Palin: Wrong Woman, Wrong Message

A friend sent me this article. I think it is one of the best political articles I have read during this campaign. Gloria Steinem is eloquent and articulate with her wording and opinions. She put into words everything I have been thinking while enlightening me on some issues I wasn’t aware of.

Enjoy.

from Opinion – LA Times
PALIN: WRONG WOMAN, WRONG MESSAGE
By Gloria Steinem

September 4, 2008


Here’s the good news: Women have become so politically powerful that even the anti-feminist right wing — the folks with a headlock on the Republican Party — are trying to appease the gender gap with a first-ever female vice president. We owe this to women — and to many men too — who have picketed, gone on hunger strikes or confronted violence at the polls so women can vote. We owe it to Shirley Chisholm, who first took the “white-male-only” sign off the White House, and to Hillary Rodham Clinton, who hung in there through ridicule and misogyny to win 18 million votes.

But here is even better news: It won’t work. This isn’t the first time a boss has picked an unqualified woman just because she agrees with him and opposes everything most other women want and need. Feminism has never been about getting a job for one woman. It’s about making life more fair for women everywhere. It’s not about a piece of the existing pie; there are too many of us for that. It’s about baking a new pie.

Selecting Sarah Palin, who was touted all summer by Rush Limbaugh, is no way to attract most women, including die-hard Clinton supporters. Palin shares nothing but a chromosome with Clinton. Her down-home, divisive and deceptive
speech did nothing to cosmeticize a Republican convention that has more than
twice as many male delegates as female, a presidential candidate who is owned
and operated by the right wing and a platform that opposes pretty much
everything Clinton’s candidacy stood for — and that Barack Obama’s still does.
To vote in protest for McCain/Palin would be like saying, “Somebody stole my
shoes, so I’ll amputate my legs.”

This is not to beat up on Palin. I defend her right to be wrong, even on issues that matter most to me. I regret that people say she can’t do the job because she has children in need of care, especially if they wouldn’t say the same about a father. I get no pleasure from imagining her in the spotlight on national and foreign policy issues about which she has zero background, with one month to learn to compete with Sen. Joe Biden’s 37 years’ experience.

Palin has been honest about what she doesn’t know. When asked last month about the vice presidency, she said, “I still can’t answer that question until someone answers for me: What is it exactly that the VP does every day?” When asked about Iraq, she said, “I haven’t really focused much on the war in Iraq.”

She was elected governor largely because the incumbent was unpopular, and she’s won over Alaskans mostly by using unprecedented oil wealth to give a $1,200 rebate to every resident. Now she is being praised by McCain’s campaign as a tax cutter, despite the fact that Alaska has no state income or sales tax.
Perhaps McCain has opposed affirmative action for so long that he doesn’t know
it’s about inviting more people to meet standards, not lowering them. Or perhaps
McCain is following the Bush administration habit, as in the Justice Department,
of putting a job candidate’s views on “God, guns and gays” ahead of competence.
The difference is that McCain is filling a job one 72-year-old heartbeat away
from the presidency.

So let’s be clear: The culprit is John McCain. He may have chosen Palin out of change-envy, or a belief that women can’t tell the difference between form and content, but the main motive was to please right-wing ideologues; the same ones who nixed anyone who is now or ever has been a supporter of reproductive freedom. If that were not the case, McCain could have chosen a woman who knows what a vice president does and who has thought about Iraq; someone like Texas Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison or Sen. Olympia Snowe of Maine. McCain could have taken a baby step away from right-wing patriarchs who determine his actions, right down to opposing the Violence Against Women Act.

Palin’s value to those patriarchs is clear: She opposes just about every issue that women support by a majority or plurality. She believes that creationism should be taught in public schools but disbelieves global warming; she opposes gun control but supports government control of women’s wombs; she opposes stem cell research but approves “abstinence-only” programs, which increase unwanted births, sexually transmitted diseases and abortions; she tried to use taxpayers’ millions for a state program to shoot wolves from the air but didn’t spend enough money to fix a state school system with the lowest high-school graduation rate in the nation; she runs with a candidate who opposes the Fair Pay Act but supports $500 million in subsidies for a natural gas pipeline across Alaska; she supports drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Reserve, though even McCain has opted for the lesser evil of offshore drilling. She is Phyllis Schlafly, only younger.

I don’t doubt her sincerity. As a lifetime member of the National Rifle Assn., she doesn’t just support killing animals from helicopters, she does it herself. She doesn’t just talk about increasing the use of fossil fuels but puts a coal-burning power plant in her own small town. She doesn’t just echo McCain’s pledge to
criminalize abortion by overturning Roe vs. Wade, she says that if one of her
daughters were impregnated by rape or incest, she should bear the child. She not
only opposes reproductive freedom as a human right but implies that it dictates
abortion, without saying that it also protects the right to have a child.

So far, the major new McCain supporter that Palin has attracted is James Dobson of Focus on the Family. Of course, for Dobson, “women are merely waiting for their husbands to assume leadership,” so he may be voting for Palin’s husband.

Being a hope-a-holic, however, I can see two long-term bipartisan gains from this contest.

Republicans may learn they can’t appeal to right-wing patriarchs and most women at the same time. A loss in November could cause the centrist majority of Republicans to take back their party, which was the first to support the Equal Rights Amendment and should be the last to want to invite government into the wombs of women.

And American women, who suffer more because of having two full-time jobs than from any other single injustice, finally have support on a national stage from male
leaders who know that women can’t be equal outside the home until men are equal in it. Barack Obama and Joe Biden are campaigning on their belief that men
should be, can be and want to be at home for their children.

This could be huge.

Gloria Steinem is an author, feminist organizer and co-founder of the Women’s Media Center. She supported Hillary Clinton and is now supporting Barack Obama.

If you have not yet registered to vote, register today! Voice your opinion! It’s your country, take a stand! Now is the time for change. ROCK THE VOTE!

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Black Hurricanes

**DISCLAIMER: If you are easily offended by funny things, then don’t read this. But note that this posting does not reflect any personal views and it is just meant to be funny.**

Well, it appears our African-American friends have found yet something else to be pissed about.  A black congresswoman (this would be Sheila Jackson Lee, of Houston), reportedly complained that the names of hurricanes are all Caucasian sounding names.  She would prefer some names that reflect African-American culture such as Chamiqua, Tanisha, Woeisha, Shaqueal, and Jamal. I am NOT making this up!

She would also like the weather reports to be broadcast in ‘language’ that street people can understand because one of the problems that happened in New Orleans was, that black people couldn’t understand the seriousness of the situation, due to the racially biased language of the weather report. I guess if the weather person says that the winds are going to blow at 140+ MPH, thats too hard to understand.  I can hear it now:

I can just see it now…A weatherman in New Orleans says…

“Wazzup, mutha-fukkas! Hehr-i-cane Chamiqua be headin’ fo’ yo ass like Leroy on a crotch rocket! Bitch be a category fo’! So, turn off dem chitlins, grab yo’ chirren, leave yo crib, and head fo’ de nearest FEMA office fo yo FREE shit!”

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Will Draw Boobs

No more starving artist title for this guy. There is a man who has found a way to strike it rich. He draws cartoons, and his gimmick is “Will draw anything for $2!”

Sounds like a bargain. For two bucks, he will draw whatever your little heart desires, if you are willing to wait. He has a list that goes back to July 24th. I recommend submitting something that is an inside joke between you and a friend and giving it to them for their birthday this fall, or for Christmas/Chanukah/Kwanzaa.

Just go to http://yirmumah.com/ (get it, Your Moolah? Hahaha!) and tell him specifically what you want drawn. And for entertainment, check out the other crazy things he has drawn, like Derek Jeter eating pizza with Phil Hartman’s ghost on the moon. I didn’t come up with it, but some crazy person did.

So get your crazy idea put into ink today!

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I’d Rather Be at Hogwarts

For those of you fellow Harry Potter fanatics, here are a few interesting HP finds that I have recently stumbled upon. I am sure you are just as excited for the upcoming movie as I am! For those of you who think that being the director of a Harry Potter movie is just as consistent of being the Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher, rest assured. Since Christopher Columbus directed the first two movies, a different person has directed each of the preceding movies. Until now. David Yates, the director of Order of the Phoenix, has signed on to the do the remaining movies. I am very excited for this. I think he did an excellent job with Order of the Phoenix, and has the right vision and amount of darkness for the remaining pieces of the story. Another exciting piece of news is that they have decided to break The Deathly Hallows into two parts, à la Kill Bill. There are multiple reasons for the splitting of Hallows, and it seems to be a win-win situation for everyone. First of all, the books have gotten progressively longer. The first book, the Sorcerer’s (Philosopher’s) Stone only had 223 pages. The Deathly Hallows has 776 (and the Order of the Phoenix had a whopping 870!) As readers acknowledge and despise, subplots from the books have been cut-out to make room for the important parts of the plot in the movies. With Deathly Hallows being the final instalment of the 7-part story, there are no such things are sub-plots. Every detail ends up tying into some resolution as the story is completed. To keep everything in, a single movie would have been over 4 hours long. And while kids are one of the target audiences (even though the stories have gotten so dark, I wouldn’t let my kids see them if I was a parent since I had nightmares while reading them and I’m in my mid-twenties!), having a movie longer than two and a half hours would be impossible for children, and some adults to sit through. Therefore, Warner Brothers decided to split the Deathly Hallows into Part I and Part II to do the final Harry Potter story its full justice. Fans will be excited to get two movies without important things left out instead of one, Warner Brothers will make bank on the two movies (the first five brought in upward of 4.5billion dollars in box office ticket sales alone) , and all the people involved in creating them will have double the paycheck. And while sources say the reason behind the two-part plan is artistic rather that financial, I’ll leave it to you to decide. Either way, I’m not complaining. The Half-Blood Prince was set to hit theaters on November 21st of this year. However, the date has recently been been pushed back to July 19, 2009 despite the film being completed. A Warner Brother executive says the date push is “to guarantee the studio a major summer blockbuster in 2009”. Also, I bet the success of summer WB films Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007) and The Dark Knight (2008) also influenced the decision. Honestly though, when would a Harry Potter film NOT be a blockbuster? Everyone and their mom will be there no matter when it comes out. I apologize for being the bearer of bad news, but now we have to wait an extra 8 months. Anyway, I will try to cheer things up with a little preview or just a refresher — the official plot line (that Warner Brothers released) of Half-Blood Prince:

Voldemort is tightening his grip on both the Muggle and wizarding worlds and Hogwarts is no longer the safe haven it once was. Harry suspects that dangers may even lie within the castle, but Dumbledore is more intent upon preparing him for the final battle that he knows is fast approaching. Together they work to find the key to unlock Voldemort’s defenses and, to this end, Dumbledore recruits his old friend and colleague, the well-connected and unsuspecting bon vivant Professor Horace Slughorn, whom he believes holds crucial information. Meanwhile, the students are under attack from a very different adversary as teenage hormones rage across the ramparts. Harry finds himself more and more drawn to Ginny, but so is Dean Thomas. And Lavender Brown has decided that Ron is the one for her, only she hadn’t counted on Romilda Vane’s chocolates! And then there’s Hermione, simmering with jealousy but determined not to show her feelings. As romance blossoms, one student remains aloof. He is determined to make his mark, albeit a dark one. Love is in the air, but tragedy lies ahead and Hogwarts may never be the same again.

The Half-Blood Prince looks amazing from the brief trailer that has been released. I am all twitterpated in anticipation. As I already mentioned, David Yates will return to direct the film. Also, the much missed Quiddich makes a beloved return. And of course, Daniel Radcliffe (Harry), Emma Watson (Hermione), Rupert Grint (Ron) and the rest of gang is back again.

Some informative and interesting websites that will answer almost every one of your little heart’s desires, about Harry Potter that is, are listed below. Enrich your mind. Check them out!

Harry Potter Wiki

Muggle’s Guide to Harry Potter

Harry Potter Lexicon

Harry Potter – Official Site

JK Rowling – Official Site

Harry Potter Games and more

Muggle.net

Long live Hogwarts.

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Impossible Quiz

Well, not really. But you must use your brain to get through it. I have gotten to number 54.

See for yourself! Click below for AddictingGame.com’s Impossible Quiz.

http://www.addictinggames.com/theimpossiblequiz.html’

For more fun and “addicting games”, visit http://www.addictinggames.com

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Dale Vicky Cristina Gotham

In the past week, I have seen more movies than I saw all year. First, I saw the hilarious and ridiculous Pineapple Express, which was hilarious but I think I would have enjoyed it more had I followed my siblings lead of smoking a fatty before the movie. After a while I was thinking there couldn’t possibly be anything else to blow up. And then they found the last item, and 100 others. It was insane. And kudos to James Franco for playing a sexy and very convincing stoner. I am not personally aware of his personal choices, but I bet he doesn’t toke up as often as Seth Rogen does. I enjoy Seth Rogen’s writing (having seen SuperBad and this), but I don’t enjoy seeing him run around in tighty whiteys. Seth, buddy, do us all a favor and keep you pants on.

Next, I saw The Dark Knight for the second time. I was skeptical of seeing it again. I really enjoyed it the first time, but I wasn’t jumping out of my seat saying it was the best movie ever and I needed to see it twenty more times in while it’s still in theatres. The cast is amazing. Hands down. However, the movie’s strengths are Heath Ledger as the Joker, Christian Bale’s looks and the flawless special effects. I did not enjoy how they made TwoFace look. Seriously, if that much of his face is blown away, he is not going to have a fully functioning exposed eyeball. And Christian Bale was pretty to look at and plays an even keeled and witty Bruce Wayne, but my vocal cords hurt just from listening to his incomprehensible raspy Batman voice. It was actually pretty humorous to the point that I had to refrain from giggling almost every time he talked. Also, they kept calling him “The Batman”. It was just awkward. Why not call  him Batman and nix the “The”? But really, Heath Ledger was phenomenal. There is talk that he will be the second person to be nominated and possibly win postmortem (First being Peter Finch of the 1976 film Network). Obviously, it is too early to even think of Oscars, but I hope Ledger is nominated and that he wins.

Tonight I saw the new Woody Allen flick Vicky Cristina Barcelona. First of all, I walked into the theatre not know what I was seeing. I assumed I was seeing some indie film. I mean, I’m not a total idiot. I knew that Woody Allen had a new movie out, but I had NO idea what it was called and vaguely remembered who was in it. I thought the film was fantastic. Woody Allen has done it again. The film is witty and light with a very blatant sexual overtone. And the backdrop being gorgeous Barcelona, makes you want to go find some Spaniard and get swept off your feet. Barcelona has definitely been bumped further up on my list of places to go in the immediate future. Penelope Cruz was hilarious and it was a pleasure to see Javier Bardem looking very sexy minus the awful hair piece he wore in No Country for Old Men (with hair that bad, no wonder he was so angry). Infact, does anyone else think that Javier has a Hollywood twin? Look:

Jeffrey Dean Morgan (best known as Denny from Grey’s Anatomy Season 2) and Javier Bardem are practically twins separated at birth. Both sexy. Both with accents.

Anyway, if you haven’t seen these three movies, please do. Especially Vicky Cristina Barcelona. You’ll thank me later.

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Olympinsomnia

We all are losing sleep watching the Beijing 2008 Olympics. With coverage all night long, who can shut their eyes during an exciting team table tennis match? And of course we all watched Michael Phelps break every world record and win 8 gold medals, becoming the best Olympian EVER.

And why would you miss the women’s all-around gymnastic finals, wondering if Nastia Liukin or Shawn Johnson was going to get the gold?

America is a group of insomniacs lately. Dr. Nancy Snyderman has some tips for fellow Olympaholics:

1. Stay hydrated.

2. Tell yourself you only need four hours of sleep – really.

3. Wear sunglasses to hide red eyes.

4. Crank up your iPod and listen to anything Michael Phelps does.

5. Skip work (you’re never going to see an Olympics like this again anyway.)

But remember. If you do fall asleep, you may dream about the beautiful male swimmers. Aaron Peirsol may join me in dreamland any time.

Until tomorrow, signing off.

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