Friday, October 31, 2008
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Tonight I am going to a dress rehearsal for American Buffalo, set to open on Broadway in a few days. American Buffalo stars Cedric the Entertainer, John Leguizamo and Haley Joel Osment. I'll let you know what I think...or not.
The play is being directed by Robert Falls. I mean, come on, Falls is a theatrical genius! He has at least 4 Tony Awards and almost as many Drama Desk Awards. So it should be good and I should have some good things to report.
See you, mañana!
PS. One other little tidbit of information. Michael-Leon Wooley is understudying Cedric. Fan-freaking-tastic!
Monday, October 27, 2008
This is what the Republican Party has done to us this year: It has placed within reach of the Oval Office a woman who is a religious fanatic and a proud, boastful ignoramus. Those who despise science and learning are not anti-elitist. They are morally and intellectually slothful people who are secretly envious of the educated and the cultured. And those who prate of spiritual warfare and demons are not just "people of faith" but theocratic bullies. On Nov. 4, anyone who cares for the Constitution has a clear duty to repudiate this wickedness and stupidityAmen
Sunday, October 26, 2008
These sleazy Republicans will do anything to retain the White House, including sacrificing our brave men and women in harm's way. They are scum!
Friday, October 24, 2008
Could Oprah be traveling to North Carolina to stump for Obama the last week of the election? What do you think? The race is tight in NC and Oprah might be just what Obama needs to win the once solidly red state.
Take a look at this classic. In order to appreciate it you have to read my post about Tucker Bounds here
Me thinks Lindsey Graham has a little too much time on his hands since being passed over for the veep nod.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Just a few minutes ago I got this message on my voicemail from my brother. My family calls me Bo, BTW:
"Hey Bo, just walking back to my dorm from rehearsal and thought I’d call and tell you how much I love this city. I honestly cannot believe I live here. So, yeah, just wanted to call and tell you that and to tell you that I love you very much"
How lucky am I?
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
In fact, I have a Baked sweatshirt that is the most comfortable of all the sweatshirts I own. You may have seen it in one of my videos featured on Bon Appetit magazine's YouTube channel (They're the two Panna Cotta vids).
But back to Matt. I found out that Matt opened the Chocolate Bar. I triple love the Chocolate bar (and did a video about it last winter). They have the best hot-chocolate in all of Gotham.
Renato Poliafito and my "Mattie" Matt Lewis
But mainly I wanted to add Matt to my list of crushes. He's a cutie! And I have a sneaking suspicion he bats for my team. He appears to be a bit short but I'm sure we can work around it.
Also, does anyone know the public relations team behind Baked? The reason I ask is that Baked is getting a hell of a lot of air time and ink. I know Matt and his business partner Renato Poliafito (at least he better just be his business partner) both worked in advertising before opening the bakery, but there seems to be something more behind the Baked phenom.
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Tracy Kerlee quantifying other people's faith.
What is so sad about this whole exchange is not that she believes what she does (though that is pretty sad). It's that her insecurity nearly reaches through the screen and grabs you by the throat. Her insecurity is the engine of her faith. Insecurity is ultimately the engine of fundamentalism (of all stripes) in general.
I actually feel really sorry for Tracy. She needs, in her heart of hearts, the other in order to satisfy her need to feel superior.
Watch for extended post coming in the next few days about Tracy Kerlee. Stay tuned.
Monday, October 20, 2008
This post is cross-posted at my baking website, BakeItTilYouMakeIt.com
I discovered something today that just may change my life forever. A few weeks ago I went and bought some Fleur de Sel for a cake. You may remember, the cake turned out disastrous.
I kept trying to figure out what to do with the Fleur de Sel since I knew I would never make the cake again. I could not throw it away since I practically had to take out a loan to buy it in the first place.
Well, I have found a few uses that I like quite a bit. I enjoy it on fries and steak and it really goes good on ice-cream. But how did it change my life?
Let me tell you!
Go now and buy it!
First, do not go out and buy it just for what I am about to tell you. Actually, who the hell am I kidding?
Unless, of course, you have some sitting around. And if you do, you’re one rich mofo and I want to be your friend.
But moving on.
1. Prepare your PB&J as you normally would, using your favorite jelly or jam and peanut butter (Jif for those in the know). I prefer my bread toasted.
2. LIGHTLY (and I do not use that word lightly) sprinkle the peanut butter side of the sandwich with the Fleur de Sel. I mean lightly, people!
6. Put the two pieces of bread together.
7. Cut your sandwich in two
8. Eat and enter a new dimension reserved for those lucky enough to try this creation.
Now to all the chefs and food pop culturati, you better give me credit when you start putting this on your menu! I’m not joking. I want the credit, Toque-ers! I don’t want to be watching The Today Show or Rachael Ray about how the latest trend is putting a peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwich on the menu. And then see how Jean-Georges is taking all the credit. It’s mine!
I know how all you celebrity-chefs operate. One person puts it on their menu and everyone follows suit. It happened with sliders and The Little Owl. After sliders showed up on the menu at The Little Owl, everyone had sliders on their menus.
It happened with the mac-and-cheese revolution of 2001. Every snotty restaurant across the land had mac-and-cheese on their menus for a while.
All I’m sayin’ is that if you put a fleur-de-sel PB&J on your menu, you give me credit.
PS. A word to the wise. Don’t go trying this with Kosher salt or table-salt. It won’t work. It might work with other sea-salts but I have not tried.
Whoop, you are hilarious and I love you dearly. But stop it! Stop it at once!
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Saturday, October 18, 2008
I really don't know where to start. That they see my desire to marry the man I love akin to darkness is baffling. That they see my love in need of "deliverance" really almost brings me to tears.
This is the side that many in my family are on. I hope they take a good look. Take a good look at your candidate that is playing a game of class-warfare, the likes of which we have never seen before. Take a look at a vice presidential candidate that believes that there is a pro-America and a not pro-America. Take a look at what is happening in the name of Christ. Take a look before it's too late!
In three weeks America will head in a direction. Will it move in the direction of yesterday, or will it leap forward? No one knows. But in less than three weeks our country makes a decision -- many decisions, actually -- and what it decides will determine whether we live in hope or continue to wallow in fear.
What is our choice to be?
The day of reckoning is nigh
Si se puede!
Anyone have any 411 on Josh Zumbrun from Forbes. He is very cute. And smart to boot.
He was on MSNBC today. I think I have a new policy wonk crush!
Um, is this the latest strategy from the campaign. First, Sarah Palin saying some areas of the country are "pro-America" as opposed to the non-pro-America parts of the country. And now Pfotewhoesit saying real Virginia vs. northern Va, which I guess is not real?
And did anyone think she might as well have said "The blacks have just come in from DC and moved to NOVA"?
Sounded like it to me. And I hate using the race card
Where's Tucker Bounds when you need him?
That was rehtorical. He's in the Country First closet you silly goose!
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Since none of the nine million doctors have been able to diagnose him I am a bit worried once again.
So for the next few days I will be tending to him and we will be trying, once again, to figure it all out.
Thank you to all that have been concerned. It means so much.
Sunday, October 12, 2008
For a moment let’s say John McCain picked Mitt Romney as his running mate instead of Palin. Romney, with an ego the size of his bank-account, will do anything and say anything to be elected as demonstrated by his failed bid for the presidency.
But if Romney became the iceberg to McCain’s ship that Palin has become, Romney might consider dropping out. He would strategically consider the implications his staying in the race had on him. He would drop out in an act of pure selfishness in order to preserve some hope of future political aspirations.
Romney may be slick but he has no delusions as to who he is. Though his ego is big, he would never presume to be chosen by God. Not even Mittens is that presumptuous.
Sarah Palin, on the other hand, is that presumptuous. She is cut from the same cloth as George W. Bush and she believes that God has brought her to this moment. Some of her staunchest supporters have even likened her to Queen Esther of the Bible.
There is no way Palin will drop out. No way in hell…literally (speaking of literally, why does Joe Biden use the word literally in every other sentence? It gets on my literal nerves!). It's the same reason Bush couldn't withdraw from Iraq. Hell, even Todd Palin cannot fathom withdrawal as evidenced by his five children.
It's the fundamentalist God-complex
James Dobson and his traveling band of hate believe that Sarah Palin has been sent by God “for such a time as this”. These are the same people that believe Bush “won” the presidency for such a time as that.
The people that James Dobson leads believe it is them against the world. They cannot accept that they might be wrong. Therefore, once Palin was anointed by the evangelical pope and his posse, the time for speculation was long gone.
If Palin appears unqualified, it’s the media’s fault. If Palin can’t answer a simple question, it’s the question’s fault. If Palin seems like the worst pick that one could imagine, it’s the liberal’s fault. But it is never, under any circumstances, Palin’s fault.
How could it be? After all, since they believe that Palin has been plucked from her igloo by God, then if they were to fault Palin they would be faulting God. And since they seem to want to speak for God ALL THE DAMN TIME, they can’t backtrack. “Oops, we were wrong. We thought we knew what God was trying to say but it turns out it was just acid-reflux. We promise to be more careful next time. Pinky swear!”
And when all else fails, they hide behind the Bible. They cite verses that speak of persecution of Christians as an explanation for perceived attacks against them or their candidates. What they do not realize is that very few are attacking them for their faith.
Instead, people are angry at them for using their faith as a substitute for their minds.
And sadly, those that still cling to the notion that Sarah Palin is the right choice are a disgrace to their faith, their minds and to a God that gave them both.
Saturday, October 11, 2008
The vacation was a road trip and somewhere along the way they decided to stop for a bite to eat. As they got out of the car they noticed a sign that read “Whites Only”. The father, himself a prominent minister, paused. He had a choice to make. He could either take his entire family into the establishment, leaving the maid in the car or he could find another place to dine.
I cannot imagine what that must have been like. To be there with your maid, a person you consider to be part of your family, and have her see that she was not welcome. What must have that been like for her? Was she numb to it at that point? Did she reluctantly accept long before that that was just the way things were? Did she dream of a day where her children would not be subjected to such humiliation? Was there a part of her that wanted, just once, to walk into a place like that and sit down and demand to be served?
And the family, the family of God, that a large number of people admired? What was their response to be? What must have gone through their minds? They surely would not leave the maid in the car. Would they? Had they resigned themselves to the fact that that was just the way things were? Did they know that their actions that day would speak to the content of their character a half-a-century later? Or did they believe, as so many others, that somehow the maid was inferior?
When I watch what is happening today I can’t help but think of that family. When I hear people at rallies for John McCain and Sarah Palin yell words out like “terrorist” and “kill him” and “off with his head” I wonder if the kids in those rallies will one day recount what they witnessed to their children. And will their children wonder why no one stood up and said stop?
Today I want to ask all of you reading this a question. Putting aside political differences, I want to ask if you have heard the words n*gger and Obama used in the same sentence? Have you heard people call him a terrorist while you were present? And if you answered yes to either question, what did you do? Did you stand up and say, even if you are not voting for him, that you will not tolerate such vicious, deadly language? Or did you keep silent and ensure that the legacy of racism in this country continues for another generation?
Oh, and in case any of you were wondering what that vacationing family did. They left the maid in the car. And with her, they left their faith and dignity and humanity as well.
How do I know this? Let’s just say it’s in my blood.
Friday, October 10, 2008
Thursday, October 9, 2008
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
What does Christopher Rice, her son, think about this?
Monday, October 6, 2008
I have often thought how bin Laden and Bush needed the other (or the ideological equivalent of “the other”) in order to achieve their respective goals. Without one or the other playing the role of agitator, the other loses the warrior status among the people they lead.
A militaristic-by-default United States helps bin Laden by ensuring that whatever he does, be it video showing he is alive or a terror attack here or abroad, the United States will overreact and over extend its reach. Bin Laden’s goals are further advanced by a United States that excessively retaliates and, in pure panic, responds without regard to consequences.
If, by appearing on video tape or, God forbid, another attack here in the United States, bin Laden gets the United States to respond with “decisive action” rather than deliberative action, he knows that the decisive action will surely include collateral damage. Collateral damage, of course, is just a nice way of saying “innocent civilians killed”. Every time the United States' responds militaristically and collateral damage occurs, the terrorists are ensured new recruits to their cause.
Conversely, the Bush administration, as well as their Republican ideologues running for office, benefit when bin Laden moves from the periphery to the center of the American psyche. Though an appearance by bin Laden or an attack on US soil by the Taliban does reinforce that bin Laden has not been captured “dead or alive”, it also reinforces something far more significant. It reinforces the idea, falsely to be sure, that Republicans are best at fighting the “war on terror” and are tougher in their response. If bin Laden magically appears on our television screens just before an election, as he did in 2004, it reminds the public at large that he is still a terrorist that needs to be dealt with. And a scared public tends to believe the Republicans are the best at dealing with such a terrorist.
That is why the recent line of attack by Sarah Palin could devastate the Obama campaign. The attack, void of fact, thoroughly debunked and done in a vacuum, will not be effective. But, should bin Laden appear, Palin’s assertion that Obama “pals around with terrorist”, becomes fatal. The parasitic claim does not need to be true in order to spread and become fatal. It simply needs a secondary host from which to feed. And that secondary host is bin Laden.
So what are we to do to blunt the effectiveness should an attack or video tape materialize in the next few weeks? I echo Mark Green’s suggestion that we get ahead of the curve and make it clear, through our voices via conversations with friends as well as posts such as this, that we fully expect bin Laden to inject himself in this presidential race just as he did in 2004. And we need to make sure that people understand that bin Laden has been on the loose now for over seven years after two wars, countless lives and a trillion dollars later and he has still not been caught. And all those efforts were done under a Republican administration that took their eye off the target and made the world a far more dangerous place.
Just as we need to keep telling people that the Republicans failed us economically, we need, also, to tell people that their ideas have failed us militaristically. And that if McCain were to win, his flair for drama and his tendency to overreact would be devastating to this country. We also need to highlight that if something were to happen to McCain, the control of our military would be in Sarah Palin’s hands. And Sarah Palin, no doubt, would be more than willing to hasten her vision of eschatology.
Start talking about these scenarios people. Otherwise if or when they happen, we as progressives will be left flat footed and the result will ensure a McCain / Palin victory.
Saturday, October 4, 2008
For those of you that don’t know, I have another website that is devoted strictly to baking. The past couple of weeks I have not paid any attention to it. I have not posted, put up recipes or put up any videos. Instead I have been consumed with my husband’s health as well as some other things. And what time I have left is devoted to the election.
Sometimes I find myself drawn to the kitchen. In many ways, baking is my therapy and helps me decompress. I simply love it. I am proud that many of my baking videos are featured on various websites and especially proud that three of my videos are featured as favorites of Bon Appetit magazine. But with time the way it is these days I have been forced to ignore baking all together.
However, not having time to bake does not mean my sweet tooth has gone away. In order to satisfy the craving the husband and I have been eating a lot of different ice cream these past few weeks. We have our standard go-to brands that we love such as Ben & Jerry’s and Breyers and if something is on sale we will give it a shot.
A couple of weeks ago I noticed that Dove was on sale for 2 for $5. Now, maybe I live under a rock but I was unaware that Dove made ice cream tubs. I knew about, and have tried, their ice cream bars but not the tubs. So I bought two and took them home.
That night the husband and I discovered something that we never knew before. We discovered that heaven is, in fact, a place here on earth. We found it in each spoonful after delicious spoonful of Dove Ice Cream.
And to top it all off (literally and figuratively) each pint has a layer of ganache that you break through to get to the creamy, unadulterated goodness. And once you are there you will never, ever think of ice cream the same way again.
Now, I have only tried two flavors because our grocery store does not carry but two. I have tried Unconditional Chocolate and Give In To Mint. But I assure you that even if I see another flavor on my way to an important meeting I will buy it and eat it at the meeting -- consequences be damned! And if I lose the respect of my colleagues , so be it. But they will not take my Dove away from me!
Let me tell you how much I love this ice cream. If, in the debate on Thursday night, Sarah Palin had said “To my fellow Americans, I want you to know in a McCain / Palin administration we will provide government sponsored Dove Ice Cream” I would have pledged money to their campaign that second and committed myself to getting them elected. That’s how much I dig this ice cream.
It's not that my allegiance to Obama is that weak. It's that my devotion to Dove Ice Cream is that strong!
So, if you have not tried a pint, I suggest you make it to your grocery store and indulge. Forget your diet for the night (or for the week) and go crazy.
I promise, you’ll never be the same again.
Friday, October 3, 2008
A very wise TV executive once told me that the key to TV is projecting through the screen. It's one of the keys to the success of, say, a Bill O'Reilly, who comes through the screen and grabs you by the throat. Palin too projects through the screen like crazy. I'm sure I'm not the only male in America who, when Palin dropped her first wink, sat up a little straighter on the couch and said, "Hey, I think she just winked at me." And her smile. By the end, when she clearly knew she was doing well, it was so sparkling it was almost mesmerizing. It sent little starbursts through the screen and ricocheting around the living rooms of America
There are honestly no words
You want me to give her credit for what? For not melting on stage? For not being able to answer a question? For thinking the sub-prime mess has something to do with energy? For wanting to expand the powers of the vice-presidency even though she has, by her own admission, no idea what the vice-president does?
I said before her convention speech that if she got her name right it would be considered a success. That’s how low the bar was then.
And she managed to lower it even more in the month since that time. Hell, the bar was so low that even Bristol’s supposed unborn child could have crawled over it. It was so low even a drunk George Bush could have bellied up to it.
So by those standards she did what she needed to do. But I would like anyone who thought it was a success to consider one thing.
Sarah Palin has said that she admires both Hillary Clinton and Geraldine Ferraro. Imagine if either of those women were on stage last night and turned in the performance that Sarah Palin did. They would have been laughed off the stage before it was even over.
Just because she made it through means nothing. She had a stack of three-by-fives she was reading from. And she could barely read those.
She’s a failure. Get over it. And Republicans need to get in the business of finding a woman with brains to represent their brand. Sarah Palin proves, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that simply having breasts and a vagina is not enough. She is an insult to women everywhere and it was the most blatantly sexist pick John McCain could have made.
Thursday, October 2, 2008
First I should go back in time to when I was 20 years old, living in Waco, Texas and a student at Baylor University. Let me repeat that slowly.
I was 20. Living in Waco. Student at Baylor.
See, Baylor is a really conservative school in a really conservative town in a really conservative state. And I was doing my best at pretending to be a really conservative student with a really conservative girlfriend studying really conservative things. But I had a secret.
No, not that one! Another one.
Every afternoon I would rush home to my apartment just off campus to secretly watch The Rosie O’Donnell Show (TROS). I loved it. And I loved her. She seemed like a kindred spirit and I could not get enough of her love of Broadway, her love of Tom Cruise and her love of the simple, ordinary things…things a kid living some 1500 miles away could relate to.
I also had a crush on Rosie’s pianist and band leader, John McDaniel. I loved everything about him. His infectious smile, his warm personality and of course his cutey-patutie-ness.
But one day on TROS, Rosie welcomed the cast of Rent. I watched, knowing nothing about the musical at the time, and began to cry. I knew I related to the musical but I did not know what it was I was relating to. I just knew that at that moment my dream of moving to New York began. I wanted to be there, in that city, and see if I could make it.
I wanted to be Rosie’s best friend and John McD’s boyfriend. I wanted to travel beneath the ground and skate on Wollman Rink. I wanted to see if I was tough enough to make it in the toughest city in the world.
In just four years that kid from Waco did move to New York. And many of my dreams, as well as things I never could have imagined, came true. I skated Wollman Rink and I ride beneath the ground everyday. And nearly eight years later I can honestly say that I am tough enough – and blessed beyond measure – to live in the shadow of the greatest city in the world.
Today, after a stressful morning of figuring out how we are going to pay my husband’s rising health care bills, I headed out to see a friend in a table-reading of a musical that is trying to make it to Broadway. Though I was interested in seeing my friend, I did not particularly want to spend my afternoon watching a bunch of actors reading a script when I had a million other things I needed to be doing.
But today in a rehearsal room on the fifth floor of a theatre on 42nd Street I realized something. I realized that even though life never works the way you think it should, it still works. And even though dreams never play the way you dreamt, sometimes they play out exactly as they should.
As I sat down among the audience of maybe ten people, all family and friends of the actors, I looked over at the piano about five feet away and noticed John McDaniel. John wrote the music for this particular musical. There he was, my once-future boyfriend, at the piano laughing and making snarky comments under his breath. He was in his element and he was having a good time.
About that time a woman with a Flip camera in hand walked right in front of me. I noted how the Flip was ironic given Rosie’s love of all things Flip. And when I looked at the woman holding the Flip I realized it was Janette Barber, the Emmy-award winning head writer and supervising producer of TROS. Many may know Janette as the Ja in the JaHeRo vlogs on Rosie’s blog. She is also known for an antic involving a Sharpie and a picture during Rosie’s last day on The View, an antic that propelled her to rock-star status in my mind.
I found out that Janette is the co-writer for the musical. I should also note that the musical is fantastic, at least the reading and singing I saw. I had to leave at the break but I have no doubt it will be a success. I am hesitant to give much more information about the musical because I am not sure they are ready to announce anything yet.
And, though I had to leave, my friend told Janette that I loved her and Janette told him to tell me about her blog. Check it out if you’d like, and tell her I sent you.
But while I was there I thought about that kid in Waco so many years ago who would rush home to watch Rosie and John, and laugh at Janette’s jokes. And I wondered what that kid would say if I told him that one day, just off the beaten path in a theatre on 42nd Street, he would be where I was today.
I think I know what that kid would say.
The realist in him would say “Yeah but what about those medical bills?”
And the dreamer in him would respond “Sometimes your dreams never come true and they are put away to collect dust on the shelf of what might have been. And sometimes when the world seems so dark and the mountains seem so large and you are ready to give up and give in and cede your dreams to a younger you. Sometimes at just that moment… when hope seems like a distant memory…the dream of yesterday becomes the reality of today”
Today I feature Joe from the great state of Texas (my home state). Joe has apparently pinned a lot on Palin:
Gov. Palin,You are the last hope for the USA. Please stay the course.
Joe in Texas
For all So Duh POP post, click here or on the label PROUD OF PALIN below
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
So after she finishes dazzling us I will repeat, for the third time, questions that I have for Palin. None have been answered in the three weeks since I first posted them:
As many have said before, the reason Sarah Palin is so important, and the reason that there is such a focus on her, is because she shows how reckless John McCain’s judgment is and her lies, as we are discovering each day, prove that she was not vetted AT ALL.
But there are more questions that need to be answered. Let’s start with these:
** Bristol Palin, the 17 year old unmarried pregnant daughter of Sarah and Todd, was out of school for a significant amount of time last year (anywhere from 5-8 months) with “mono”. The maximum a child is normally out of school for such a thing as mono is less than three months. Did she have a rare strain? Was she, as one would assume, quarantined so as to not infect others? If so, could someone find out the dates she was out of school? Surely, with such an infectious disease, she would not be having sex while infected? She has been pregnant for, what, five months according to Sarah Palin?
** When Sarah Palin realized she was going into labor, why did she go ahead and make a speech at a governors’ conference in Texas? She says she was leaking amniotic fluid? Who is her doctor and why did they tell her it was ok to make an eight hour trip back to Alaska, on a PLANE? Did Sarah tell any of the flight attendants she was in labor? Did the pilot know? The governor of Alaska was five weeks premature with a special needs child and yet all the powers that be told her it was A-OK for her to travel? On a plane? Leaking amniotic fluid? Why wouldn’t they, for the sake of the baby, do what is in the best interest of the child and deliver in Texas so as not to risk more harm to little Trig? Todd Palin said they wanted the baby to be born in Alaska because “You can’t have a fish picker in Texas?” First of all, what does that even mean? And secondly, they were willing to risk further harm to the baby just so he could have Alaska as his place of birth?
** When she arrived back in Alaska, why weren’t there medical personnel waiting there to whisk away the governor? Why did she drive an additional 45 minutes to get to the hospital when there were others closer?
** Where are Trig Palin’s birth records? This is a legitimate question. After all, Trig had his own webpage on the governor’s state-run website. Where are Sarah Palin’s medical records? Mat-Su, the hospital where Palin gave birth, does not even list the birth of Trig the day the Palins claim. They don’t list the birth at all. Why is this?
** Sarah Palin returned back to work just three days after giving birth to her 5th child. Did her doctor, the one that is apparently MIA, allow this too? Or did Sarah go against her doctor’s wishes? I admit, I am no Sarah Palin. I’m a sissy-boy faggot that can barely move after a week with a slight cold. Sarah Palin, on the other hand, can shoot 437,000 caribou before dusk. But it seems to me that just 72 hours after giving birth to a child with special needs and she returned to work? Am I the only one that finds this not only remarkable, but also hard to believe?
I am sure there are very obvious answers to all these easy questions. Could people just give them to me? In the comments please list the answers if you have them. List the source as well.
Psst. Snopes does not count as a “source”
Also, if there are more questions that I have not listed, list them in the comments.
Oh, and I am fully prepared for the comments calling me crazy, unhinged, reckless. Say what you will. I don’t give a shit. I just want the answers. We deserve the answers. And one way or another, the answers will come out.
What I think we all need to keep in mind over the next five weeks is that all they have left at this point is tearing Obama down. McCain can't run on ideas because he has none. And Palin is proving to be the failure that keeps on giving so he can't run on her appeal (the base loves her and that's about it).
So the next few weeks they will work to ruin Obama. The swiftboating of '04 is nothing compared to what's about to come. I suggest turning off the news and not going online for a while (though not even I can do that).
Get ready for them to attempt to tear Obama apart by any means necessary.
And the polls will tighten.
So go, now, and do something. Give money, knock on doors, make sure all your friends are registered. Offer to take a neighbor to the polls.
I assure you on election day the religious right will be mobilized and they will vote even in the case of a natural disaster.
We need that resolve and then some. We, progressive and fair minded individuals, need to commit right now, that no matter what, we will cast our vote. No excuses, no exceptions.
I just pray that I can make it to the other side sober. I have never been so nervous in all my life. We can't afford to lose. America can't afford to lose.
Dennis Prager recently gave a talk (sermon, really) to the monthly Focus on the Faggot…er…I mean Focus on the Family chapel service. I wanted to write a response to his sermon because many things stood out about his little “marriage” lecture.
James Dobson decided that Prager’s sermon was so good that he wanted to broadcast it on two days worth of Focus programming. Dobson introduces Prager by lavishing praise on him and then says something that is very telling.
About three minutes into the first broadcast, Dobson tells listeners that Prager is Jewish, “which means we don’t see eye to eye on our Christian faith, obviously”.
This introduction raises some serious questions about Dobson. Does Dobson consider Prager’s Jewish faith to be part of the “Christian faith” or was that just a slip of the tongue? And does Dobson believe, based on Dobson’s faith, that Prager is going to heaven? If he does, how does he reconcile that belief with the strictures of his fundamentalist beliefs? And if he does not believe Prager is going to heaven, why would he have someone that is hell bound take the stage at a chapel service?
I know the answers to all of the above questions because, after at least 20 years of listening to Dobson starting when I was a child, I know what he believes. No, he does not believe Jews go to heaven and the reason he invited Prager to chapel was because Prager sees “eye to eye” with Dobson in regards to gay marriage and homosexuality in general.
However, following the logic that it is ok for a hell bound Jew to take the stage as long as that Jew is in lockstep with Dobson on one issue (or many issues, for that matter), it begs the question if Dobson would welcome an open homosexual on the stage if that homosexual agreed with Dobson on the evils of, let’s say, gambling.
See, if the unpardonable sin is rejecting Christ (which Prager is guilty of, according to the faith of Dobson) then what Dobson is suggesting by inviting Prager to chapel is that Dobson believes that Prager’s belief that gays should not be married trumps Prager’s lack of belief in Christ. Ultimately what Dobson is doing here is quantifying sin, something that every fundamentalist is forced to do due to their literal interpretation of the Bible. If Dobson does not believe he is quantifying sin then I look forward to him extending an invitation to an openly gay gambling opponent. In fact, I know a thing or two about the devastating effects that alcoholism has on families – a far more devastating effect than whether or not I can marry my husband, which has no effect on straight marriage – and I would be happy to address the chapel.
One other glaring note about Dobson’s introduction is his reference to the Torah. You have to listen to it but he basically says that the Torah is the Old Testament. The quote is “I asked him to speak about homosexuality in the Torah. Or in the Old Testament”
Reading that, one might think that Dobson was saying that he asked Prager to speak about homosexuality in the Torah or in the Old Testament. But that is not what he meant and when you listen, what he is saying is “In the Torah, in other words, the Old Testament” There is no room for interpretation when listening to how Dobson said it. But given the demographics of his audience, I am sure not many listeners picked up the fact that the Torah and the Old Testament (OT) are not synonymous. In fact, the Torah is the first five books of the OT, not the entire OT.
Moving on to Prager’s sermon.
Prager opens his remarks by calling Dobson “one of the greatest Americans of our time”.
He then goes on to say that he has a niece that is gay. He says that he loves his niece and he loves her partner but does not condone their life. What he does here is nothing more than gilding the lily that is “Love the sinner, hate the sin”. He immediately jumps from his “compassion” for his niece to the idea that if one accepts homosexuality one will accept “anything” – the slippery slope that fundamentalists often employ as a scare tactic.
But of course Prager, like Dobson, depends on the audience not to think the slippery slope fallacy to its logical conclusion. Because if they did, many would be forced to ask if Dobson accepts that a Jew can speak at chapel because he shares Dobson’s fundamental values, would he then accept a Muslim who had those values. In other words (in Prager’s words) “is everything ok?”.
Prager then begins the warfare talk that is so popular among fundamentalists. He speaks of the “battle” being lost in most of the Western world but that the “battleground” is in the United States. He asks his audience if we (we, as in the people of the United States) will be governed by Judeo-Christian values (an interesting term, to be sure, considering that Judeo-Christian is meant to illicit thoughts reaching back to the beginning of time. But the Judeo-Christian concept is relatively new only dating back to the turn of the 20th the century) or “secular’ values. This “battle”, Prager goes on to say, is the reason for the “anger” directed at evangelicals.
He then immediately follows up the anger statement by asking the audience why there was so much anger at Sarah Palin when she was nominated. He says, of course, that the answer is because Palin spoke too much about God. Prager, like Dobson and the rest, take much comfort in believing that people are angry with them because of their God. It is far easier (and far more noble) to believe that than to examine the real reasons people are angry at them over, among other things, Sarah Palin.
This anger that many on the right talk about is a way for them to further insulate their “flock” from reality. If one can convince someone that their beliefs are despised because their God is despised, then they need not worry themselves with facts and science and the legitimacy of their claims. Many, my mother included, when cornered revert to “God said it, I believe it, that’s that”
It is, of course, the most intellectually lazy and dishonest way to live. But intellectual laziness is of no concern to fundamentalists. One need only go to right wing blogs and read how many throw around words like “intellectual elite” and disparage degrees from places like Yale or Harvard in order to see how deep the contempt is for the intellectually curious. In fundamentalists' circles the mind is to be feared, not explored. And if the mind arrives at a conclusion that is not in sync with fundamentalism then the mind is automatically suspect, often attributed to the work of Satan.
Prager continues along this vein of “God values” by telling the audience that he asks those on the “secular and religious left” if they have a “book from which” they get their “values”. He says that those on the left invariably answer that they do not get their values from a book but instead from their heart. Prager is doing two things here.
The first is implying to his audience that if one does not have a “book” from which to glean values, such as the Bible, then one simply has no values. The other thing Prager is doing is using the word “heart” as a euphemism for the word “mind”. This is just another way of dismissing the mind as an agent of evil rather than a tool meant for good.
Prager proves this by saying “We who are religious know that the heart is a rather weak source for strong values”. In other words, the mind cannot be trusted and must be perceived as weak lest it be relied upon. Prager continues “And that’s the battle, and it’s very hard to battle people’s hearts”.
Once Prager makes the case that the mind (heart) is ultimately of no use in determining ones’ values he then begins to get to the reason of his sermon by rhetorically asking what God did on the second day. He answers that God “separated”.
Anyone with half a (suspect) mind, including his audience, can see where Prager is going. Everyone knows that by God “separating”, it automatically means that homosexuality is wrong. But more on that later.
Prager then tries to credential himself by saying he has taught the Torah in Hebrew for twenty years and proceeds to give his audience a lesson by saying that the Hebrew word for “holy” (qadosh) is also the word for “separate”. This is true. Qadosh means “to set apart for a special purpose”. But I would also note that the word “Qedesh” is Hebrew for “male prostitute”, derived from Qadosh.
He continues that “there is a war against the Biblical notion of separation”. Prager knows his audience well and knows that war imagery plays well to this crowd. My mother told me a few months ago that she was “pro war” and that she believed “God is pro war”. This shocked me and immediately I wondered how she arrived at such a belief. The father of Jesus certainly is not pro war and no matter how much one might want to twist theology to make God pro war (or to make God more in line with a president who goes to war based on lies) does not make it so.
But Prager says that five examples prove there is such a war between “holy and profane”;
1 Cursing. Prager says that the ubiquity of cursing in society is proof of the profane. He says that public cursing is “evil”. Supposedly, teenagers cursing in a grocery store is enough for Prager to think that the world is an evil place (I should note that at this point I was ready to quit listening but I soldiered on)
2 Apparently Prager thinks that if you use the term “good and evil” you are right wing religious. Or in other words, only fundamentalists believe in good and evil, as opposed to the left that does not believe in such a thing??? He goes on to tell the audience that since they believe in good and evil they are detested. Again, he is trying to build a separation (is that holiness?) between his audience (the good moral people) and the heathens.
One man’s heathen is another man’s infidel. One man’s qadosh is another man’s qedesh. You say fundamentalist Christian, I say fundamentalist Muslim. Let’s call the whole thing off!
He says that the secular left is making war on the Judeo-Christian value system and provides a few examples of how the left does not believe in evil.
One example is that “major French and German guests on my radio show from France and Germany”(you know, as opposed to the French and German people he might have on his show that are really from Mars). Anyway he says that “every single one” references George W. Bush’s use of the term “good and evil” as what those French and Germans from France and Germany think is wrong with America. He says that Europe does not use the term and that, according to those on the left, the “only evil is to talk about evil or even worse, confront evil”
Prager then goes on to say that the media never uses the word “terrorist”. At this point I am about to pop a blood vessel. Is he serious? Is his audience that stupid? A quick google search can prove him wrong on this. What media does he listen to? Certainly not the media I listen to. They all use the word terrorist. But again, Prager does not let facts get in the way of his diatribe based on emotion. “Separate” emotion, but emotion nonetheless.
He goes from that fantastical story to another about how the media never call murderers “murderers”. And at this moment it is as if you can hear him slip into a parallel universe where all these things he says are true.
3 That, unless you are a right winger, there is no way you can believe that there is a separation between man and God. And since there are atheist on the left, there can be no one who believes in God on the left.
I believe in God and I have friends who are atheist and we don’t try to convince the other. But in Prager’s world we on the left are all monolithic beings who march to the beat of one secular drummer.
4 Apparently if you believe that there is a separation between man and animal, you are Biblical. But if you believe man and animal are equals you are lefty and therefore a member of PETA. That’s the line of logic with number four, according to Prager.
Therefore, since those of us on the left are all members of PETA, he makes fun of PETA and uses them as proof that no one on the left can separate the value of a human from an animal.
It’s called a straw-man or a red-herring. Take your pick. But I didn’t have to tell you that, did I, silly liberal?
Also, on point four, apparently Prager is in love with his stereo system. You’ll just have to listen if you want to know the context. But he does say “I am not guided by love, I’m guided by values”.
In Prager’s world, values and love are mutually exclusive. And if “love” guides you, well, it is the same as being guided by your “heart”. And, remember, that is evil.
5 And finally he gets to his main point. God created male and female. Man and woman. After trying to impress the audience with speaking in Hebrew, he says that that separation of the sexes is what makes us “distinct”.
He says that there is a Biblical law that says that a man cannot wear women’s clothing and vice-versa. To prove that society has “strayed” from this he says that almost all urban high-schools across America have “cross-dressing day. It’s actually part of the curriculum”. He says that this proves that there is an onslaught against the notion that “there is anything different between the sexes”
Now putting aside Shakespeare for a moment, I immediately called my friends who were in high-school recently, including my brother. My brother did not answer the phone (no surprise there) but I asked my friends who went to “urban” high schools if they had a cross-dressing day and, if so, was it part of the curriculum. After they all laughed, they said no.
Again, I do not live in Prager’s world. I live in the real world. And apparently the real world is vastly different than Prager’s world.
Prager follows up his cross-dressing fantasy by saying that “Folks if you are truly interchangeable, it doesn’t matter who you have sex with, right?”
Ok, this is where I am going to end it. Part two will be up in a few days. Prager gets into a lot of stuff that will take up another five pages and I just don’t have the time to cover it all right now.
Today's exchange during the "Hot Topics" segment on The View may have shed some light on the rumors that Elisabeth may be leaving for Fox.
I have never seen Barbara Walters so confrontational with Elisabeth as she was today. I have a feeling Barbara, after giving interviews saying that Elisabeth was staying put, found out that she is, in fact, leaving.
I am looking for video to post of the exchange. If you know of any already up let me know
The one that I am featuring today is from someone that apparently believes that a woman armed with a gun, hunting a defenseless creature makes the woman fearless. Okie dokie!
dear gov PALIN,
IN THE WILD YOU HOLD YOUR GROUND FROM WILD ANIMALS, YOU DO NOT SHOW ANY FEAR ,TO THE LOW LIFE JACK--S. THE FIGHT HAS JUST STARTED.
GOOD LUCK FROM A NEW YORK REP.
For all So Duh POP post, click here or on the label PROUD OF PALIN below
I would also like to thank Sarah Palin. Without her willingness to step on the national stage, this blog would not be where it is today. Thanks Sarah! And I look forward to an equally entertaining month from you in October.
I learned a lot this month. For instance, based on the search strings that bring people to this site, I learned that there are a lot of people that want to know how many zeros are in 700 billion (For the record, it’s 11 but 12 if you count Bush. HAHA! That never gets old). I also learned that many of you read while you are supposed to be working. Another thing I learned is that my love of baking takes a back seat to my love of politics during an election season. One surprising thing I learned is that my mother considers the facts I write about the Republican party and religious right to be a slap in her face.
But the most important thing I learned is that there are a ton of people out there like me who freak out when Andrew Sullivan disappears.
What a month for the ‘mo’s, huh? From the publicized Ray Boltz and Clay Aiken coming out(s) to the outing of McCain’s chief of staff, Mark Buse, it has been a month of closet doors swinging open. And I, for one, love it!
Oh and I had a birthday! Woo hoo! Though I did not get many gifts (including none from my husband) it was a good day. I did get taken to lunch by one of my dearest friends and I did get cruised at that lunch by a gorgeous guy.
I went to the cast and crew party for Ghost Town earlier this month. That was a blast and I highly recommend the movie. My friend, Michael, is in the movie. Oh, hold on, I dropped something. BRB
Ok. Sorry. It was just a name. And if you click on that name you will see a wiki article in which I am featured (it's at the bottom) . Yeah, I’m that cool.
My goals for October? To get the readership up even more and get more people commenting. Maybe Andrew Sullivan will decide to disappear again. That gets the comments up. And I love comments!
Anywho, thanks again! I look forward to a great October. Feel free to write me if you wish. I love mail. My email addy is jon-marc AT live dot com.