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Last day to register

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Rebecca Traister gave another interview about her book Good and Mad to friend and journalist Chris Hayes. Traister is a must listen no matter what format but this podcast is especially poignant because it was recorded before Christine Blasey Ford testified last week. In that context, what Traister says will blow your mind.

About anger, am I angry? Yes. I’m as angry as a Bacchae. It has been a struggle to not start screaming and not stop until I burst some eardrums. I don’t get that angry very often but if you push me year after year without let up, I lose it eventually.

The trouble is, and this is a problem regardless of what sex you are, it’s very difficult to canvas when you’re not in control of your anger. You can’t just show up at peoples’ doors like some Tasmanian Devil with a flyer in your hand. It tends to make voters nervous.

So if you can control your anger for a few hours a weekend, please consider channeling it in some productive way for a campaign near you. For various real life reasons, I’ve been putting it off but now it’s crunch time.

**********************

Here’s a real life reason. I went to a goat run last Saturday. Turns out most of these people were Democrats who were furious at what happened with Kavanaugh. They’re all planning on voting in November. But first, a beer:

******************

Walk to work music:

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24 Responses

  1. Omg, that whining, crying toddler is on the bus again. Jeez, somebody needs a nap.

  2. He is tweeting that all these protesters were paid protesters and more nonsense like that. Not taking them seriously and then misrepresenting their motives.

  3. I listened Traister’s interview with Ezra Klein. She is brilliant and I look forward to hearing her conversation with Chris Hayes, as well. After listening to her I have evolved in my view of Andrea Dworkin and others considered “radical” in their feminism. What a time in which we live.

    • Among other things, Dworkin said that all male-female sex was rape, by definition..

      There is no way that “our side” can win enough elections, unless we get at least 40% or so of the male vote. I am well aware of the miserable, hate-filled language and actions of a large group of non-college educated white males, and then of course horrible sexual assaulting preppy white males of the Kavanaugh ilk. But a general war against men and maleness is not only unfair to the millions of men who do good things, and who love a woman in their life, but i t would keep Republicans in power forever. Very few heterosexual men would want a reality where women despised men the way that Dworkin and her compatriot Catherine MacKinnon did. And one thing which gets passed over is that many white women, particularly in the rural areas, vote the same way that the men do. Some want to attribute this to “being brainwashed by the patriarchy” or being afraid of men, but I think it is simply that they do not see these things through the same prism that mostly college educated women in urban areas do. Disturbingly, the Kavanaugh saga seems to have hardened the f first group’s resolve to go out to vote Republican. We saw Ernst, Capito, and Collins vote for Kavanaugh; Murkowski end up voting “Present.” We know that the awful Marsha Blackburn, who unfortunately looks to win in Tennessee, is right-wing Trump on everything. Republicans are protean, they will come up with a bunch of right-wing women canddiates who pretend that they care about wonen’s issues.

      This of course is the kind of thing that the despicable Trump is trying to exploit to his advantage. My problem with Traister is that, at least when I have seen her on television, she is always about one single issue, which ultimately boils down to how awful men are, and how women must rage and fight against her interpretation of maleness She is married; during some of the MeToo stories about men in Hollywood and the media, she wanted to tell us that her husband told her that because of those stories, he didn’t know why she would ever want to have sex with him again. During the last campaign and aftermath, she supported Hillary Clinton, but in what to me was an unappealing way; she only focused on the feminist import of the campaign. while her articles invariably took gratuitous shots at the way Hillary campaigned, and that, according to Traister’s viewpoint,, Hillary was slogging along in an uninspiring and even hapless way.

      When complex and multifaceted candidates are seen only as a symbol of one thing, it diminishes them. But I acknowledge that we have to win this election any way we can, so if large numbers of voting women are motivated by wanting to “destroy the patriarchy,” while they buy into the new narrative that Bill Clinton should have resigned from office because of having an affair with Monica Lewinsky (this was said by Kristin Gillibrand), and that Al Franken was right to resign, because allegedly putting his arm around some women, and trying to kiss one, is “sexual assault,” I’ll have to go with the enthusiasm, albeit not the narrative.

      • I composed a response to your thoughtful post and it disappeared. I’ll try again 🙂

      • Thank you for your well reasoned comments.

        I understand why Dworkin provokes a visceral response. In fact, 20 + years ago I shrugged her off because of her seemingly over the top feminist views. I still have concerns about how she criminalized intimacy in hetero relationships, for precisely the the reasons you articulated.

        I do believe that she was correct that women should be aware of the patriarchal framework, within which we all operate, in both our micro and macro environments.

        I am not familiar with Traister’s writing during the 2016 campaign, although given her journalistic background and colleagues it’s not surprising that her support was lukewarm and snarky. Sorry to hear it, but not surprised.

        I don’t completely agree with your take on Traister’s primary focus. My view from both interviews (I have yet to read her book) is the enormous power and change which can be effected when women are channeling righteous anger into action. She points to prominent women who were key figures in everything from abolishing slavery to the formation of unions to civil rights. And, of course, the suffragette movement.

        And you perfectly stated the complexities and nuances rife within the politics of gender.

        I happened upon a podcast from “Skullduggery”, in which the author of a book and a film maker of movie about Gary Hart called “Front Runner” are interviewed. They discuss the drift toward scandal and entertainment in politics and how Hart’s situation was the catalyst in many ways.

        They seemed to all agree this has created deleterious effects on the true qualities of a statesman (woman) which are no longer valued and the media’s gigantic role in this shift.

        One of the interviewers actually used the term “bimbo eruptions” to describe Clinton’s campaign and was taken to task later by one of interviewees. All male panel.

        And as they began to discuss the ramifications to women when those types of phrases are widely employed, they eventually sheepishly acknowledged that a group of men may not be poised to discuss that topic with any level of expertise.

        Small steps 🙂

        • Herstory Repeating, I appreciate your thoughtful and fair-minded reply and elaboration. I think that we agree on important things, even though of course we might sometimes have a different prism from which to view things.

          There is no question that there are bad men out there, men who derogate and even abuse women. And it is exciting to see women running for office, and obviously being the major component of Democratic resistance to the fascists trying to control the nation. But I do react to the “men are awful” narrative which gets purveyed. I won’t go through it all here, but there is this unfortunate blurring of lines, via MeToo, where mild flirting or even kissing a woman at the end of a date can be construed as some kind of “sexual misbehavior” or even assault. Expanding these definitions is not good for anyone who does not want some kind of New Puritanism to take hold. Unfortunately, in virtually every kind of social or political conversation, there seems no way to draw reasonable boundaries; it seems to be all or nothing. It is an interesting if frustrating intellectual exercise to try to think really hard about things like this, and decide what reasonable workplace rules or even societal rules might be. At the one extreme, you have the old days, where men could get away with mostly anything in the workplace; and now at the other extreme, there are implicit calls to make virtually any male action that a particular woman didn’t originally sign a notarized statement in favor of, to be non-consensual, and thus grounds for firing or worse. And no one actually wants to sit down and figure out some guidelines for conduct that would protect against the egregious misbehavior, but allow room for “vive la difference.”

          That is why Dworkin and Mackinnon and some others very much upset me, because I read their comments as coming from a position of basically hating heterosexual men. MacKinnon, in particular, was a puritan whose followers wanted to ban and suppress books and poems which they saw as evil expressions of maleness, things like Andrew Marvell’s poem “To His Coy Mistress,” or the works of Philip Roth. I know that about twenty years ago, there was this wave in universities trying to take such works off the reading lists. I don’t know what has happened since. Aesthetically speaking, I know that there have been many efforts to reorient movies and theatre, not necessarily for the better. As sort of a silly example, I watched the series “Broadchurch,” which involved the efforts to find the killer of a boy. There was a big thing about contests and even betting on who the murderer would be revealed to be. I would have won, because I immediately eliminated as a possibility every woman in the story (they would not make the murderer of a preteen to be a woman), eliminated the one Black person in the story; eliminated the Reverend and the boy’s father, and then only had two characters left, and just figured it would be the less likely of those. Also, that vastly overrated series, written by a man (he is now showrunner of “Doctor Who”), portrayed every man in the script, except the alcoholic Reverend, as being at the least a jerk, and most worse than that. I commented that if this show were seen as a true evocation of the world, no woman would have anything to do with any man. “Big Little Lies,” was almost just like that; the men were all jerks and far worse, except for the one idealized male who made all the money for the family, cooked the meals because he loved doing so; and not only forgave his wife for obviously cheating on him, but just kept telling her how much he loved her, without ever even questioning her about the infidelity. Well, those are minor things, just shows; but for someone who loves nuance in literature and art, it is disappointing, because I think the characters have mostly become like stock figures from Commedia dell’arte; you know exactly how they are and how they will act, after the first thirty minutes; and the main reason is because the writers and networks want to purvey a particular social narrative. I loved books and movies where there was ambiguity, and characters of both genders and all ethnicities might reflect varying shades of it.

          Well, that is probably off the subject; but just some aspect of the problem of portraying one gender as good and one as not. There are fortunately reasonable people like you out there, but of course their ideas and voices often get drowned out by those who push for extremes. Finally, as to Rebecca Traister, she obviously has a following. I did not appreciate at least some of her articles during the campaign (I read them because some suggested they were worthwhile) where at least as I saw it, Hillary was almost cast as a supporting player in Traister’s larger narrative of women against men. She saw the entire campaign as being about misogyny; while to me, that was clearly an important part, but there were others, such as the mythology that Trump was the friend of the working person, and that Hillary and her husband are corrupt; and of course the general bias of the media, both men and women, against her. Traister at least on a couple of occasions seemed to cast Hillary as a rather ineffectual candidate with missteps. She supported her, but with the almost inevitable NY Times type of “it’s a shame she isn’t better” snark. And I did not appreciate that. Hillary needed more full-throated support and appreciation than she got from some quarters.

  4. I know we don’t care about what happens to these trump administration people. But my 2 cents about Haley resigning is one of saving herself for the long term. She could say she didn’t like how women were treated with K nomination. She could not pack a punch with her resignation if she did it after midterms and Democrats won.

    • IMO sadly she did none of this… coming out later and saying this will not win her any points with me.

  5. Buffoon said Hillary never got it (about winning) when asked about her comment on CNN which was that the WH event for the supremes was a political rally. No one told him she got 3 mil more votes.

    • PM, more votes than any other presidential candidate in our history except for Obama in 2008. She even beat Obama’s 2012 totals. Yeah, right, you Malignant Miasma of Malevolence, she doesn’t get it because she was a “horrible candidate” who failed to see the power of corruption, hatred and fear. What Hillary didn’t get is fair treatment from Russia, Comey, the FBI, the GOP. the SC (Citizen’s United and gutting the VRA) and Sanders. She will always be a winner to me.

  6. Another issue to get enraged about. Why are not the media fuckers hounding trump and his minions on this? Why isn’t this the front page headline with a blaring siren. This is so criminal, so inhumane.

  7. Yes, very nervous. It didn’t get as much play but he was way too nervous and why? We know why. He knew Ramirez story was circulating and would be disclosed any moment even as he tried to stifle it.

  8. The ugly motherfucking illiterate MOB…and MOB rule. Why can’t a prominent Democrat rebut his tweets with what goes on these rallies? Why can’t the media write articles about HIS MOB and HIS MOB RULE?

    • I don’t know why the DNC doesn’t have some ads running which compare Trump to Hitler, showing the Nazi rallies and the chants. They are very similar. But the MSM would be aghast, because the Democrats must always be civil, and must not even protest, while Republicans wave fists in rage, and chant that public figures they don’t like should be locked up. When the real violence starts, the MSM will have panel discussions asking perplexedly, what is the cause of this? Must be both sides, yes, indeed, just like the Nazis only beat people up in the early days, because they were goaded into it. The death camps came a while after that.

    • Wow, Laura Rozen is echoing what I said above. Yes, we need a prominent Dem surrogate to rebut his tweets and his rallies. Tom Steyer or some such person may be able to finance it. Protesters will get an outlet and if the media deigns to carry it, it will even make national news and maybe they will stream it. Call it Townhall chats (like fireside chats) and go from state to state and show case the candidates running for office there.

    • Good. Common sense prevails.

  9. I hadn’t put this together. here is the origin of ‘lock her up’, of course. Manafort running the Ukrainian guy’s campaign and his opponent was a woman. Now remember all the stuff the buffoon said about Hillary and see Manafort’s fingerprints on it.

    • The whole gang, trump, the campaign cronies, Manafort and the rest, the Republicans, his supporters and the rally goers are all evil ((witting or unwitting) which is why he keeps projecting that on the Democrats. There is always a tell in whatever trump says.

  10. Trump and Trump’s snarling mob chanting “lock her up” for Feinstein is a gift. What phrase better represents the Republican Party’s desire to forcibly deprive women, who challenge their rule, of their rights and freedom.

    Voting starts today at 8:00 here headed out to vote these

  11. Fools out! I voted today.

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