Dad wears a skirt so people won’t pick on his five-year-old son’s love of wearing dresses rather than trying to make the boy dress as others.
That beats the hell out of the time when I was with my dad and a guy with long hair walked by on the other side of the street. My dad pointed to him and said “if you ever grow your hair like that, I’ll disown you.”
I didn’t grow my hair, and he disowned me anyway (until he was dying and wanted to make a show out of reconciling - I didn’t play along).
Especially when it is full of dreams about getting caught in a tsunami, and then rescued by dolphins. Who look more like green slugs. Who try to eat me. (I saw part of Little Shop of Horrors earlier today - I blame that). Who, in me trying to fight off what I think is their playful biting that they don’t realize really hurts, are getting crushed by me as I try to roll away and are now in full-on “fight for your life” mode and ripping me apart. I remember feeling the blood everywhere as I roll around my living room carpet from 1993 with them crawling after me.
Then I woke up and found my dog licking me. I guess that explains the wet feeling that my brain turned into something deadly.
I’m glad I don’t usually sleep where he can get to me. That would be a messed-up dream to have all the time. I’ve got enough recurring nightmares without adding one.
The radical wing of the Republican Party is now providing every drop of money and muscle for Romney’s campaign. He owes them and they own him. And if Romney wins, he will govern according to the Tea Party’s whims. Need proof? Look at John Boehner’s transformation over the last four years in which he went from working with the president to forge bipartisan compromises (aka governing) to automatically opposing every proposal the president put forward including those dripping with conservative policies.
We had no intention of asking the Count to speculate about what Bert and Ernie get up to in the privacy of the bedroom they share. No, we were happy to stick to the numbers questions.
But when the time came to record our interview we were hit by a disorientating array of technological problems.
Had the producer, Richard Knight, read the guidance document on interviewing Muppets carefully he would have been more prepared for what happened next.
"Muppets", the document read, "always stay in character".
So that’s how Richard found himself discussing ISDN line settings, not with the late Jerry Nelson, the venerable occupant of the Count costume, who died aged 78 on 23 August, but with Count von Count himself - who punctuated Richard’s lengthy technical briefing (the problems went on for at least 40 minutes) with cries of “Werry good!”, “Yeees” and, of course, “Ah ha ha ha!”
More, including audio of the interview (only 2:49 long), at the link.
I want policies that actually respect my bodily autonomy, my right to privacy when it comes to healthcare, and my right to fair pay and equal treatment in the workplace. That’s what I want. Republican lady governors and senators notwithstanding, the GOP is not going to give women policies that do any of these things.
My first thought when I read this was that there’s no way such an intelligent woman said this. But she did and I’m floored.
What do I want?
I want Congress republicans to compromise instead of throw tantrums and derail any major, beneficial form of legislation possible.
I want my bodily autonomy respected and I want to be trusted to make my own decisions with whatever is going on inside my body.
I want to be able to go to medical school without having to put myself into a quarter million dollars worth of student loan debt or borrow money from my parents.
I want to be able to get a job.
I want to be able to take my birth control without having to worry that someone will make it illegal if they are elected president.
I want greener energy programs and more protections for the environment.
I want health care reform. I want to be able to see a doctor and not have to go into even more debt. I don’t want to have to worry about what will happen to my parents when they get older and medicare is no longer there for them.
I want members of congress to stop saying stupid, scientifically incorrect shit about rape, pregnancy, climate change, etc.
Parading a bunch of women around at the RNC is not doing any of that for me. Parading a bunch of women around at the RNC who are just pretending that they are part of the boy’s club, when, really they will always be a separate part that can be trotted around when someone makes a stupid legitimate rape comment isn’t doing SHIT for me.
If small business is indeed the engine that drives job growth in America, then we are certainly trying to do our part. And so as a small business owner committed to job creation, let me just say:
IF I HEAR ONE MORE FREAKING PERSON TELL ME THAT I BUILT MY BUSINESS, I AM GOING TO VOMIT.
You know why there aren’t a lot of small online media companies emerging from Somalia these days? Because they don’t have a freaking government. They don’t have bookstores where I could sell books, or roads I could use to get t-shirts to your house. My businesses—like all American businesses—exist because we live in a successful and stable country, which is only successful and stable because for generations, we’ve paid taxes that have allowed us to build an infrastructure and make investments in innovation that allow for increased economic productivity and efficiency.
The free market has shown again and again: It can’t make such a world without government assistance. (Witness, for instance, how bad the free market is at developing new classes of antibiotics, even though such antibiotics would be very useful at keeping people healthy, which in turn increases our Gross Domestic Product.)
My work—like almost all work these days—depends upon the Internet, which wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for government investment. If I hadn’t received excellent free primary school education, I could never have written books. And if primary education weren’t free and compulsory in the United States, I’d have fewer readers, because fewer people could read.
In his stump speech, Mitt Romney has said, “The other day, you know, I thought about a kid that works hard to get the honor roll. And she works real hard. I know that to get the honor roll she had to go on a school bus to get to school. But when she makes the honor roll, I credit the kid, not the bus driver.”
Well, I credit the bus driver, for providing a safe and comfortable environment for that student. But drivers aren’t just collecting a paycheck: They’re performing a vital service, and one that involves tremendous responsibility. So yes, I credit them.
And I credit the kid’s teacher, who works tirelessly to get the kid excited about learning. I credit the kid’s parents, and I credit her peers. I credit the school’s cafeteria staff, who work to get the kid as nutritious a meal as budget cuts will allow. I credit the school librarian, if the school still has a librarian, who teaches the kid research skills that will serve her well throughout life. I credit the politicians who raise taxes to pay for better schools rather than cowardly arguing that taxes should always be lower, even if they’re already lower than they ever have been. I credit the school board and the people who repave the roads to school to keep them safe.
I credit the kid. But I also credit her community. They recognized the kid (like all kids) was worth investing in. They cared for her. They made it possible for her to succeed.
Over the years, I’ve encountered a few successful people who believe they did it all themselves and achieved success because they are just better than their fellow human beings. Some were bankers; some were writers; some were lawyers. Some male, some female. Some rich, some not. Some were born into privilege, some weren’t. I guess they’re a pretty diverse crowd. They only have one thing in common, really: They’re all assholes.
This doesn’t happen every day, but good for the Los Angeles Times for calling out the ubiquitous falsehood about Obama supposedly waiving welfare reform’s work requirement right in its headline:
Rick Santorum repeats inaccurate welfare attack on Obama
As Kevin Drum says: “it’s about time reporters and copy editors started putting this stuff front and center.” And, indeed, the LA Times does this, in its headline and with this highly placed sentence: “In fact, Obama did not waive the work requirement.”
The lie debunked here, of course, is central to Mitt Romney’s campaign; it is airing in ads in multiple swing states that are reportedly backed by heavy buys, and Romney and his surrogates have been repeating it in one forum after another for weeks on end.
I didn’t expect this, but the epic dishonesty of Romney’s campaign is finally prompting something of a debate among media types about whether what we’re seeing here is unprecedented — and how to appropriately respond to it. This debate is focused partly on whether there’s a racial dimension to this attack. But it’s also about (as I noted here yesterday) what the media should do when one campaign has decided that there is literally no set of boundaries or standards it needs to follow when it comes to the veracity of the core assertions at the heart of its entire argument.
There seems to be a bit of a strain of media defeatism settling in about this. James Bennet, the editor of the Atlantic, wrote yesterday that he is glad to see news outlets calling Romney’s falsehoods out for what they are. But he wondered whether we are about to discover that the press is essentially impotent in the face of this level of deliberate dishonesty: “what if it turns out that when the press calls a lie a lie, nobody cares?”
I’m sympathetic to the question. Indeed, it goes to the heart of the Romney campaign’s gamble here, which is that the press simply won’t be able to keep voters informed in the face of the sheer scope and volume of mendacity it unleashes daily. At the same time, though, I have to agree with Atrios: When news orgs want to make a big stink about something, and keep that stink going for a good long while, they prove to be very capable of it indeed.
As Steve Benen and James Fallows keep arguing, this poses a test for the news media. What would happen if a nontrivial number of articles and broadcasts about the welfare lie and other Romney falsehoods called out his dishonesty right in their headlines, prominently featuring unequivocal declarations (not mealy-mouthed he-said-she-said nonsense) that Romney is misleading people and has done so again and again and again, despite knowing the truth?
Mark Kleiman suggests that horserace reporters begin clearly spelling out that Romney has “made a strategic decision to try to bury Obama under a blanket of false charges.” Would that be an exaggeration? No, it wouldn’t. What if newspapers devoted extensive front page pieces to dissecting Romney’s decision to continue basing entire ad campaigns on widely debunked claims, even as Romney advisers openly boast about the success of their dishonest ads and openly declare that they won’t be constrained by fact-checking?
Could something like that begin to shift the dynamic a bit and make it harder for a campaign to keep lying at this pace? I don’t know, but it would be nice to find out.
“England is just a small island. Its roads and houses are small. With few exceptions, it doesn’t make things that people in the rest of the world want to buy. And if it hadn’t been separated from the continent by water, it almost certainly would have been lost to Hitler’s ambitions.” — Mitt Romney
One last fact check before I go to bed (yes, I think I’m going to bed early this morning). I had a brief exchange on twitter with Sally Kohn, who wrote the “Paul Ryan’s speech in 3 words" article that I quoted in my last post. I told her that I had picked up on the GM plant, but missed the Medicare distortion. She said that she missed Simpson-Bowles. Looking that up led me to this.
This one’s from BarackObama.com, but before you say “well, of course it’s biased,” it’s backed up by Paul Ryan’s own words. For the non-linked statements from Paul Ryan press releases used in the press release, you can find all of Ryan’s press releases on his congressional website, here.
The press release is behind a read more because it’s not tiny (not really huge, either, though).
Fact: While Ryan blamed President Obama for the shut down of a GM plant in Janesville, Wisconsin, the plant was actually closed under President George W. Bush. Ryan actually asked for federal spending to save the plant, while Romney has criticized the auto industry bailout that President Obama ultimately enacted to prevent other plants from closing.
Fact: Though Ryan insisted that President Obama wants to give all the credit for private sector success to government, that isn’t what the president said. Period.
Have you read anything by Jasper Fforde? His 'Thursday Next' books are actually pretty damn brilliant. Kind of like Monty Python/Doctor Who mashup but taking place around and inside classic literature.
I have not. That was my first experience. Brilliant, but hard to keep up with. Throw in my dyslexia and things got really confusing for me.
“It’s mostly an unlicensed-usage problem. At the last count David Copperfield alone had had had had sixty-three times, all but ten unapproved. Pilgrim’s Progress may also be a problem due to its had had/that that ratio.”
“So what’s the problem in Progress?”
“That that had that that ten times but had had had had only thrice. Increasedhad had usage had had to be overlooked, but not if the number exceeds thatthat that usage.”
“Hmm,” said the Bellman, “I thought had had had had TGC’s approval for use in Dickens? What’s the problem?”
“Take the first had had and that that in the book by way of example,” explained Lady Cavendish. “You would have thought that that first had had had had good occasion to be seen as had, had you not? Had had had approval but had hadhad not; equally it is true to say that that that that had had approval but that that other that that had not.”
“So the problem with that other that that was that…?”
“That that other-other that that had had approval.”
“Okay,” said the Bellman, whose head was in danger of falling apart like a chocolate orange, “let me get this straight: David Copperfield, unlike Pilgrim’s Progress, had had had, had had had had. Had had had had TGC’s approval?”
I just had to turn the TV off. The whole thing gives me fucking heartburn.
I almost did the same. Even PBS must have been fed up. They cut away from Condoleeza Rice’s speech twice…once for some sort of commercial (which would be odd in any public television broadcast, much less during a convention speech), and once more for dead air.
But it was probably a technical glitch. She was one of the least psychotic speakers of the evening.
Anyone who buys for a second that Mitt Romney is the culmination of nothing but bootstraps—that any Joe Schmo from a middle class family could have done what Mitt Romney did career-wise so quickly and so easily, without his family money and connections helping him get through school, without his family money and connections helping him land the right jobs—is seriously naive.
I am just so, so, so tired of a couple of rich people, who have always been rich people, pretending to be not rich people, to try to trick not rich people into thinking that their policies, which are demonstrably not for not rich people, will help them.
When I see how much people on the right seem to struggle with the context of Obama’s “you didn’t build that” speech, it’s not hard to see why. They often don’t understand the context of their own lives and privilege. Can’t figure out that growing up the child of a millionaire, governor, and former presidential candidate means that you are given the sort of opportunities and privileges that absolutely no one else would get…and that when you are the child of people with no money, no education, no lofty titles or careers, you are dealt all sorts of challenges and obstacles that someone like Mitt Romney would never encounter. These people utterly fail to see how their achievements are largely dependent upon circumstance, and how a rich dude growing up and figuring out how to be rich is not the same as a person who grows up in poverty simply figuring out how to survive, much less work themselves into a better life. It is not meritocracy that turns a rich kid like Mitt Romney into a rich man like Mitt Romney. It’s plutocracy.
On a final note, I am sick of Ann trotting our her experiences with MS and breast cancer as examples of how “regular people” she and Mitt are, how much they have “struggled.” It is not that I don’t have sympathy for her for what she has experienced. It’s just that I find the, “Look at my illnesses! See, we’re just like you!” crap to be pretty meaningless when Ann, unlike many people in this country, has health insurance and access to the very best America’s medical community can provide. A poor person who has MS or has battled breast cancer would have a very different story…and very likely, a story with a much less happy ending. The fact that “Obamacare,” which protects people with MS, who have or had cancer, is one of the Big Bads for the Romney campaign, the fact that there is no understanding that Ann Romney’s struggles are not the same as the struggles of a poor person who has MS or breast cancer, infuriates me.
I’m just tired of Republicans trying to erase the differences produced by class in America. The only time you can get a Republican to talk about issues of class is if the topic of race comes up, and then, it’s just to derail the conversation and say the real problem isn’t race but money.
I’m done. I can’t watch or listen to this bullshit anymore. It is insulting to my intelligence, and everyone else’s, when the Romneys stand up in front of the country and pretend to be regular people with regular concerns who built their fucking bootstraps instead of coasting to wealth on the bootstraps handed to them by their parents. Fuck. That. Noise.
There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me — because they want to give something back. They know they didn’t — look, if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own. You didn’t get there on your own. I’m always struck by people who think, well, it must be because I was just so smart. There are a lot of smart people out there. It must be because I worked harder than everybody else. Let me tell you something — there are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there.
If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business — you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen. The Internet didn’t get invented on its own. Government research created the Internet so that all the companies could make money off the Internet. The point is, is that when we succeed, we succeed because of our individual initiative, but also because we do things together.
Since the entire Republican convention is centered around “we built this” and mocking Obama’s supposed claim that “you didn’t build that,” here’s the full quote.
You know, the version that includes the part where he’s talking about the roads and bridges that the business owners didn’t build. Including the part where he says that you had a great teacher somewhere along the way, who taught you how to succeed. Including the part where he praises individual initiative, but says that we work together to lift each other up. The version where, in context, you can clearly see that hes saying that you don’t become a success alone. At some point, you had help.
It’s like when Fox News trotted out those kids with a lemonade stand to say that they built it themselves — except the help of parents, investors, and a brother who they “hired” to work for free…but, you know, totally on their own. As their dad said, “Nobody helped them except us. They did it on their own.”
Try not to get whiplash trying to follow right-wing logic.
It’s like this entire convention is a badly-planned SNL sketch.
Also, don’t miss this bit of chaos on the floor. (video link)
Some are painting it as a jingoistic assault on the Puerto Rican speaker at the podium from people who don’t realize it’s part of the United States, but I actually buy the GOP’s explanation that it was spillover from the Ron Paul debacle (even if I did read it on FOX).
When you hear about Mitt Romney winning the Republican nomination, you may or may not hear about the Republicans who were at the convention to vote against him. That’s because Republican National Committee changed the delegates.
The state of Maine had 20 of its 24 delegates there to support Ron Paul. Ten of them were replaced so that Maine couldn’t even submit Ron Paul’s name for nomination. In response, Ron Paul supporters walked out of the convention in protest. Maine’s governor, despite endorsing Mitt Romney, boycotted the convention altogether over the decision to silence the dissenting vote.
When the roll call vote was held, several states listed votes for both Romney and Paul. When the vote totals were read back, the votes for Paul were never mentioned.
Ron Paul wasn’t my guy, but you have to wonder about a political party that shuts up people in its own ranks when they don’t walk the party line and do what they’re told.
It sort of goes along with what Governor Christie said in his keynote address: “Real leaders don’t follow polls; real leaders change polls.” If they don’t like the consensus, they tell people what they are supposed to think. When people won’t march in step, they just change the numbers.