Archive for April 21st, 2009

21
Apr
09

Jesus, Cheney And Gingrich, It Was A Handshake, Not A Handjob!

Egads, the right’s just going ape-shit nutbar over Obama daring to shake hands with Hugo Chavez. First, of course, Cheney had to shit all over it:

Former Vice President Dick Cheney told Fox News Channel’s Sean Hannity that President Obama’s handshake with Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez “was not helpful” and could lead “foes” of the U.S. to “think they’re dealing with a weak president.”

Since it rhymes so nice, Newt followed suit:

Appearing on Fox News Channel’s “Fox & Friends,” Gingrich said: “This does look a lot like Jimmy Carter. Carter tried weakness and the world got tougher and tougher because the predators, the aggressors, the anti-Americans, the dictators, when they sense weakness, they all start pushing ahead.”

First of all, Hugo Chavez is a small man with a small man complex. Treating him like he’s a Castro is exactly what he wants. Treating him like a man so insignificant that passive civility is his due…well, suffice to say he’d rather be thought of as a villain by us.

Secondly, these claims about strengthening foreign resolve against us by using diplomacy? And you want to use the visage of Carter as a boogeyman in that regard? Let’s take a look at Carter’s record, mkay?

President Carter established diplomatic relations with the People’s Republic of China and made good on a long-standing American promise to return control of the Panama Canal to the Panamanians. After negotiating the necessary treaties with Panama, Carter prevailed in an exceptionally contentious ratification fight in the Senate.

The outstanding achievement of the Carter presidency was the peace settlement between Israel and Egypt…

Since leaving the White House, Jimmy Carter’s personal diplomacy has helped to defuse international crises in hot spots from North Korea to Haiti. In 2002, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts…

And Cheney’s policies of torture and otherworldly a-hole behavior?

The crisis in Iraq, coupled with radical shifts in U.S. policy in the Middle East and elsewhere, gave extremists a new focus, allowing radical groups to widen their appeal among Muslims and others…The world today is clearly a more dangerous place than it was on September 10, 2001, or last year before the invasion of Iraq. This is true for Americans. But it is equally true for Spaniards, Indonesians, and most especially, Iraqis. (This whole article is really thorough and an excellent read.)

The point is: Jesus Christ, kids, settle the fuck down arready.

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21
Apr
09

Dubya And Clinton To Face Off! (Kinda)

Oooh, a fake debate between George W. Bush and Bill Clinton is happening in Canada soon (since Bush is reasonably certain he won’t be arrested on sight in that country, at least)!

Former U.S. presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush will appear together in Toronto next month on a public stage for the first time since Mr. Bush ended his presidency, in a remarkable twist on the cultural cold war that Barack Obama and others are trying to lay to rest. The two will be appearing at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre on May 29 for a moderated [conversation]…

Audiences hoping to witness the two men tearing at each other verbally will be disappointed. Presidents do not attack presidents, at least not directly, if only because only presidents know what other presidents go through.

Oh, Canadians are just so polite. Yes, it’s true that presidents don’t usually attack other presidents. Who knows? Maybe they’re right about this. Still, I’d like to think that the memory of impeachment hearings over a blow job are memorable for a president, as is the image of his successor getting away with domestic spying, torture, and outing a C.I.A. agent. And, if there’s one thing we learned from his wife’s campaign, ol’ Billy Boy is pretty easily riled.

If nothing else, the passive-aggressive flaunting of far superior intellect that Clinton is absolutely guaranteed to demonstrate is worth the price of admission.

21
Apr
09

Yay! I Can Heart Rahm Emanuel Again!

Boy, Rahm-bo, you really had me scared for a minute. I watched you tell your buddy, Snuffleupagus or whatever his name is, that you didn’t think investigation or prosecution of Bush officials would be necessary or beneficial to a country yearning to move forward. GAH!!! Nooooooo…How is my bed-wetting liberal self supposed to continue my heretofore seat-wetting crush on you???

Ah, now I see. Thanks, NY Times for the clarification!

On Sunday, Rahm Emanuel, the White House chief of staff, said on the ABC News program “This Week” that “those who devised policy” also “should not be prosecuted.” But administration officials said Monday that Mr. Emanuel had meant the officials who ordered the policies carried out, not the lawyers who provided the legal rationale.

Three Bush administration lawyers who signed memos, John C. Yoo, Jay S. Bybee and Steven G. Bradbury, are the subjects of a coming report by the Justice Department’s ethics office that officials say is sharply critical of their work. The ethics office has the power to recommend disbarment or other professional penalties or, less likely, to refer cases for criminal prosecution.

The administration has also not ruled out prosecuting anyone who exceeded the legal guidelines, and officials have discussed appointing a special prosecutor. One option might be giving the job to John H. Durham, a federal prosecutor who has spent 15 months investigating the C.I.A.’s destruction of videotapes of harsh interrogations.

Now if only we can learn that Obama’s infuriating desire to continue the Bush policy regarding Bagram is really just a way to rendition these motherfuckers to the hell they created.

21
Apr
09

Occam’s Razor, Fugue-ish Feeding, And Why I Love Dissent

Suffice to say, I have just had it with all kinds of medical practitioners. Midwives, nurses, doctors, and specialists…I’ve been awash for the last month in all their sage wisdom.

“Your daughter needs to eat more carbohydrates. She must have potatoes during every meal and desserts after. And, no, rice and beans don’t count as carbohydrates.” “Your daughter needs a tube in her ear to prevent ear infections.” “Her ears are fine.” “She has thrush, which could signal an autoimmune deficiency.” “She absolutely does not have thrush, and she’s perfectly healthy.”

This has all put me in the mindset of Dr. House, especially as I keep repeating the same medical history to each so-called “specialist.” So here’s the mystery we’re trying to solve:

My baby’s spent the first 7 months of her life in the 10-25% of weight, and the 50-75% height. When she started at daycare, she was upset. Really upset. Like, hunger strike upset. She refused all nourishment all day, and any given to her was promptly vomited back up. When I would pick her up, she would only accept breast milk, since she was looking for comfort. This went on till her first birthday, and still does to some extent (she will throw up any breakfast she eats upon entry through the door). It has, up till now, taken a month straight of visits to specialists to explain to her doctors, then, why she has dropped to the 3% in weight and 10% in height (or lower).

Also, they can’t figure out how she keeps catching ear infections.

Egads, man, when did the simplest answer to something become so goddamned elusive? I couldn’t understand this until listening yesterday to the latest “specialist” in baby care, but now I think I get it: They cannot tolerate variations on a theme.

The doctor was pounding me with rapid-fire questions for a half an hour, trying to get me to give her an example of my baby’s daily diet. Thing is, she doesn’t have a set schedule, and her tastes change daily. The doctor could not compute this, and got more and more agitated until she started barking orders at me, telling me EXACTLY what she had to eat and when. Why does my baby have to eat cereal for breakfast and not rice and beans, if she so desires? I got no answer. She did, however, go on to tell me my daughter was likely vitamin deficient, or otherwise malnourished, without a single test result to look at…just because she was confounded by a baby who ate what she wanted when she was hungry.

My husband and I have always been against excessive schedule-making when it comes to parenting, but never have I been more against it than I am now. I used to just think it was healthier for a child to be able to be flexible as far as nap times and meal times go (especially since we are public transportation junkies), but now I think it’s healthier for society in general. This is part of a larger parenting quibble we have with traditional parenting mores: “Because I said so” is a ridiculous answer to any question.

The progressive dumbing-down of societies (all this happened in Spain, but it could be anywhere) is becoming so rampant, it’s starting to terrify me, and I just see this manner of illogically foisting rules on people over whom you have authority as a highly contributive factor. Why not encourage a child (or patient) to know the reason he does what he does, or doesn’t do what he doesn’t do? Kids actually like information (hence the ubiquitous question, “Why?”), and sometimes light-hearted reasoning can really help (My nephew, who won’t eat almost anything given to him, finally ate his fish sticks when I explained that protein is what your body utilizes to grow. The terrifying prospect of being shorter than his baby cousin suddenly spurred his appetite to never-before-seen heights.)

In short, if my child’s doctor doesn’t like my daughter eating dahl for breakfast, then 😛