May 10th, 2009

☎ ming xi

Texas is charging rape victims who cooperate with the police.

CNN reports that Texas hospitals are charging women who have been raped thousands of dollars for their rape kits that are collected by police as part of their investigations. According to CNN, Texas’s crime victim compensation fund consistently has a surplus and could likely cover these expenses. Watch it:

During the 2008 campaign, Gov. Sarah Palin (R-AK) came under criticism for the fact that while serving as mayor of Wasilla, the town’s policy was to “bill victims” for their rape kits. (HT: AMERICAblog)


Seriously? EDIT: Since CNN won't embed, added the video from YouTube instead.

High Schoolers protest surveillance of lesbian students

Although the United States is still labeled as "the land of the free" no American can expect to walk around in a public place without being video taped, monitored, and photographed. Even public school campuses have begun capturing surveillance of students in the name of "safety" and "security." But as always, the ability of surveillance led one power hungry school official to do something that is unquestionably unethical.

Keith Nelson, the Dean of Students at Gig Harbor High School in Washington, suspected that one of the students was a lesbian. The girl's parents allegedly wanted to be notified of their daughter's behavior in school, so Mr. Nelson looked through surveillance videos and found footage of the girl kissing another female student. Nelson then notified the parents, and the girl was transferred to another school.

Read the rest of the article HERE!!!

Suing for sex

Sex-starved Kenyan sues over boycott

NAIROBI, Kenya (CNN) -- A Kenyan man has sued activists who called on women to boycott sex to protest the growing divide in the nation's coalition government.

James Kimondo said the seven-day sex ban, which ended this week, resulted in stress, mental anguish, backaches and lack of sleep, his lawyer told the state-run Kenya Broadcasting Corp.

The lawsuit filed Friday claims lack of conjugal rights affected Kimondo's marriage and seeks undisclosed damages from the G-10, an umbrella group for women's activists, KBC said.

The women's caucus caused a national debate when it urged women to withhold sex to protest increasingly frosty relations between President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga.

Citizens of the east African nation are frustrated by a shaky coalition government, which was formed after post-election violence killed more than 1,000 people in 2008. The wrangling between Kibaki and Odinga has sparked fears of more violence.

Gender activists say they are not worried about the lawsuit.

"I have not been served with the papers, but I was told they are coming and I am eagerly waiting," said Ann Njogu, executive, director of Centers for Rights Education and Awareness. "It will be interesting to see the face of a man who is not willing to abstain for the sake of his country."

Despite the lawsuit, Njogu said, the boycott was successful.

"The principal leaders met as a result of the boycott, and I understand that they are setting up reforms to look into the country's internal security," she said.

Plans are under way for women activists to meet with Kibaki and Odinga, according to Njogu.


Dude, a week? You're trying to say you can't manage to go without for a week? Puh-leeeez. Your hand will always say yes, just so ya know.

5 years on, gay marriage debate fades in Mass.

While still opposed in some conservative circles, no prospect for referendum


Collapse )

Article continues at the source

I just thought this was a nice story. I believe that people will grow accustomed to marriage equality, it'll stop seeming strange or scary to all but the most determined bigots, and then yay: equal rights for everyone, in every state.
Body language

Cheney backs Limbaugh over Powell on GOP future

WASHINGTON – Dick Cheney made clear Sunday he'd rather follow firebrand broadcaster Rush Limbaugh than former Joint Chiefs chairman Colin Powell into political battle over the future of the Republican Party.

Even as Cheney embraced efforts to expand the party by ex-Govs. Jeb Bush of Florida and Mitt Romney of Massachusetts and the House's No. 2 Republican, Virginia Rep. Eric Cantor, the former vice president appeared to write his one-time colleague Powell out of the GOP.

Asked about recent verbal broadsides between Limbaugh and Powell, Cheney said, "If I had to choose in terms of being a Republican, I'd go with Rush Limbaugh. My take on it was Colin had already left the party. I didn't know he was still a Republican."

Collapse )


DV is okay, supposing that she shops a lot, says Saudi judge.

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Husbands are allowed to slap their wives if they spend lavishly, a Saudi judge said recently during a seminar on domestic violence, Saudi media reported Sunday.

Arab News, a Saudi English-language daily newspaper based in Riyadh, reported that Judge Hamad Al-Razine said that "if a person gives SR 1,200 [$320] to his wife and she spends 900 riyals [$240] to purchase an abaya [the black cover that women in Saudi Arabia must wear] from a brand shop and if her husband slaps her on the face as a reaction to her action, she deserves that punishment."

Women in the audience immediately and loudly protested Al-Razine's statement, and were shocked to learn the remarks came from a judge, the newspaper reported.

Arab News reported that Al-Razine made his remark as he was attempting to explain why incidents of domestic violence had increased in Saudi Arabia. He said that women and men shared responsibility, but added that "nobody puts even a fraction of blame" on women, the newspaper said.

Al-Razine "also pointed out that women's indecent behavior and use of offensive words against their husbands were some of the reasons for domestic violence in the country," it added.

Domestic violence, which used to be a taboo subject in the conservative kingdom, has become a hot topic in recent years. Groups like the National Family Safety Program have campaigned to educate the public about the problem and help prevent domestic abuse.

Saudi women's rights activist Wajeha Al-Huwaider told CNN that Saudi women routinely face such attitudes.

"This is how men in Saudi Arabia see women," she said in a telephone interview from the Saudi city of Dahran. "It's not something they read in a book or learned from a friend. They've been raised to see women this way, that they're less than a person."

Al-Huwaider added that "I'm not surprised to see a judge or a religious man saying that - they've been raised in the same culture - a culture that tells them it's ok to raise your hand to a woman that this works."

Another Saudi judge, in the city of Onaiza, was the source of a separate recent controversy: he twice denied a request from the mother of an 8-year-old girl that the girl be granted a divorce from her 47-year-old husband.

Last month, after human-groups condemned the union, the girl was granted the divorce.

By the power of Grayskull

Polar bear ruling brings Obama and Palin together like Spring love

Who doesn’t love a polar bear?

You remember those really cute Coca Cola commercials showing the adorable white puffballs all playing together with dancing penguins.

Sure, in reality they’ll bite your head off. And take great pleasure in doing so.

But … the lovable omnivore appears to be responsible for the first recorded incident of post-partisanship. A decision by the Obama administration yesterday on the adorable puffball led Alaska Governor Sarah Palin to praise her former opponent.

The issue is over whether to protect polar bear habitat by restricting greenhouse gas emissions outside of polar bear habitat. Back in 2008, Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne said no, we’re not going to do that, and issued a rule to that effect.

Yesterday, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar also said no and announced that rule would be continued.

“We must do all we can to help the polar bear recover, recognizing that the greatest threat to the polar bear is the melting of Arctic sea ice caused by climate change,” Salazar said in a statement. “However, the Endangered Species Act is not the proper mechanism for controlling our nation’s carbon emissions. Instead, we need a comprehensive energy and climate strategy that curbs climate change and its impacts — including the loss of sea ice. Both President Obama and I are committed to achieving that goal.”

Although she didn’t praise Obama directly, [Palin] sent a shout-out to Salazar over her Twitter account.

“This is a clear victory for Alaska,” Governor Palin said. “We all want to preserve and protect the polar bear using the best possible tools, but there is absolutely no need to change the … rule to accomplish this purpose. I want to thank Secretary Salazar for his careful review of the science and the administrative record that led to this decision.”

More at the


Exclusive: DNC Ad Hits "The New GOP" Sunday Show Guests (VIDEO)

Exclusive: DNC Ad Hits "The New GOP" Sunday Show Guests (VIDEO)

As expected, Democrats pounced Sunday night on the Republican Party for trotting out a set of Sunday talk-show surrogates who didn't exactly project political resurgence.

In a Web ad provided to the Huffington Post, the Democratic National Committee pointed to Dick Cheney, John McCain and Newt Gingrich's appearances on the talk-show circuit earlier in the day as the latest example of a party devoid of new ideas or faces.

"Having marginalized themselves as the Party of No - the GOP has nowhere else to turn but a generation of leaders whose ideas and brand of politics have been thoroughly rejected," read an accompanying statement by Communications Director Brad Woodhouse. "Anyone watching television today would have to be excused for asking - is this 1996 or 2009?"

This truly is low-hanging fruit for the DNC: a widely unpopular former vice president, failed presidential candidate and highly controversial former House Speaker representing easy targets. But the real story - and, for the GOP, problem - here is the hard-to-overstate absence of leadership. Without a central figure or institution to help guide the party's message - from the policy platform to the television surrogates - the names and ideas that rise to the surface will naturally be from the old guard. Michael Steele's rocky tenure at the RNC hasn't filled that void.

Much of the problem is, of course, self-inflicted. Cheney, after all, just this past week expressed his desire to see the new wave of Republican leadership take its place in high-profile roles. Then he went out and did a live interview for the full half hour on "Face the Nation," in which he proclaimed Colin Powell to no longer be a Republican.

Michael Steele Responds To Obama Ribbing: 'Good Love Between Two Brothers' (VIDEO)

Michael Steele Responds To Obama Ribbing: 'Good Love Between Two Brothers' (VIDEO)

RNC chair Michael Steele responded to President Obama's ribbing of him at the White House Correspondents Dinner.

Asked by PoliticsDaily how he felt about Obama's jokes - "Michael Steele is in the house tonight -- or, as he would say, 'In the heezey,'" Steele laughed and said:

"It was good love between two brothers... I was surprised, but I appreciate the president giving me a shout out. I've given him a few over the years, so he just returned the favor."

He added that he was flattered by the attention from the president, tossing in a warning:

"It was nice to get the ribbing. Look, anytime you're called out by the President of the United States is pretty cool, right?" Steele said. "Look, this worm will turn. My time will come -- trust me."

Watch the video:


Because I like Johann Hari.

Obama Isn't FDR Yet -- But He Might Still Do It

Image and video hosting by TinyPic
Because posts need pictures.

Nobody feels like hanging out tinsel to mark Barack Obama's first one hundred days - least of all the President himself. After the cheering crowds in Grant Park and the choked-up crowds on Inauguration Day went home, he has been left with a depression, a slew of wars, and an unraveling climate. Mario Cuomo, the former mayor of New York, said politicians "campaign in poetry, but govern in prose" - and Obama has had to hit the prose hard. So now George W. Bush has been dispatched to torture only the English language, has "change come to America", as Obama promised?

Collapse )

Because sometimes posting articles is necessary for catharsis, even if you're preaching to the choir. Happy Motherfucker. Love, Rahm Emanuel.

(no subject)

Anti-Feminist Lawyer Loses Women's Studies Suit

Who's smirkin' now, sucka?

Remember the anti-feminist lawyer who was suing Columbia for offering Women's Studies courses because, according to him, it's discriminatory towards men? His case (not surprisingly) was thrown out last week by a Manhattan judge.

This is not the only case Roy Den Hollander has pursued; he's also filed lawsuits against clubs that offer Ladies Nights (because of course that's feminism's doing?), and is pretty blatant in the acknowledgment that his sole purpose in life is working against the evil feminist machine, saying:

"What I'm trying to do now in my later years is fight everybody who violates my rights... the Feminazis have infiltrated institutions, and there's been a transfer of rights from guys to girls."

Holy eloquence. Is this dude really a lawyer? Also not surprisingly, when the judge dismissed his suit, Hollander "assailed the judge as [insert gasp] a feminist" and claimed that "[w]hen it comes to men's rights, judges act with an arrogance of power, ignorance of the law, and fear of the feminists."

There are too many contradictions there even worth repeating, but regardless you better be careful - that kind of talk may not bode well with The Feminists...


A.F.I. : Crash Love Baby!

Gideon Yago Interview in "Vanity Fair", Talks About "IFC Media Project"

Gideon Yago's Media Project: Press Criticism for People Who Aren't Idiots

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

If Bill O’Reilly had flipped to the IFC Channel on Sunday at 11:00 p.m., perhaps hoping to catch his favorite Jim Jarmusch or John Waters movie, he probably would have had an aneurysm. The premiere episode of the second season of The IFC Media Project ( [with Gideon Yago], which was devoted to coverage of international news, showcased:

A lament that all but one cable provider in America refuses to carry Al Jazeera English, the sister network of the cable channel famous for its anti-Americanism and for broadcasting Osama bin Laden’s homemade videos.

A report on last year’s war between Russia and Georgia arguing that it was Georgia’s fault, and that the media took Georgia’s side because of a slick PR campaign and the importance of an oil pipeline that runs through Georgia.

An animated segment about piracy in Somalia that pointed out that for years Western ships have been fishing in Somali waters and dumping nuclear waste there, and questioned whether the pirates are actually “the bad guys.”

Not quite the same complaints that O’Reilly and his ilk might have about the news, but that’s because the people behind the half-hour series—in particular, host Gideon Yago, the award-winning MTV News alumnus, and executive producer Meghan O’Hara, Michael Moore’s longtime collaborator—don’t want to see the mainstream media wither and die. They truly love journalism, and they want it to be better. Like your parents, they criticize because they care. Here’s what Yago and O’Hara had to say when I spoke to them last week.

Collapse )

You can catch Gideon Yago's show “IFC Media Project” on IFC on Sunday nights @ 11 PM.

And, you can follow him on Twitter:

Uzi Arad: Israeli Spy Treif Under Bush, Now Kosher Under Obama

Uzi Arad: Israeli Spy Treif Under Bush, Now Kosher Under Obama

by Richard Silverstein |
Uzi Arad is Bibi Netanyahu’s national security advisor. He is also an Israeli spy. He officially worked for the Mossad for 23 years achieving senior status. But his real claim to fame as far as Israel-U.S. relations is his intimate involvement, along with Naor Gilon, in the Rosen-Weissman spy scandal:
U.S. officials believe Franklin met with Arad during his frequent trips to Israel.
In the original indictment which was later annulled, Franklin is said to have met with Arad in the cafeteria of the Pentagon in February 2004. Franklin is also believed to have met with an Israeli diplomat serving in the Washington embassy who suggested that he meet with Arad.
During Arad’s last visit to the United States, FBI agents sought to question him. Arad, who was on his way to the airport to catch a return flight to Israel, suggested the investigators accompany him on the flight and question him on board the airplane. The agents agreed and conducted the questioning in flight.

As a result, Arad’s U.S. visa was revoked and the Bush administration refused to allow him entry since 2007. That was before Bibi promoted him, before Barack Obama became president, and before the administration dropped the Aipac Two spy case. Even though visa decisions are not subject to legal challenge or standards, I’m guessing Obama figured that with no case against Rosen and Weissman, it’s decision to label Arad persona non grata was moot.

Haaretz reports that Arad’s visa has been restored and that he plans to meet with his U.S. counterpart, James Jones, in Washington to lay the groundwork for Bibi’s first meeting as prime minister with Obama in June.
What is curious is that no one has written about the restoration of Arad’s visa. Interestingly, Haaretz and Eli Lake wrote about this subject when Arad was first appointed to his post and noted how problematic his lack of ability to travel to the U.S. would be. But not a word since.
I’m guessing that the Obama folks told the Israelis that they wanted total silence on this subject. But that doesn’t bind me thank God. And I think it stinks.

If Jones had to meet with Arad, he could’ve met him in any number of foreign capitals to plan the Bibi-Obama meeting. I see no good reason why the U.S. should’ve given Arad, Bibi and the Israelis such a present. And in fact, what message does it send? That if you’re a Mossad agent and succeed in stealing secrets from our government you’ll face some slight inconveniences for a time, but that all will be forgiven; and in fact you’re likely to be promoted by your Israeli comrades and you’ll be back meeting the creme de la creme of the U.S. intelligence and political elite in no time.
Collapse )
good news everyone!
  • 7950

Republican women: A minority in a minority

Women make up almost 51 percent of the U.S. population but less than 10 percent of the House and Senate GOP — a gender disconnect that could make the Republicans’ climb back to power even steeper than it would be otherwise.

Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) notices that she’s part of a shrinking minority every time she heads to the Senate floor for a vote.

Republican women in the House say they feel the problem — literally — when their male colleagues nudge them to the front of GOP press conferences to break up the solid lines of middle-aged white men in neckties.

Collapse )