Category Archives: Politics

Tea Party 2009 — 1,000 Words

Via Millard Fillmore’s Bathtub via U.S. History for Dummies at Ghost in the Machine:

teapartydouches1


Tomorrow: National Day of Silence 2009

glsen_articlesimage_large2400w200hnorm1NEW YORK, April 9, 2009 – An 11-year-old Massachusetts boy, Carl Joseph Walker-Hoover, hung himself Monday after enduring bullying at school, including daily taunts of being gay, despite his mother’s weekly pleas to the school to address the problem. This is at least the fourth suicide of a middle-school aged child linked to bullying this year. Full article at GLSEN

Carl did not identify as gay, but this tragedy serves as a reminder that anti-LGBT bullying can have devastating effects on all students, particularly during the vulnerable years of budding sexuality and peer pressure.

Carl would have turned 12 tomorrow, April 17, 2009 — the National Day of Silence.

Contrary to claims made by the religious right organizations and various members of their flocks, promoting homosexuality is not the purpose of the DoS. The purpose is simply to bring awareness of anti-LGBT name-calling, bullying and harassment, and to promote effective responses to it. It is not about allowing gay students to disrupt class for the day to promote a “homosexual agenda”, as many claim.

Students of all beliefs, backgrounds and sexual orientations participate in the Day of Silence.

When I called my son’s middle school, I was pleased to learn that they will recognize the DoS. An announcement will be made in the morning, and the event will take place during lunch. In an effort to counter some of the negative response they are sure to receive, I offered my thanks and support, and assured them that my son will be in attendance.

Rambling On will also recognize the National Day of Silence tomorrow, April 17, 2009. No new posts will be made, and comments will be held in moderation until the morning of April 18. I will change the settings now in case I’m unable to get back to it later, but I will do my best to check in and moderate comments before I shut down for the night. Comments made after around 7:00 p.m. Central Time will not likely be seen until the morning of the 17th, and will therefore be held in moderation until the following morning.

My heart goes out to the family of 11-year-old Carl Joseph Walker-Hoover and to all the other families and individuals who know first hand the harsh realities surrounding anti-LGBT bullying and harassment.

To those who have experienced the humiliation of being tormented simply for being who you are: You are valued, loved and appreciate by more people than you may ever realize. Your life is precious and other people’s lives are enriched by your presence in the world. Please be good to yourself — you deserve it!

Posted by Lottie — Copyright © 2009 Rambling On


Catching Up

Things are coming along nicely here. I’ve made quite a bit of headway with the sorting, packing and tossing of junk. You wouldn’t believe the amount of crap one mom and one kid could have accumulated in just two short years in one place.

The kiddo and I spent the greater part of the day doing yard work. Our landlord is showing the house tomorrow and we want to make it as presentable as possible. I’ve done a fair bit more than I’m required or obliged to do, but that’s just the kind of saint person I am. Thank you, and please hold your applause.

We’ve got homeschooling down to a science. We usually get everything done inside a couple of hours. John is looking forward to going to a new school, though; he’s even decided to join the choir there.

Bonnie has been just great about everything, and she even helped prepare for John’s enrollment in his new school; I don’t know that I’ll ever be able to thank her and her husband properly.

When I was writing to her the other day, a line from the poem To Have Succeeded came to mind:

To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived; this is to have succeeded.

By this standard, these two dear people are already a huge success!

I miss being able to write every day. I have a few posts sort of brewing in my head. It’s not that I can’t make the time, it’s just that after a day of packing, cleaning, errands or whatever happens to be on the day’s agenda, I’m just too drained to focus. Most nights I can barely keep up my end of a conversation with Mike. I decided to stop early today and post a little something while I’m still able to form a few coherent thoughts.

Some things I want to write about when I’m able to concentrate:

  • More on the economy and stimulus bill
    While I’m certainly no economist, some of the misinformation that’s being repeated ad nauseam could be refuted by anyone willing to pull his head out of his butt, apply a little common sense, and stop hanging on Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh’s every word.
  • News vs. commentary
    The two are not mutually exclusive. At the end of the day, the important question is: Can the reporter and/or commentator pass a fact check? Commenting on the news or expressing opinions about it does not negate the facts being discussed.
  • Pleasant vs. rational
    When I was a teenager, I knew a woman who called me Dorothy, introduced me to her friends who weren’t really there and served ‘us’ tea using an invisible tea set. She was a lovely woman whose company and imaginary tea parties I truly enjoyed. But that did not make her thought processes rational.
    Pleasant and rational are not synonyms.
    (This is not a shot at the mentally ill. I’m really going somewhere with it. Please stay tuned.)

Well, that’s all for now. I hope you’ll keep checking in.

Posted by Lottie — Copyright © 2009 Rambling On


Duh Economics

If I hear one more person ask how spending billions of dollars is supposed to stimulate the economy, I think I’ll scream at the top of my lungs while pulling every hair out of my head. After that, I will buy a wig, glue it to my head and continue with the hair-pulling.

I’m going to be as restrained as I possibly can here, but this is getting ridiculous. At the risk of sounding like a condescending jerk, when someone asks how spending money stimulates the economy, they show a complete ignorance of even high school-level economics. The question is as jaw-dropping to me as asking how billions of people having sex is supposed to stimulate population growth.

So then you get the argument, ‘well, this is not a stimulus bill, this is a spending bill.’ What do you think a stimulus is? That’s the whole point! — President Obama

Exactly! I’ve been saying this, almost verbatim, for a couple of weeks now. Thank you, Mr. President!

But now we’ve got people saying, “So, he finally admits that the stimulus bill is about spending.”

Excuse me while I have a facepalm moment.

President Obama no more “admitted” that the stimulus bill is about spending than a person could “admit” that air traffic is about planes flying around in the sky, or that ice is about frozen water.

But let me tell you where I think President Obama went wrong in all this: He gave too many people more credit than they deserved in assuming that they understood what the damn word means.

He didn’t “admit” to anything, as that would imply that he had previously denied or attempted to cover it up. I think he just finally realized that he was going to have to dumb it down for people who clearly weren’t grasping all the words or understanding the very basics of Duh Economics.

This is not simply a matter of perspective. This is not some sinister, liberal conspiracy to steal people’s money. The United States is in economic crisis. Police are being called to control the crowds at job fairs! This is the harsh reality of the situation.

Republicans may not like it but the way to create jobs fast is through spending. It matters when you’re wrong. A whopping proportion of the Republican rhetoric about stimulus is wrong – total economic bull puckey. It’s time to take the radical step of privileging correct information over incorrect information.

Rachel.msnbc.com

For a crash course in what economists from both sides of the aisle are saying, please watch at least the first four minutes of this, though I do recommend the entire eight minute course.

Posted by Lottie — Copyright © 2009 Rambling On


Let’s Play: Who’s the Terrorist?

NSA Whistleblower: Wiretaps Were Combined with Credit Card Records of U.S. Citizens

NSA whistleblower Russell Tice was back on Keith Olbermann’s MSNBC program Thursday evening to expand on his Wednesday revelations that the National Security Agency spied on individual U.S. journalists, entire U.S. news agencies as well as “tens of thousands” of other Americans.

[…]

“This is garnered from algorithms that have been put together to try to just dream-up scenarios that might be information that is associated with how a terrorist could operate,” Tice said. “And once that information gets to the NSA, and they start to put it through the filters there . . . and they start looking for word-recognition, if someone just talked about the daily news and mentioned something about the Middle East they could easily be brought to the forefront of having that little flag put by their name that says ‘potential terrorist’.”

Wired

Well that should narrow it down: People who discuss current events on the telephone and mention the Middle East are potential terrorists. Because no law abiding individual would ever utter such terroristic language.

No wonder they never caught Osama bin Laden. They were too busy listening in on the phone calls of private citizens talking about the news. Genius, I tell you!

Here’s Russel Tice’s exclusive interview with Keith Olbermann:

Posted by Lottie — Copyright © 2009 Rambling On


President Obama’s Inaugural Address

Barack Obama was sworn in today as the 44th President of the United States. I am filled with a hope that I haven’t felt in a very long time.

Congratulations, Mr. President!


This video is public domain per White House copyright policy.


A People’s Holiday

A Brief History of Martin Luther King Jr. Day

“This is not a black holiday; it is a peoples’ holiday,” said Coretta Scott King after President Ronald Reagan signed the King Holiday Bill into law on November 2, 1983.

I Have A Dream

Video Credit