congress had the courage to do so. He gave voice to millions of Americans who felt no one was listening.

My thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends. Rest in peace, John Murtha.