Jesurgislac’s Journal

November 15, 2008

My Obama Wish List: 10

Filed under: My Obama Wish List,Pets — jesurgislac @ 8:31 am
Tags: , , ,

What’s next?

10 Getting the First Puppy

Take more time to choose and vet the puppy for the First Daughters than McCain did when he chose Sarah Palin.

Okay, break’s over!

October 31, 2008

Can someone explain why…

…someone regurgitating this Republican crap about Barack Obama makes a point of claiming to be a Democrat?

I mean seriously. The guy evidently intends to vote for John McCain and Sarah Palin next Tuesday: he supported George W. Bush consistently and loyally: he opposed John Kerry: he seems to have opposed Al Gore: on what basis does he still think of himself as a “Democrat”?

October 18, 2008

“I should have a choice about this”

Transcript below the fold.
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October 2, 2008

Eight years before Florida 2000… and after

Reading the transcript of this VP debate from 1992, by the way, Admiral Stockdale doesn’t even mention that he was a POW for over 7 years.

Possibly because he felt he’d accomplished things in his life since such that the years he spent as a prisoner were not the largest accomplishment of his life.

I’ll update with a link to the Biden – Palin VP debate when a transcript is available.

Transcript from CNN.

(And, update: Saturday Night Live Vice Presidential Debate Transcript and non-US accessible video (comment 2). Also, discussion whether this successful satire makes Palin more lovable.)

PS: Why Florida 2000 Still Matters.

October 1, 2008

Palin and the McCain: are you pondering what I’m pondering?

Pinky & The Brain = Palin & McCain

Pinky & The Brain = Palin & McCain by Val Web

(This post could not have been created without Richard Watanabe’s fabulously wonderful Complete List.)

“Egad. You astound me, John.”
-”That’s a simple task, Sarah.”

“Are there any questions?”
-”Oh, Oh, pick me, John.”
“President McCain!”
-”Yes, um, what is the password?
“I can’t tell you. If you were to be a PRISONER OF WAR you might give it away.”
-”What, me? Never, no, Narf, never.”
“And if you were tortured?”
-”Oh, well that’s different then, isn’t it?”
(more…)

September 30, 2008

What kind of person still wants to vote for McCain?

McCain and Palin had a bad week, and it was entirely of their own making. (“I’m going to suspend my campaign and fly to Washington to fix the crisis!” said McCain. “Well, I think so -POIT- but where do you stick the feather and call it macaroni?” said Palin.)

The US is in the middle of a financial crisis. This guy (via) has Palin-level solutions (and shares Jerry Falwell’s notion of Christianity).

He thinks the problem is that the State of Maine isn’t sufficiently pro forced pregnancy: that taxpayers support family planning: that marriage isn’t defined in the state constitution and ought to be: that in Maine same-sex couples have some of the civil rights of marriage and ought to have none: and that Maine sets certain standards for education that discriminate against Christian parents who want their children taught only that God created the world in six days a little over six thousand years ago. Oh, and he thinks that “unleashing the private sector” would make Maine “energy independent”. Goodness knows how. Treadmills?

It seems, you see, that what this McCain voter objects to is Governor John E. Baldacci’s work to make Maine more energy-independent, less oil-dependent:

“From my earlier experiences and frustrations, we set up this Office of Energy Independence and Security when oil was $20 a barrel. At that time I knew the public wasn’t going to understand that this was an important measure, because there wasn’t anything dramatic going on with energy then, but I hoped it would give us an opportunity to become a laboratory for energy saving ideas. We started buying hybrid Priuses, and doing car and van pooling. We now use 100 percent renewable energy for state government’s electrical needs. By using biodiesel for State buildings, we save about 13,000 gallons of Number 2 heating oil every year. We started conservation methods in all departments. We’re doing things smarter by using the resources we had.”

So, in summary: a typical McCain voter believes that the country can be saved (and God will “crack a smile”) if more women are forced through pregnancy against their will, same-sex couples are denied basic civil rights, scientific education is rolled back to the 19th century, and there’s none of this nonsense about the state government offering programs that help people become more energy efficient.

“Right now, there is not a single voting system on the market or in use anywhere in the country that meets current federal voting standards, and very few people realize it.” – Douglas Kellner, co-chair of New York State’s election board

But I’m sure John McCain is among those few.

September 24, 2008

Traditional Values: How dare an uppity black woman think she can make her own rules!

The Traditional Values Coalition wants you to crash Oprah Winfrey’s e-mail server. (Thanks to Ben Wolfson at Unfogged for the heads-up.)

Oprah’s crime: she has set a rule that she’ll interview no candidates for President on her show (Barack Obama has appeared on her show twice, both times before he announced he’d be running for President: since then, though Oprah has made no secret of supporting Obama for President, he has not been interviewed on Oprah).

The Traditional Values Coalition (among those “traditional values” must be “being a whiny baby”) has written an e-mail for their supporters to send (they don’t permit their supporters any alterations except in the subject line of the e-mail). I did consider sending one with a subject line Oprah Rules, Sarah Drools! More Traditional Values Coalition Bullshit but then I thought, nah, the whole point is clearly to crash the system with sheer numbers, I won’t join in. They squeal that Oprah’s “honoring the accomplishments of all women” is an illusion, as is her belief in “fairness and impartiality”. The e-mail refers to an invented item on the Drudge Report that Oprah had refused to interview Sarah Palin, tp which Oprah responded:

The item in today’s Drudge Report is categorically untrue. There has been absolutely no discussion about having Sarah Palin on my show. At the beginning of this Presidential campaign when I decided that I was going to take my first public stance in support of a candidate, I made the decision not to use my show as a platform for any of the candidates. I agree that Sarah Palin would be a fantastic interview, and I would love to have her on after the campaign is over.

Apparently, making rules for who will and will not appear on the show means Oprah is not “the advocate for all women” – after all, Sarah Palin is just a career Republican hack hockey mom. Oprah’s uppity decision to publicly support a Presidential candidate and to set rules for her own show must, to these “traditional value” people “mean only one thing – you put Obama’s interests ahead of the interests of your viewers”. Yeah right.

Still, though I would not wish Oprah to reverse her decision not to interview any of the candidates on her show, I would very much like to watch Oprah push Sarah’s head through the wall. Metaphorically, of course, and I’m sure Oprah would do it ever so nicely; Sarah might not even know how badly she’d been beaten till she saw the reruns.

PS: Someone already did the analysis much better.

Paying attention: why Florida 2000 still matters

In November 2000, the Presidential election had come down to the 25 electoral votes in Florida. Gore had won the popular vote, and, by exit polls proven reliable in every country in the world, he’d won Florida.

By December 2000, the courts – not the voters – had decided to hand Florida’s electoral votes to Bush.

Many Americans are under the strong (yet incorrect) impression that Bush “won Florida”. They are incorrect about this – but hardly to be blamed: no US news services ever clearly and unambiguously reported, at any time after the courts had awarded the White House to Bush, that – if all the votes had been counted, which they never were officially – a majority of Florida’s voters had voted for Gore. (This does not count the voters who were intimidated away from the polls nor the voters who were illegally removed from the electoral rolls prior to the election, which I was reading about in the UK news and hearing about on the BBC in November 2000 – along with the news that an attempted recount had been halted by Republican party operatives from another state who showed up to violently protest the recount.)

If all the votes had been counted, according to Florida electoral law in November 2000 – count the ballot if the voter’s intent is clear – Gore had won. (There’s an interesting interview in Research in Review that makes the point that Gore won by tens of thousands, not by a close count of a few hundred, with the author of The Battle for Florida: An Annotated Compendium of Materials from the 2000 Presidential Election.)
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September 22, 2008

51% of the people who visit PBS.org are morons

Filed under: Elections — jesurgislac @ 7:14 pm
Tags: , ,

Simple question: simple, obvious answer. Do you think Sarah Palin is qualified to serve as Vice President of the United States?

Good grief. How can so many people get it so wrong? I mean, even Republicans who think Dick Cheney’s been the bestest Vice President ever.

September 12, 2008

Pro-lifers support rapists

Hilzoy on Obsidian Wings:

One Vice Presidential nominee turned her back on past and future rape victims. Another was looking out for them. Read the rest

It’s one of the examples of how feminism has worked its way into general acceptance since the revolutionary movement began: it’s now accepted in most modern jurisdictions that rape is a crime committed by the rapist, for which the rapist is prosecuted by the state: it is not a crime that the rape victim claims is done to her for which she personally must seek redress. (I use gendered language in the last part of that sentence because the legal acceptance that men too are raped is another by-product of feminism.)

Old-fashioned legal language used the term “prosecutrix” to describe the rape victim if charges were brought against the rapist in court, blandly presenting the idea that the rapist’s victim was pressing the charges, rather than being the key witness. It is a source of the blame-the-victim attitude – “being raped” was something that happened to the victim, not something that someone else did.

For example, explicitly for “pro-life” reasons, the Catholic Church recently withdrew all support for Amnesty International, because AI had decided that they would support the right of a raped woman to have an abortion and to get medical treatment for problems caused by an illegal abortion – a decision caused by AI’s work with women gang-raped by soldiers in the Congo. At the other end of the scale, Catholic hospitals routinely deny emergency contraception to rape victims – a procedure which in a civilised country leads to more abortions than would otherwise occur.

Although Hilzoy doesn’t mention it, this belief usually runs in parallel with the belief that a woman made pregnant by rape ought to be forced through pregnancy and childbirth – no matter the age of the victim, her being raped has removed her status as “innocent”: the fetus she may carry has that status, but a raped child does not. (The recent example of an 11-year-old girl in Romania, who had been raped – allegedly by her uncle, who fled when his niece’s pregnancy was discovered – but who was denied an abortion by the pro-lifer authorities in her country, “to protect the innocent child”. The girl, you see, was no longer an innocent child – she had been raped.)

Sarah Palin famously said, in response to a question about whether she supported abortion, not even if her own daughter was raped.

(That she reneged on that decision, and has since declared herself to be pro-choice, makes her a better human being, but her principles at the time she was Mayor of Wasilla were apparently, explicitly, for forced pregnancy.)

It doesn’t surprise me that, just as Palin regards a raped woman as an incubator for the rapist’s seed, Palin also regards evidence for prosecuting the rapist for his crime as a matter for the rape victim to pay for.

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