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Saturday, March 26, 2005
OPRAH UBER ALLES, or, WE GET MAIL,
or, TOMORROW'S NEWS TODAY, or
Oh, to hell with it ...
About 6 am I saw this story, scanning Google News. At about 6:21 a friend of mine sent me the actual story. (Bless you, friend).
>From the Miami Herald today.
Posted on Sat, Mar. 26, 2005
TERRI SCHIAVO CASE
Police 'showdown' averted
BY CAROL MARBIN MILLER
Hours after a judge ordered that Terri Schiavo was not to be removed from her hospice, a team of state agents were en route to seize her and have her feeding tube reinserted -- but they stopped short when local police told them they would enforce the judge's order, The Herald has learned.
Agents of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement told police in Pinellas Park, the small town where Schiavo lies at Hospice Woodside, on Thursday that they were on the way to take her to a hospital to resume her feeding.
For a brief period, local police, who have officers at the hospice to keep protesters out, prepared for what sources called ``a showdown.''
In the end, the squad from the FDLE and the Department of Children & Families backed down, apparently concerned about confronting local police outside the hospice.
''We told them that unless they had the judge with them when they came, they were not going to get in,'' said a source with the local police.
''The FDLE called to say they were en route to the scene,'' said an official with the city police who requested anonymity. ``When the sheriff's department and our department told them they could not enforce their order, they backed off.''
The incident, known only to a few and related to The Herald by three different sources involved in Thursday's events, underscores the intense emotion and murky legal terrain that the Schiavo case has created. It also shows that agencies answering directly to Gov. Jeb Bush had planned to use a wrinkle in Florida law that would have allowed them to legally get around the judge's order. The exception in the law allows public agencies to freeze a judge's order whenever an agency appeals it.
Participants in the high-stakes test of wills, who spoke with The Herald on the condition of anonymity, said they believed the standoff could ultimately have led to a constitutional crisis and a confrontation between dueling lawmen.
''There were two sets of law enforcement officers facing off, waiting for the other to blink,'' said one official with knowledge of Thursday morning's activities.
In jest, one official said local police discussed ``whether we had enough officers to hold off the National Guard.''
''It was kind of a showdown on the part of the locals and the state police,'' the official said. ''It it was not too long after that Jeb Bush was on TV saying that, evidently, he doesn't have as much authority as people think.''
Since Jebenezer, the Demagogue's brother, denies this ever happened, don't hold your breath waiting for it on TV. Fox News has gone so far as to have one of their guys call for defying the judge's order, just as gambling-addict Bill Bennet has done, and apparently this approach HAS been tried. Let's see whether one of the trigger-happy "Christian" traitors succeeds in bringing a gun to the scene. Several attempts have already been thwarted, but you never know.
And there's more at the Miami Herald website:
You have to log on to get it. Instead of registering, you can use
as the e-mail address and password requested.
Well, I watched and listened all day, but, as he predicted, no media picked up on this MUCH MORE TELLING story. Instead, they were busily morphing Michael Shiavo into Scott Peterson.
I read about this during my early morning Google News scan, and have watched in horrified disbelief as NO ONE has bothered picking up on the story!
But the echo machine continues spamming the same dumb fucking AP story across a thousand papers, with Schindler's plea to Bush to save "Terri"
(Notice how "Terri" is suddenly accorded this phony intimacy, like "Conner" the Fetus was accorded palsy-walsy status in the big murder case? Peterson ... Lacy, I seem to recall. Shows how much attention I paid.)
Another by the by: I have divined that only morons buy food.
The reading material surrounding the Safeway checkstand at noon was all moron reading material, which means that if any non-morons were buying food, they'd surely have SOMETHING for them. But they didn't.
I guess they all buy at the snooty-foody places, where Kant and Proust books stuff the checkout aisle.
And then I found this newspaper story from Tomorrow, which I sent to my friends, including the aforementioned ...
"Those of us who have long worried that unleashing religious fundamentalism into the bloodstream of American politics would lead to disaster can feel only that our fears have now come true. "
This is how the British are looking at us, and perhaps a huge chunk of the rest of the world, as well. Ever play Parcheesi? -- HW
From the SUNDAY TIMES OF LONDON
March 27, 2005
Comment: Andrew Sullivan: Terri is the dying martyr the Rebublican right can use
It was impossible to look without grief at the images of Terri Schiavo starving slowly to death in a Florida hospice. It has, alas, become impossible in America to look at such a tragic set of circumstances without hysteria.
Those of us who have long worried that unleashing religious fundamentalism into the bloodstream of American politics would lead to disaster can feel only that our fears have now come true.
Fifteen years ago Schiavo suffered a heart stoppage that was caused by her bulimia. Her brain was temporarily starved of oxygen and scans showed that her cerebral cortex had stopped functioning.
A scan shows that her brain has since shrunk massively. Her electroencephalogram reading was and is flat — she has no brain waves. She is not brain dead, but she has no ability to think, feel or communicate.
She can breathe on her own and random eye movements can give the impression of some kind of awareness. She has been kept alive by a feeding tube.
In the first years that she was in this horrifying state, her husband Michael did all he could to find treatment, going from hospital to hospital trying new therapies. Terri was sent to California to have experimental platinum electrodes implanted to get her brain going again. Michael slept next to her for five weeks. At the time he and Terri’s parents were united in doing all they could for what was left of his wife.
(read the rest by clicking on the link above)
My friend wrote back a long, despairing screed, saying in part:
"Forgive my excesses, please, Hart, including the excessive use, sometimes, of words. I think we have to preach to the choir because people like my darling little bro have more in common with Terri Schindler-Schaivo (remember how they howled when "Hitlery" retained her maiden name? Ooh, bad. But... IOKIYAR.) than with the sentient.
To which I replied ...
I understand EXACTLY where you're coming from.
I watched the evil spectacle of hell-spawn FAUX news morphing Michael Shiavo into Scott Peterson via Rita Cosby tonight. I never watch "SatanTV" but I figured that ONLY FAUX could really tear into this with all the demonic vigor of the self-damned. (Followed by Geraldo sniffing piously about "the little girl all of us have come to know and love" and the monster that killed her.
Even had the recorded transcript of his courtroom confession (replete with salacious details of how he got a 5-year-old to play with his penis) with the most Manson-esque zooming still of the "predator" and a discussion featuring, among others, "Faux News Analyst Mark Furman."
I kid you fucking not.
I heard about the Miami news story this morning at about 6 AM. I have been monitoring all the media I could on it, and ONLY a Scottish newspaper seems to have picked up on it.
As to the rest of it: I watched Rita Cosby interviewing the brother of "Terri" ( where's "Conner" in all this, I wonder), and letting him, even setting him up for the most vicious, horrible accusations.
The truly fucked part of all this is, an INSTANT of science ends the debate:
The woman's EEG is fucking FLAT, fer chrissakes. When FAUX shows too much of the videos, you can tell that she's not tracking ANYTHING with her eyes. She kind of looks at a balloon and then tracks south.
The second little piece of that horrible ol' Debbil science is this:
The CAT scan clearly reveals that her fucking BRAIN IS MUSH! The cortex is mostly fluid at this point. There AIN'T no THERE there!
But the frigging bastards in the Right Wing Echo Machine have gone into full court press on this puppy, and they literally create this wife-abusing, vegetable-causing, criminal who is trying to cover up his crime ...
HE IS HAVING HER CREMATED AND WON'T ALLOW AN AUTOPSY! (Clear evidence of guilt).
I have been listening to AIR AMERICA, and to the right wing radio kooks elsewhere, and in two DAZE, they've got the "thoughtful" women of America -- who think with something other than their fucking brains -- completely believing this horse shit. The women calling "Satellite Sisters" (neutral, more or less), calling some right wingnut named Humphries, or calling Laura Flanders are INDISTINGUISHABLE.
The Right Wing Echo Machine has done its evil work, seeping into every crevice in the collective gray matter of the Yew Essay.
I'm going to say something VERY un-PC here, but since you brought it up ...
Prohibition was the direct result of Women's Suffrage. Because the Suffrage Movement had grown out of the old Women's Christian Temperance Union (Take the Pledge!) the political payback was Prohibition. Not exactly the most stellar inauguration of exercising the franchise, sad to say.
I say this as a man whose great-Grandfather was screamed at in his saloon in Kearney, Nebraska in 1902 by Carrie Nation herself (she was "stretching her legs" from a long train trip between anti-alcohol inquisitions).
I believe that the Republicans are now targeting women, picking up on the ingrained Victorianism, pushing these NATIONAL ENQUIRER stories, and whipping up the hysteria specifically aimed at a sort of Oprah Uber Alles coup d'etat. I don't for a minute believe that they've "failed."
The protests of the war were moved to page A-17 for a solid week, and the national debate on Vietnam, Mark II vanished. DeLay is now a "Godly" fuck, and they've got these Katholiks and these Anti-Papist Klansmen joined in common cause against evil fornicators. They've cloned Mark Shiavo into Scott Peterson, and it serves their master, Beelzebub, or Dick Cheney, take your choice.
Anyway: the complicit media haven't bothered doing ANYTHING other than doing what is ordered of them, and this wretched orgy of "piousness" continues over Easter weekend, in a sort of "Passion of The Abused Wife" ignoring three incredibly important stories:
1. Worldwide protests over the war. 100,000 at least in London, and in every major and most minor American cities.
2. The fact that if, as the OPEC minister said, US refining capacity is now driving the price of oil, and we lost one refinery, we may have just given Al Qaeda a perfect bead on how to bring down the US economy by attacking indefensible targets.
3. The horrific conditions on most American Indian reservations, and the unemployment, poverty and despair that persists, as the Native Americans remain the MOST disenfranchised group of all Americans.
Oh, by the by, they still are deciding on whether to go after the kid for being a Goth, or for being on Prozac: clothing or drugs, that's the only issue here. Nothing else fits into the "People" magazine have a nice day mentality.
Catch the cover of Newsweek this week, BTW?
"How Christianity became Christianity," with an Old Masters Jesus emoting "passionately" on the cover.
I'm looking forward to "Renaissance: Fad or Revolution?" "The Reformation: What's Luther's Problem, Anyway?" and, "The Enlightenment after Robespierre: Can it Survive?"
Jesus. The Stupid Ray has GOT to be kicked up to full power.
bests (note my new default sig),
"Those of us who have long worried that unleashing religious
fundamentalism into the bloodstream of American politics
would lead to disaster can feel only that our fears have now
-- The Sunday Times of London 3-27-05
Stupid ray kicking in reel hard now. Have to go beat head against wall.
PS: A friend wrote me that he wanted to link to my "AMERICAN CENTURY PART I" but didn't want people reading about fucking teenagers, so I've done a "Virtual Reprint" -- you can link to it at: http://www.hartwilliams.com/tr.htm
NOW I go beat head against wall.
Friday, March 25, 2005
LATEST TERRY SCHIAVO IMAGES!
A Skiing Uphill EXCLUSIVE!!
Thursday, March 24, 2005
or, THE AMERICAN CENTURY, Part II
It's nice to see that the so-called "progressives" of our time are every bit as insane as their "faith based" lunatic nemeses of the NeoCon Right.
For the past several weeks, the lunatic left, the "local activists" have been chewing the carpet over a bill just passed in the Oregon House to require fluoridation of water in cities with a population of 10,000 and more. I grew up with fluoridation, and my cavity history speaks of its efficacy. But I remember the railings of the far Right back then, about "polluting our precious bodily fluids" now eerily mirrored by the 'green' Left.
Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose.
But let's leave aside the fluoridation debate and keep the precious bodily fluids in the scope. One of Alexander Cockburn's self-righteous contrarians, a holier-than-thou smear artist named Michael Donnelly has now weighed in for the umpteenth time on the derailing of former Democratic congressman Les AuCoin's nomination to the state timber board. Quoth Donnelly (from CounterPunch):
"One Courageous Senator Held the LineI don't intend to go into the AuCoin nomination here. What is important is the continuing prudery, the Victorian disgust with sexuality that Donnelly mindlessly ejaculates as the "obvious" reason for disqualifying AuCoin, just as Walker spewed her venom at Goldschmidt.
So, noting that the hyperlink takes you to the disgusting display of Willamette Week's bluenose "scoop" on the 25-year-old affair between ex-Governor Neil Goldschmidt and his then-14-year-old baby-sitter (that continued until she was 17, it should be noted), we move into the terra incognita of asking: what is wrong with this country in its insane Victorian prurience, its bluenosing character assassination, and the ease with which a consensual sexual relationship with a biological ADULT female so easily becomes 'child rape.'
This is cheap prudery. From 'Teaching Sex' by Jeffrey P. Moran (Harvard University Press, 2000):
Prudery, as a sex educator noted, "regards sex as unclean and perhaps loathsome, and the sex relationship as a purely physical one." He continued, "It is this attitude which is in part responsible for the prevalence of prostitution, for this is exactly the phase of the sex life which prostitution represents . . . It represents a complete failure to appreciate the spiritual side of sex." Victorian prudes, according to these activists, shared with prostitutes and pornographers a vulgar view of sex. Even the purity activists had given the impression that sex was always "something shameful and even sinful," so social hygienists found it natural that young men and women would accordingly treat their sexual endowment with contempt.This is really the crux of this whole, sick, sad episode. This has nothing to do with Goldschmidt. It has to do with political assassination in the press of perceived enemies. Vicki Walker, as I have noted again and again (including in today's Register-Guard) has a problem with Goldschmidt that taints anyone remotely connected with him. It is based on her own, twisted sexuality, as her entire career has been tainted by this sick prudery.
Donnelly echoes this, presuming that Goldschmidt should be painted as a "child rapist" and, therefore, beneath discussion. A demon. An object of disgust and derision. As WILLAMETTE WEEK excoriated the OREGONIAN for terming the liason an "affair."
You know what, kiddies? It WAS an affair.
Sorry to upset the apple cart, but this sick, depraved, twisted sexual sickness has got to stop. From two reporters for the PORTLAND TRIBUNE conspiring with a MOST unjournalistic lack of integrity to bring down Goldschmidt, and collaborating behind the scenes with Walker to do it, to CounterPunch mudslinger (as opposed to muckraker) Donnelly smearing the perceived shit from Goldschmidt onto AuCoin's face in print, this is disgusting; it is a witch hunt gone mad; it is Victorian prudery unleashed at the selfsame time that we decry the "lunacy" of the Right-To-Life crazies running roughshod over the Constitution to enshrine THEIR prudery about death in law and practice.
Where is the moderate or sane observer to find safe haven?
When the "Progressives" are as insanely agents of a sexual Inquisition as the "Right Wingers" are, what remains?
Let's backtrack a little. Rewind a century to 1904. Sherman, set the wayback. (And let's follow Moran's exceptional book along):
At the dawn of the twentieth century, a sixty year-old man invented adolescence. After decades of vocational uncertainty and then years of frenetic research in child study, philosophy, psychology, and the social sciences, G. Stanley Hall, a psychologist and president of Clark University, published in 1904 a two-volume work devoted to the special situation and needs of young people who had reached puberty but were still too young to marry. Only with the publication of Adolescence, Hall's masterpiece of research and creative interpretation, did Americans begin to speak of that new category of being, the Adolescent.Now, you might ask, how does this relate to our own Oregon home-grown sexual hystericals? The association of adolescence with the most insane Victorian taboos is present from its inception. Prior to this, secondary sexual characteristics, e.g. biological sexual maturity was always considered to BE sexual maturity. With the advent of adolescence as a concept -- albeit an initially TWISTED concept -- society created the modern gray area which is codified as "Statutory Rape." (Sex with a child, it should be noted, has ALWAYS been against the law, going back to the Middle Ages. Casually throwing around the term "child rape" is, therefore, an astonishingly ugly and vicious slur.).
What is statutory rape? It is consensual sexual relations between an "adult" and a sexually mature individual below the arbitrary "age of consent" set by generally middle-aged and viciously prudish state legislators. This varies from state to state. In 1974, when the "affair" between Goldschmidt and his baby-sitter began, one might recall that sexuality was viewed much more casually, and casual sex was all but rampant, since penicillin had eradicated sexual diseases, the Pill and other contraception had all but eradicated unwanted pregnancies, and abortion on demand was readily available if contraceptives or prudence failed.
Thus, the taboos of millennia had fallen in the face of an utter lack of consequences.
So we need to be careful about adjudging what happened based on 2004 morality -- as if the term were not automatically ironic, given the uses that this low Victorian prudery has been put to.
I have never trusted self-righteousness. The acrid stench of self-righteousness has proven -- time and time again -- the precursor to the ugliest episodes in human history. In this case, the desire to utterly destroy a political opponent -- first by Walker, and now by Donnelly -- has verged into the hysterical, and I am ashamed to live in a state in which no one, NO ONE, is willing to stand up and say: this is wrong.
Let's talk about fucking 14-year olds.
I've been around the block. I worked in porn in Hollywood in the 1970s and 1980s, and I've slept with more than a few women, who have related their sexual histories to me, in the land of afterward.
And one thing I can tell you about the generation that came of age in the 1970s and 1980s is that in Southern California, for instance, I was hard-pressed to meet any woman who had NOT lost her virginity at the age of 13.
Often, the woman in question had chosen to lose it to an older man, and gleefully recounted how SHE had controlled and initiated the encounter.
I knew a woman who told me, at length, the history of her seduction of her junior high school gym teacher. She had coolly initiated the affair in high school, initially as a way of "getting even" with all the little cheerleader types who continually gushed over the gym teacher. She never told them, but always glowed with satisfaction, thinking "I have him and you never did."
She installed herself in the teacher's home as his "babysitter." The affair lasted for nearly five years, broken off, finally, when she became ultimately bored with him. There was always a shocking lack of caring about the consequences on her part. She was vaguely aware that she could destroy his career, marriage and life at any time. But she also knew that she could also always claim that HE was the initiator, and no one would ever question her. She would be exonerated as the blameless "victim," and she admitted that she always knew it.
This sense of power was part of the attraction and delight she took in what was, to her, her "conquest."
So, here was a 14-year-old babysitter who Vicki Walker and Michael Donnelly, who WILLAMETTE WEEK, and all the cheap prudes in Oregon would claim was a 'raped child.'
Au fucking contraire.
By the by, that teacher-seductress wasn't some hardened porn actress. To meet her, you'd swear that she was the daintiest, quietest, sweetest little Sunday school teacher you ever met. But you'd be astonishingly wrong: that woman knew tricks that no porn queen ever dreamed of. So beware of appearances.
I have heard many similar stories, and I know my human history well enough to know that these are more the rule than the exception.
But we have that twisted hangover of Victorian morality that still lies embedded in the birth of the "adolescent" at the turn of the last century. And the courts, the newspapers, and the politicians -- who have always, prior to this blighted era, recognized that a code of hypocrisy MUST be included in a definition of "normal" and "moral" behavior, because "normal" and "moral" don't exist in any great degree -- now pretend that our arbitrary and absurd definition of "normal" IS, in fact, the rule.
I can only presume that they haven't bothered living around real people.
Because, any real time spent among "normal" folks will curl the hairs of the prude, and shock the soul of the moralist. People are a lot worse than you'd like to think, and, could we face facts, we would make laws for the way that people are, and not how we wish they could be.
Perhaps this is understandable in the politician, who are usually sheltered "goody-goody"s, without the slightest hint of how actual humans live: smug prigs who have never had the imagination to sin, let alone the courage to try.
We ALL have skeletons in our closets, and we know, from public statements, that Vicki Walker has more skeletons than most: a druggie, a victim of unsolicited childhood incest (or at least that is her self-serving claim), by some accounts, quite the promiscuous young lady before pulling the Traci Lords/Linda Lovelace reversal and becoming a "pillar of morality."
And who knows about Donnelly? About WILLAMETTE WEEK? About Jim Redden and Phil Stanford at the PORTLAND TRIBUNE who worked on this story until they couldn't crack it any more, and passed it off to Walker, to hand it to WW? Who knows what twisted lives and motivations underlie their smug self-righteousness?
But even Walker's incest is a trivial matter. As time went on, and I met more and more women who were willing to be intimate with me, verbally, at least, (and babies, when you've heard 20 or 30 porn actresses' backstories, you've heard an earful!) and I learned that the secretaries, and the file clerks, and the former cheerleaders were carrying dark secrets that were JUST as crazy as the porn starlets' -- and sometimes even more so -- you learn that incest is FAR more prevalent than anyone would like to believe, and that, even worse, quite a few of them LIKED it.
There you have it.
Vicki is no aberration. In fact, I don't doubt that an awful lot of women snicker at her behind her back, because she sets herself up as the "crusader" for reforming sexual practice that she little comprehends, nor understands. Right now, appropriately enough, she is crusading against a Salem junior high school band teacher who had sex with some of his students.
No one asks WHY the student who turned him in did so. Perhaps, like Goldschmidt's babysitter, she tried to shake the teacher down. In Goldschmidt's case, the woman got jobs, got favors, and finally helped herself to a $200,000 settlement of "hush money" years later.
It was the settlement that provided the clue that Walker/WW/the Trib, et al, were able to use to destroy the man.
But Walker can't personally cut the band teacher's balls off. He's off to state prison. No: she wants to go after anyone who MIGHT have had any knowledge of the teacher's extracurricular activities (and of course, if you're fucking your teenage students, you don't attempt to hide it for fear of your very existence) and to increase criminal penalties for anyone NOT already complying with mandatory laws to turn any and all suspects in immediately TO THE PROPER AUTHORITIES.
You know, like Vicki "Psycho Mom" Walker. Right?
It was this shrill self-righteousness that produced the backlash of the Radical Right (who are now even less tolerant than the PC Nazis of the 70s and 80s were, and they were intolerant even of the way you used pronouns -- "person" not "man," "black" not "Negro" then "person of color," and "Hispanic" not "Mexican" then "Latino" which is interesting, since virtually NO latinos speak a whit of Latin, etc. etc.). And it is this shrill self-righteousness, this witch-hunt mentality, these gestapo tactics (you are REQUIRED to turn people in) that are destroying this country, whether it be from the left or the right.
And if Michael Donnelly called Les AuCoin a "nigger" or a "jew" rather than a "Timber Toad" (as in a prior column) or a "child rapist sympathizer" the Pee-Cee stormtroopers would string him up by his admittedly unimpressive testicles to the nearest telephone pole.
That's just the way it goes in Amerika these daze. (sic and sic-er).
But there's nothing that gets these shrill Comstocks, these Puritan witch-burners up in arms more than sex.
They positively revel in it. It touches their sickest fantasies and their deepest core. Vicki Walker must have speculated on what went on a million times. It never seemed to bother her or Willamette Week that they were invading the "victim"s privacy. Or that she didn't want to talk about it -- except for the several times over the years that she'd bragged about the affair.
If someone rapes you, you don't brag about WHO it was who raped you. (Unless, of course, you're Vicki Walker. But that's more in the line of "boasting" -- which is intended to impress people with oneself, which it seems to have done quite nicely as regards reporters in this blighted state)
On the other hand, one doesn't generally take glee in the downfall of a rival, or someone with whom one disagrees, and paint anyone having anything to DO with that rival as equally culpable.
Why to read Donnelly and Walker, one would think that Les AuCoin held the girl down while Goldschmidt spread her silky teenage thighs and slipped his erect cock between the glistening folds of her throbbing, lobster-red, engorged labia.
(Well, that's what everyone's ACTUALLY, secretly picturing in all of this, isn't it? There is always an element of secret titillation in the Bluenose, the Prude, the Moralist in High Dudgeon, after all.)
Since when is it kosher to condemn a man for refusing to abandon a friend? And when is it all right to presume, merely by his association with a man whose secret we have no reason to presume that his friend knew, that the "tainted" friend is, therefore unworthy of holding the slightest trust, by virtue of his association with the "criminal"? We don't even hold the friends of serial killers to that standard.
But this is a witch-hunt, after all. And the courage to stand by your friends in a sexual scandal taints your ability to see the forest for the trees, evidently.
I guess it's some kind of pun on wood and having a "woody."
That's as best as I can figure it.
[By the 1920s] While sex educators had previously found the innate purity of girls to be their most reliable ally against sexual misconduct -indeed, they had occasionally feared that feminine purity would hypertrophy into a sterile prudery-now observers found young women everywhere eager to cast off this moral burden, to shock, to misbehave just like the boys. [ibid.]The worst of this is the hidden Victorianism in all of this. We love to pretend that since we tossed Mary Kay LeTournier in prison for having had sex with a 13-year-old boy (to whom she is now engaged, BTW), that we have adopted an "equal" treatment principle. This is sheerest horseshit.
In fact, what's actually at work here is still the old Victorian double standard that women are innately pure (coupled with the false sobriquet "child" in the Goldschmidt Affair) and that LeTournier was merely acting as the "man" in the relationship.
It is never admitted that the teenager involved might have desired the relationship. And it is always presumed by psycho-logists (sic) whose discipline, one notes, is only as old as the Victorian coinage of "adolescent" that "irremediable" psychological damage will result from teenagers having had sex with AN OLDER PERSON.
One would have to conclude, then, that having sex with an inexperienced peer would be even MORE devastating psychologically, but 13-year-old girls have been having sex since the dawn of time, without discernable psychic scarring.
Of course, if that underage sex permanently scars you, screws you up and wrecks your mind and emotions, then why on Earth is Vicki Walker in any sort of position of authority? This is reminiscent of an argument made against Anthony Comstock: that if looking at porn twisted and ruined your mind, then Comstock, as Chief Anti-Vice Officer, had seen MORE porn than anyone alive, and ought to be, therefore, the most twisted man alive. (I sure as hell wouldn't argue with that!)
To pretend that the arbitrary "age of consent" cutoff line is THE EXACT SAME THING as the actual biological maturation age -- viz. the age at which sexual relations are possible in the complete sense: ovum, sperm, erection, lubrication -- is sheer specious fallacy. In fact: When human law meets human instinct, human law loses. EVERY time.
And remember: the ACTUAL maturity comes with rather strong hormonal imperatives TO have sex, else the species would not reproduce itself. It is in our desperate struggle to come to accommodate these overwhelming instinctual urges that the entire history of Civilization is writ. Think of how different, for example, all European history might have been, had Henry VIII been able to keep his pecker in his pantaloons. Or that Camelot need not have fallen, had Guinevere and Lancelot not been overwhelmed by hormones.
That's why we've always had a code of hypocrisy. It's the ONLY way for the law to save face: we "look the other way." Otherwise, the law would be an ever greater laughingstock than it already is.
But the implicit idea is still: boys sinful. Girls pure and chaste.
[We still see it in the commercials (teach your son how to treat women) and the domestic violence pronouncements (men are beasts, women are blameless angels) and in the basic presumptions regarding men and women: women are still the "fair" sex, the "better half," and the rest of it. How many times have you heard the old saw that if women ran the world, there wouldn't be any wars? ]
That's utter bullshit, and you know better. So why is this Victorian madness, this monstrous prudery that destroys lives and careers, this vicious "moral" behavior that ravages lives still in vogue?
Because it allows us to murder our enemies and claim that God was on our side while we did it.
And you know what?
That's wrong, too.
Now, don't get the idea that I'm advocating having sex with teenagers. I am most assuredly NOT. I have had sex with them (when I was one) and I can state categorically that teenage girls are the worst lays in the world, and no one with the slightest appreciation of sex ought to sully their palate with such cheap junk food.
On the other hand, having sex with someone below the age of consent (which was, at the time, 14 in many states and countries, so don't presume that Goldschmidt did anything intrinsically wrong. Technically, yes. Intrinsically: no) gives an immature person the ability to destroy your life, which means that THEY OWN YOU.
Goldschmidt's paramour realized this, years later, when she shook him down for a couple hundred thousand dollars to keep her mouth shut (she didn't).
No: fucking teenagers is bad policy, and I categorically submit that you shouldn't fuck anyone who isn't in their 20s at least -- ESPECIALLY if you're a teenager.
What I AM saying is that you're not going to stop it, and dragging up a 25-year-old private episode that both parties seem to have come to mutual and private accommodation on is the height on invasion of privacy.
It is a form of rape, far more debilitating than the literal type. And Donnelly, Walker, Willamette Week, Redden and Stanford are the rapists.
So, let's be clear on what the real morality is here, and stop using the phony morality to destroy lives.
Vicki Walker is a monster. Michael Donnelly is a libelous vermin. The rest of them are beneath contempt, and I am going to try and move on.
If I went any further, I'd have to speculate on what THEY masturbate to, and those are images I'd rather avoid before supper: They are assured to produce nausea, whatever they are.
"Thus, despite their desire to teach abstinence only because it is right morally, conservative educators harked back to the earliest sex hygienists, who could not resist pointing out that God had conveniently arranged life so that morality and hygiene were indistinguishible. [ibid. on "Abstinence-Only" sex education in the present.]Heaven save us from those who would make us more "moral."
But fluoridation IS good for your teeth.
Wednesday, March 23, 2005
THE AMERICAN CENTURY
With the ascendance of Teddy Roosevelt after the assassination of William McKinley, TR established the United States as an incipient world power, and used the megaphone of the presidency as -- in his words -- the "bully pulpit." "Bully" was a favorite word of TR's. In his lexicon, it meant, "groovy," or "far out." It was an exclamation indicating the superlative.
Fast forward to 2000, as George W. Bush. "King George" ascended, following the character and legal assassination of President-Elect Gore. King George never used the term, but his use of the "Bully Pulpit" took on an entirely different -- and increasingly ominous -- cast, based on the quite different, and more conventional interpretation of the term "bully."
What had happened in between?
Well, we do know that the aliens began the heavy bombardment of the United States sometime in the early 1990s, using their newly developed "P'kelamithug" ray. Cryptological analysis of the alien tongue has been able to decipher this term as meaning, roughly, the "Stupid Ray."
Its effects on the American populace were subtle and yet devastating. An entire generation ceased to learn anything about civics, government, or the "rule of law" basis of our system.
Too many stupid books were bad anyway. Maybe it was good thing.
Fed on a steady diet of ever-stupider films (that, ironically, ennobled and enshrined the lone vigilante approach to problem-solving even as the various individual rights and abilities of citizens to act of their own volition was increasingly curtailed) Americans began to swagger more and empathize less. This was the result of a creeping anti-Enlightenment, as even science began to retreat, with Evolution suddenly under attack from pro-campfire-stories-of-creation flatheads. Unfortunately, in a Democracy, a majority of flatheads sets the agenda, and in places as lacking in diversity as Kansas, science was rolled back to a pre-Gutenberg level.
(Not Project Gutenberg -- the collective effort to put the classic books of human history on the internet in a text form; no, I mean Gutenberg the guy what made the moving type pressing ink down thing.)
The stupid ray was, we now know, being slowly ratcheted up. By 2000, a profoundly dyslexic anti-intellectual was installed in the White House, and a series of TV pageants was staged, increasingly insisting that the White House performer be kept away from reporters and non-hand-picked citizens.
Again, the stupid ray was toggled up, and so no one bothered questioning WHY, for the first time in the history of the country, the president was utterly inaccessible to any and all citizens. During the campaign of 2004, political loyalty oaths and background checks (in the form of "do not allow to enter" lists) were used to increasingly insulate the president from carefully selected crowds and TV cameras.
Stupid protesters. Protesters just making trouble.
As the collective cerebral cortex, (or the aggregate of cerebral cortices, take your pick) was affected by the stupefying effects of the alien ray, the reptile brain returned, increasingly, to ascendancy over the weak-minded mammal brain.
And the bullies began to run things, as they had throughout the Ice Ages and through most of human history. Was this a bad thing?
Bullies got us where we are. Where we are is good. We have TV. TV is good.
WHY the aliens are bombarding us with this deadly ray was nearly unraveled, but, alas, the research team at Sandia Laboratories were insidiously affected, and slaughtered each other in a tragic argument over the last jelly donut in the breakfast bin. Now, no one remains who can decipher their notes, and it looks like we're in for a massive redux of the movie "Charly," for which Cliff Robertson won a best actor Oscar many years ago.
But bullies is good. Weak humans must die. Them what attacked us is bad, and we bigger dominant apes than they.
Kill them. Kill them all.
God put president in office. He boss by divine right. Right make might and we kill them Al Qaedas. Kill them good.
What I talking about? Oh yas. Talking about aliens. We kill aliens when they come down. First we kill Al Qaedas, though. Kill them all. Kill them good.
Kill weak humans, like liberals. Liberals bad. Bad like Al Qaedas.
As the cerebral cortex was taken over, atavistic urges began to rule all aspects of American life. News and analysis fell to abysmally stupid and compliant levels, and logic and reason were replaced, more and more, by emotional arguments and celebrity trials. American discourse fell from a "National Geographic" mentality to a more "People Magazine" sort of literacy.
Food good. Food make brave warrior strong. Brave warrior kill many enemy Al Qaedas.
Have to eat now.
Tuesday, March 22, 2005
PRESENTED ALMOST WITHOUT COMMENT, or
READ 'EM & WEEP
GOP Talking Points on Terri Schiavo (from the ABC News website)
Memo, Obtained by ABC News, Was Circulated Among Senate Republicans
Mar. 21, 2005 - The following memo listing talking points on the Terri Schiavo case was circulated among Republican senators on the floor of the Senate.
This is an exact, full copy of the document obtained exclusively by ABC News and first reported Friday, March 18, 2005, by Linda Douglass on "World News Tonight with Peter Jennings."
S. 529, The Incapacitated Person's Legal Protection Act
Nice to see that the Republican leadership provides substantive employment to illiterates:
I thought that was the prerequisite for leadership in the Republican caucus.
(With Southern drawl, of course.)
Monday, March 21, 2005
FRUITS: NO! VEGETABLES, YES!Remember what I was saying yesterday about governance and priorities? Well, what with the veterans, head start, schoolkids, roads, bridges and the US economy NOT being GOP priorities, guess what IS???
This has nothing to do with Terri Shiavo.
This weekend, there were protests all over the world about the Iraq invasion's second anniversary. This was (like another terrorist alert) an easy way of shoving the protests (100K in London, etc. etc.) to page A-17 because of a PR circus.
In other words, look at what and who this serves: Tom Delay gets cover from his ethics scandal.
The Administration gets cover from their SLEW of scandals. And a permanently brain-damaged woman is cynically exploited for political gain, as a compliant media falls into lock step arguing over what is, sad to say, a triviality.
This is the old "bomb shelter" argument: no real application to anyone's real lives, except for a Florida family's dispute over a functional corpse.
But the POLITICAL distraction, the sleight-of-hand is priceless. Don't get sucked in. Pay attention to the mentally competent kids being killed in Iraq. And to the Iraqi civilians being killed who don't seem to count as human beings at all.
At least the Australian newspaper, THE AGE, got it right (the US media, as usual, is AWOL):
In a related story, Chief Justice William Rehnquist returned to the Supreme Court today. His feeding tube IS in place, and observers reported that his face contorted into various expressions that some interpreted as being indicative of higher cognitive functioning.
Other observers vehemently disagreed.
(nota bene: the legally brain-dead are denoted in BOLDFACE RED.)
Sunday, March 20, 2005
The Vernal Equinox is exact at 4:34 AM, Pacific Standard time.
If you were looking for some balance, now's the time!
Mercury just went retrograde for 26 days, of course, but Saturn goes direct (out of retrograde) on Tuesday, so you win some, and you lose some.
or, National Take A Vegetable to Lunch Day!
A lot of governance lies in setting priorities.
One priority might be the 100,000 civilians we've slaughtered in Iraq to "let freedom ring" and relieve them of Saddam Hussein -- whom, one might note, is still alive, and might well escape to return to power.
Another priority might be in serving the families of the 1500 Americans needlessly sacrificed to this senseless war.
Yet another priority might be to the veterans of that war, whose benefits and medical care are being heartlessly sacrificed in the name of reducing the deficit produced by the selfsame war, and the tax cuts for the richest Americans that are rapidly driving this nation into bankruptcy -- a bankruptcy that we can no longer declare, thanks to the credit card/banking industry and their lobbying on behalf of 30 and 40 percent interest rates.
But luckily, these priorities pale in comparison to the need to launch a national crusade on behalf of a vegetable.
MIAMI, March 18 (Reuters) - An effort by U.S. lawmakers to prolong the life of a brain-damaged Florida woman provoked furious rhetoric from legislators, lawyers and advocates on all sides of the controversial right-to-die issue.Just so that you know, Terry Shiavo collapsed in February of 1990, her heart stopped, and the blood supply to her brain was interrupted long enough to render her a vegetable.
Since I'm a Tibetan Buddhist, I'll give you MY take on her situation: A conscious entity has been trapped in a useless body and a permanently useless brain. For the past 15 years. This is called "compassion" and "pro-life."
Her husband, sensibly, would like her to move on.
Her parents, insanely wedded to the illusion of her body, insist that its existence be prolonged, and that her horrific torture continue. They have supplied videos of her smiling. This, evidently, means that their hateful and hideous "God" has bestowed the "gift" of life on her, and she should continue to exist organically at a level somewhere south of amoeba and north of rutabaga.
So, Demagogues for the Ethical Treatment of Vegetables (DETOV) has thrust her case to center stage.
Only a cynic would presume to wonder why the Ethically Challenged former bug-killer Terri-ble Tommy DeLay should choose to present himself as the champion of Florida Vegetables. Perhaps his Sugarland, Texas experience has shown him, first hand, the terrible ravages that Boll Weevils can inflict on defenseless plant life. Or, perhaps, he wants cover from his potentially indictable offenses, his utter lack of scruples and his blatant disregard for even the appearance of propriety.
No, DETOV has subpoenaed Schiavo to testify -- some would argue as a tactic to delay her disconnection from life support. Others might suggest that Congress -- who doesn't seem to have any problem with approving and anointing utter incompetents to positions of grave authority-- has no hidden agenda whatsoever. I mean, Condi Rice is in no wise even remotely qualified to act as Secretary of State. Alberto Gonzales is not qualified as Attorney General; Wolfowitz is not qualified to head the world bank, etc. Heck, Bush's federal judge picks are SO lousy that one isn't even a practicing attorney, having allowed his bar membership to lapse in D.C. before moving to Utah, where he is Counsel to BYU, while not licensed to practice law in any state in the Union.
[Any reflections on the tight-assed BYU Administration's anal "respect" for rules when they're convenient and blissful ignorance when they're INconvenient are entirely the supposition of the reader and certainly beyond the parameters of this innocent, harmless little essay.]
So, perhaps the expert testimony of a brain-dead vegetable wouldn't faze this gaggle of morons. After all, the entire Bush presidency is predicated on the supposition that ANY moron can do any job in government. We can all see how successful this philosophy has been, given its results.
Luckily, the judge in the case has extended his middle finger to congress, the Senate has refused to remain in session over this "crisis" and the Supreme Court wants no part of it. So, DeLay and his minions can only importune, impotently. (Surely they wouldn't be exploiting a human tragedy for political gain, would they? Would they?)
"By their fruits ye shall know them," the Good Book tells us, although in this case, "by the fruits that they hate, ye shall know them," might be more to the point.
So, to me, poor Ms. Schaivo OUGHT to be accorded the opportunity to be freed of her fleshy prison, to incarnate in a new, working brain and body, and to move on. Imagine being utterly paralyzed, unable to do other than observe for 15 years because your parents didn't want to see you "die."
ANYthing would be better than that.
Sadly, our civilization exists in such a state of barbarism that, rather than the compassionate euthanasia that I can guarantee the entity known as Terry Schiavo would beg for, had she voice to beg, the only thing that "modern" medicine can offer is to allow her to starve to death, by removing her feeding tube.
Thank goodness we've got our priorities in order. Just think how horrific it'd be had we not.
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