ceebeegee: (Default)
 Inspired by Elizabeth's post...

Monday, I was walking from a class on the UWS to my evening job in Midtown. I was waiting to cross Columbus Avenue at that triangle just uptown of Lincoln Center. I was JUST about to dart across when the light turned red--as I stopped, I saw an elderly woman across the street go down HARD on the sidewalk. I was horrified but could not cross because there was now a shitton of traffic going past. I was waiting anxiously, catching glimpses of this woman lying on the sidewalk, and seeing people gather around her. Finally the light changed and I ran across. By now there were at least 10 people there--offering to help her up, I asked if we should call an ambulance, people were offering advice. People holding this woman's hand, saying "we're here for you." A young woman was walking past, paused, and said "you should call an ambulance. You REALLY should call an ambulance." People still standing by anxiously. Young woman walked down the sidewalk, came back and identified herself as a Physician's Assistant. She said we REALLY should call an ambulance and pretty much took it from there. Some guy in some kind of official-looking vehicle drove up and Young Woman had taken charge at that point, telling him "I'm a healthcare professional, she needs..." I finally drifted away, feeling secure this woman would be helped.

New Yorkers--we got your back. And I loved this because this applies to everyone. Iranians and Iraqis flying in to JFK--we got your back. Fuck Trump. We got your back.

Today. Walking to evening job, cross over to Fifth Avenue at 51st where there is a Banana Republic store. In the foyer is a pigeon, trapped, banging against the glass doors leading to the outside. I, and a number of other spectators notice this all at the same time. I jump forward to open up one of the three doors to encourage the bird to fly out. Another spectator does the same thing. Between the two of us we manage to keep open the three doors and the bird flies away. 

New Yorker--we got your back. Even the pigeons ;) 

Fuck Trump. We got your back. The funny thing is, the stereotype is that New Yorkers are cold and disinterested--this has never been my experience. New Yorkers take very seriously their stated values of inclusivity, liberalism. To all our friends flying into JFK from Iraq, Iran, Syria--we will not let you languish, all those . We have your back.

ceebeegee: (Default)
 I am so effing stressed about Election Day. I had to leave one of my classes early today because I nearly passed out, I felt so nauseated.


I will be carrying my Anglican rosary in my pockets all day tomorrow (today, really). And doing a LOT of drinking once I get home.
ceebeegee: (Default)
Since this is the first day off that I've had at least a couple of months, I was hoping I could go to the beach, but in fact today it is cloudy and rainy so no go :( I had actually had tentative plans with my neighbor Maria to go to Brighton Beach–– she is Russian and I thought I could've practiced my Russian down there. (I love that about BB, that I can actually read the signs по русски and practice.) Maria is pretty cool--I met her and her mother when we all moved into the building 3 years ago, and there was a big meet-and-greet on the terrace in August. We hung out for drinks with her brother (who also lives in the building) two weeks ago--she asked me to meet her up at her apartment which she said was 1004. I go up there and knock, several times, and there's no answer. I text her "где ты? я здесь в 1004." {Where are you? I am here at 1004.) She gave me the wrong number--she lives the floor above. But look me at, texting full sentences and question in Cyrillic!!!!!

The heat came on this past week bigtime, which means another summer like that year. When you work outside, global warming becomes very personal--last summer was really, really hard on me. From July through to the end of August--every day I worked outside, drinking as much water as I could, and trudging home to try to cool down before trudging off again to my evenning job. I couldn't WAIT for September, and December's very warm spell was terrifying to me. I really, really hope the conservative shitheads in Congress who are reflexively blocking any kind of measure on climate change just to say fuck you to Obama live by the water, so their houses will be the first to wash into the ocean when the waters rise. I am honestly terrified at the change.

And speaking of politics, some of these Bernie fans need to step away from the Kool-Aid. Look, I have no problem with Bernie Sanders (although he isn't my choice) and if he got the nomination, of course I would vote for him. What the fuck is wrong with so many of his supporters (NOT ALL, many of perfectly reasonable, please do not NOT ALL MEN my post) that they would rather burn the whole building down than vote for a viable candidate who is LEAPS AND BOUNDS better than the Republican clown? I look at them and they all seem to be white, straight, cisgenerdered men--who really have little to fear from a Trump administration. They can afford to be pie-in-the-sky about politics. Rachel posted somehting a few days ago that brought out the Bernie nuts, and one of them actually said ""If we can't win, at least we can make the re-election an impassible road for whomever wins!" Like, WHAT THE FUCK. What a completely stupid, stupid, self-absorbed, dumbass thing to say. It's as though this is some sort of freshman year class in political theory. Four years of living under Trump policy and rhetoric would actually affect some people's lives, you fucking toddler.

In better news, my Sunday classes are growing by leaps and bounds. They added me to these classes 6 weeks ago--3 in a row in Hell's Kitchen. At first each class had literally one kid each and then they started growing. I thought little of it until one of the mothers buttonholed me after a lesson, saying "your company is new to this neighborhood, right?" I said I didn't know but these were my first classes here in Hell's Kitchen. She said you don't advertise here--I never see fliers or anything like that but all your business is growing by word-of-mouth. All of us parents go home and tell the parents of our children's friends that they should sign up. (Which obviously means they like my classes!*) She said you should advertise more--you only have one competitor (she named the company, I didn't recognize it but I could tell by the name they didn't specialize in soccer) and this neighborhood is filling up with families.

Now, I used to live in Hell's Kitchen and know and love the area quite well. I said I would pass this on to the head of marketing who was THRILLED to read all this.

And then yesterday one of the kids gave me the cutest offering. I called him a little rosencavalier (but seriously, what kind of flower is that? It's not a rose). Isn't that adorbs?

*Also on this day, one of my kids' grandparents were there to drop off/pick up the kid, and they stayed and watched. Afterward they were just aglow--the grandmother was marveling at how good I was with the kids and I said well, it's a good job for me because I like kids, I like soccer and I like to perform. And the grandfather shook his head and said "they're lucky to have you." What a nice compliment! That was a good day :)
ceebeegee: (oz)
Friday evening I went down to the Gene Frankel to see the last Planet Connections show I could, Doug's (our Tom in Sweeter Dreams) other show, Hummingbirds. Not bad at all--his performance was great, as were the two women. One of them (the two women) buttonholed me two weeks ago after Sweeter Dreams, raving about my performance and...touching me?! Not inappropriately but flirtatiously. I certainly wasn't offended but was wondering if I'd interpreted that correctly and later Duncan said "oh yeah, she was all over you." Okay, then! Anyway, she and the other woman, whom I'd seen in another PC show, Loose Women... (she was great) were both very strong. I couldn't hang out to compliment anyone afterwards, as I had to book way back uptown to catch the end of Jason's "Take Back the Park" viewing--I guess I'm sort of a mascot now!

I got there and it was a bit of a bust, due to the clouds. There were about 5 other men besides Jason--he introduced me and then he and I talked for a bit. After the interview came out the day before, Jason had emailed me, calling me "very brave" and he followed up on this. I demurred a bit--I'm not traumatized, and nothing lasting happened to me, other than radicalizing me even MORE about rape and violence against women. It's not brave, it's just facts. At any rate, he told me that he thinks the interview was not just on local radio, but on "All Things Considered"--which is national! Wow! He thinks this because some friends of his heard the interview in New jersey, out of range of local NYC radio stations. Pretty cool!

I got home and heard the AMAZING NEWS!!!! YAAAAAAAAYYYYY!!! So, so happy for all my gay friends and family--we truly are all brothers and sisters in the eyes of God! So happy that the New York legislators did the right thing. It is TIME! I started weeping, reading the explosion of joy of Facebook. Then the historian in me was even more moved reading what the legislators had said to explain their affirmative votes--this especially got to me:

Republican Senator Mark Grisanti then spoke about his struggle before coming to his decision to vote for the bill. "A man can be wiser today than he was yesterday," he said.

This is literally bringing tears to my eyes. This is how progress is made. This is how we make things better, not just for us but for those around us. This is the difficult, incremental process of social evolution. There has seemed to be so much anger and hatred for the past 20 years in politics--so many wedge issues, so much pointless divisiveness, so much cruelty. (Specifically, I'm thinking of shitty, godless Pat Robertson blaming 9-11 on feminism and homosexuality. That's not partisan, that's not ideological or true to your religious beliefs, that's just being a nasty, cruel piece of shit.) I'm not kidding myself that it's all ended--I know it hasn't. But by God, in the past 3 years, we've elected a black man to our highest office, and we've just doubled the number of gay people in this country who can be married. Even the setbacks are being nullified, like when Prop 8 was overturned in the courts. I love reading about the '60s--there was so much incredible heroism in the civil rights and anti-war movements, and so much history was made. It happened so quickly. My friends, these are our sixties. This is our time, our chance to change the world for the better. To grow, to accomplish--to change the world.

By the way, I just called my state senator and thanked him for voting yes on Friday. His assistant was thrilled, thanked me and told me also to email him, which I will.

Saturday was the final performance of Sweeter Dreams--Christine was there, as was my friend Linda, as well as Jason and Caroline. Jason was right up front laughing at everything, it was great. I had a little fun with the interview scene and finally FINALLY got a laugh on my throwaway snark on Joanna Remarque. I made two small adjustments--I emphasized my criticism of her in my first monologue just a little bit more, to set it up, and then in the interview I made the eye roll bigger and FINALLY got a laugh! I also added a new obnoxiously correct pronunciation--Spielberg is now Schpeelberg, the way the Germans would say it. Heather told me they all laughed backstage when they heard that.

After the show Jason and I got Mexican food and just had a nice long convo. I had plans to have dinner with Tim so I raced hom and got ready, then I met him at Houston's by the Lipstick Building (one of my favorite buildings in the city). We talked forevs, had a lovely time. He thinks the cop rape verdict is complete bullshit, BTW. We went to a bar for a nightcap and the Yankees game was on--they showed a guy sliding headfirst in slomo and I commented that I'd done hook slides (and of course regular slides) but I'd never slid head first, I was too nervous about messing up my face.

Sunday I slept quite late--finally got up and cleaned and got ready for my Sunday softball game. We played the Northwestern team and HAMMERED them. The final score was 12-1. Yikes! I hit .500, plus a sacrifice grounder. And I was part of a double-play--there was a runner at 2nd who was caught between the bases when our center fielder caught it. I yelled "Throw it here, he has to tag up!" And when I got the ball, ran his ass down, even though I could've just ran back to 2nd base. But what fun would that have been? :) It's more fun to tag them!

At one point I was on 1st base and someone popped it up to the infield--the 2nd and 1st base players weren't communicating too well, so I gambled, thinking they wouldn't catch it. Well, the 2nd basewoman DID catch it so I was in trouble since I hadn't tagged up! I DOVE back to 1st base just under the tag--so now I can say yes, I HAVE slid head first!

After the game 5 of us hung around for batting practice and then we went over to a bar when the Northwestern team told us they'd be. And--I think one of my teammates was flirting with me? Sometimes it's hard to tell. But he seems to direct a lot of attention my way--he's always teasing me or asking me questions, and then he was comparing our gloves (his is huge and expensive, mine is very old--I've had it since I was 8-9--and NOT-expensive) he said something like "I'll only buy her a good one if she goes on a date with me." Um, what?! I'm just saying, my female radar is pinging. He is cute, though. Anyway, we all had pitchers and maued wings. Nom, nom, nom...
ceebeegee: (Default)
Come on, guys. An angry statement directed at the President--on a GUN? What the FUCK? Have thes eguys learned nothing from what just happened?

I see this all ending badly.


Jan. 13th, 2011 11:17 am
ceebeegee: (Southwest cactus)
I am no expert on Arizona politics but I have visited there several times and my father and stepmother go to their house there all the time. It's...sad, I guess, that Arizona has been cast in the role of this super-conservative, xenophobic area. I can't say how accurate that is but I will say at least the Sedona area is a mixture of very conservative and very liberal, hippie-ish, New Age. And they all seem to get along just fine. I'll also say, regarding their draconian response to illegal immigration--they're on the front line. Arizona has to deal with that situation is a very different way than most of the rest of the country. I don't agree--AT ALL--with demonizing or otherizing illegals, and I think demanding to see their papers smacks of Nazi Germany and is ridiculous and racist. But they're desperate. I strongly support legal immigration--in fact, I think it should be easier to get citizenship--but you have got to wait in line.

I probably could've written that a few months ago, but it came up again when I was at the gym watching Nightline last night. They showed this...sea, this beautiful sea of flowers, balloons, notes outside the hospital where Congresswoman Giffords and some of the other wounded are, all well-wishers, all Arizonans who came together to unite. I especially loved seeing the Native Americans chanting. You see a lot more of those cultures out there--we've pretty much eradicated that here on the East Coast :( but there are reservations and stores and constant reminders over in the Southwest. It's really lovely. I thought that chanting was as great a response as praying or writing a note.

And this is sad (from the Post):

While federal lawmakers debate how best to increase safety for themselves and their staff, some Arizona Republican party officials are choosing to leave office in the face of threats.

A conflict that has been going on between local Arizona Republicans came to an end in the wake of the shooting in Tucson on Saturday when Arizona's Republican District 20 Chairman Anthony Miller and several others chose to resign.

The Arizona Republic reports that Miller, 43, a former campaign worker for Sen.John McCain who was re-elected to a second one-year term last month, has been concerned for his family's safety by constant verbal attacks and blog posts from some local committee members with tea party movement ties.

I can't blame him for not wanting to die but--yeah, way to stifle debate through threats of violence.

The Context

Jan. 9th, 2011 03:42 pm
ceebeegee: (Massachusetts foliage)
I think it's really depressing when, in the first wave of reaction to this horrible event yesterday, there's more attention paid to the so-called "finger pointing" and "blame" than to, you know, six people who were murdered in cold blood and how a political system was hijacked yesterday. Because let's remember who the real victims are here--ranty demogogues who suddenly realize their words have an impact and are now scrambling to cover their asses by washing their hands of responsibility. There are several examples but this in particular struck me. Judson Phillips, the head of a Tea Party networking organization, issued this statement:

Cut for political musings )

The whole thing is just so goddamn sad. I've been wavering on the death penalty lately but this guy sure deserves it. A nine year old girl? Jesus.
ceebeegee: (Massachusetts foliage)

Rest in peace, Allison, Sandy, Jeffrey and  Bill.

And for those of you Guardsmen who turned and fired on unarmed students, some of whom were merely walking to class--you have to live the rest of your life with what you've done.  I want you to see all the news stories about today, the 40th anniversary of Kent State, and remember the lives you ended, and those you changed forever.

In the aftermath of the shootings, campuses all over the country shut down and students were sent home.  Many of these students were told by their parents that "they deserved it" and "they should've killed them all."  One girl asked her mother "I had a class that day--what if I'd been shot walking to class?"  Her mother paused and said "you would've deserved it."*  Her own mother

This is what happens when political discourse is poisoned to this extent, when vitriol has seeped into people's identities--they are so invested in the fight, the aggression, they lose sight of fundamental issues like a student's right to protest, and to walk to their classes without being fired on and we're all human beings together.  I cannot get past that someone was so, so very invested in their hateful political stances, they just cannot bear to admit there might be a chink in their hateful, angry political philosophy,  that they actually say things like "you should've been killed too."  If your politics cause you to forget your own humanity and say dreadful things like that, you need to rethink your politics.

My grandmother and mother got in an argument about it--Mom said "Mother, not only were they allowed to be there, those who were walking to class were required to be exactly where they were!"  She finally got my grandmother to back down.

*From James Michener's Kent State: What Happened and Why.


Mar. 28th, 2010 07:11 pm
ceebeegee: (Default)
I don't know what it is about some guys--yes, in my experience this generalization is correct, it is always men--who feel the need to correct women. It is really annoying. Today a friend of mine (Beth D.), from when I went to HS in New Hampshire, posted a link on FB about this new White House seder, and another friend of mine (Tim A., a conservative for what it's worth) responded "Kinda odd seeing as we just gave Israel the diplomatic finger last week." Another guy responded some kind of statement basically about how it was all contrived, everything out of the WH (from any administration) was calculated or whatever, but I skipped over it and responded to Tim "Well, diplomatic relations between us and Israel the state, and our cultural support for American Jews are two different things--even many Jews do not necessarily support Israel's policies. (And in the '50s-'60s the disparity was even more noticeable--Southern Jews as a group explicitly did NOT support Israel, they saw such support as undermining American patriotism.) Often I, a WASP, am far more pro-Israel than some of my Jewish friends! But I do think this is cool, if you're going to have an Easter Egg roll and a White House Xmas tree, why not a seder?"

Third Guy responds "Clara, this may be true and would still be entirely beside the point. What is handed to the press involves a *perception* game. Even the most simplistic of associations (Jewish-American & Israeli) are valid when playing in the public eye. And remember, he's making a statement to the Israelis just as loudly. He is trying to diffuse ANY knee jerk reaction of appearing to be anti-jewish administration."

Bitch Switch--ON. Do NOT talk down to me like that. God, I get so pissed off, with a white-hot passion, as that kind of condescension. You are not here to teach me, and you and every other computer-and car-salesman had better get that through your head. I wrote back coldly "Please don't tell me what is beside the point. You interpreted the article as a strategic PR-aimed release from the administration; I was responding to the apparent contradiction, as voiced by Tim, that a White House-hosted seder should coincide with our perhaps temporary cooling of diplomatic relations with Israel. I didn't address your take on it at all. I have no opinion on whether or not the release was cynically motivated and in fact do not concede your assertion that that is THE point."

I find the angrier I get online in political discussions (and this wasn't even that! Jeez, I wasn't responding to him, this was an historical highlight about Jews in America!), the colder and more Spockianly articulate I become. I think it's the WASP in me.
ceebeegee: (that is not what I meant at all)
...a friend of mine posts on FB one of those "This is what I believe" apps that says "I pledge not to vote for any candidate that supports socialized medicine."

She's an Army wife.

ceebeegee: (that is not what I meant at all)
So--obviously some pretty big legislation was passed yesterday and some strong opinions were expressed. Now most of my friends are pretty liberal, and by and large the opinions I was reading on my Facebook feed were positive. There were, of course, some not so. I fully believe that there is principled opposition to this legislation--I don't agree with any of the arguments I've heard, either because I didn't think they added up or I'm just ideologically opposed to the premises of the argument--but I know that people I respect and love do not necessarily support this.

It can be really difficult to weigh in on the subject--even to go onto Facebook and read what others have to say--without getting emotional or taking it personally. It's a really tough line to draw. I like to see passionate discussion and no one should be afraid to disagree, but when 1) you don't know someone, and 2) you're discussing things online, without the context of face-to-face communication, things can get--unattractive. This is why I tend to reserve my political discussion for LJ, rather than FB. Too many friends on FB, plus its format doesn't facilitate thoughtful discussion as well as a blog community does. When I do post political on FB, it's usually a cri du coeur, something that bothers me, or elates me, so much I can't hold it in.

A few weeks ago, Patricia posted something on FB about health care reform, and one of her friends, someone I don't know, asked "who pays for it?" I responded (my first response to Patricia's thread) "since health care reform is something that benefits all of us, like education, we all pay via taxes." Question seeking factual answer, factual answer given with underlying reasoning, right? He responded with this diatribe on how he wasn't going to pay for boob jobs and illegal immigrants and nose surgery and I don't know what-all--like, apres ca, le deluge, this very partisan, emotional post. Dude, if I'd known you were spoiling for a fight, I never would've responded. And he started it off with "Nope. Sorry." I have to say, as soon as you start off a response like that, I click off. It's condescending and rude. "Nope. *shakes head regretfully* Your attempt to impress me just didn't work, so I'll be brief and dismissive. Sorry. Better luck next time." It's an aggressive response couched in falsely "nice" language. I notice it mostly from guys, whereas women tend to use the "Um..." or call people "honey." Again, as soon as I see that, I stop reading--if you take an argument this personally, I'd rather not engage. I was polite to you, and I expect the same. Which is basically what I said to him, something along the lines of "you obviously have your mind already made up so there's no point in discussing this." He responded again but I never read it. Dude, don't know you, now I don't want to, stop trying to pick a fight.

So--I posted last night another cri du coeur, "Yes, we could!" because yes, I am very happy this bill passed. Almost everyone who responded agreed but a friend of mine from elementary school wrote something about how "not 'we,' the majority of Americans didn't want this*, only some people in DC" (paraphrase). I started to type out a geeky, over-explanation about how I was referencing Obama's campaign slogan, don't take it literally, it's a rhetorical "we," I was not speaking for all Americans but those who support health care reform., and we live in a republic, not a perfect democracy and all the reps who voted for this bill are presumably acting on the wishes of their constituents, because they know they'll be voted out if they don't. Then I decided--you know what, let him have his say. As I said it's a really tough line to draw, to read what people are saying, about an issue that you feel so passionately, and not respond sometimes. Michael's (my friend Michael Mackey) an old friend of mine, haven't seen him in forever but I remember several months ago he very respectfully asked for people's thoughts on health care reform, even if he had his own specific opinions. He's pretty disappointed obviously, but he's a good American who's trying, just like the rest of us.

But then there was the hilarious exchange on my friend Jim Denny's page. Jim posted in favor of the bill, said something about making health care affordable for everyone, rich or poor, and a friend of his started off his response "Jim, you sound like Adolph Hitler." I busted out laughing at that. A couple of other people posted and he answered every single with with this long diatribe--this is where you are crossing a line. Your Hitler response just makes you look ridiculous, but you don't get to take over the discussion and essentially try to shout down people. (That drives me crazy on YouTube as well, when people have to respond to every single person who expresses an opinion contrary to theirs, as though that other person really is wrong and they have to correct them. Crazily enough, you really see it with ladies' singles figure skating videos. There are some crazy FS-loving bishes, yo.) Jim wrote back "Yeah, been goose-steppin' around the neighborhood all evening looking for some hard-working young Americans who can't afford health care I can herd up and gas." I'd been thinking of invoking Godwin, but when I read what Jim wrote, I posted "Let me know if you need a fellow Aryan to help, it's been awhile since I've asked anyone for their papers, I need the practice."

*I read this several times on FB last night, that supposedly most Americans "don't want" this. I'd really like to see some reputable sources for that, because I've been reading the opposite, that Americans DO want health care reform. Of course then you have to get into what questions were asked on these surveys, how specific were they, and when were they conducted. My point is that it's sort of meaningless to say something so vague. At any rate, it's still a faulty argument, IMO--most Americans didn't want the civil rights act either. Most Southerners didn't want slavery to end. Most Jordanians STILL don't want the peace treaty with Israel. You may not believe that health care is a human right, but if you're arguing with people who do believe that, invoking majority rule is not going to convince them.
ceebeegee: (Red Heather)
Monserrate heckled mercilessly during his debate with opponent for Queens seat in upcoming special election.

My favorite part is the protesters who slashed red lipstick on their cheeks every time he promised to "cut" anything.

Monserrate was convicted last fall of slashing his girlfriend's face with glass a little over a year ago (he is seen on video dragging her through the lobby of their apartment building). Subsequently the State Senate expelled him out but he fought it--he actually sued the State Senate. A judge smacked him down, affirming the right of legislative bodies to discipline their own members. He was also right in the middle of those shenanigans last summer with the deadlock in the State Senate, and he's also voted against gay marriage in New York State, notwithstanding his campaign promise to Empire Pride to vote for it. Not only is he running again, if you can believe it he's cast himself as the victim in the whole girlfriend slashing-and-dragging, Senate expulsion thing. He made a speech, saying he "had been made a scapegoat" and "accused his critics of exploiting an 'ethical bully pulpit' and called the process to expel him 'the height of arrogance.'" Just...wow. Truly shameless. This is really just another example of the shithead-male entitlement thing as the beating at the Social--this is obviously a guy who thinks he has the right to discipline his "woman" and is outraged than anyone could suggest otherwise.
ceebeegee: (Red Heather)
Guys. GUYS. I'm talking to YOU, "Governor" Paterson, and Charlie Rangel and the girlfriend-slashing rep from Queens, Montserrate, and our latest embarrassment, the ertswhile Representative Massa.

STOP RUINING THE BRAND. Okay, we all know the drill--Democrats get caught with women, (conservative) Republicans get caught with men. Democrats are populares, Republicans are optimates (heh, a little Roman Republic history there). Didn't you get the memo? What the hell is going on here? New York Democrats are a MESS right now. Who has the gall to try to maim his girlfriend with a razor and then not only refuse to allow himself to be censored by the state senate, but then tries to run again and steals Obama's election imagery and slogans? And Paterson is a pathetic trainwreck, an incurious, uninsightful party boy who is in way over his head. I want to say I'm disappointed but no--I'm not surprised at all. However I am disappointed in Rangel--a natural leader, a gifted politician and he turns out to be helping himself on the side. And OMG, MASSA, what a complete trainwreck. Dude, find a narrative and stick with it. And stop trying to blame someone--anyone--else for what you did. When Glenn Beck writes off your Democrat-bashing narrative in disgust, you know you've got problems.

Regarding infidelity in politicians--generally I don't care. That is between them and their spouses, as long as it doesn't affect their governing/decision-making. But when they're hypocrites, like Henry Hyde, that bothers me. I don't necessarily think they should resign, but obviously it completely nullifies the moral authority they claim to have.* And when they're promoting anti-gay legislation and they turn out to be gay--they are fair game, man. If you're going to stick your nose into the private lives of my friends and family and make them into 2nd-class citizens, then I have no sympathy when you're caught in the bathroom tapping in Morse code DO ME NOW to the stranger in the next stall.

*Spitzer is a special case--yes, he was a hypocrite not so much in words but because he made his career as a moral crusader, built his rep as AG on it, including targeting johns. Also after he'd been elected he did not Play Well with Others, he made a lot of enemies in Albany, and after he was caught he was a quadriplegic duck. He never would've been able to effect ANY legislation after the scandal so yeah--buh-bye. That's a tragic case, because he was actually very capable and intelligent. Unlike his replacement.

But seriously, New York Democrats. Clean it the fuck up. (Though in all fairness, the Democratic Party has basically kicked out Montserrate.) Stop embarrassing us. We don't look any better than Illinois or Lousiana right now.


Mar. 8th, 2010 07:04 pm
ceebeegee: (Virginia)
Yet another one.

From now on, can we just start with the assumption that if you're an asshole homophobe who pushes anti-gay legislation, you're gay? It would save a lot of time.

Which means you're next, Cuccinelli. Oh, and can someone please tell me why all the homophobes and racists come to Virginia to spread their hatred? I mean, Senator Macacawitz was from California, and this dude is from New Jersey. I know y'all probably don't want him back but we don't want him either. Virginia has enough home-grown antedeluvians, we certainly don't need to import them. Go home.
ceebeegee: (Default)
There seems to be a lot of second-guessing about Bloomberg's smaller-than-expected margin of victory over Thompson--apparently it was only 5 points instead a projected 12 or so. Second-guessing and what seems to me to be an attempt to force this into a narrative, that being Bloomberg's supposed erosion of influence. Frankly I think all it means is that not many people here in the city voted on Tuesday because they all knew that Bloomberg would win. Thompson was nothing, a cipher. All he had going for him was that he wasn't Bloomberg, but he stood for nothing and he made a lot of basic, amateurish errors in his campaign (misspellings on campaign materials and in commercials, poor coordination with staff, etc.). A hapless effort overall.

I said something about this on Alex's FB page but to expand on it--I have a problem with the Democratic party in New York State. They're this well-entrenched party machine, like Tammany Hall, especially here in the city, so the only way to break through is to put in your time and eventually you'll get rewarded with a slot on the ticket. And so we, the voters, are presented with a bunch of talentless party hacks for our Democratic choices--I mean, Bill Thompson? Ferrer? Paterson? The ONLY way Paterson got on the Spitzer ticket for Lt. Governor was because he'd put in the time--he has zero leadership qualities and is unelectable. And with anemic choices like Ferrer and Thompson, we get trounced by more charismatic mavericks like Bloomberg and Guiliani--guys who actually have a chance at breaking through the pack because the pack is so much thinner in the NYC Republican party. Bloomberg was a Democrat originally--he had to switch parties to have a shot at the nomination. (And then switched again to become an Independent.) And look who he ran against in 2001? Mark Green, whom I actually don't mind personally or as Public Advocate, but is a bland, by-the-numbers leader. I think he does better snarking on the side, because he diesn't really impress me as a leader--I reacted quite badly to his negative campaigning in 2001.

The exception to this is Anthony Weiner, who is a NYC Democrat and I love him. He's like a charismatic geek--kind of like Bloomberg, now that I think of it. Very intelligent and a hard worker. I'd like to see him run again in four years.
ceebeegee: (Default)
So apparently a representative of Obama's had what was supposed to be a private chat with "Governor" Paterson to advise him to to run for re-election.

I can understand not liking this on principle, but 1) the President of the US is also the de facto head of his own party, which duties include strategizing for upcoming elections, and 2) Paterson is TERRIBLE. My cat Tatiana would be a better Governor than he is. He is indecisive, foolish, disloyal, commands no respect in Albany and as a result cannot effect much (cf. the deadlock), high-maintenance and completely concerned with drama and making himself look good. He is TERRIBLE.

I actually probably wouldn't hate Guiliani for Governor--I can't stand him personally but he is certainly a decent leader, and he's really not that conservative--but it's a question of Democratic strategy. If Paterson did indeed get the nomination (*shudder*), I probably just wouldn't vote in that race. I cannot in principle vote for Paterson. However if Cuomo got the nomination, I would certainly vote for him over Guiliani.
ceebeegee: (Default)
There's an interesting article in this week's New York Magazine about Caroline Kennedy's quest for the appointment to Hillary Clinton's vacated Senate seat. I have to say, the article has made me lose respect for Governor Paterson. Apparently he just loooooved being the center of attention during the whole thing and was deliberately stoking the drama to make himself appear more...uh, executive, I guess. This struck me:

Keeping the speculation alive meant Paterson stayed in the spotlight, a golden gift for a man who hates being characterized as an “accidental governor” and a man who needs to run for the office, for the first time, next year. Often in Washington Paterson seemed simply to be ecstatic that his games with the media were keeping the attention so focused on him.

The "accidental Governor"? Johnson was the "Accidental President" and he accomplished more that Kennedy did! In fact Johnson was arguably one of the most important Presidents of the 20th century, because of his pushing of the Civil Rights Acts. Succeeding to office is a long and time-honored tradition. What matters is what you do when you get there.

This also gives me pause:

Yet Paterson wants to do more than cut the tension; he wants desperately, even more than most politicians, to be liked. Almost as much as he wants to be taken seriously.


"...Look at how he travels: At the Democratic convention in Denver, you’d see Jon Corzine and he’d have two people with him. You’d see David Paterson and he’d have 60 people with him.”

Look, I can appreciate his baggage with his disability but the last thing I want in a politician is a "desperate need to be liked." A politician should try to straddle the line between 1) the natural (not desperate) need to be liked, because it helps you play well with others (important in politics), and 2) the need to be a leader, and be your own person. And the way to be taken seriously is to take yourself seriously. Show that you are a force with which to be reckoned through your actions. Don't surround yourself with machinations and drama and an entourage. That just seems silly, and sort of pathetic.

After a brief appearance on CNN’s American Morning, the governor had settled into the back seat of his car to rest before an interview with Capital News 9, an Albany-based cable channel. Then, without warning, his aides scrambled, leaving dust and baffled reporters in their wake.

Later, word was passed that the governor had a serious headache. Later still, Paterson claimed to have eaten some bad sushi the night before. “Right,” says a reporter who covers the state capital. “It’s just more drama from Paterson.”

“Welcome to the world of David,” says an elected official who has known Paterson for years.


I will say, Gillibrand seems pretty cool. I thought Caroline Kennedy was an interesting choice at first--she certainly does have cred with the new President, one consideration--but after the Blago debacle, and her interview plus her voting history, it's clear she wouldn't have worked on many levels.


Oct. 10th, 2008 09:04 am
ceebeegee: (Tatiana the Sausage Kitty)
She cracks my shit up. She looks so sweet and demure too--I love it!

ceebeegee: (crescent moon)
I've been thinking about the choice of Palin this weekend. I had very mixed feelings at first--I desperately want a woman in the Oval Office. I want to see myself reflected up there. No offense to my many white male friends :) but I'm tired of the same type of people getting elected to positions of power. I'm tired of the message being sent, over and over--you don't belong here. You are not welcome here. And yes, when you never see yourself up there, that IS the message. At the same time, you certainly don't vote based on identity alone--you vote on the issues. But I won't deny, the identity is getting more and more important when more than 20 years after Geraldine Ferraro got the VP nom, we STILL haven't had a woman VP or President, or even a shot at one. STILL. India has had a head of state before the US has. I was very disappointed that Hillary, whom I love, did not get the nomination but with Obama--well, okay, we're still making history, a new path is being forged, that's good too.

Then the news on Friday. I was stunned, and at first, very impressed. No matter who wins, history will be made. We could have a woman in the Office! I figured she was probably conservative but I will admit, the allure of having a woman in that VP slot was pretty strong. Then I did some research on her stances on the issues. She's very pro-life--calls herself a "Feminist for Life." Uh, no. You cannot call yourself a feminist if you would force me to have a baby if I'm raped. No. If I get raped and a pregnancy results, the FIRST thing I'm doing is getting an abortion. You do not get to tell me what to do with my body. Full stop. She was coy on creationism being taught in schools (the fact that this is EVEN AN ISSUE in this country makes my teeth hurt. Creationism is for CHURCH!!!! It is not science!)--she wanted both to be "discussed," framing it as "don't be afraid of information." Gu-whuh? Creationism is not information. It is an attempt to explain how we came into being with no way to test it. Which is why it's religion and NOT SCIENCE. And she doesn't think global warming is man-made. Which is just silly and ignorant.

And with this whole pregnant-teenage-daughter thing--well, it illustrates how silly the abstinence-only dogma she promotes. And finally, if you're trying to pass laws that invade my privacy, you'd better be prepared for your family's privacy to be invaded. Someone commented on the NYTimes site: "Family decisions are a private matter for most people, but they should not be private for someone who has no respect for the decisions of other families. Because Governor Palin wants to use the power of the government to force all women to be just like her, voters should be entitled to examine Governor Palin's family life to view the consequences of her policies regarding reproductive rights." Yup.


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