Monthly Archives: November 2007

Rudy is the perfect Republican candidate

Just the perfect example of Republican hypocrisy…..

How can the party that impeached Clinton for a blow job even let him run? It just proves that everything they say about “morality” is a political attack, and they don’t follow a word of it.

Rudy made the NYPD walk Nathan’s dog? Good grief:

The Shag Fund not only paid for the 11 tryst visits to Hamptons.

— It paid for hotel and other expenses for mayoral aides — in addition to the security detail — who also went with the mayor to the Hamptons on the tryst weekends.

— Nathan’s NYPD-chauffeured trips (without Rudy) to visit her parents in Pennsylvania, 130 miles outside the city.

— NYPD detectives and city-owned undercover Dodge to drive Nathan around the city.

— NYPD detectives and city-owned undercover Dodge to drive Nathan’s friends and family around the city even when she wasn’t in the car.

— NYPD security detail for Nathan, personally approved by Bernard Kerik.

— NYPD cops to walk Nathan’s dog.

Then again, at least the NYPD didn’t strap the dog on top of a car like Mitt Romney.

Of course, all the Republican candidates have some of the classic Republican features, as Hunter notes:

Watching the Republican debates is proving a surreal experience. The feeling is like watching… well, a science experiment, I guess, would be the best way to put it. All of the Republicans involved seem to be devolving into crude caricatures of Republicanism, but different crude caricatures of Republicanism — something a bit more surreal than mere pandering. It is as if modern Republicanism was pushed through an ideological prism, and each of its parts scattered onto a different podium at a different part of the stage.

Romney: The CEO Republican. The multimillionaire whose interest is an America secured for the financial goals of multimillionaires. The problems of the little people are nothing: give them a little verbal bread, by appealing to a few of their baser instincts (Guantanamo good! Terrorism bad! Torture good!), and the Republican party leadership can play the public like puppets on strings.

Huckabee: The Religious Republican. The perfect embodiment of true Republican religion; sings to the majesty of a Jesus that has been painstakingly repainted in the Republicans’ own image, scrubbed of inconvenient tendencies towards compassion. Huckabee does not know if Jesus would support the death penalty. He does not know if torture is anti-Christian enough to really make a big fuss over.

Giuliani: The Crime Boss Republican. Giuliani’s primary motivation in government has always been the consolidation of his own power, the use of that power to retaliate against his enemies, and, apparently, Herculean efforts to organize his city around best satisfying his own desires and needs and genitalia.

Tancredo/Hunter: The (Hypocritical) Bigots. Nativism and racism writ large; the “Southern Strategy” recast to draw from and stoke fear, resentment and loathing not against black Americans, now protected too well for such rank hatreds to be openly expressed, but against brown Americans.

Thompson: The Vacuum-Packed Professional Republican. Chosen by name alone, not skill, and specifically picked to be well known and inoffensive with no particular record, agenda, skills, or ideas that might get in the way.

Ron Paul: The To Hell With The Rest Of You Republican. The rejector of the base premises of government itself. Paul represents the large portion of the Republican party that condemns the very notion that government should have a role in bettering the health, education, or welfare of its citizens.

While not one of the current Republican candidates are eager to utter George Bush’s name — he is, after all, badly damaged goods, since he had the misfortune to put Republican ideas into practice and be branded with the now-obvious results — there have been absolutely no attempts whatsoever to distance themselves from either those ideas or those results. On the contrary, it has just been broken up into discrete portions, every one of them seeking dominance over the others.

It is as if all the failures and corruptions of principle of George Bush has been cleaved into parts, each one of them reaching an even more extreme level in one or another of those seeking to succeed him. Would you like the religious panderer Bush, or the fiscally incompetent Bush? Would you prefer the Bush that uses the crudely drawn specter of terrorism as distraction from every issue and act, no matter how seemingly petty or unconnected? Would you like the Bush that turns all aspects of government into crap, or the Bush that uses his position as a tribal lord, meting out punishments to all those that oppose him and lucrative positions and benefits to all those that maintain their loyalty? You have a choice: each one is represented onstage.

And why should that be surprising? It is, after all, the fabric of Republicanism. These are the things that get applause, when spoken from their podiums: the crude, the insincere, the blasphemous, the hateful, even the condemnation of the tasks of government themselves. Large portions of America cheer for these things, and, surely, those portions of America need a political party too.

UPDATE: My goodness, I forgot McCain, the Warmonger Republican. In my defense, it’s only because everyone has forgotten McCain. He is still running, right, and not just as a foil to Ron Paul?

Never Rains in Southern California

But today, it does!!!! We’re getting rain!! Yay!!!!

Of course I just had all the carpets and floors cleaned yesterday….

I guess if you want rain, you have to clean something. At least I’m not getting the carpets done today when it would take forever to dry out again. And I trusted my instincts and brought all the area rugs back in last night, even the not completely dry ones, so they aren’t out getting all wet.

Guess it’s time for California’s mudslide season…

Turn and Face the Strange

No One Really Wants Change | The Agonist

If we know that change is constant and the only thing that you can count on is change, then why do we resist it so much? Why don’t we embrace it and look forward to its arrival in the hope of lessening its impact. I have never understood why stubbornness and blind loyalty are considered traits to be emulated. Before his reelection Mr. Bush was given positive ratings for being stubborn and not willing to change course in the midst of mounting evidence against him. So there is something in many Americans that believes that change is bad, hence the mantra, “stay the course”. Even when change is discussed or contemplated, it is only presented as piecemeal or change-lite.

We know that the wealthy are siphoning off billions of private and taxpayer dollars, we know that the war in Iraq was unnecessary and based on false premises, we know that our government and its officials are awash in special interest money and influence, we know that the war on drugs is not working, we know that our government is torturing people in our name, we know that people who were sworn to protect it are ignoring or demolishing the Constitution, we know that our country is slowing becoming a police state and we are losing our democracy, yet despite all of these things we continue to spurn change. Anyone who advocates real change is immediately marginalized, depicted as insane, or killed and another brick is added to the wall.

It is hard to believe that we were the generation of change and revolution, we had such high hopes for ourselves and the world. Now many of us hide in our gated communities or suburban enclaves content with the treadmill existence we decried our parents for. Many of us have become stuck in our ruts, living lives of quiet desperation. So we complain and we moan and groan, but we are too afraid or too cynical to change. And as we amuse ourselves with the latest gadgets, reality show, or other distraction our country continues to spiral further away from us.

If we knew back then what we know now, I wonder if we would have done things differently. I don’t know, but this is definitely not what I envisioned.

Child materialism linked to self-esteem

Child materialism? I would say all materialism is linked to low self esteem. It seems like some people never grow up — I’m constantly amazed that I’m supposed to be impressed by someone’s stuff.

But I didn’t get it when I was a kid, either.

Child materialism linked to self-esteem – Yahoo! News

In two studies reported in the Journal of Consumer Research, they found that materialism spikes in early adolescence and declines by the end of high school, mirroring the years children are most prone to teen angst.

Between the ages of 12 and 13 children try to compensate for low self-esteem through material goods that they think will make themselves feel better, or that they think will raise their status among their peers.

“While peers and marketing can certainly influence teens, materialism is directly connected to self-esteem,” said Professor Deborah Roedder John of the University of Minnesota,

Skeleton Woman

Spiritual Emergency: Skeleton Woman [The Life/Death/Life Nature]

She had done something of which her father disapproved, although no one any longer remembered what it was. But her father had dragged her to the cliffs and thrown her over and into the sea. There, the fish ate her flesh away and plucked out her eyes. As she lay under the sea, her skeleton turned over and over in the currents.

One day a fisherman came fishing, well, in truth many came to this bay once. But this fisherman had drifted far from his home place and did not know that the local fisherman stayed away, saying this inlet was haunted.

The fisherman’s hook drifted down through the water, and caught of all places, in the bones of Skeleton Woman’s rib cage. The fisherman thought, “Oh, now I’ve really got a big one! Now I really have one!” In his mind he was thinking of how many people this great fish would feed, how long it would last, how long he might be free from the chore of hunting. And as he struggled with this great weight on the end of the hook, the sea was stirred to a thrashing froth, and his kayak bucked and shook, for she who was beneath struggled to disentangle herself. And the more she struggled, the more she tangled in the line. No matter what she did, she was inexorably dragged upward, tugged up by the bones of her own ribs.

The hunter had turned to scoop up his net, so he did not see her bald head rise above the waves, he did not see the little coral creatures glinting in the orbs of her skull, he did not see the crustaceans on her old ivory teeth. When he turned back with his net, her entire body, such as it was, had come to the surface and was hanging from the tip of his kayak by her long front teeth….

Socialism for the Rich

Indeed. Those same people who rail against national health care support bailouts for poorly run companies. Socialism only seems to be a problem for them when it is benefiting those who can’t afford to pay off legislators.

No wonder our country is a mess.

RGE – Nouriel Roubini’s Global EconoMonitor

A fortiori the same public takeover should have been done in the case of Countrywide, the poster child of reckless mortgage lending and of the current mortgage disaster. Instead, rather than kicking out a reckless CEO – whose actions are now under SEC investigation – and putting the lender under public control, Countrywide has been rewarded with $51 billion of public money that was provided in a stealth bailout operation while the current shareholders and incompetent managers are still firmly in charge of the bank.

The right approach would have been – as Martin Wolf suggested for Northern Rock – to take over the bank and put it formally under public control. Instead the US Treasury, the FHFB, the Fed and the banking regulators have been tacit and/or explicit accomplices of the stealth public bailout of most egregious example of reckless and predatory lending, the core institution at the center of a subprime and mortgage disaster that is now taking the entire US economy into a recession.

The lesson of this sad and sleazy episode is that when profits are privatized and losses are socialized we get sleaze capitalism and corporate welfare that becomes public bailout of reckless lenders. All this from a US administration that hypocritically praises every other day the virtues of private markets capitalism. For all of us who do truly believe in free market economies where a variety of public goods are provided by governments and the financial sector is properly supervised and regulate this is not a capitalist system but rather socialism for the rich.

The Interior Woman

Sometimes women become tired and cranky while waiting for their mates to understand them. The women say, ” Why can´t they know what I think, what I want ? ” Women become fatigued with asking this question. Yet, there is a solution to this dilemma, a solution which is efficient and effective.

If a woman wants a mate who is responsive this way, she will reveal to him the secret of woman´s duality. She will tell him about the interior woman, that one who, added to herself, makes two. She does this by teaching her mate to ask her two deceptively simple questions that will make her feel seen, heard, and known.

The first question is this: What do you want? Almost everyone asks some version of this, just as a matter of course. But there is yet one more essential question, and that is: ” What does your deeper self desire?”

If one overlooks a woman’s dual nature and takes a woman at face value, one is in for a big surprise, for when the woman’s wildish nature rises from her depths and begins to assert itself, she often has interests, feelings, and ideas which are quite different from those she expressed before.

To securely weave a relationship, a woman will also ask the same two questions of her mate. As women, we learn to poll both sides of our nature and that of others as well. From the information we receive reciprocally from both sides, we can very clearly determine what is valued most and how to respond accordingly.

To love a woman, the mate must also love her untamed nature. If she takes a mate who cannot or will not love this other side, she shall be in some way dismantled and be left to limp about unrepaired.

So men as much as women, must name their dual natures. The most valued lover, the most valuable parent, the most valued friend, the most valuable ‘wilderman,’ is the one who wishes to learn. Those who are not delighted by learning, those who cannot be enticed into new ideas or experiences, cannot develop past the roadpost they rest at now. If there is but one force which feeds the root of pain, it is the refusal to learn beyond this moment.

We know that the creature Wild Man is seeking his own Earthly Woman. Afeared or not, it is an act of deepest love to allow oneself to be stirred by the wildish soul of another. In a World where humans are so afraid of ‘losing’, there are far too many protective walls against being dissolved in the numinosity of another human soul.

The mate for the wildish woman is the one who has a soulful tenacity and endurance, one who can send his own instinctual nature to peek under the tent of a woman’s soul-life and comprehend what he sees and hears there. The good match is the man who keeps returning to try and understand, who does not let himself by deterred by the sideshows on the road.

— Clarissa Pinkola Estes, Women Who Run with the Wolves

Drinking it in

I drink a lot. No, I don’t mean alcoholic beverages, although occasionally it is those. I mean life. I drink in life in so many ways. I absorb whatever is going on around me, whatever is going on in the world, in the minds of the people around me. When I go to a party, I am overwhelmed by all the stories going on around me, the little dramas playing out between people and within people.

I think this is the real difference between extroverts and introverts. The extrovert can put themselves out there, be the life of the party, and keep going, because they aren’t taking in anything of the people around them, they are just putting it out. For me though, the cup is filling, filling, filling all the while, and while I may be also putting myself out there, I am absorbing as well, drinking in the substance and energy of those around me as well. And I become full, I run over the top with those around me, and I need to go find my space again to be still and become empty again, so I can go back and absorb more.

And though people accuse introverts of being self-absorbed, it isn’t that we are self absorbed at all. It is that we are other-absorbed, that within a few minutes we know you, we absorb you and feel who you are. You change us, we become you. And to find ourselves again, we have to retreat and back off and take the time to recharge ourselves. To become empty. So that we can do it all again, and know more, even deeper, always deeper.

You have rabbit holes? Show them to someone who is introverted, and they’ll help you learn to crawl through them, dig out more, go deeper, find another way back to the surface.

You have lakes of meaning? We’ll absorb them. And if you are shallow, we’ll know it and get bored easily. And if you are an ocean….

Ah.

Black and shiny

So the last few days my dreams have been full of shiny black cars. The first night I was dreaming about them, the dark man was driving and drove us into a river. But I had rolled up the windows and the car floated along until I got out easily inside some building that the river ran through.

Last night I got to drive the car, briefly, and then my husband drove it for a while. We went to a place where there was a frail young dark-haired woman, and I held her for a while before I woke up.

I guess I need to take control of the car and take care of this woman.

According to one dream interpreter:

Dreams of someone else driving your car are potent dreams. Remember, your car is your vehicle. You are meant to be the driver plotting out your course. Your car is meant to be your ticket to freedom. When someone else in in the driver’s seat it means that is symbolically the person you feel or may even wish were in charge of your life.

Look at who is in the driver’s seat. Is it a parent, a spouse, a child, a friend? How do you feel about the person driving the car? Are you happy about where they taking you? If you like the person driving the car and are happy about where you are going, this dream might point to you wishing that you handled your life like the person in the dream does. It might also be a wish for being ‘rescued’ by that person from a situation in your life that you are unhappy with.

Alternatively, if you don’t like the person driving or the course you’re on, it may feel like that person is in charge of your life, or that you feel like you’re making the same choices as someone whose life you feel is less than ideal.

Remember though, the person driving the car is a symbol. Dreaming of someone of the opposite sex driving your car can point to an animus/anima figure who you feel is in control. For women, the animus is the thinking part of the psyche, for men, the anima is usually representative of the emotions. Do you feel you are making decisions according to faulty logic or misguided emotions? This is where your feelings about the driver of the car give you the most information about the dream.

Look at dreams of cars and driving as sign posts giving you information about how you can regain control of your life and what you can do to claim your freedom and power.

Black

For alchemists, black symbolized the beginning of the process of spiritual development. Black was the color which symbolized confusion, and a feeling of despair. It might be thought of as the color of wandering in the desert, feeling like nothing good will ever happen.

But wandering in the desert allows us to give up those things we no longer need, it allows for old parts of ourselves to die off so that new life may spring up. Even the mighty oak must first spend time as an acorn lying in darkness before it can reach up toward the sky.

“Black is the color of mud, the fertile, the basic stuff into which ideas are sown. Yet black is also the color of death, the blackening of the light. And black has even a third aspect. It is also the color associated with that world between the worlds which La Loba stands upon — for black is the color of descent. Black is a promise that you will soon know something that you did not know before.” — Clarissa Pinkhold Estes, Women Who Run with the Wolves