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    • The politics you’ve got
      MANDOS POST Take a look at Joe Biden—he appears to have, for now at least, considerable staying power in the Democratic primary opinion polls (although, of course, this may change as the actual primaries come through). If your model of political psychology can predict a strong core of popular support for Trump without also predicting […]
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Republican “Muslim Under the Bed” Debate

monster_under_bedCNN says the kid’s table debate for the Republicans is going on now. I’m not terribly interested. The main event starts at 8:30pm. Why the Republicans need so many debates in order to not talk real policy is beyond me. Ok, not really. They’re going  to be on the tube as much as possible from now until Nov 2016 because the media wants us to hear them constantly, even if we are not supposed to take them seriously.

Well, *most* of us will not take them seriously.

Oh, look! France rejected it’s right wing nationalist party after a terrorist attack! Gee, if only we could reject guys like that in our own country…. {{sigh}}  A girl can dream.

Anyway, I think we can all expect both debates to feature all kinds of scary scenarios featuring Muslims. So, I am proposing my own scenario for this one called, The Muslim under the Bed. What would your favorite candidate do? Here’s how it goes:

It’s 2am and you wake up with an urgent need to pee. Suddenly, you hear a scuffling noise from under the bed. You are sure there is a Muslim under there with a long knife waiting to cut your head off. What do you do?

A.) You go for it. You jump out of bed and run to the door, fling it open, run to the bathroom, slam the door shut loudly and lock the door behind you hoping you reach the loo before Ahmed does.

B.) You decide to hold it. You breathe very softly so that you fool the Muslim into thinking you are still asleep. It’s only a few hours to sunrise and when the sun comes up, the Muslim will disappear.

C.) Very carefully you slide your hand under your pillow for your AK-47, do a quick maneuver you have been practicing for just this eventuality, aim your gun under the bed and shoot the cat.

Commence the collective trembling and live blog here.

 

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Look out for your Muslim neighbors and friends

I frequently go off on a tangent about religion. There are a couple of reasons for that. One is that I think it’s a waste of resources to be pining for a celestial paradise when living in the here and now requires so much attention. Two, I think that god, if she does exist, does not want people to try to understand the bronze age mythology and morality of a tribe of warriors, sheep herders and Taliban precursors. She wants a major rewrite.

But I don’t really have a problem with average religious people as long as they don’t expect me to participate. I DO have a problem with fundamentalists from any religion. They’re the ones that give the rest of their religious adherents a bad name and that goes for Christianity as well as Islam.

Where I live, there are a lot of Muslims. I see them pushing strollers on the sidewalk, serving shwarma from a grease wagon, at my old place of work and among my friends. The right wing noise machine has a lot of right wing voters convinced that these people, who in total are a tiny fraction of the American population, are going to receive a fatwa and murder us all in our beds. Setting aside the fact that the numerical probability of this happening is about as likely as being sucked down the bathtub drain, it’s just a ridiculous idea. Who has the time to go all jihad on anyone anymore? There’s work, chauffeuring your kids around, going to back to school night, shopping for food, cooking, cleaning, mowing the lawn. Muslims are just as exhausted as the rest of us. And besides, not every Muslim is a fanatical, fundamentalist in the mold of Pat Robertson or Jack van Impe.

The timing and severity of the events in the past couple days point to a political motive to me. They are designed to make Obama look bad, to make his foreign policy staff look overwhelmed (too bad that Hillary is as steady as a rock) and to make the less reflective and conscientious Americans among us to take their anger out on innocent people. That would be bad. I don’t care how unhappy I am with Obama, there is no excuse for using innocent Muslim Americans to score political points.

I hope I am wrong about this but as the rioting escalates (and who knows who is behind that really and with how much money) the conservative Fox News viewer, indoctrinated by endless Muslim jihad scenarios, might start to lose it. It’s just the kind of chaos scenario the right wing would delight in. And where has Karl Rove been lately? He’s been entirely too quiet.

So, keep an eye out for your Muslim neighbors and friends. Don’t let the mob impinge on everyone else’s religious freedom, even if all that praying is a waste of time after all.

A Plea from a Makeup Guru

As some of you may know, I watch makeup videos on YouTube to relax.  Yeah, yeah, it’s a secret vice.  I can never look like them but I have learned a few things.  Like, use a peach highlighter to counteract dark circles and stay away from eyeshadows with too much shimmer unless you are very young.  And I have also learned that some makeup gurus, like Samantha at pixiwoo, know that it’s not all about them:

{Stay with it til the end.  It’s short but worth it}

I find it really strange that the plight of the Pakistanis is on low burn this week.  The UN says that compared to Haiti earthquake and Indonesian tsunami relief, the flooding in Pakistan, which is affecting so many people, is getting very little attention.

Images of people slogging through water did not generate the same kind of sympathy as a leveled city, even though the dimensions are similar, aid groups noted, especially since, according to the United Nations, more than 15 million people have been affected and are often difficult to reach.

“That should be enough to get anybody’s attention,” said George Rupp, the president of the International Rescue Committee. The organization has raised just $1.18 million of the $5 million it is seeking, with about $700,000 coming from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Online donations are far below the response to past disasters, he noted.

Many aid groups are increasing their efforts as the scope of the disaster unfolds. TheInternational Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies began an appeal for more than $16 million on Aug. 2, of which about 60 percent has been donated, but now expects to double the appeal, said Elyse Mosquini of the federation’s United Nations office.

Given the threat of more rain and the potential spread of disease, time is not an ally. “People are starting to appreciate the scale, but I don’t know that people are appreciating the urgency,” said Rebecca Barber of Oxfam, speaking by telephone from Pakistan.

There were limited signs on Tuesday that change might be in the offing. At the London premiere of the movie “Salt,” Angelina Jolie lent glamour to the cause, saying on the red carpet that donating to Pakistan was an urgent matter. “It is millions and millions of people who will be uprooted for a very long time,” she said.

Unfortunately, this is not a good time for giving to the Pakistanis.  The citizens of this country turn to their churches during natural disasters, looking for answers and relief.  But Pakistan is a Muslim country and our country is busily engaged in a PR political war to determine whether American Muslims in New York City have the right to worship where it is most convenient for them.  When they might be finding comfort in their mosques, organizing relief for their Pakistani friends, they are instead asked to defend their constitutionally guaranteed right to worship.

I’m embarrassed for us on both counts. Not only does it demonstrate how crowds can be swayed to carry praise or blame too far, it makes fundamentalist extremism towards our country more likely.  We make a mockery of the principles upon which this country was built and in the process end up looking like craven, irrational hypocrites.

This week, I will be devoting the Friday Fast to Pakistani Flood Relief.  In the meantime, I have a little public service announcement to my friends on Facebook.  I haven’t really used Facebook much until recently when DandyTiger turned me on to Flipboard.  So, I just started accepting my friend invitations.  But I have been really disturbed by a small number of these so-called friends who have been sending me columns opposed to the proposed mosque in Lower Manhattan.  Let me make my view on this perfectly clear: I believe in the freedom of worship.  I am an American and that’s what Americans believe in.  Some of you may have forgotten that principle but it’s in the bill of rights.  I don’t have the right to hold my beliefs as being better or more worthy of respect than anyone else’s.  I DO have a problem with fundamentalism and extremism in any religion.  But it you keep your beliefs to yourself and behave as a good citizen, then your Christian fundamentalism is of no interest to me.

So, verily I say unto you, do not send me messages of intolerance regarding this mosque.  I have no fear of Muslims.  I want to live in peace with them.  And I will unfriend you. I have already had to unfriend several people over this.  If that means I have fewer friends, well, at least I can sleep at night with a clear conscience.

If you are insulted or offended by this post, then please, don’t feel obligated to read anything else I write.  I don’t speak for the other frontpagers on this matter but I have no reason to believe they disagree with me.

Obama on “Women’s Rights” in His Speech in Cairo, Egypt

Obama's concept of women's rights?

Obama's concept of women's rights?

Oh. My. God. Is this man really as clueless as he sounds? Obama on the rights of Muslim women in the U.S.:

…freedom in America is indivisible from the freedom to practice one’s religion. That is why there is a mosque in every state of our union, and over 1,200 mosques within our borders. That is why the U.S. government has gone to court to protect the right of women and girls to wear the hijab, and to punish those who would deny it.

On what he refers to as “women’s rights”:

I know there is debate about this issue. I reject the view of some in the West that a woman who chooses to cover her hair is somehow less equal, but I do believe that a woman who is denied an education is denied equality. And it is no coincidence that countries where women are well-educated are far more likely to be prosperous.

Now let me be clear: issues of women’s equality are by no means simply an issue for Islam. In Turkey, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Indonesia, we have seen Muslim-majority countries elect a woman to lead. Meanwhile, the struggle for women’s equality continues in many aspects of American life, and in countries around the world.

Our daughters can contribute just as much to society as our sons, and our common prosperity will be advanced by allowing all humanity – men and women – to reach their full potential. I do not believe that women must make the same choices as men in order to be equal, and I respect those women who choose to live their lives in traditional roles. But it should be their choice. That is why the United States will partner with any Muslim-majority country to support expanded literacy for girls, and to help young women pursue employment through micro-financing that helps people live their dreams.

That is all Obama had to say about “women’s rights” yesterday in his speech to a Muslim audience. Continue reading

For the record, I don’t care if Obama was raised a Muslim

The story being floated by the Israeli newspaper may or may not be true. It makes no difference to me. My opposition to Barack Obama is based on his and his campaign’s behavior during the campaign and the actions of the DNC in his favor. My opposition to Barack Obama is based on the fact that he can’t hold a candle to Hillary Clinton in terms of policy, experience, qualifications, strength, dedication and sheer guts in the face of overwhelming odds.

I expect Obama will once again run from this accusation, deny it, and throw Muslims under a bus, along with the rest of us who are already there. It’s getting might crowded under the bus these days. But this will not make him more presidential. This will only make him the craven empty suit we know he is.

As a Muslim role model, he sucks.

Ponderables

  • How well will Hillary do today in Florida? What will the impact of Ted Kennedy’s endorsement for Obama be? Will it free up liberals to vote for him or will women, such as myself, turn out in numbers to register their displeasure?
  • The following disgusting website was referred to me by an Obama lurker. Is this viral and does it explain some of the support from people who don’t remember the 90’s? The helpful reader says the following:

    I don’t speak out of ignorance. I’ve done my due diligence in investigating
    both candidates. And so have many other people in charge. That’s why the
    Kennedy’s have endorsed Obama also. They know the “real” from the “fake”.Get informed, please!

    !

  • Obama once again throws Muslims under a bus. I guess the audacity of hope doesn’t apply to all people. I’ll betcha he’s not an atheist either. Neither am I but my adolescent is. Is he going to be her president or will he continue the Bush tradition of treating non-Judeo-Christians as second class citizens? And when exactly are we supposed to get over our fear of Muslims if the Democratic frontrunner continues to treat them like lepers? Just sayin’.
  • Please, someone tell Hillary to not do robocalls.  They make voters hate the candidate that makes them. (I heard about this from many, many Lamont voters in the CT primary.  The Big Dawg’s robocalls for Lieberman REALLY turned them off)  It’s a surefire way to lose voters unless you are telling people what their polling place is.  Never, NEVER make advocacy robocalls.  And if Mark Penn is suggesting them, hurt him, real bad.