So I am leaving tomorrow, to go to MN for the weekend. I'll be in Minneapolis from Friday 26th till Mon 29th, going to all the Nordic Roots festival shows at the Cedar, and spending my time drinking and harrassing innocent Mid-Western wenches at several venues (assuming they still exist): Sgt Preston's, that awesome hot-dog place half a block from the theatre, that wondersome cheap dive a couple of blocks up from the theatre, or, if all else fails, in the lobby bar at the Holiday Inn. I shall wear black and be loud, so if you feel like stopping by for a philosophical discussion, a drinking competition, some nefarious plotting or a friendly game of fisticuffs, be my guests!
I do not have the right equipment, but any woman reading this should consider going to Women against Sarah Palin blog and adding her name to the already rather distinguished list. A short quote:
"We want to clarify that we are not against Sarah Palin as a woman, a mother, or, for that matter, a parent of a pregnant teenager, but solely as a rash, incompetent, and all together devastating choice for Vice President. Ms. Palin's political views are in every way a slap in the face to the accomplishments that our mothers and grandmothers so fiercely fought for, and that we've so demonstrably benefited from."
Yeah, that's absolutely correct.
The new Ecuadorian constitution will apparently include "rights of nature":
"Art. 1. Nature or Pachamama, where life is reproduced and exists, has the right to exist, persist, maintain and regenerate its vital cycles, structure, functions and its processes in evolution.
Every person, people, community or nationality, will be able to demand the recognitions of rights for nature before the public organisms. The application and interpretation of these rights will follow the related principles established in the Constitution.Art. 1. Nature or Pachamama, where life is reproduced and exists, has the right to exist, persist, maintain and regenerate its vital cycles, structure, functions and its processes in evolution.
Every person, people, community or nationality, will be able to demand the recognitions of rights for nature before the public organisms. The application and interpretation of these rights will follow the related principles established in the Constitution."
For more details, see http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2008/09/04-7
Adlai Stevenson, while running against Eisenhower for President, gave a particularly great speech and afterwards one of his aides came up to him and said "Mr. Stevenson, after that speech you will have the vote of every THINKING person in America!" Mr. Stevenson replied "That won't be enough. I need a MAJORITY!"
Does this remind you of anything? With all the right-wing bloggers and their sycophantic commenters frothing and cumming all over themselves at the thought of another authoritarian ignoramus (almost) at the helm, I haven't lost hope yet. Perhaps we have learned something. The funny thing about all the conservative ravings is their conviction that the Democratic party stands for some kind of hard left ideology, something only a blinkered idiot would consider to even approximate the truth. Remember, kids: Democratic party is center, wobbling between left- and right-leaning please-everyone stances. Republicans, on the other hand, are in the distinguished company of Mussolini and Franco, on the far right of things. Any further right, they'd be all over the sidewalk, running over pedestrians. Wait, they do that already! There is no mainstream left in the USA, despite all of your subliminal desires for a bogey-man to come and treat you like you deserve to be treated.
Oh, and by the way, still no word from the McCain campaign about those pesky science questions...
Amazing. One of the questions asked of Sarah Palin was:
" 11. Are you offended by the phrase "Under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance? Why or why not?
SP: Not on your life. If it was good enough for the founding fathers, its good enough for me and I'll fight in defense of our Pledge of Allegiance."
The joke is that the words of the Pledge were not written until 1892, and the words "Under God" inserted into it in 1954. What do the founding fathers have to do with it?
We've known for sure that she was a medieval theocrat already, now she proves her ignorance beyond any reasonable doubt. Is this what USA wants to stand by the presidential throne: an ignorant, oppressive, bigoted, theocratic idiot? The mind boggles...wobbles...toggles....
GOP has gone into an attack mode, accusing any critics of Governor Palin of sexism. Of course, such a charge coming from the conservative wing of a conservative party (opposed, for example, to Equal Rights Amendment) is somewhat funny on the face of it, but we can ignore that for now.
In any case, allow me to throw in my little bit of technicolour yawning. Firstly, my feminist and libertarian credentials are well established, and a charge of sexism against me is laughable, as anyone that knows me can attest. Secondly, I am not going to concern myself with irrelevant charges, such as her personal business, anything involving her family, or such.
But the problems with Palin go much deeper than that. Of course, her experience (or lack of it) is hardly relevant, as a number of bloggers on both sides of the fence have already pointed out. Her opposition to abortion is more troubling, but here, too, one must be given some slack (although her opposition to *all* abortion, even in cases of rape and incest, is quite frightening. One is reminded of a statement attributed to the then-Senator Jesse Helms, on the very same subject: "What's wrong with incest? That's how we get the best horses." Speaking of sexism...)
No, the issues that make her, in my opinion, unfit to hold the office, are her lack of understanding of the basics of our Constitution and her unabashedly theocratic tendencies. If I were in an uncharitable mood, I would be tempted to call her an ignorant fascist! She is completely unclear on the concepts of the separation of powers, freedom of speech and the Establishment Clause. In the past, she has called for the teaching of creationism alongside evolution in public schools, spoke favourably of the banning of certain books in public libraries and, apparently, attempted to pressure other state officials to join up in her private feuds. All of those make her appear positively medieval, in some ways, and certainly not a person who would be looked at as an ambassador of democracy by the whole world.
So, back to sexism: it appears that the selection of Sarah Palin is, on the one hand, a bone thrown to the right wing of the Republican Party (read: mad, ignorant theocratic fascists) to bring them around and rally their support behind McCain's questionable conservative convictions and, on the other hand, an attempt to play the discrimination and pseudo-feminist card. A transparent political gimmick, a ploy that may fool some but not most, hopefully.