Saturday, July 05, 2008
Friday, July 04, 2008
You know what, Barack Obama, you can fucking bite me, OK?
It is my fucking body. If I take a whim to tattoo it, I will. If I take a whim to shave my head, I will. If I take a whim to cut my toenails, I will. If I take a whim to get an abortion, I will. On a whim. Because it is my fucking body and there's just no compromise between you, who apparently believes that my body can become state property for the use of the state's interests, and me, since I believe that, well, that it is my goddess-damned body and not the state's. One could have hoped that someone whose ancestors were considered property might have had an understanding of this point, but, turns out, possessing a penis make that point irrelevant.
You stupid, naive fucktard. The fundies won't vote for you no matter how fast you sell me down the river. And I, I am going to have to get v drunk to make myself vote for you. And you'd better hope that John McCain starts gaining on you, or my checkbook, well, I won't be in a hurry to open it. You stupid, arrogant, male asshole.
Picture found here.
IN CONGRESS, JULY 4, 1776
The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America
When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.
He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their Public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected, whereby the Legislative Powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers.
He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.
He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power.
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
For protecting them, by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury:
For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:
For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies
For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & Perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.
In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.
Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.
We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States, that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. — And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.
— John Hancock
Josiah Bartlett, William Whipple, Matthew Thornton
John Hancock, Samuel Adams, John Adams, Robert Treat Paine, Elbridge Gerry
Stephen Hopkins, William Ellery
Roger Sherman, Samuel Huntington, William Williams, Oliver Wolcott
William Floyd, Philip Livingston, Francis Lewis, Lewis Morris
Richard Stockton, John Witherspoon, Francis Hopkinson, John Hart, Abraham Clark
Robert Morris, Benjamin Rush, Benjamin Franklin, John Morton, George Clymer, James Smith, George Taylor, James Wilson, George Ross
Caesar Rodney, George Read, Thomas McKean
Samuel Chase, William Paca, Thomas Stone, Charles Carroll of Carrollton
George Wythe, Richard Henry Lee, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Harrison, Thomas Nelson, Jr., Francis Lightfoot Lee, Carter Braxton
William Hooper, Joseph Hewes, John Penn
Edward Rutledge, Thomas Heyward, Jr., Thomas Lynch, Jr., Arthur Middleton
Button Gwinnett, Lyman Hall, George Walton
Wednesday, July 02, 2008
Lilies tangle in her hair: green stems
A disembodied hand
Floats on the surface. So much has been lost
Already: toes, the lobe of her left ear.
But this remains, a damp, immaculate
Sign, like a message saved from the dark current.
She wandered through the courtyard in her tattered
Dress distributing wild violets.
She called us whores—your son ma'am, not your husband's
I think—and knaves—the taxes sir, your cellar
Is stocked with sweet Moselle. We called this madness.
Indicia of her innocence: to be
A maiden floating dead among the flowers.
She will become an elegant and mute
Image: the sodden velvet coat, the sinking
Coronet of poppies, virgin's bower,
And eglantine. The replicable girl.
(A blob of Chinese white becomes a hand.
The artist puts his brush in turpentine,
The model pulls her stockings on.)
Surround by the water-lily stems,
Her face appears an enigmatic mask:
A drowned Medusa in her snaking hair.
The lilies gape around her like pink mouths,
Telling us nothing we can understand.
Her eyes stare upwards: dead and not quite dead.
We're heading for the harvest, the time of dead things, the time when alive things are cut down dead and used to feed alive things. It's all (the Dark) Goddess pouring (the Dark) Goddess into (the Dark) Goddess.
Image and lovely patterns here.
Deborah Oak explains what it's all about:
I have pleasant encounters with people I love, I've gone forward and gotten stuck, something dramatic happens, it costs me, and somehow, eventually, I go forward again, with plenty of slowing down and breaking/braking to eat good food and enjoy the company of those I love. And, through it all, the sun or moon is high above, and there’s beauty all around.
Chas Clifton offers the on-shrooms version:
(You sit on the curb in front of the liquor store until a guy wearing a wizard's hat and driving a van with California plates comes along and says, "Hey, want to eat at an Ethiopian restaurant?")
The "Street of the Idol-Makers" was shorter than last year's version, due partly to Sacred Source now being owned by the same people as Maxine Miller Studios, or so I'm told.
The emphatically Pagan switch plate on the right was at Dryad Design's booth. Paul Borda has also designed a Green Man version, where the switch forms his tongue.
Hecate adds: I had dinner at Iron Gate Inn. The grape vines were bearing. I watered herbs. I read G/Son some poems. It's all good. It's all Goddess pouring Goddess into Goddess.
Carol Christ has a post up that explains, better than anything else ever can, what it was about feminist Wicca that called my name, kicked my ass, slapped me sideways, fed me spaghetti, and called me "Shirley":
The world renowned historian of religion Mircea Eliade said that religion originates in the desire to escape what he called “the dangerous and chaotic flux of things.” This view makes it nearly impossible to appreciate a Goddess whose female body symbolizes the creative and transformative cycles of birth, death, and renewal. Eliade’s thinking is dualistic because it arises from the attempt to escape the changing world, the world in which minds are part of bodies and bodies are part of nature. Dualistic thinking posits a realm of immortal and unchanging truth which is said to be the true of home of the rational mind which, it is said, can separate itself from the body and nature. Change is feared because things that change eventually decay and die. Dualistic thinking became foundational in western thinking through the influence of Plato. Here is Plato’s description of the Good: “This beauty is first of all eternal, it neither comes into being nor passes away, it neither waxes, nor wanes. . .” For Plato, the Good must be eternal. If it were not, like all other things it could decay or die. There is a clue here to why this kind of dualistic thinking is inherently anti-female. Plato also says that the good does not come into being which is to say: it is not born. Thus for Plato to deny death is also to deny birth. To deny birth is to deny the honor earlier cultures offered to the mother who gives birth. The denial of death is rooted in the belief that birth through a female body into a life that ends in death is neither acceptable nor determinative of the human condition.
Image found here.
Tuesday, July 01, 2008
Ladies! Listen up! Catching breast cancer early is the key to surviving it! Breast Self Exams (BSEs) can help you to detect breast cancer in its earlier stages. So, on the first of every month, give yourself a breast self-exam. It's easy to do. Here's how. If you prefer to do your BSE at a particular time in your cycle, calendar it now. But, don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good.
And, once a year, get yourself a mammogram. Mammograms cost between $150 and $300. If you have to take a temp job one weekend a year, if you have to sell something on e-Bay, if you have to go cash in all the change in various jars all over the house, if you have to work the holiday season wrapping gifts at Macy's, for the love of the Goddess, please go get a mammogram once a year.
Or: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention pays all or some of the cost of breast cancer screening services through its National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program. This program provides mammograms and breast exams by a health professional to low-income, underinsured, and underserved women in all 50 states, six U.S. territories, the District of Columbia, and 14 American Indian/Alaska Native organizations. For more information, contact your state health department or call the Cancer Information Service at 1-800-4-CANCER.
Send me an email after you get your mammogram and I will do an annual free tarot reading for you. Just, please, examine your own breasts once a month and get your sweet, round ass to a mammogram once a year.
And, here's a video demonstration of a BSE.
You know, I think I warned people about this:
Reaching out to evangelical voters, Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama is announcing plans that would expand President Bush's program steering federal social service dollars to religious groups and — in a move sure to cause controversy — support their ability to hire and fire based on faith.
Obama was unveiling his approach to getting religious charities more involved in government anti-poverty programs during a tour and remarks Tuesday at Eastside Community Ministry in Zanesville, Ohio. The arm of Central Presbyterian Church operates a food bank, provides clothes, has a youth ministry and provides other services in its impoverished community.
"The challenges we face today, from putting people back to work to improving our schools, from saving our planet to combating HIV/AIDS to ending genocide, are simply too big for government to solve alone," Obama was to say, according to a prepared text of his remarks obtained by The Associated Press. "We need all hands on deck."
But Obama's support for letting religious charities that receive federal funding consider religion in employment decisions was likely to invite a storm of protest from those who view such faith requirements as discrimination.
David Kuo, a conservative Christian who was deputy director of Bush's Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives until 2003 and later became a critic of Bush's commitment to the cause, said Obama's position has the potential to be a major "Sister Souljah moment" for his campaign.
This is a reference to Bill Clinton's accusation in his 1992 presidential campaign that the hip hop artist incited violence against whites. Because Clinton said this before a black audience, it fed into an image of him as a bold politician who was willing to take risks and refused to pander.
Why anyone is surprised that someone who handed out flyers showing himself in a pulpit and announcing that he was "Called to Serve" and is a "Committed Christian" would throw over the separation of church and state in order to cater to fundie whackjobs who wouldn't vote for a Democrat if jebuz came down from heaven and campaigned for him is beyond me.
Still better than McCain.
Hat tip: cahuenga in comments at Eschaton.
Monday, June 30, 2008
I was estranged from my mother ever since, well, to be honest, ever since the day that I was born. But I was in my thirties when I quit speaking to her, and so, perhaps, her death, when I was in my late, late forties, was less traumatic for me that the death of a parent often is for many adults.
This weekend, as he got sleepy for his nap, G/Son said to me, "I miss my mommy." I said, "Well, Mommy is coming soon to pick you up, and I'm sure that she misses you, too." G/Son asked, "Do you miss your mommy?" Not thinking, and I was driving at the time and calculating if we could get home before G/Son fell asleep in his car seat and whether or not I could put away the groceries before his nap or if I should try to put him down for his nap and THEN put away the groceries, and that's the best excuse that I have, I said, "Well, Nonna's mommy is dead."
That engendered a solid full five minutes -- forever in a two-year-old's world -- of the following dialogue, repeated over and over again:
G/Son: You don' have a mommy?
Nonna: When I was little, like you, I had a mommy. But when I got very old, my mommy got very, very old and she got sick and died. But I have you, and your mommy, and your daddy to love, so I'm not sad.
G/Son: You don' have a mommy?
. . . .
Finally, I said, "Nonna's mommy liked to help poor people and when she got too sick to stay here, she went to the Summerlands. I like to think that she likes the apples and the apple cider."
G/Son: Your mommy died?
Nonna: That's right.
G/Son: Well, Nonna, sometimes, that happens.
In my religion, it's as important as new life emerging in the Spring. I won't, don't want to, refuse to impose my religion on G/Son. Yet, I'd like him to take a more reasonable view of death than do most Americans. And as we head from the longest day of the year, high summer, to Lughnasadh, the first of the harvests, I want to celebrate Death, that great harvest, in my own life and to be honest w/ G/Son about it.
I need to come up with a list of about twenty of the Bush junta's worst lies.
*Abstinence Education Works
*Outlawing Abortion Will Decrease the Rates of Abortion
*America Does Not Torture
*Faith-Based Initiatives Do Not Violate the First Amendment
Help me out in comments. I know we can come up with more than twenty.
Sunday, June 29, 2008
Every afternoon, I go halfway around Washington Circle and I sit at a light and look at this bit of masking tape that substitutes, here in DC, for freeway blogging. Periodically, the "authorities" come along and clean it off. And, then, immediately, it reappears.
It completely rocks.
Someone, and I'm old so I forget who, once called Sunday morning the most-segregated time of the week. They were referring to the fact that those "see-those-xians-how -they-love-one -another xians" didn't love each other enough to, you know, worship what Obama is pleased to call "a mighty god" in integrated company. Maybe that's changed or maybe xians still prefer their churches racially segregated.
But as Atrios demonstrates Sunday after Sunday, Sunday morning is still the most sexist time of the week.
It's 2008. We are in the frapping twenty-first frapping century of the Common Era. And people wonder why I drink.