Sunday Roast: Fetus trumps woman?

In 1973, abortion was made legal in this country, via the Roe v. Wade decision by the United States Supreme Court.  Reproductive rights were now the law of the land, and women could now legally use birth control and get a legal and safe abortion, if she decided it was necessary.  Surely equal rights for women — across the board — were just around the corner…

We’ve come a long way, baby, but not in the direction we’d hoped.  Abortion is still legal in the U.S., as well as birth control of many varieties, but being legal and having access are two very different things.  There’s a fairly new trend out there, called a “conscience clause,” and it’s being used by medical personnel and pharmacists to deny their services to women who want birth control and/or abortion services.  Why anyone would go into such fields if they won’t actually do their job for everyone is beyond me, but that’s a topic for another day.

There’s a place called Guanajuato, Mexico.  This place is the anti-choice crowd’s wet dream come true — and a living nightmare for the women who live there.  Cecile Richards has an article on Huffington Post about what’s going on in Mexico these days…

Consider the case of a bleeding young woman’s reception at the Guanajuato hospital:

Before doctors would care for her, the authorities were summoned to interrogate her about her sexual history. Immediately after surgery she was forced to make a statement, and she is still being investigated for possible criminal action.

Yes, this woman’s life was literally draining out of her, but never mind that, the authorities need to find out if she was having a ‘legitimate’ health problem.

Across Mexico, women are being investigated, accused and jailed, even for the suspicion of terminating a pregnancy. Moreover, pregnant women with bleeding or other symptoms are now terrified to go to hospitals, lest they be accused of attempted “murder.”

Indeed, Guanajuato is the ultimate Utopian paradise for 2010 mid-term election anti-choice candidates such as Sharron Angle, Ken Buck, Christine O’Donnell, Joe Miller, and Rand Paul.   These five Republican candidates for the United States Congress oppose abortion for any reason — even rape or incest.  That’s right folks, if Angle et al get their way, a victim of rape/incest who finds herself pregnant better just buck up and start making lemonade out of that truckload of lemons that were dumped on her, cuz God’s got a plan.

More bad news folks, Angle et al are just the most high-profiled anti-choice candidates this year.  Raw Story has a post with a link to a partial list of 78 mid-term candidates who also oppose abortion in all cases.  There was a time when I was confident Republicans would never allow legal abortion to go away — it got too many single issue voters writing them checks and into the voting booths.  But these Republican/Tea Party candidates are a new breed — a much more radical breed.  Very unpredictable…

Angle et al are not just anti-abortion, they are anti-woman.  They are hypocritical, “small government,” puritanical, fetus-hugging busy bodies, who don’t give a rat’s ass about a child once it leaves the birth canal, and don’t pretend to care about women at any point in our lives — unless we are currently playing host to a blastocyst.

Roe v. Wade made it possible for a woman in the United States to obtain a safe abortion, so she could live to care for her existing children, finish school, mitigate the side effect of a crime, or remedy a birth control malfunction.  Roe v. Wade is still the law of the land — for now — although access to abortion services is limited, in some states access is severely limited.

Get into the voting booth on November 2.  Abortion rights are not the only reason to vote, but they are a very important reason for the women in this country — even the anti-choice women, because they use birth control and have abortions, too.


118 thoughts on “Sunday Roast: Fetus trumps woman?

  1. The separation of church and state are a myth.

    Religion was written by men. Very very sexually frustrated, backwards, there’s lead in the wine, ergot in the rye bread and I’m hallucinating, men.

  2. Forgive me for telling this long personal story, but this issue is deeply personal to me. In my forties I became pregnant with a child who was diagnosed with HLHS at 22 weeks gestation. Abortion was one of the options I was offered, the others being have the child and watch him die or sign him up for a heart transplant and prepare to raise a child with some pretty scary medical needs. It was made clear to me that transplant was not an option unless I had medical insurance that would cover it, many policies do not. I chose that option. Would I have chosen differently had I been a woman with no insurance who had to work to support other children? Would I have been willing to sell my home and render my family homeless in order to pay to try to save the life of the fetus? Tell someone to make lemonade when you are willing to provide lemons, sugar, and water to those who don’t have their own. After this difficult time I met, via the internet, women around the world who had been in this exact situation. The young and poor were never offered any option other than taking their child home to die.
    Well, forgive my ranting. I’m off to church. Did you know abortion is not really mentioned in the Bible anywhere?

  3. I stand by my statement, religion was created by mean, insecure men as a means to control women.

    Good post, Zooey. Got to go get ready to meet some people for a bike ride. Beautiful day in Pennsylvania and the President will be in Philadelphia today. He will be speaking in the Germantown section of Philadelphia which is a prime location providing easy access using public transportation. The msm has been using “Tokyo Rose” psych-ops on us for the past several months and I don’t think it is working. They want us to feel defeated and stay home on election day. I believe it is having the opposite effect.

  4. “cuz God’s got a plan…”

    “One Nation, under God…”

    The “neo-christian” evangelical movement started decades ago, and is just now beginning to come to fruition.

    God has been remade, cast in the image of a totalitarian father who gives power to the rich and turns a blind eye and deaf ear to the suffering of the poor.

    In rather simplistic terms, God acts that way towards the different castes because the rich are His Chosen, while the poor are not.

    We know the rich are part of God’s Chosen because He has bestowed riches, wealth and power to them. God blesses all that they do.

    The poor are condemned already. Any suffering they have on this earth is their own fault. If they would just submit to the authority of God, through His Son Jesus Christ, they, too, would be blessed.

    This is why Joe the Plumber, a handiman without a plumber’s license, dreams of owning his boss’s business…dreams of becoming wealthy enough to be one of God’s Chosen.

    This is also why people like Barbara Bush don’t care to dirty their minds with thoughts of the poor suffering after Katrina, why the CEO of BP referred to the fishermen and others whose lives were destroyed as a result of the oil well blow-out as “small people.”

    This doctrinal wall between God’s Chosen and the Unchosen allows devoutly religious people to accept the fact that a Good and Loving, All-Powerful God allows suffering: only the Unchosen suffer.

    This is the new theology adopted by the rich and powerful. It is global, and seeks a global government with an Authoritarian Christ at its head. In this theology, liberalism, socialism, progressivism, are of the Devil, because anything that helps the poor takes money from God’s Chosen and spends it on the Unchosen, and, in so doing, helps the Devil.

    In this new theology, Christ no longer ministers to the poor; He damns them.

  5. Meet the Press has a Senate debate between Dem Alexi Giannoulias and Repub Mark Kirk, for President Obama’s open Senate seat. I didn’t hear much of anything I didn’t already know, like Kirk lied about his military service, and the Giannoulias family bank loaned money to shady folks in Chicago. Kirk is having to run against his record as a House Rep, but it was one place my ears really perked up, when he said we need to sell off parts of TVA, and privatize the power industry in my area. One reason we have jobs at all in my area, is due to cheap power. Those phony power shortages caused by Enron, and the uncertainty of future energy costs haven’t helped retain jobs in California, or attract new ones.

    It’s sad that in Illinois, you have a House Rep who voted for TARP, versus a former banker, to choose from. While Alexi G. is running for the side I would support, he would have been a better candidate at another time.

    Joe Klein of Time, and Peggy Noonan of the Murdoch Street Journal discussed the basic pessimism of both sides of the electorate, and their lack of understanding of health reform, financial reform, and TARP/Stimulus. Klein said they are starting to feel better about the auto industry bailout, and that you can’t drive thirty miles without seeing a road crew, so they are seeing some result of the stimulus money.

    Noonan plays concern troll, acting all sympathetic that Obama on the stump speaks to ‘extraneous issues’. Both agreed the Republicans are far from confident about the Midterms.

  6. Politicians have no business AT ALL in insisting government interference with and meddling in the private doctor-patient relationship. The state has no constitutional right of any kind to do so, and most surely the expressed right of privacy should overwhelm and wipe out any interest the state presumes.

    That said, I can note that in 1984, my then-wife and I were faced with a major decision. She was 41 and pregnant. Amniocentesis revealed Down Syndrome. We, she and I together, made the hard choice. I was with her the whole time; there was no rejoicing when the event concluded, only a great sorrow that things had happened as they did.

    As a non-theist, I had no religious problems, only a huge personal sadness. As one who had been raised as a Catholic and educated in Catholic schools (K-B.A.) she had personal sadness plus a trainload of guilt, and even though she could defeat the guilt intellectually it still haunted her, probably still does.

    Thankfully there were no bureaucrats (or Senate candidates) involved, and thankfully her (city government-paid benefit) insurance handled the tab.

    Six months later, we adopted a newborn; three years later we adopted a second newborn. Both girls are now grown and have brought nothing but joy. We raised them sans church involvement of any kind, figured they could make their own choice as adults. In so doing, we hope we spared them of the baggage that disallowed their mom from the ability to make an unencumbered intellectual choice, one that still haunts her to this day.

    I don’t have a dog in the hunt of what others believe — until they try to impose their beliefs on mine or to interfere in areas which are personal. If someday abortions were mandated, I would probably take exception. If gay marriage was mandated, I’d take exception. But in any other context, the government — free from influence by religious belief as it is — has no business even commenting on such issues, much less trying to legislate.

    As Denis Diderot long ago noted, “No man will be truly free till the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest.” He was, basically, correct.

    Rant over. For now at least.

  7. On This Week, Amanpour starts with a brief story about North Korea, and Kim Jong Il, and speculation over his health.

    Next is the Connecticut Senate race between Richard Blumenthal and that crazy rasslin’ lady Linda ‘The Stone Face’ McMahon, the Queen of Botox! This was two separate taped interviews. (At the start of her interview, McMahon is briefly identified as a Dem, on the chyron below her face, but ABC catches it). She tells Christiane she’s for a Federal hiring and wage freeze, but that won’t control spending enough. She ignores the question on Social Security cuts, and gets away with it. McMahon defends the sexism and behaviour degrading to women, in her WWE shows as a first amendment right of the content provider. She tries to soften that by claiming her shows moved from TV-14 to PG, saying she’s happy with the content today.

    Blumenthal blames the shrinking of his 41 point lead, as of January, on a ’50 million dollar, negative attack machine’. Blumenthal, like Kirk in Illinois, has been caught in misstatements about past military service.

    McMahon has outspent Blumenthal 16 to 1, including 25 to 30 million dollars of her own money, according to Amanpour. It is forcing the Dems to spend money in Connecticut, that could better be spent in true swing states.

    Before the break, French finance minister, Christine Lagarde, is asked about European austerity. I get the idea she’s saying the programs are working to create jobs without government stimulus. Of course, they have taxed their banks to pay for the crisis, an unheard of policy here. They have been able to rein in their banks, but, she says they always make up new schemes to get around the rules. (Sounds like that makes her happy.) Lagarde defends the raising of retirement age as being in the interest of the next generations. (What that actually does is depress their wages, by keeping a larger supply of labor. Maybe in France they can keep their jobs until they do retire.)

    I skipped the Musharaff interview, to have time for the panel, with George Will, Paul Krugman, Tavis Smiley of his PBS show, Amy Walter, ABC News Political Director.

    Saints preserve us! Amy Walter gets the first question! A breakthrough for humanity! The question concerns Marcy Kaptur’s House opponent, Rich Iott, the Nazi re-enactor we all heard about yesterday. (Not since F1’s Max Mosley, got caught cavorting with the Nazi dressed hookers, have we had such a scandal, it seems.) Walters says this hurts him and helps Kaptur (obviously).

    They play Christine O’Donnell’s “I’m You” ad. Will says the Tea Party is an enormous net benefit to the Republicans. ( I’m still waiting for them to elect their first general election candidate.)
    Tavis notes that O’Donnell is having to defend herself against herself, not statements made by others, the Tea Party candidates aren’t the best candidates for the long run, and where were the Tea Party supporters, when the deficit was being run up during the last administration?

    Krugman says the Tea Party candidates would make governing difficult for the Repubs if they were in control.

    Will brings up ads from five freshman Democrats, claiming they voted against TARP, when the vote for TARP happened before they were in office. (But doesn’t name them, he never does bring specifics.)

    Krugman said there’s more corporate money than any election before in US history. It’s not the ‘little guy getting into politics’ through the internet, it’s the billionaires.

    Will likens the foreign dues paid to the Chamber of Commerce to the foreign dues paid to the AFL-CIO.

    Smiley said nobody in DC has a vested interest in fixing the broken campaign finance system. People have the right to know where the money is coming from.

    Krugman disputes Lagarde’s employment numbers, disagrees with the effect of austerity, in France. The people who have a stake in deficits are bond investors, with interest rates at near record lows. It’s a popular European fantasy which bears no relationship to reality.

    Will says we’ve had 20 months of the most rapid expansion of discretionary spending in our history. We’ve lost 1 million private sector non farm jobs (almost all in the early months).
    In 1983 the Reagan tax cuts created a boom of 7 million new jobs.

    Krugman said the only discretionary spending was emergency spending and that Reagan cutting interest rates in 1983 helped the jobs. (Which we can’t do because W had to cut them to zero trying to keep the economy from cratering before the 2008 election.)

    Having Krugman on sure helps call Will out on his BS!

  8. “One Nation, under God…”

    I wonder why the right-wing is so adamant about insisting that this is a nation “under God.” The Founding Fathers never said that. The words “under God” were added to a pledge that was never endorsed by the Founding Fathers, either. The people who insist that this country go back to the days of its founding should be the first ones to reject the addition of “under God” to the Pledge of Allegiance (which, let’s face it, most of those people couldn’t properly name in the first place.)

  9. When “Under God” was added, I was in Middle School. I was, even then (and thanks to my dad), “ornery” when it came to religion. We had to say the Pledge every morning before class; for the first two or three words I paused and didn’t say “under god”; once I became an adult, I quit saying the pledge completely. Haven’t said it for as long as I can remember, in fact. I have no allegiance to any flag, nor for the ‘Republic’, nor to anything ‘under god.’ I do have great respect and admiration for the Constitution, however, but those of us who do are apparently in a distinct minority these days.

    • Awesome article on Truthout: Tea Stained: the Tea Party and Its Claims to Feminism

      For feminists watching in slack-jawed amazement as this bizarre Year of the Woman unfolds, the immigration focus is particularly disturbing. When the bodies of people of color, particularly women and children, suffer the consequences of the anxieties and actions of white women claiming political and social power for a select few, that ain’t feminism.

      Palin, Bachman, and their ilk are trying to claim the title of “feminist,” but all they succeed in doing is burying 150 years of work toward equal rights for women under a steaming pile of shit.

  10. Frugal, please give your wife a big hug from a lady in VA who was lead to adoption in much the same way you folks were.
    I quit saying the pledge of alligiance around 3rd or 4th grade, because I just naturally resented the idea that anyone could make me swear loyalty to anything.
    Speaking of TARP, this from “5 myths about TARP” in today’s Washington post: “Even looking beyond the TARP to losses associated with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s pre-crisis mistakes, the direct costs of the government’s overall rescue strategy are likely to be less than 1 percent of GDP. By comparison, the much less severe savings and loan crisis of the late 1980s and early 1990s cost 2.5 times that as a share of our economy.”

  11. Thanks for the truthout article Zooey (and the hugs). To those so-called religious, protective mama bear feminists I offer this from two very different women:

    “(1) Ours is a migratory world in which many people move across borders to escape poverty, hunger, injustice and violence. We categorically reject efforts to criminalize undocumented migrants and immigrants, and deplore the separation of families and the unnecessary incarceration of undocumented workers. Since, as we are convinced, it is natural to seek gainful employment to sustain oneself and one’s family, we cannot agree that the efforts of undocumented workers to feed and shelter their households through honest labor are criminal.”
    Bishop Katherine Schori

    “A culture that tolerates injustice against one group of its people ultimately fails to respect and value all its citizens”
    Laura Bush

    The anger of this crop of right-wing females is not feminism, it’s the last angry gasp of creatures who marginalize others and have begun to fear the day when the world will no longer permit them to do so.

  12. I note that Christine has more chins than she had several years ago. That plus her lies reminds me of the great description of ‘two-faced’ from an old movie:

    “You’re a one-eyed Jack around here, Dad, but I’ve seen the other side o’ your face.” ~Kid Rio (Marlon Brando) to Dad Longworth (Karl Mauldin) in One-Eyed Jacks

  13. When I took my Oath upon entering the Air Force, I silently mouthed the optional words “…so help me God” at the end. The one time when I mentioned I was atheist in front of my co-workers, my supervisor turned in his chair to face me and said, “Really? I never met an atheist before.” It felt very much like a challenge of sorts, rather than a gesture of inquisitiveness, and I decided then to be very careful to whom I might mention my atheism.

  14. I decided then to be very careful to whom I might mention my atheism

    That is most interesting, Wayne, as I kind of do the ‘reverse’. If the conversation starts to lean toward ‘god’ a/o religion I’ll pre-empt so as not to be drug into the fairy tale.
    (Sharia law was being discussed and the tsking was coming from fundamental ‘christians’ about the hijab and telling women how to dress.)
    These fundies don’t allow ‘their women folk’ to wear pants, only dresses and skirts that are worn mid-way down the leg. The neck and arms must also be covered.
    They attempted to quote something from their version of the bible.
    I pointed out that Muslims believe the Sharia laws come from Qur’an ( the written guidelines of their lives) and that it is no different than their quoting from the bible.
    I think they are still pondering the thought that what ‘they hate’ is exactly how they act.

  15. ebb,

    This happened around 1983-4. Times have changed. I no longer hesitate to mention my atheism if someone mentions “God’s will” or something like that. When I said I would be careful, I meant at that time in my life. I think that by now, most of the people who know me through the Internets know that I am atheist. And while Atheism is not fully embraced by our society, it does seem like its less scorned than it used to be. I’m rarely referred to as a “Godless communist” anymore, but that’s probably due to the collapse of the Soviet Union.

  16. “I wonder why the right-wing is so adamant about insisting that this is a nation “under God.” ”

    Read “The Family” by Jeff Sharlet

  17. I’ve never had much trouble with my religious beliefs, even when I was in the Navy. Whenever asked by a Mrs Grundy type if I believed in something I just answered No. (The Navy types about had a shit hemorrhage over it when they were screening me for security clearance.)

    No matter what the question was. Within a few minutes they end up chasing their tail.

  18. Hooda,

    When Reagan was in power, mentioning that you were Atheist was tantamount to saying you were a Communist Sympathizer. Not the wisest career move for someone in the military. 😉

  19. Zooey,

    I know. War is brutal enough as it is (not to mention completely unnecessary.) To know that all our efforts to have Bush and Cheney tried as War Criminals was for naught because they were just continuing existing US policy is sickening.

  20. Wayne, when they asked if I was an atheist, I said No. Same answer to was I a Christian, believed in God and all the rest. They seemed to think I had to believe in some sort of sky fairy somewhere. Frustrated the crap out of them.

  21. Zooey,

    Furthermore, I think if any US president ever had the courage (or depravity) to pull the trigger himself on one of those death squads, it might no longer be US policy to have them operate at our behest.

    • The thing I keep coming back to, Wayne, is that by continuing the “existing US policy” and doing nothing, we are all made complicit — no matter how much we protest.

      It seems that may be the goal.

  22. In fact, when it came to my dog tag they had to put ‘Other’ for religious affiliation.

  23. “When Reagan was in power, mentioning that you were Atheist was tantamount to saying you were a Communist Sympathizer. ”

    It wasn’t a whole lot easier being a liberal environmentalist no matter what you did or did not believe. Local businessmen actually called my employer (I did DSP for sonar and ASW) and told them I was a commie.

    • I may be naive, but I really don’t get the whole “not minding your own business” thing.

      Very few, if any, of us live such exemplary lives that we should feel free to comment on the way our neighbors live their lives.

  24. It wasn’t a whole lot easier being a liberal environmentalist no matter what you did or did not believe

    oh, you are so ‘right on’ OIMF. The Saint Ronnie years branded anyone who thought about the future sans fossil fuel and heaps of garbage as a communist!
    After all what was one of his first ‘acts as President’?
    Do away with the solar panels that Jimmy had put up!
    And look how much longer it took to get them back in the ‘Peoples House’…

  25. One of the reasons I love TheZoo is because my atheism isn’t grounds for being ostracized. I respect the fact that many of my fellow Critters (and Zoosters) are people of Faith, and I do my best to censor what I say.

  26. Well you youngsters out there, back in ’65 seeking civilian employment, the words Military, Electronics and Top Secret Clearance got me a job on DoD funded R&D facility outside DC.

    One interesting experience was visiting a clean room that could detect fibers from Kotex pads in the air!

    In ’69 in private employment I had a wee part as a sub-contractor to a sub-contractor to NASA’s first moon landing.

    Sigh….the older I get the better I was!

  27. Very few, if any, of us live such exemplary lives that we should feel free to comment on the way our neighbors live their lives.

    And those that do live exemplary lives have the class not to say anything about it.

  28. From one of my all time favorite “radical” authors/thinkers:

    “God? … who the hell is He? … Why confuse the issue by dragging in a superfluous entity? Occam’s razor. Beyond atheism, nontheism. I am not an atheist but an eartheist. Be true to the earth.” ~Edward Abbey, Desert Solitaire; 1968

  29. I highly doubt that human kind will ever not have the urge to comment on how others live their lives. We are an opinionated bunch. The problem always seems to come in when someone thinks their opinions and/or comments should mean something really important to anyone else.

    • The problem always seems to come in when someone thinks their opinions and/or comments should mean something really important to anyone else.

      Now I’m in trouble… 😛

  30. “I respect the fact that many of my fellow Critters (and Zoosters) are people of Faith, and I do my best to censor what I say.”

    And please tell me if I ever fail to respect your rights to believe or not as you choose, or if I start spouting too much Bible.

  31. frugal, you could carry that one step further and be a lifetheist. Life happens, whether we will or not and it just might not be confined to earth.

  32. pachydiplax: Well you youngsters out there, back in ’65 seeking civilian employment, the words Military, Electronics and Top Secret Clearance got me a job on DoD funded R&D facility outside DC.

    Back in ’65, I snagged a job in the research department of a company that was involved in classified BCW projects. The timing was perfect — it kept me free from the draft the year after my student deferment ran out. I wasn’t all that pleased that I contributed to the war effort in the Nam, but given that the major project upon which I worked was a Tunnel Denial concept where, by blowing a certain non-lethal chemical formulation into V.C. tunnels it would, according to theory, cause up to 5000 of them to shit at the same time. The amusement both helped and inspired.

    • I worked was a Tunnel Denial concept where, by blowing a certain non-lethal chemical formulation into V.C. tunnels it would, according to theory, cause up to 5000 of them to shit at the same time.

      So instead of the magical mysteries of “remote viewing,” you worked on “remote shitting?” 😀

  33. Outstanding,

    I guess, for me, I don’t mind at all that anyone believes that there is a God who has something to do with our creation or our destinies. I don’t agree with it, but I can accept that. It’s when they start promoting one particular Religion as superior to all others that I start to get concerned.

    I don’t mind hearing someone quote the Bible. I have a problem with an insistence that it is a verbatim quote from a Supreme Being, or that it is the Word of God.

    I have actually seen pictures of people carrying signs in support of English as our official language that said , “If English was good enough for Jesus, it’s good enough for me.” That is why I do not want anything to do with Religion near my Government. I have to obey my government, I don’t have to obey anyone’s religious beliefs, especially if they think Jesus spoke English.

  34. Outstanding, honest faith, in anything, should always be respected. Nice thing about the Zoo is that seems to be understood by all.

    To be given the ability to think and understand is man’s greatest attribute and gift. To follow anything blindly is to slap the divine in the chops.

  35. Zooey,

    That’s what we, as a nation, get for not emphasizing the learning of foreign languages. In European countries, it’s not at all unusual to have children who can speak English, French, Spanish and German. It is not only inconceivable to have that happen routinely here, it would be, to some people, a complete waste of time. None of the English-only people realize that if they took the time to learn another language, they could understand what all those foreigners were saying about them behind their backs.

    • That’s a good point, Wayne.

      I’ve often wondered if those Japanese symbol tattoos really say what the wearer thinks they say.

  36. Geez, Wayne, work with me here. We’re talking the son of doG, ya know the guy who hired the acid head to write Revelations? Of course he could see into the future. (Outstanding, I hope you have a good sense of humor)

  37. I respect everyone’s point of view, their beliefs, and my respect has nothing to do with whether I BELIEVE as they do, only that I respect their right to believe as they wish. I ask only that they similarly respect all others, including myself, and understand that there is a difference between belief and respect of belief.

    Zooey: So instead of the magical mysteries of “remote viewing,” you worked on “remote shitting?”

    Yes. As we liked to say, “War is a shitty business, but someone has to do it.”

    • I feel the same way, frugal. Believe what you want to believe, I can respect that. Just give me the same respect.

      I totally respect my middle sister’s belief in god, even though I don’t understand it — it’s not my business to tell her she might be full of shit. She, on the other hand, will tell me she loves me very much, but I’m going to hell, and that hurts HER feelings.


  38. My son has two Chinese symbols tatooed on his chest. I’ve always believed they stand for “American Asshole”.

    And don’t worry, I have a sense of humour, I’ve always thought that anyone who took Revelation literally, let alone thought it was the actual word of God, had perhaps done too much acid at some point in their lives.

    “To be given the ability to think and understand is man’s greatest attribute and gift. To follow anything blindly is to slap the divine in the chops.”

    Beautifully said Hooda!

  39. Marion Zimmer Bradley had a bit she wrote in a few of her novels I always liked.

    “Allow others their otherness.”

  40. Zooey,

    If you’ve never read “Dave Barry Does Japan”, I recommend it. His take on the various cultural differences between our countries is funny. But he also noted that young Japanese people absolutely love our alphabet. They think it’s really cool to walk down the street wearing a shirt that says something in English, even if it makes no sense. He said he saw shirts that said “Eat Fuck Chicken King”. They just think the lettering is really cool, much as people might think something written in Japanese “looks really cool.” I shudder to think what phrase some Japanese person as devious as me might have put on them.

    “Oh, I see you have a head scarf with Japanese writing on it.”

    “It says, ‘Divine Wind.”

    “Well, that’s what ‘kamikazi’ means. What’s written on your scarf is, ‘Hit me, I’m a dick smoker.’ You might want to talk to the guy you bought that from.”

  41. My oldest friend became a fundie ten years ago, according to her I’ll be right there in hell with you Zooey. I’m going for thinking the whole man was around with the dinoaurs thing is a big load of crap, among other reasons.

  42. Outstanding,

    I remember seeing a stand-up comic making the argument that if there really were dinosaurs walking around with men, wouldn’t at least a few of them have made it into the Bible? How would Adam’s naming of the animals have gone?

    “Well, I think I’ll call that cute little feller there a ‘rabbit’. And that will be a ‘lion’. And that guy right there will be a ‘Tyrannasaurus R-ahhhhhh!'”

  43. I was tempted to post this on TP.

    “You know, I talked to God over coffee this morning and he asked me to tell the fundamentalist types that they didn’t have to worry about voting this time because he had things handled. Have some faith, He said.”

  44. I was tempted to post this on TP.

    “You know, I talked to God over coffee this morning and he asked me to tell the fundamentalist types that they didn’t have to worry about voting this time because he had things handled. Have some faith, He said.”

    And if they say, “Why wouldn’t He tell us that message directly?”, you can answer, “Why doesn’t he tell ALL of us the same message directly that He supposedly tells only one person? What does He do, tell one person and pray to himself that the message gets through to the rest of us?”

    Here’s a perfect way to do it: Have everybody on the planet go to bed and have the same exact, wonderful dream. Then, the next day, when everyone starts talking about that wonderful dream they had the night before, they’ll realize that everyone else has had the same dream, and even people like me would start to re-think their position on the existence of God.

    No, instead He picks some guy wandering around in a desert to give his message to. Now there’s a credible source.

  45. I’ve got a question, after Mary was pregnant did she give Joseph any , or was she still a (cough, cough) virgin when she gave birth.

    If Joseph had to wait until after the birth, the sheep in the manger make sense now.

  46. Wayne, you see, according to some 1,500 years of dogma you have to either study for years or receive some sort of painful divine revelation to truly comprehend the message of Jesus. It is very intricate and needs interpretation and filtering before ordinary people can comprehend the divine, universal complexity of…Be Nice.

  47. Wayne, I think konichi wa means ‘how goes it?’ or something close to that. Wouldn’t swear to it though. It’s been thirty years since I read the book, probably more, almost that long since the miniseries first came out. Just picked it up on Netflix — well worth the time to watch it.

    Course, I’m biased — I always thought James Clavell was a great author. King Rat, Shogun, Noble House — and those are just the ones made into movies or miniseries!

    Hai! Domo arigato Toranaga-sama! Wakarimas! Something like that. If I keep it up I should be fluent in a week! 🙂

  48. frugal, I always thought it meant ‘Isn’t that so?” But I ran it through several translators and they all told me it means konichi wa? Weird.

  49. My facility for language other than English is terrible, always has been. I think the problem is that it’s the only language I was exposed to in my growing up years. My mother and grandmother spoke German, but never around us kids. My dad could handle Swedish since both of his parents were from Sweden, but he, too, stuck to English. It was like English was “official” and all other languages were thus not important. My first two years of college I took German, but it was too late, didn’t stick. Lived in AZ for forty-plus years, wanted to learn Spanish but counting to 100 and ordering breakfast (“tocino y dos huevos revueldos, pan tostada con mantequilla, y jugo de naranja”) were the best I could manage.

    I’m all for multiple languages in childhood, the more the merrier. Children don’t have those mental blocks that we get when older. Or so it seems at least. Multilingualism should be a sought-after standard, not something viewed as suspicious or even criminal.

    Meanwhile, will be watching tonight disk 4 of Shogun. I should be far more fluent by morning than I am this afternoon, i.o.w. Mariko-san (Lady Toda) explained, after all, to Blackthorne (Anjin-san) that Japanese is incredibly simple to learn. I’m sure I’m living proof that that’s not so, but what the heck, it’s worth the watch anyway!

  50. frugal, I grew up with 11 aunts and uncles and 2 grandparents who all spoke Polish and I know 1 phrase in Polish. I studied Russian and Arabic in college, minored in Russian and I remember more Spanish from 1 semester in Jr high.

    America is cheating itself by not requiring foreign languages to be taught at the grade school level.

  51. Hooda – Ako sa mas?

    Great conversation today. Talking religion on Sunday which is a special day for Christians. Other religions have other days. I was raised Catholic and I refer to myself as a recovering Catholic. Frankly, I don’t care what people believe as long as they keep their religion out of my life. I have my own beliefs, one which is that we have all been here before and before that and before that and we may return again and again and again. There is no worshiping involved with this belief. That’s it in a nutshell.

    Zooey, that video is part of tomorrow’s open thread. I found it on DailyKos on Saturday morning.

  52. Cats, my belief say there is something out there way smarter than me that keeps things running. Don’t know if I’ve been here before don’t know if I will be here again. Since I don’t know it really doesn’t matter. While I would like to believe in mulligans, what I like really has no impact on what is.

    For me, doing well this time around is enough. I’ll worry about what comes next when I get there. (And hope I did a good enough job here)

  53. I’m rotten. I started a God is an Autocrat line on TP. Christians shouldn’t vote because it isn’t in the Bible!

  54. I’m rotten. I started a God is an Autocrat line on TP. Christians shouldn’t vote because it isn’t in the Bible!


    Especially right-wing Christian women! Not only is voting not mentioned in the Bible, but the Founding Fathers never intended women to vote.

  55. When people tell me that I will go to hell if I don’t believe in god I tell them that it doesn’t really matter because I don’t believe in hell either.

  56. Wayne, there is not a single instance in the Bible, OT or NT that supports anything like modern day voting. God is an autocrat. His will is law.

  57. I’m in the middle of Stephen Hawking’s new book, The Grand Design. It’s compelling, even for a relative physics ignoramus such as myself. It appears to be leading to a genuine theory of origins, one which does not require a ‘creator’ in the religious sense — something I’ve long maintained but could never scientifically support.

    Quantum physics is fascinating. I actually think I’m learning something NEW as I study each page! What’s so great about quantum physics is that it’s so incredibly simple AND so incredibly complex that no wingnut will ever even try to debunk it! Well, ‘cept maybe for Pee on TP (that sounds gross — maybe because he is).

    Speaking of Pee, I made him sick today. I’m very proud of that.

    Anyway, I’ll report back later on Hawking’s thesis, if and when I can comprende what he’s come up with (it took me three years and three reads of Brief History of Time before I could grasp the front end of what he was saying). What a gift his mind has been and remains.

  58. Cats: “When people tell me that I will go to hell if I don’t believe in god I tell them that it doesn’t really matter because I don’t believe in hell either.”

    For a change of pace, ask them if they think they’re going to heaven, then explain how you’ll surely see them there, since such an eternity would be pure hell for you.

    I tried that once, it worked. The guy shut up, quit pontificating. At least in my presence.

  59. zxbe, stunningly beautiful photos!
    Sure looks as if autumn has arrived in your part of the world!

  60. Oh, and I noticed on the stairs down to the lower part of the falls, a little plaque:

    WPA – 1937

    I wondered how many thousands of people over the last 70+ years have enjoyed this park. If Republicans had their way, this park wouldn’t be there. It would probably be an industrial dump.

  61. Zxbe, the WPA was magnificent in its undertakings.
    Too bad something like that couldn’t be done today – help boost the employment/economy and totally beautify the country. You’re correct to state the gonopers would have none of it.

    S.F. Coit Tower’s

  62. zxbe: “This is how I spent my day. Minneopa State Park & Falls, near Mankato. Enjoy.”

    Oh, man, take me back in time! Minneopa was my FAVORITE place when I was a kid in S. Minn. sixty years ago! Used to go there regularly for picnics with my folks, with friends. Last time I was there was in the spring of 1960, senior ‘skip’ day at New Richland High, some 35 miles from Mankato. Six of us — three guys, three girls — skipped school and went to Minneopa for a picnic, for the day. It was great! As always.

    Thanks for the rehash!

  63. I’ve got a question, after Mary was pregnant did she give Joseph any , or was she still a (cough, cough) virgin when she gave birth.

    If Joseph had to wait until after the birth, the sheep in the manger make sense now.

    Wasn’t ‘Mary’ the Christine O’D of her day? Or is it that Christine is the ‘Mary’ of her day? Neither putting out – virgins to the end.

    Not certain what role ‘Joseph’ was supposed to play in all of this. Marriage wasn’t the ‘in’ thing so ‘legitimacy’ wouldn’t have been the reason.


    Many of your kin were zipping around the marsh at Don Edwards National Wildlife Refuge –
    we observed six to eight Blue Dashers. The iridescence and beauty of Dragonflies is a wondrous sight!

  64. ebb: “Wasn’t ‘Mary’ the Christine O’D of her day? Or is it that Christine is the ‘Mary’ of her day? Neither putting out – virgins to the end.”

    All I know about it I learned from my dad’s uncle, Werner Peterson. In the late seventies when Werner was in his nineties, he was at our house for Christmas dinner. He was usually quiet, but when there was a lull in the conversation that day, he laid us all out with this one (spoken in a heavy Swedish accent):

    “Ya, I yust heard today dat dey have figgered out dat Jesus vasn’t born in Sweden.”

    Everyone’s attention was riveted. Werner was silent. I finally broke the ice and asked how they had decided such a thing. After a pause, he said,

    “Cause dere vasn’t no more Virgins left in Sweden!”

    Needless to say the room erupted in laughter. So he added, “And dey say he vasn’t born in Norway nieder. Cause in da bible it says da tree vise men came from da east, and to da east of Norway is Sweden, and dere vasn’t no vise men dere neider.”

    That was one told around the family’s Christmas campfire for many years to come.

  65. Z, that’s the remnants of a place called Seppman Mill. It was a wind-powered flour mill built in the late 1800’s.

    Frugal, I’m ashamed to admit this, but this was actually my first visit to Minneopa. I’ve been wanting to go, but it’s just a long-enough drive, that I never seemed to get around to it.

    So I took advantage of the global-warming induced near 80-degree day and drove down. The park was packed, with others enjoying the roaring falls (due to high water levels) and the phenomenal weather.

  66. frugal, that was quite humorous! Thanks.


    zxbe, the west was also enjoying a warm autumn day.
    The Pelicans, Sparrows, Finches, Northern Harriers, Peregrines, Butterflies and Dragonflies were out in numbers to cavort and take in the shorter daylight.

  67. Thank you ebb

    That’s enough to make a person blush. Dragonflies don’t blush, but they do flutter when butterflies flitter around.

    I think that Saint fellow over at TP was trying to get Wayne away from the computer so he could flirt with Jane.

    • Thanks for the reminder about Coit Tower, ebb. I lived in the Bay Area a long time, but never actually went inside the tower. I really missed something…

      I remember the time my mom, along with the officer’s wives club, put a giant yellow ribbon on Coit Tower. It was a welcome home for the men on the USS Coral Sea in 1975, after the war — including my dad. There must be a picture of that somewhere in my mom’s stuff. I hope I can find it one day.

  68. Ah, a butterfly.

    A saying I collected as a youth: I should always distrust a man who raves of distant beauty under foreign skies and has yet to discover the wondrous things within five miles of his abode.

    I was lucky to grow up when students had maps available, unlike South Carolina Beauty Queens.

  69. pachy, did your class room have the ‘pull down’ maps up by the teachers desk?
    And the huge globe at the front of the classroom?

    Those were the learning days of yore.


    and has yet to discover the wondrous things within five miles of his abode.

    Out by the refuge there’s a mega church – to each side: an undeveloped field. Across the street: an undeveloped field.
    These fields teem with wild life – even ‘cute’ little bunny rabbits people set free.
    There are Burrowing Owls; Red winged blackbirds; Kestrels, etc.
    On never, ever sees the ‘attendees’ at this mega complex wandering to observe what is right under their noses.
    Zip into the parking lot – attend inside a box – stream back out to the car and off they go.
    All the while – right under their feet all the beauty their ‘creator’ has imbued this life.

    Sorry for repeating this story – it truly floors and astonishes me how ‘holy folk’ close themselves up inside a box when the outdoor calls at their feet.

  70. I’m being attacked by my cat. He’s demanding payment for the mouse he brought me. Filling his food bowl has failed to stop this creature, He’s demanding attention!

    This I’ll dedicate to all cat owners here as I say g’night all.

  71. ok, the last ‘outdoor adventure’ story of the day (I promise):

    The Corvid scrum: the Crows are so entertaining.

    The Black Walnuts are just ripe for the picking and the crows are taking advantage. There are a few fellows who don’t want to actually land in the tree to pick the walnut so they wait until others have a beakful – alight on the ground and then land, right next to the walnut holding crow. Beak the walnut out of that mouth: let the beak games/scrum begin.
    I half expect the crows to start using their feet to kick the walnut down the way…

    (ok, I don’t have cable and try to take advantage of every sunny day that is presented. Actually I’ll take being out of doors in rain or shine any time.)

  72. 2ebb – We should enjoy everyday to the best of our abilities. You are not missing much by not having cable.

    Thanks for the Cats video. Wish that play would return to New York. I saw it many years ago and would enjoy seeing it again.

  73. Rest well and easy pachy!

    Cats – hurray for your Phils.

    The G’s nearly gave us coronaries today – coming from the brink to win! Now they’ll just wrap it up tomorrow (yes, a whole bunch of positive/wishful thinking).

  74. Last night in baseball:
    San Francisco beat Atlanta
    Philadelphia beat Cincinnati

    If SF wins, they play Philadelphia

    Last night in football:
    Philadelphia beat San Francisco

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