Utah Rep.: Ban Gays From Publicly Funded Programs

Can we just ban Mormons from receiving any public services, getting married and tax them more as well as tax the property of their cult?

From The Advocate: http://advocate.com/News/Daily_News/2011/02/02/Utah_Strict_Bill_to_Exclude_Gay_Families/

By Michelle Garcia

February 2, 2011

A Utah legislator introduced a bill Wednesday that would require all publicly funded programs, laws, and regulations, to ensure they exclude families headed by gay and lesbian couples.

Rep. LaVar Christensen writes in the bill’s language that “marriage and family predate all governments and are supported by and consistent with the Laws of Nature and God, the Creator and Supreme Judge of the World, affirmed in the nation’s founding Declaration of Independence.” It also says, “families anchored by both a father and a mother, fidelity within marriage, and enduring devotion to the covenants and responsibilities of marriage are the desired norm.”

Brandie Balken, executive director of Equality Utah, told the Salt Lake City Tribune that the bill could be used to “create a filter for public agencies and a way to target laws, services and funding that currently help single Utahns or Utanhs with families that differ from Representative Christensen’s.”

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I’m Tired of Transsexual Models, Lady Boy Flight Attendants, RuPaul’s Drag Race, Drag Pageants, Transsexual Porn Stars and Sex Workers

There is a real reason why this blog contains more stories about politics, economics, the environment etc, etc than it does about transsexual and transgender specific stories.

I get several feeds from people who collect transsexual and transgender stories from around the world plus I get Google and a couple of other story feeds.

Most of the stories are quite honestly boring.  Sometimes I make exceptions if people seem really interesting or have made a break through.  Lea T. and Nina  Arsenault are sort of exceptions Lea because she represents a level of break through and Nina because of her honesty and self awareness of herself as “art project”.

But generally I am not interested in Pageants or RuPaul’s opinion of anything.  I find most of the stuff that comes from the mouths of drag queens, especially performers to be an insult to all women including both post-transsexual women and transgender women.

I was always more cute than glamorous.  Glamorous was a better descriptor for some of my friends.  But I liked being pretty and attractive as much as the next woman.  I obsessed about my weight and appearance and getting older.  At times I dressed so blatantly sexy/sleazy I couldn’t help being objectified and I ate the attention up like it was caviar and Moet’s Champagne.

I know the pleasure of arousing the lustful male gaze, the sense of power. Yet even then I knew there was more to me and I wanted to be taken seriously when I was some where during the day time doing something I wanted to have taken seriously.

This is why I get tired of so much emphasis being placed on the physical appearance of some of the young and pretty sisters.

I think it is great Thai Airlines is hiring “Lady Boy” flight attendants.  So rather than doing sex work a few of the prettiest of our Thai sisters can be part of a flying drag show, where they wear tags identifying them as Katoeys. So they are not only objectified but treated as a third sex, with the male customers being protected from deception by having the flight attendants wear badges that clearly identify them as Katoey.

I get really tired of hearing and reading about “transsexual” porn stars and sex workers who insist on advertising the size of their cock and how “functional” they are.  When I first came out it seemed like the only careers choices we had were performer, hair dresser or sex worker.  That was 40 years ago times have changed.  Besides the majority of transgender women are trying to claim they are legitimate as women without SRS. Your advertising your cock size undermines their attempts to be taken seriously and their attempts to find a profession other than sex work.

Post-transsexual women are women, end of story.  We are not transgender.  While some of us deal with the fall out from the objectification embracing of some sort of freakish “third sex” by ranting and raving in anger, others of us just sigh and think, “How in hell will an inclusive ENDA ever get passed?”.

Objectification of the nature encouraged by the hypersexualizing of transsexual and transgender  has as much impact as the tasteless caricaturing of our lives in crappy movies like “Ticked Off Trannys with Knives” and the tasteless sketch on Saturday Night Live.

We want to be taken seriously and treated with dignity, permitted to lead ordinary lives with jobs that are fulfilling as well as paying a living wage.  This is hard to do if people have to constantly fight objectification and caricaturing.

Post-transsexual women and men are real women and men, part of our distancing ourselves from “transgender as umbrella” is that too many under that umbrella embrace some sort of third sex/gender construct that undermines the credibility of post-SRS people.

Therefore I get tired if the steady stream of stories that seem to belong more in tabloids than in my life.  Particularly when the people I know, post-transsexual, pre-op and transgender are generally far more ordinary people and less given to either flamboyant self-objectification or to being caricatures.

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Debts Should Be Honored, Except When the Money Is Owed to Working People

From Truth Out: http://www.truth-out.org/debts-should-be-honored-except-when-money-is-owed-working-people67301

by: Dean Baker

Monday 31 January 2011

This seems to be the lesson that our nation’s leaders are trying to pound home to us. According to The New York Times, members of Congress are secretly running around in closets and back alleys working up a law allowing states to declare bankruptcy.

According to the article, a main goal of state bankruptcy is to allow states to default on their pension obligations. This means that states will be able to tell workers, including those already retired, that they are out of luck. Teachers, highway patrol officers, and other government employees, some of whom worked decades for the government, will be told that their contracts no longer mean anything. They will not get the pensions that they were expecting.

Depending on the specific circumstances, they may find their pensions cut back 20 percent, 30 percent, perhaps even 50 percent. There would be no guarantees if a state goes into bankruptcy.

There has been a concerted effort to bash public-sector employees by either highlighting the few instances where pensions actually are exorbitant, or just making things up. Untruths about Goldman Sachs, General Electric, or any other major company rarely appear in the media and are usually quickly corrected when they do. However, exaggerations or outright fabrication are a standard practice for those who report on state and local budgets when it comes to public employees.

Continue reading at:  http://www.truth-out.org/debts-should-be-honored-except-when-money-is-owed-working-people67301

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Wall Street Pay Broke Record Last Year

In case you wonder why I hate rich wall Street scum and think they should pay 75% taxes with no exemptions on everything they are given over say a million then wonder no more.

The rich elite scum are the enemy of the hard working people and the unemployed or underemployed people of America.  They are why ENDA doesn’t mean shit.

While Main Street suffers wall Street parties.

What is good for Wall Street is bad for the hard working people of Main Street.  The CEOs and Bankers have dozens of mansions while the people of the heartland are losing their homes.

From The Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/02/02/wall-street-pay_n_817373.html

William Alden

February 2/11

Wall Street pay is rising, while income for normal Americans has stagnated.

Even as the real economy limped, financial firms paid employees a record sum last year, the Wall Street Journal reports. In 2009, the last full year data are available, average wages for Americans fell 1.5 percent from the previous year, according to the National Average Wage Index. Median household income in 2009 was “not statistically different” from 2008, according to the Census Bureau.

But total pay at Wall Street firms rose 5.7 percent in 2010, as the 25 companies that have already reported results shelled out a record $135 billion. Even as regulators pressured firms to alter compensation, prominent executives got big pay bumps, seeming to suggest that the former Wall Street culture has emerged virtually unscathed from the recession.

In the years leading up to the financial crisis, executives got bonuses based on their companies’ short-term performance, a phenomenon that experts say encouraged excessively risky behavior. When lawmakers drafted regulations for the financial sector, executive compensation became a crucial subject for reform. The stimulus act, passed in early 2009, contained rules limiting pay.

But those rules have not worked, according to a December report from the Council of Institutional Investors. While some firms did decrease bonuses, they also raised base salaries to compensate. Even the new forms of pay — such as restricted stock, designed to align executives’ interests with those of shareholders — don’t effectively curb dangerous risk, the report found.

Continue reading at:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/02/02/wall-street-pay_n_817373.html

As Tea Party Koch Brothers Earned An Extra $11 Billion In Recent Years, They Laid Off Thousands

February 2, 2011

From Alternet:   http://www.alternet.org/newsandviews/article/458013/as_tea_party_koch_brothers_earned_an_extra_%2411_billion_in_recent_years%2C_they_laid_off_thousands/

David and Charles Koch, co-owners of Koch Industries and primary financiers of the Tea Party, have amassed one of the world’s largest private fortunes and Koch Industries is the second largest privately held company in America. Koch sycophants in the media have attacked anyone daring to criticize the company because Koch Industries employs nearly 50,000 people, according to a study produced by Koch Industries last week. In the last two years, David and Charles Koch have jumped from each being worth $16 billion to now being worth $21.5 billion. That means together they went from being worth $31 billion dollars to being worth $42 billion today. David is now the richest man in New York City, and the pair are now on the nation’s top ten list for richest Americans.

However, at a time when the Koch brothers were enjoying spectacular financial gains, Koch Industries laid off well over 2,000 people. Using the same approximate “jobs multiplier” Koch Industries used in its study last week, that means Koch Industries extinguished nearly 8,000 jobs in recent years:

Continue reading at:  http://www.alternet.org/newsandviews/article/458013/as_tea_party_koch_brothers_earned_an_extra_%2411_billion_in_recent_years%2C_they_laid_off_thousands/

From Op-Ed News: http://www.opednews.com/articles/Accelerating-to-Third-Worl-by-Rob-Kall-110201-475.html

Accelerating to Third World America: One Third of Home Occupants Rent and Eighteen Percent of US Homes Vacant

By Rob Kall

February 1, 2011

The economic and housing crises have wreaked massive changes in how Americans live, as we accelerate our slide into third world status
A quarterly Census report on homeowner vacancy and homeownership states that of the 131 million homes in the US, 112.5 million are occupied and of those, 74.8 are owned. That means that about one third of the occupied homes in the US are being rented.
A smart discussion of the report at CNBC explained that the number of unoccupied homes dropped, but that was because of a big uptick in rentals. The article observes,

Younger Americans have seen what home ownership has done to their friends and families, and many want no part of it. Credit has become very nearly elitist. Home prices, whatever your particular data provider preference might be, are still falling.

Banks, Fannie  [ FNM    0.488    0.001    ( +0.21% )    ] and Freddie [ FRE    3.28    0.01   ( +0.31% )    ] are holding on to hundreds of thousands of properties, and we don’t know exactly when or how they’ll sell them.

Continue reading at:  http://www.opednews.com/articles/Accelerating-to-Third-Worl-by-Rob-Kall-110201-475.html

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Six trans women killed in Honduras in two months

From Pink News UK: http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2011/02/01/six-trans-women-killed-in-honduras-in-two-months/

by PinkNews.co.uk Staff Writer
1 February 2011

LGBT campaigners are calling on Honduran authorities to fully investigate the murders of six transgender women in just 60 days.

According to Human Rights Watch, the first death was on November 29th and the latest took place on January 17th.

The women were murdered on the streets or in their homes in the capital, Tegucigalpa, and in the cities of Comayagüela and San Pedro Sula.

The attacks ranged from gunshots to setting the victims on fire.

Indyra Mendoza, director of Honduran lesbian group Red Lésbica Cattrachas, said: “The impunity with which these murders have taken place has shaken the entire lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community in Honduras.

“We need legislative change and prevention programs to end discrimination in Honduras, because at the moment we are living our lives in hiding.”

Human Rights Watch said the women appeared to have been tortured before being killed.

Complete story at:   http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2011/02/01/six-trans-women-killed-in-honduras-in-two-months/

Queensland evacuations urged ahead of Cyclone Yasi

Is any one still in denial about Climate Change?

From The BBC:  http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-pacific-12342031

1 February 2011

Australian officals are urging residents in parts of Queensland to flee ahead of the most dangerous storm ever predicted to hit the state.

Cyclone Yasi, a category five storm – the highest alert level – will make landfall on Wednesday night local time (after 1200 GMT).

State Premier Anna Bligh said people should just “grab each other” and find safety.

Last month, Queensland was hit by widespread deadly flooding.

“Do not bother to pack bags. Just grab each other and get to a place of safety. Remember that people are irreplaceable,” Ms Bligh said.

Filling sandbags

Police on the streets of the northern city of Cairns were urging people to get out.

“Everyone’s got to go now,” one officer said. “The water is coming now.

Continue reading at:  http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-pacific-12342031

Colossal Storm Roars Through Nation’s Heartland, Warnings From Texas To Maine

We are currently iced in.  Our drive way and the street in front of our house is solid ice and we don’t have a four wheel drive or chains.

The one positive thing about this storm is maybe it will wake some of the deniers up if their Stupor Bowl at Jerry World is a bust due to ice storms, freezing rain, snow and temperatures in the single digits/teens.

From The Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/02/01/colossal-storm-roars-thro_n_817257.ht


02/ 1/11

CHICAGO — A winter weather colossus roared into the nation’s heartland Tuesday, laying down a paralyzing punch of dangerous ice and whiteout snow that served notice from Texas to Maine that the storm billed as the worst in decades could live up to the hype.

Ice-covered streets were deserted in Super Bowl host city Dallas. Whiteouts shut down Oklahoma City and Tulsa. And more was on the way. Chicago expected 2 feet of snow, Indianapolis an inch of ice, and the Northeast still more ice and snow in what’s shaping up to be a record winter for the region.

The system that stretched more than 2,000 miles across a third of the country promised to leave in its aftermath a chilly cloak of teeth-chattering cold, with temperatures in the single digits or lower.

Continue reading at:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/02/01/colossal-storm-roars-thro_n_817257.ht

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Reagan’s mean-spirited legacy of economic disaster

Ronald Reagan sucked as a President.  Along with “W” he was one of the worst of the worst.  Right down there with Herbert Hoover.  That anyone could possibly believe the mantra about the Republicans being fiscal conservatives only goes to show how stupid and gullible people are.  Doped up on shiny toys and spectacle willing to believe shrill demagogues like Beck and Limbaugh who fill them full of so much crap they don’t even realize they are getting totally fuck so the republicans can give their hard earned money to the rich while bankrupting the country.

Not that Obama is any better.

From The Open Left: http://www.openleft.com/diary/21571/reagans-meanspirited-legacy-of-economic-disaster

by: Paul Rosenberg
Tue Feb 01, 2011 at 09:00

As we approach the centenial of Reagan’s birth, conservatives are whipping up the country into a frenzy of addled adulation.  It’s time for a bit of a reality check. Yesterday, in my diary, “History repeating itself “, I briefly touched on the fact that the fall of the Soviet Union–which he is widely credited for–was not only a surprise to Reagan’s CIA, it was arguably delayed by his war-like posture strengthening Soviet hardliners, which in turn was premised on the baseless neocon fantasy that the Soviets were militarily superior to us when Reagan took office.  That’s an area in which there are some very clear-cut facts and some things that are more debatable.

But when it comes to Reagan’s economic legacy, the record is crystal clear:  Before Reagan, we were on a path on reducing our debt-to-GDP ratio, the most fundamental measure of national fiscal responsibility.  With him, we began using irresponsible increases in the debt-to-GDP ratio to produce extremely skewed economic growth targeted narrowly toward the very top of the income ladder. The so-called “Reagan miracle” is a complete and utter myth, as one can see from these simple comparisons of basic economic growth statistics.  As one can readily see, the 1970s were a troubled decade compared to the 1960s, but we still managed to keep reducting our debt-to-GDP ratio.  Then Reagan came along, and gave us a junk-food “cure” that was only marginally better in terms of GDP growth and income growth for the bottom 99%, was actually worse in terms of job creation, and showered the top 1% with wealth–at the very time that their taxes were being slashed as never before:

Reagan’s policies–modified slightly under Clinton, and put on steroids under GW Bush–are the root cause of the economic distress we are experiencing today.  And the newsletter Too Much has the goods on the root of Reagan’s selfishness that helped lead our nation astray economically:

Continue reading at:   http://www.openleft.com/diary/21571/reagans-meanspirited-legacy-of-economic-disaster

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Eating Healthy

It is hard to listen to television or read the news papers and resist the message urging us to fill our bodies with total crap.

I worked passing out food samples in a big box store and I used to read the labels as I was handing food to people on electric scooters who were so obese or crippled from lost of limbs due to diabetes and other diseases caused by an improper diet that I had to bite my tongue to keep from say.  This has 2300mg of sodium per serving and 900 calories mostly from fat and High Fructose Corn Syrup.  Stop eating this shit.

The joke is I’m just as big a sucker as they are because I ate the shit too.   I have sky high blood pressure and cholesterol.

I should have listened to my vegetarian and health food eating friends but I had substance issues and was abusing my body any way.  Eating garbage was the issue that remained even after getting clean and sober.

Now that I’ve tried to get more conscious of what I eat and to lose weight I find myself thinking that a lot of the food they sell should have the same warning labels on the packages they are required to put on tobacco products.

Not that the corporations would ever let their puppet do that.

But here’s some leads on a few  articles from the last couple of days:

From Seafood Source: http://www.seafoodsource.com/newsarticledetail.aspx?id=9085&utm_source=NewsLinks&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=InformzNews

U.S. government: Eat fish twice a week

BySteven Hedlund, SeafoodSource editor
31 January, 2011 –

For the first time, the U.S. government is advising all Americans, including pregnant and breastfeeding women, to eat seafood at least twice a week for heart and brain benefits. Previously, the twice-a-week recommendation was limited to heart patients.

On Tuesday, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S Department of Health and Human Services released the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, as required by Congress every five years. The guidelines serve as the basis for federal nutrition policy.

In the guidelines, the agencies said: “Moderate evidence shows that consumption of about 8 ounces per week of a variety of seafood, which provide an average consumption of 250 milligrams per day of EPA and DHA, is associated with reduced cardiac deaths among individuals with and without pre-existing cardiovascular disease.”

Continue reading at:   http://www.seafoodsource.com/newsarticledetail.aspx?id=9085&utm_source=NewsLinks&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=InformzNews

From The New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/01/business/01food.html?scp=1&sq=Salt%20level%20in%20food&st=Search

Government’s Dietary Advice: Eat Less

Published: January 31, 2011

As the nation’s obesity crisis continues unabated, federal regulators on Monday issued their bluntest nutrition advice to date: drink water instead of sugary drinks like soda, fill your plate with fruits and vegetables and cut down on processed foods filled with sodium, fat or sugar.

More important, perhaps, the government told Americans, “Enjoy your food, but eat less.” Many Americans eat too many calories every day, expanding their waistlines and imperiling their health.

While the recommendations may seem obvious, it is nonetheless considered major progress for federal regulators, who have long skirted the issue, wary of the powerful food lobby. (The 112-page report even subtly suggests that people eat less pizza and dessert.)

Previous guidelines urged Americans to curb sugar, solid fats and salt, but avoided naming specific foods, let alone urging consumers to eat less food over all.

“For them to have said ‘eat less’ is really new. Who would have thought?” said Margo G. Wootan, director of nutrition policy at the Center for Science in the Public Interest. “We should have been saying ‘eat less’ for a decade.”

Ms. Wootan said she was nonetheless pleased that the guidelines provided “understandable and actionable” advice rather than the “big vague messages” of the past.

Continue reading at:  http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/01/business/01food.html?scp=1&sq=Salt%20level%20in%20food&st=Search

From World Socialist Web Site: http://www.wsws.org/articles/2011/feb2011/cdcd-f02.shtml

One third of Americans are diabetic or prediabetic

By Gary Joad
2 February 2011

According to the 2011 National Diabetes Fact Sheet released by the United States Centers for Disease Control (CDC) on January 26, last year saw an increase in the numbers of people with diabetes in virtually every age category.

The federal agency reports that some 25.8 million Americans, or 8.3 percent of the total population, have diabetes. Fully a third of these individuals do not know that they have the disease and are unaware of the serious risks it creates for their health. In a staggering indictment of the state of public health in the US, the CDC found that a further 79 million people in the country are prediabetic, meaning that their blood sugar levels are elevated, but not yet to the point where they meet the criteria for a full diabetes diagnosis.

Diabetes is a malfunctioning of blood sugar control in the human body. Blood sugar levels depend, in part, on the quality and timely release of the protein called insulin from the pancreas, an elongated endocrine organ behind the stomach.

In Type I diabetes, which is generally diagnosed in individuals under the age of 20, a person’s pancreas has virtually ceased producing insulin. In Type II diabetes, which generally onsets after the age of 20, the body fails to produce enough insulin and what it does produce is unable to reduce and control blood sugar as efficiently as in non-diabetics.

The CDC report notes that “diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure, non-traumatic lower limb amputations, and new cases of blindness among adults in the United States.” It is also a major cause of heart disease and strokes, and “the seventh leading cause of death” in the country. According to the government agency, “The risk for death among people with diabetes is about twice that of people of similar age but without diabetes.”

Continue reading at:   http://www.wsws.org/articles/2011/feb2011/cdcd-f02.shtml

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More on the Koch Brothers and their war on the American People and the Nation We Hold Dear

This from The Sierra Club: http://sierraclub.typepad.com/michaelbrune/2011/01/the-billionaire-brothers-who-make-us-sick-.html#

The Billionaire Brothers Who Make Us Sick

Michael Brune’s Blog

This weekend, two billionaire brothers will hold a private, closed-door meeting of elite and powerful donors and supporters of the oil industry. You can bet that along with conga lines and Jello shooters, the agenda at Charles and David Koch’s little bash will include doing everything possible to ensure that nothing gets done that might result in clean energy, green jobs, or a healthy environment.

If you’ve heard of the Koch brothers, it’s probably because of the article that Jane Mayer wrote about them for The New Yorker last year. As a rule, the Kochs prefer to keep a low profile and let their money do the talking — and their combined wealth of an estimated $30 billion from their Koch Industries has a very loud voice. When you spend more each year than ExxonMobil to fund climate-opposition groups and obstruct environmental policy, your money is shouting like a street-corner evangelist. In the case of the Koch brothers, the false gospel is spread by think tanks, foundations, and (unfortunately) many of the new faces in Congress — elected with a lot of help from the Kochs.

I don’t know a word that means the exact opposite of environmentalist — but then we didn’t really need one until the Kochs came along. Greenpeace put out a shocking report focused on how Koch Industries and its owners fund the climate-denial machine, but it also gives some insight into why the Kochs are also going after all environmental safeguards as well as the Environmental Protection Agency.

Koch Industries has a long history of multi-million dollar fines from the EPA and Justice Department for everything from oil spills to dumping toxic chemicals. Even the Bush administration fined them for covering up the illegal dumping of 91 tons of carcinogenic benzene–though John Ashcroft got potential fines of $350 million knocked down to a $20 million slap on the wrist for falsifying documents.

Continue reading at:  http://sierraclub.typepad.com/michaelbrune/2011/01/the-billionaire-brothers-who-make-us-sick-.html#

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