Thursday, January 25, 2007

More on the lovely Donnie Davis

I'm really quite intrigued as to whether the guy's a homo taking the piss (note to american readers: I mean by that that he's making a joke, not that he's urinating), or whether he's actually serious. I mean, his introductory video -- when he takes his coat off, does anyone else think it's about the gayest thing ever?

I mean, he talks about his "powerful new program" CHOPS (Changing Homosexuals into Ordinary People), but there aren't that many details (parenthetically, of course, I prefer not to be "ordinary.") Of course, he does invoke the "god hates fags" thing:

I know how horrible and rough that road can be. I have been called a "Faggot". You are not alone and guess what, God Loves You even if he hates your Homosexuality. You just can't stay that way. Let me help you love yourself. Follow me and together we'll C.H.O.P.S away the Gay.

Huh. There's also a contradiction: His music video says "God Hates Fags," but he says that he loves you even if he hates the homosexuality. He's taking two positions: Either you can not be gay and it's something you can change, or it's innate 'cos God hates Fags (not people who engage in homosexual conduct).

I mean, it's SO simplistic and stupid, it's either the product of a moron, or it's a joke. Likewise, the usual odious "same sex attraction (homosexuality) can be hard to spot until it is too late" and also the linking being a homo to being a sexual predator. And the gay bands section is just a little too funny to be serious.

So: Either he's making a very elaborate parody, which might be true, or he's just a fat dumb Christian from the south who wants to not be gay 'cos he never got a good enough blow job, and living a life of self-denial while claiming the love of an absentee god (who, if He loved him, wouldn't have made him a homo in the first place, if you accept the logic that god hates fags), instead of a meaningful, good, healthy relationship with another man.

And: He calls Andrew Sullivan a great christian! Um. And he talks about his weight, and talks about "urges"--huh? And he thanks the homosexual community. What?

And I reiterate what Candian Cynic said: If you can't tell whether something is farce or not, your religion's pretty pathetic.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

WTF?

Can anyone hazard a guess as to whether this is just a joke? This appears to be the singer's website, and this the organization's. Canadian Cynic makes the point that when you can't actually tell, your religion is pretty fucked up.

Fuck Off, Mr. Ambassador

So the Yankee Ambassador is up in arms that Canada might have some concern why one of its citizens is on their no-fly list.

I'm sorry. You take one of our citizens, whisk him off to Syria ("They gave us assurances" even though "we can't ask them to help in Iraq 'cos we can't trust a word they say"), let him be tortured for a year, and then chuck him on your no-fly list, and you get upset when we ask a few questions?

Welcome to the new America, folks. Don't question us. Don't ask us why we do these things to your citizens. Don't raise your voice in defence of your own people. If we decide to do something, you can go cry in the corner, we don't care.

And Americans wonder why the world hates them.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Gag me with a fork, Tony Snow

Can you believe this? Dan Froomkin, in the Post, has something from a Tony Snow chat. Regarding tonight's State of the Union, this line is so risible that I forgot to laugh:

Q What's the best part?
MR. SNOW: You know, it's difficult to say. It's like looking in a drawer full of diamonds.


I'm sorry. This is like the North Korean government reporting that Kim Jong Il's first ever golf shot was a hole-in-one, that he's written hundreds of books, that he's composed a hundred operas. This sort of veneration from Bush minions is preposterous. Here's some more, from Froomkin:

"The President is exuberant and determined. When George W. Bush attacks something like the State of the Union address, it's with an eye toward action. . . ."

"The president is going to address those and also address another question Americans have, which is: Can these people in Washington work together? Can members of Congress work with the president or is there simply going to be partisan exchanges important the next two years?" [Because, of course, Dubya was never partisan, oh no.]

"You know what, you've got him confused with somebody that indulges in self-pity." [You'd have to think you were doing something wrong for that.]

Friday, January 19, 2007

Richardson?

So, Bill Richardson is gonna run for Prez. Great--I think he'd be a great candidate.

But, minor problem. We now have Hillary (woman), Obama (half black, middle name Hussein, first name awfully like Osama, as Fox never hesitates to point out), and Richardson (hispanic).

In Canada, we'd be fine. I just don't have faith that Americans are in a place where a woman or minority could get elected president.

Shut Up, Little Sisters

I completely agree with this decision. Little Sisters' Book Emporium or whatever it's called is really irritating. They keep going to court, complaining that their porn gets censored.

Now, don't get me wrong. I have no problem with them complaining that gay porn gets censored at customs and straight porn doesn't. Porn should be treated equally: whether it's a female or male midget getting shagged in a bunny suit, the same standard should apply. No problem.

But what pisses me off about them is that they claim to speak for all homos. They make the claim that somehow our porn should be treated differently, because it's a part of our "culture." That sort of stuff makes me damn sick.

I suspect that porn fills the exact same role in my life as it does any 30 year old straight guy--a handy think to have around when you're home alone and need a few minutes with your right or left hand man.

But for that store to argue that somehow homo porn is elevated to some sort of constitutionally protected "expression" of our culture and sexuality is nauseating. Are we debasing ourselves: the peak of gay cultural expression is a few shaved beefcakes doing each other? That our identity is summed up by some fat hairy bear doing a barely-legal twink and calling him "boy"?

No thanks, Sisters. You might be pathetic and that's your form of "cultural expression" but it sure ain't mine. Porn is porn, be it gay, straight, bi, animal, vegetable, whatever. The same standards should apply. And it's not culture, it's just something to jack off to (or get ideas for new positions or whatever). When I want culture, I'll read a book or go to the theatre or something, not pop in the latest Falcon video.

Though Marcus Iron really is quite dreamy.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

No shit, Ben

So Bernanke is now warning that, because of the deficit, the US faces a fiscal crisis.

Well no fucking shit, Ben. For all Bush and his Republican buddies' claims that cutting taxes would drive revenues through the ceiling, we now have a little problem.

Of course, some might have harkened back to the early 90s, when Canada faced bankruptcy because of its deficit and debt and was considered an economic basketcases.

But--here's the delicious logic of the Bush campaign to get rid of government. First, because you know you can't make the case when there's a surplus to cut medicaid, social security, etc., you starve the government of revenue with massive tax cuts to the wealthy.

Then, claim, oh no, there's a deficit, but we're fighting a war, so where can we make cuts?

Cut the programs.

Rinse. Repeat as necessary.

It's just like with Katrina: Screw it up through massive incompetence, and then use your own screw up as justification for why government isn't effective at solving problems. How terribly convenient.

The country is fucked, thanks to 6 years of Bush and 12 of republicans.

Totally unrelated: To the reckless woman who hit my good friend with her car because she couldn't be bothered to pay attention to her driving and put him in the hospital for almost a week: YOU SUCK. Seriously. One minimizes the dangers of drinking and driving in this town: taking cabs, walking, and then some idiot decides to run you over, probably yakking on her cellphone or doing her makeup. I hope they sue the fucking daylights out of you and you lose your bloody license that you likely didn't deserve anyway and you find yourself reduced to living in a goddamn trailer park in West Virginia because that's all you can fucking afford, drinking moonshine to dull the pain of your own stupidity.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

California Republic, II



Yesterday I got up at 5am and got in my car and drove 2 hours to Big Bear to ski. It's not the best resort in the world, but it's not bad at all, for a day trip. The view is spectacular. The snow was good. It wasn't too crowded. And it was the most beautiful day--sunny, crisp, not a cloud in the sky. These two pics from my camera phone don't do it justice.

And driving home, again, I really said to myself, California's a great place. I even was okay, watching the Golden Globes. I'm not into Hollywood, I don't have a TV and never go to movies, and I don't give a &*%! who's shagging whom or dating whom. We have great weather, we can drive 2 hours to the slopes and be on the beach in the afternoon, we have beautiful mountains and deserts and the ocean. We just need independence :)

Friday, January 12, 2007

Wii, PS3, XBox 360--please advise

I've had a hell week. I've not been home since Thursday 9am. I think I clearly deserve a present. Only, which one to buy?

Constitutional Outrage Number 4734

Congress must declare war. It must. That's the Constitution. Yet, today, Condi Rice "refused to promise that Bush would seek permission from Congress before attacking either country [Syria and Iran]."

Are we going to war with Iran? We can scrounge up 20,000 troops, and everyone on the planet says the military is stretched too thin--and we're about to go to war with one or two more countries?

What sort of lunatics are running the country?

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Show the world the letters I gave you. Let the world read them. Let the world know the agony of the detainees in Cuba.

A letter from a detainee in Guantanamo. The moving ending:

I would rather die than stay here forever, and I have tried to commit suicide many times. The purpose of Guantanamo is to destroy people, and I have been destroyed. I am hopeless because our voices are not heard from the depths of the detention center.

If I die, please remember that there was a human being named Jumah at Guantanamo whose beliefs, dignity and humanity were abused. Please remember that there are hundreds of detainees at Guantanamo suffering the same misfortune. They have not been charged with any crimes. They have not been accused of taking any action against the United States.

Show the world the letters I gave you. Let the world read them. Let the world know the agony of the detainees in Cuba.



And of course I'm sure we'll get some right winger who will say either a) better a few hundred ay-rabs rot than one terrorist go free, or b) these people want to destroy our country.

Those kinds of comment aren't worthy of a response.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

California Republic

Thank God I live out here in civilization. For the intellectual bankruptcy of our current administration and its 12-year do-nothing Congress, there's an answer out here in California.

In the last few days, the Governator (a Republican!) has come forward with vision and with ideas. And he knows that California, the 5th or 6th largest economy in the world, with 37 million people, can be a leader and shape the national agenda.

The things he's proposed:
  • More schools.
  • Healthcare for all Californians--including illegal immigrants.
  • New dams.
  • New infrastructure.
  • Reducing carbon emissions.
  • Fixing electoral boundaries ("The Hapsburg monarchy had more turnover than the California legislature" was a witty line).

Etc. etc. etc. Quothe the Governor:

Not only can we lead California into the future, we can show the nation and the world how to get there. We can do this because we have the economic strength, we have the population and the technological force of a nation-state.

Exactly. I was not a fan of Arnie, mostly because he claims he's a Republican (though reaction to his proposals is far warmer from Democrats than from Republicans here in California). But I'm starting to be proud of him. And some of his rhetoric is good for us out here, so routinely ignored or denigrated by Washington. As the LA Times wrote on Monday:

"What a prosperous, peaceful, golden state in which we live and work and raise our families," he said. "We should never forget the joys and blessings of being Californians." Around the world, he said, people "ache to have what we so often take for granted."

California has its problems. None of us can deny that. But we're working to fix them. We're progressive and dynamic. We can ski in the morning and sun in the afternoon (I've done that). We have San Fran and San Diego, two of the nicest cities in the country. We have LA which, for all its stucco, sprawl, traffic, and smoke, is a dynamic and diverse city that goes far beyond the Hollywood stereotype. We have our beach cities, we have our northern cities. We have mountains and deserts.

And it seems now like we might be getting some vision to go along with all our blessings.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

"Support our Troops

You've got to love the draft dodgers like Cheney and Bush who so passionately argue that we need to support our troops and that we should sacrifice.

Canadian Cynic points out that young Republicans are the same. When asked at the Young Republicans' national convention whether they'd enlist, the responses were across the board. The best:

"I physically probably couldn't do a whole lot" in Iraq, said Tiffanee Hokel, 18, of Webster City, Iowa, who called the war a moral imperative. She knows people posted in Iraq, but she didn't flinch when asked why she wouldn't go."I think I could do more here," Hokel said, adding that she's focusing on political action that supports the war and the troops."We don't have to be there physically to fight it," she said.

"Support our Troops" and "Surge" while not actually doing anything yourself. "Sacrifice" with tax cuts.

I increasingly see the value of a draft, and one without generous deferments for the wealthy. Right now, the cost of any foreign policy decision falls on a very small minority of people. Their lives are played with because politicians know there simply are few consequences to their actions.

If it was the case that when a politician voted for war, or for a surge or a sacrifice, there was a very significant chance that his or her son or daughter, or the son or daughter of his or her constitutents would be sent into harms way, if every time they voted for war they knew the decision would impact the full range of society, I would bet that our creative foreign policy adventures would dramatically decline.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Natural Selection

This is one for the Darwin Awards:

A would-be copper thief was killed over the weekend while trying to steal wire from a Hydro-Qu├ębec tower in Montreal. Police said the man climbed the tower in the city's north end Saturday night carrying the tools he would need to cut a length of copper wire.

But he touched a 65,000-volt high-tension line and fell 10 metres to the ground, they said.


Duh. Let's hope this happened before he had the chance to reproduce.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Harper on Hockey

There really is something sort of cool about the PM having a talk about hockey with a cute TSN announcer. I remember the Jeanfather talking on CBC when we won the 4x100 relay (Atlanta?), calling from a wedding, clearly tipsy. I like that too.

Could you imagine Dubya doing the same?

Lunatic Christians


This sort of picture is frightening (hat tip to Andrew Sullivan, the johnny-come-lately to realizing Bush is a disaster. We saw the light before it was cool, Andy.).

Honestly. What sort of blinkered, head-in-the-sand, never-thought-for-myself person would actually think that this picture was in any way good? Why is it, confronted with the litany of Bush's myriad sins, his outrages to the Constitution, his screwing up of the economy, his losing a major city, his constant cronyism, his failure to listen to anyone about anything, people see the hand of god? They believe he's the next Prophet, that God speaks personally to him, that God chose him?

If God picked Bush, then God is either cruel or has a very sick sense of humour.

Friday, January 05, 2007

"Hopelessly Sectarian."

Charles Krauthammer makes the following point:

The whole sorry affair [of Saddam's execution] illustrates not just incompetence but also the ingrained intolerance and sectarianism of the Maliki government. It stands for Shiite unity and Shiite dominance above all else.

Duh. DUH. Lord, why do politicians not talk to historians. Of course Iraq and its government is hopelessly sectarian.

Human history is the story of oppression. Given the chance, one group (generally the majority) will always oppress another. It's the universal constant of humanity. Tutsis will oppress/kill Hutus (or vice versa). Serbs will oppress Bosnians. Germans will oppress Jews. Americans enslaved blacks for centuries. In almost every modern state and certainly in almost every state until the 20th century, the majority ethnic, religious, linguistic, whatever group has beaten up, oppressed, granted fewer rights to, or otherwise beat up on the minority and denied them access to civic life.

The natural human state is not to empower the minority. For all Dubya's "let freedom bloom" the natural human state is not for different ethnic groups to get along and function happily in a wonderful bi-partisan polyglot happy state. It takes only a cursory reading of history to know that. I mean, the US isn't even there: look at the constant efforts to make foreigners assimilate, the "english only" movement, the "don't let mexicans become citizens." Can I remind everyone when segregation ended?

In the ONE place I can think of where the minority participates fully in civic life and is given the tools to do so, it's still a struggle and many people are against it. Lord Durham was prescient. Canada makes it work, and the Quebecois do participate: 1/3 of the Supreme Court and House of Commons, 1/4 of the Senate. Quebecois can thrive in government, in the armed forces.

And look how much people hate that (ladies and gentlemen, I present the Reform party.) how often do you hear about people (from Alberta, generally) who talk about how they hate the French, how French is rammed down their throats, how we shouldn't give them special status, etc. It is to our eternal credit that we hold fast against them.

So, my point: People of different races/languages/religions don't naturally get along. The like to oppress each other. Given the chance, and the civic tools, they will.

If Dubya--or anyone--thought that Iraq would turn into a wonderful multicultural bi-religious federation where everyone gets along and shares power, he was nuts. Because, other than Canada (happy to hear of others--maybe Belgium?), no such federation exists or has ever existed.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Bush's latest constitutional outrage

You think your mail is safe? Even when there's a statute saying that your mail can't be opened without a warrant?

Wrong. Think again.

Dubya's decided, with a little signing statement, that he can open your mail any time he wants to, in any circumstance that he, the Decider, decides is enough of an emergency:

Most of the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act deals with mundane reform measures. But it also explicitly reinforced protections of first-class mail from searches without a court's approval.

Yet in his statement Bush said he will "construe" an exception, "which provides for opening of an item of a class of mail otherwise sealed against inspection in a manner consistent ... with the need to conduct searches in exigent circumstances."

I would rant, but this is so shocking I think it speaks for itself. Some good commentary here.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Balanced Budget MY ASS

So Dubya wants to balance the budget. Great. Well done. Um, before you were President, Mr. Decider, we had a balanced budget.

But here's the kicker: Rather than get rid of his tax cuts, which are responsible for so much of the loss of revenue, he wants to keep them:

In a statement in the White House Rose Garden after a Cabinet meeting, Bush said his budget proposal would "address urgent needs" -- such as winning the war on terrorism and maintaining a strong national defense -- while also making his tax cuts permanent. To do so, he said, would "keep this economy growing."

So his budget is all about military and tax cuts. How's he going to balance it then?

Get rid of medicaid, social security, funding for roads, schools, hospitals? Axe the EPA, the EEOC, and the entire federal judiciary?

And does anyone find it funny he's waiting till the Dems control Congress to ask that earmarks be cut? He had NO problem with them while he was President. In fact, can anyone think of a single bill he vetoed for containing earmarks (or anything else, for that matter)?

With him refusing a course change in Iraq, and his ludicrous budget, let me say this: We are well and truly fucked.

Pat Robertson and Terrorists

On my way up the elevator today, the little news screen told me that Pat Robertson says that God told him there'd be a terrorist attack in 2007 that would result in a massive loss of life.

This is the bullshit of believing in god. What on earth is the use of a deity who sits up in the skies, talks to the occasional person (always a white southern man, it seems), tells him what's going to happen, and can't do anything about it? Or won't do anything about it?

If God's sitting up there being all-powerful but doing nothing to help people, he's a tyrant and shouldn't be worshiped. If he's not able to do anything, then he's no deity and not worthy of worship.

Wonkette puts it nicely: Dictator-coddling scumbag Pat Robertson told his shrinking audience of mouth-breathing trailer trash that God appeared in a dream and said a major terrorist attack is coming this year, probably nuclear in nature, but who knows for sure. (God is no longer omnipotent and all-knowing, but He still has some connections and hears a lot of gossip. And unlike U.S. intelligence agents, He is fluent in Arabic.)

To be quite honest, I'll stick with the book of Apollo, myself. Greek gods are much cooler, and there's as much proof that they exist as that the christian god does.