From the GREAT STATE OF MAINE...
Michael Moore is shrill...
"Y'know, we live in a country where we're all very patriotic and we all say we love America. We love our country and yet we hate our government. And I think part of that is because we've seen government mess up a lot lately. And I don't think it's so much the government, it's who you put the government.
"There's nothing wrong with FEMA. FEMA is a good idea. We need FEMA. I think everyone would agree with that. What's wrong is "Heckuvajob Brownie." That's what's wrong...when you put the wrong people in charge of FEMA. [...]
"And I do believe that the first thing we have to do is ask ourselves who we are...as a people. Are we the people who want to believe that we're all in this together? Or is it every man for himself: pull yourself up by your bootstraps...me me me me me.
"Or do we operate from the ? That we're all in this, and when we have a national shame---whether it's a tragedy like Katrina or health care---we then collectively decide to do something about it. That's what I'm hoping we all do. I think that's your challenge to this audience and to the rest of the country."
---From the 9/27 edition of Oprah
The second time I went to see Sicko at our local theatre, a woman who had obviously dragged her Michael Moore-hating husband with her sat down next to us. The movie had already started, and as he scooted past me in the dark the husband mumbled, "Don’t worry, I won’t be here long." After about 20 minutes of heavy sighing and looking at his watch (while the rest of us were practically in tears), he got up, said "I'm outta here," and left his wife to finish the movie without him. I thought that was classy.
Anyway, Sicko---a sure-fire Oscar nominee---is now out on DVD. I disagree with Peter Travers' blurb that says, "You'll laugh 'til it hurts." It's more like, "You'll wince 'til your head explodes." And I can tell you from experience: HMO's don’t cover exploding heads (although the travel-size sewing kit they sent was very thoughtful...)
Cheers and Jeers starts in There's Moreville... [Swoosh!!] RIGHTNOW! [Gong!!]
From Talking Points Memo: “Democrats are picking up seats in the Virginia legislature tonight. They might just win a majority in the state Senate, pending a couple of close races, and the Republican majority in the House of Delegates has been narrowed slightly.“The reason is very simple: The Republicans are getting creamed in Northern Virginia.” [...]
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The right’s biggest book publisher is apparently having trouble with some of the right’s biggest authors. It could get ugly — and for some of us, entertaining.Five authors have sued the parent company of Regnery Publishing, a Washington imprint of conservative books, charging that the company deprives its writers of royalties by selling their books [...]
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ENDA is being debated on the House floor right now. The chair just said that Tammy Baldwin may not even offer her transgender amendment, even though Monday the House gave Baldwin permission to offer her amendment. Why is Baldwin now talking about withdrawing her amendment, i.e., not offering her amendment, when for weeks NGLTF and Baldwin and their allies have been screaming bloody murder that we'd better let them try to include transgender people in the bill? We were told for weeks by the folks calling for ENDA to be killed if it doesn't include gender identity, that it would be easy to pass the bill with gender identity because America, and Congress, have already come around on trans issue (e.g., cross-dressing, sex changes, and more). I've been arguing that such an amendment would go down in flames, as would an ENDA that includes trans coverage, and set the transgender community (and gay community) back politically. And now that Baldwin finally got official permission to offer her amendment to include trans back in the bill, she appears to be backing off.
Oh, it gets better. The House Republicans are now demanding that the full House vote on Tammy's trans amendment. Think about that. The Republicans who want to kill this bill, stymie our civil rights, and use gay issues to bash Democrats in the election are the only people pushing for Tammy's amendment now - are the only people pushing for what was, until a few minutes ago, the position that United ENDA, including NGLTF and all of its allies, have been supporting and lobbying for.
Why is United ENDA suddenly pulling its amendment when they told us for weeks that we were crazy, that trans issues would easily pass the Congress, that even a loss on trans issues would be a win, there was no downside to losing, and that there was no reason to believe that the Republicans would use trans issues to bash Democrats and kill ENDA?
Pretty much everything I predicted is now coming true. And everything United ENDA predicted, and supported, and pontificated about has now become the position of the far-right anti-gay Republicans.
Time for folks to call Tammy and ask her why she just threw the transgender community under the bus.
When Fidel Castro dies, something fascinating will happen in America. The History Channel will run extensive coverage of Castro's life. CNN will air over and over again profiles of Castro and the many American presidents he outwitted and survived....
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Politics always seems to be about race. That's what I learned in Connecticut, when voting[...]
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A Canadian dollar now costs $1.10.
America’s media are following President Musharraf’s “emergency” suspension of Pakistan’s Constitution, Supreme Court and elections, asking what it means for America’s war on terror. After watching the military arrest[...]
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Charles Sullivan at Cyrano's Journal:
It seems inexplicable that so many of the American people can be so dazed and confused, while moral degenerates ransack our nation, piss and defecate upon the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, and brazenly loot the public domain, making a mockery of the rule of law and societal norms; whatever they may be.
Incredible lies are routinely passed as truth and the world as we know it is unraveling, as we prepare to invade and occupy yet another country, perhaps igniting World War Three. We go on with the insipid routine of our dull lives: we go shopping, and bombard our senses with mind numbing entertainment, telling ourselves that it?fascism?can?t happen here, even as its poisoned blossoms unfold before our astonished eyes and fill our lungs with their noxious fumes.
We refuse to believe what we are seeing and we dismiss it as too preposterous to be real. We no longer wholly trust our own senses or follow our most innate instincts, failing to recognize that they are all that is true; all that allow us to survive the wretched madness that pursues us like rabid dogs, and relentlessly nips at our fleeing heels.
Increasing numbers of us move through this world with a sense of impending doom but we do not fully comprehend its origins or the breadth of the disaster it portends. We sense not only that something is wrong?something is terribly, irreconcilably, sickeningly, wrong. We do our utmost to repress those feelings, telling ourselves that our worst fears, our darkest nightmares, are irrational, unfounded phantoms of the imagination; so many ghosts lurking under our beds.
We have been programmed to believe that we are the greatest nation to ever emerge from the mists of history, that everything about us as a people is exceptional and exemplary. Despite a history of endless provocation and war and countless other forms of self mutilation, we claim that we are a peace loving people?god?s own children, animated by divine stirrings.
But perhaps our state of confusion, our disorientation, and our shock at what the government is doing in our name?all of which seems to be occurring at the blinding speed of light?and our refusal to believe that which is so blatantly obvious to all but those who wear mental blindfolds, or the criminally insane, is a form of psychological shock and awe that has been deliberately imposed upon us not only by depraved politicians vying for wealth and power, but by our every societal institution.
We have arrived at our place as a result of an educational system that does not teach us how to think, but to follow rules and obey authority; to bow to self policing peer pressure and group think: a system that prepares us to pass math tests but not those of citizen and neighbor. We dutifully recite the pledge of allegiance to the flag but we hold no allegiance to the world?s people, or its stunning biological and cultural diversity, or to truth. We were led to the precipice by religious institutions that operate by the same principles as ?for profit? corporations, encouraged by Zionist and Christian fundamentalists with visions of Armageddon dancing in their crazed, bigoted heads. We are here because we pay attention to a media monoculture that does not inform, but lies and deceives for money.
A good friend recently suffered the crushing blow of not getting a job she was certain she was certain would allow her to express her talents to their fullest. She prepared diligently for the interview; learning everything she could about the company, the industry, and the position itself. She came out of the interview feeling like she'd nailed it. Then came the phone call: "We're sorry, but we've filled the position with another candidate."
She just knew she would be perfect for the job and vice versa. Now it's back to the drawing board. Back to scouting the ads online and in the newspaper, to networking and schmoozing, researching companies and sending out resumes. It's hard work and difficult to put your heart into it when your dream job has just slipped through your fingers.
Almost everyone has had the experience of wanting something, waiting for it, and having it cruelly denied them at the last minute. Whether it was a much hoped-for birthday gift that didn't materialize, a college admission not granted, or the failure to get one's dream job, disappointment is a universal experience.
The differences arise in how we cope with our disappointments. I have had great success in coping by curling up under the covers with a good book and cup of tea, but that escape only lasts until the final page is turned, or the tea fills the bladder. A good cry, for those so inclined, also can be cathartic and therapeutic, but most of us find the time and privacy required for a makeup-destroying sobfest hard to come by. Wallowing in one's misery, whatever the form, can be very tempting, but it only provides short-term comfort.
A better long-term solution for me has been the tough love technique. Acknowledge that shit happens, it hurts like hell, sometimes life isn't fair and you get fucked over, and move on. If you choose to employ this method, feel free to modify my language when consoling younger children, although I've found the plain-spoken approach works very well with teens and young adults. After the pain has lost its raw quality, a healthy self-examination of what was learned from the experience and how to handle things differently the next time is needed, but in the immediate aftermath, expressing one's sadness and anger take precedence.
Years of personal experience with disappointment have led me to the realization that just as they say depression is anger turned inward, regret is frequently disappointment with a long shelf-life. Not dealing with disappointments and putting them behind us allows them to fester and eat away at us. Thus my belief that head-on confrontation is much more effective than drowning one's sorrows or other forms of avoidance.
What great disappointments have you suffered, and how did you deal with them? How do you keep your disappointments from turning into regrets?
Here's a woman who suffered more than enough pain and disappointment to last several lifetimes, but who still managed to regret nothing. She was one tough lady.
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