Because I’m building a cigar box dulcimer and just got a kit to build a really nice mountain dulcimer.
Because I’m building a cigar box dulcimer and just got a kit to build a really nice mountain dulcimer.
A girl files suit after sexual abuse from a cop reveals a departmental pattern; what is with authority figures using sex to dominate others?
By Sarah Seltzer
September 6, 2011
In our authority-oriented society, we’re expected to put our trust in certain powerful figures: the police officers charged with protecting us, the clergy charged with guiding us.
So why is a culture of sexual abuse so rampant in many outposts of these kinds of institutions?
The answer lies in the question: wherever there is unquestioned power and authority, we’ll see sexual abuse, because in our “rape culture” rape is above all about power, domination, and violence. And when the attacker feels that he or she can get away with it–as those who are revered or set aside by society do–the problem worsens.
Over Labor Day weekend, a chilling story came to light in Kansas City, Missouri. The court case arose out of a culture of police negligence around questionable sexual behavior, a culture that eventually led to a horrific assault on a young girl, a teen who was hanging out late in a park with her friends.
A teen-age girl says a Jackson County police officer forced her to give him oral sex in his squad car after he found her and some friends in a park after curfew. And she says that assault is just the tip of the iceberg of a pattern of sexual deviancy by Jackson County police officers…
Burgess told C.B.’s friends to leave, then he handcuffed C.B., fondled her breasts, vaginal area and buttocks, forced her to give him oral sex and ejaculated.
Some people out there have a problem recognizing boundaries. I think this is part of the issue with transvestites feeling they have the right to colonize unwilling post-transsexual folks and then call them names if they do not submit to this colonization.
This inability to recognize boundaries seems tied in with an inability to recognize the differences between the Usenet, a Mailing List and a Blog or there being a hierarchy of level of control over that which gets posted.
Women Born Transsexual is my Blog. I write articles for it I select and edit content from else where that I think people should be aware of. I do not let every comment through any more than your local newspaper publishes every letter to the editor.
This Blog has a point of view that places it with the underground papers I admired in the 1960s, notably the original Berkeley Barb and Berkeley Tribe. It has some strictly transsexual/post-transsexual content. It also has a good deal of left wing, feminist, environmental, gay and lesbian content.
I obviously do not buy into the right wing spin of “fair and balanced”. When I post what I feel is a pertinent article that attacks Wall Street or some ultra right wing Republi-Nazi I do not feel I have to balance it with some unhinged piece of right wing batshittery.
I should come as no surprise that I get trolls and hate mail. I also have people devote an inordinate amount of energy to engaging in ad hominem against me from their Blog platforms. This seems to come mostly from Transvestite Men’s Rights Advocates. I get some from the HBS crowd for not being pure enough or mean enough but not so much lately. I get some from post-transsexual women, who think I am way too left wing. The latter of these doesn’t bother me much at all, my politics are my politics and being post-transsexual doesn’t require membership in any political party.
There are actually two different kinds of concern trolls.
The first tends to come off very bitchy, as well as stupidly brainwashed by the patriarchal male vision of women. It goes as follows: “You come off as old, ugly and bitter.” Which is an extremely stupid thing to say to an old feminist, especially one who thinks someone demanding she smile and act cheerfully perky while getting fucked over by her employer should be grounds for justifiable homicide. This is the sort of thing one hears from transgender folks who think women should be glamorous, empty headed, man-pleaser fembots. In short people whose idea of what women are comes directly from the unmediated male gaze.
I often feel like saying, “Why, thank you. I am old, you are mistaken about ugly but I would expect that from a plastic airhead fembot, and I believe the word you were looking for when you decided on bitter is, “angry.” Of course I am angry, I have spent the last 30 years watching the vile ultra right wing Republicans and their enablers, the neo-lib Democans trash my country and every thing it stands for. But don’t bother your pretty vacant little head. You have to know something about the real world to understand.
Then there are the trolls for whom concern mingles with the ultimate victimhood. This one has a tendency to easily turn into a hysterical hate screed wishing me all sorts nasty fates for having the audacity to not immediately swallow their entire line of bullshit. This one starts off:
“I’m a woman because I identify as a woman, no matter what I have between my legs.”
Okay, you’ve just established that you are delusional. Isn’t that precious… This is kind of like my saying, “I identify with Margaret Atwood or Carol Joyce Oates as a best selling author, even though I haven’t finished my first book and it will sell in the few thousands.”
I’m a blogger because I blog. I am a writer because I write, sometimes my pieces are very well received within a relatively small circle of readers. I am post-transsexual because a long time ago I had an operation that changed my sex.
Oddly enough I used to try to reason with these people, not realizing I was trying to reason with living breathing examples of why transgenderism (but not transsexualism) should continue to be listed in the DSM under a revised and tightened set of criteria. Example if you try to tell me your dick is a neo-clit you need to either be joking or realize I’m going to consider you delusional.
Then there are the transgenders who are “transsexual wannabees”. Or the million and one excuses for not getting SRS, who turn around and argue how it is unimportant because no one including themselves ever sees their genitals. Often times these folks have had fifty thousand dollars worth of facial surgery but can’t afford SRS.
If I express the slightest trace of skepticism regarding people laying a totally bullshit number on me, I have to put up with the name calling.
If I don’t think all your problems are directly related to your being transgender, or that your problems as a transgender person are pretty consistent with the same problems faced by assigned female at birth women of your same class and social position in life, then I am considered insensitive.
What follows will be an accusation that I don’t care about all the transgender folks who are murdered because I do not support measures that will do nothing to end the violence. At that point I steel myself for what experience tells me will come next. The hope I will meet with violence, phrased as concern that I never meet with violence.
At this point I should point out, that I am an old woman who doesn’t work the street, go to drag bars and pick up strange men or even hang out in places where that sort of activity is known to happen. Also I’m a really good shot with a variety of handguns from .380 and 9mm to .45acp and live in a state that issues concealed carry licenses to citizens who take the classes.
Concern trolling, along with ultimate victim trolling is just plain annoying and really freaking pathetic.
That brings me to “Challenge Trolling”.
This is a game generally played (at least on this blog) by douche nozzles, misogynistic wankers, some of whom are actual transvestites and some who fantasy role play on line as transgender people.
If I spam filter these people they send notes that include messages like this.
(Are you going to publish this comment? Or are you going to prove you’re an intellectual coward and not publish it? Inquiring minds want to know…)
To which I say, “Go fuck yourself, dickwad..” Why should I let some abusive prick who wears women’s clothes to get a boner come to my blog and abuse me?
I wouldn’t put up with shit from a man in a dress like him in 3D, so why should I put up with it on a Blog I’ve spent two and a half years building? After all Blogs are not the freaking Usenet.
The other sort of challenge comes from the credential privileged. People pull this one even when the credential comes from a diploma mill operating out of a website and PO Box.
Mostly though resorting to this ploy equals an automatic lose on the part of the person trying to use it. It is also pretty insulting in that it assumes I haven’t attended college when I have actually studied without working for a degree in three of the finest Universities in the country. But I’m also an autodidact with an extensive library up stairs and I am willing to look stuff up.
BTW I have actually banned very few people. Even most trolls are merely moderated and many who assume they are moderated actually aren’t but for some reason the spam filters which I have maxed to avoid the porno ads put them in moderation.
As for the trolls… Get a life…
By michael payne
September 7, 2011
Have you ever experienced that feeling just before a massive storm hits, as the skies darken, when you can feel a mounting pressure and intensity in the air, and there is this eerie silence; when you know it’s going to be a bad one but you don’t know exactly when it’s going to erupt? The American people, though greatly stressed and frustrated remain passive, submissive and largely silent. But is this, in reality, merely the calm before the storm?
Every since the housing collapse triggered the recession that began in 2008, millions of Americans have been battered and beaten down, struggling to find jobs and stay afloat during this dire crisis in their lives. They watch as this government that should be attacking these problems has become totally dysfunctional, collapsing under the weight of a broken and corrupted political system.
But with all this pain and suffering, personal setbacks and the prospect of more and more of the same, the people of America remain in a form of semi-paralysis, full of fear and apprehension, but not protesting; seemingly unable to vent their mounting anger.
Those in the field of psychology would tell us that this is not a good condition. Keeping things inside, allowing problems to fester without relief, can be extremely harmful, both physically and mentally. People under such stress and tension in their lives often come to the point where life has lost its meaning and that’s when unexpected things can easily happen. What are the people of America to do, where can they go, who can they turn to in their greatest time of need? Can they continue to wait and hope that this president or this Congress will respond to their needs?
Two major factors have the potential to trigger a societal eruption in America; jobs and food, both necessities of life. We all know about the never-ending jobs problem but there is another rapidly escalating problem involving food. Right now there are about 45 million Americans living below the poverty line and about the same number dependent on food stamps. The combination of a lack of jobs and the inability to pay the increasing prices for food are forcing more and more people into poverty and on food stamps.
Is there anyone who thinks that this kind of civil disobedience and protests can’t happen in America, that this nation is somehow immune from them, that the people under such immense stress have infinite patience and can continue to remain in a state of frustration and desperation endlessly? We need only look at what’s happening in other parts of the world and we may find our answers to these questions.
Every day we see more examples of just how un-American the Republicans are. How they hate freedom and democracy. How they hate equality and justice and all the things this country stands for. Perhaps we need to listen to Jimmy Hoffa and next election take these un-American bastards out and send them home so they can work in private industry.
But with the limitations of the sort that so many working people find on their employment contracts. Perhaps we should make sure they not employed lobbying. Make their pensions dependent upon no positions with firms getting contracts from the government.
Let them open one of those highly touted small businesses they claim make so much money.
Ryan J. Reilly
September 8, 2011
Congress should follow in the footsteps of state legislatures and pass a federal voter ID law that requires voters to present photo identification at the polls, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) said Thursday.
Graham defended South Carolina’s recently passed voter ID law, which is under review by the Justice Department.
“I think what South Carolina did makes eminent sense to me,” Graham said at a hearing on state voting laws chaired by Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL).
Durbin opened the hearing saying, “the incidence of voter fraud in America is minimal and the reported fraud is often anecdotal, unsubstantiated and contrived.”
“You will see more of this, Mr. Chairman, not less,” Graham continued in his opening statement. “Thirty states have some form of voter ID requirement, so I think this is the future of the country, something we should embrace at the federal level, because elections do matter.”
Graham even raised the Sept. 11 attacks to justify restrictions on voter access.
From Thom Hartmann:
From Michael Moore: http://www.michaelmoore.com/words/mike-friends-blog/my-10-year-olds-jobs-program
By Alan Grayson
September 8th, 2011
I like to help my children with their homework, whenever I have time. (And since January, I’ve had more time.) It’s great to help them — I know all the answers, and I never have to take the exams.
Last night, we tried something different. They helped me with my homework. A math problem:
“We are spending $159,000,000,000.00 on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan this year. If we ended the wars, brought the troops home, took that money, and created decent jobs paying $30,000 apiece in the United States, then how many jobs would we create?”
Skye, the 16-year-old, took out her phone, clicked on the calculator app, and gave the answer:
I asked the 12-year-old, Star, and the 10-year-old, Sage. Both gave me the right answer:
Then I asked the 6-year-old twins, Storm and Stone. Storm said “thirty hundred and five.” Stone agreed.
OK, so we have a jobs program that a 10-year-old can understand. But, admittedly, not a six-year-old.
And what would that jobs program do to the unemployment rate? The math is a little more complicated, but the answer is that it would drop the unemployment rate from 9 percent to 5.5 percent. Immediately.
It’s actually better than that, because money that is spent hiring Americans, in America, then circulates in America. Economists tell us that every new job like that creates as many as five other jobs — the employee then pays his rent, the landlord then goes to the restaurant, the waiter then gets his hair cut, and so on. Unemployment, goodbye.
As opposed to spending our money in Iraq, on Iraq. Have you ever been in the desert when it rains? The water runs through the sand so fast that 15 minutes after the rain is over, it’s as though it never rained at all.
That’s what happens to our tax dollars spent in Iraq. The term “bottomless pit” is an understatement.
And what would all those employees do? Well, Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky has figured that out. She has introduced a bill to hire 2.2 million people, and her bill breaks down this way:
Or, alternatively, we can have all those millions of people, our fellow Americans, do nothing all day, as they lose their jobs, lose their homes, and slide slowly into poverty and bankruptcy.
And I’ll tell you one thing for sure: more corporate welfare will not create jobs. In the past ten years, we have crammed trillions of dollars into the pockets of Big Business, through bailouts, tax breaks, subsidies, no-bid government contracts, grants, cheap mining and drilling licenses, etc., etc. Do you know how many jobs in America the private sector has created during that time?
Actually, less than zero. There are around one million fewer private sector jobs today than there were ten years ago.
We keep handing our money over to the rich, in the vain hope that they will give some of it back. That hasn’t worked, and it won’t work.
So which do you prefer: war or jobs — jobs for all Americans? I want jobs.
We want jobs. Jobs, health and peace.
Follow Alan Grayson on Twitter: www.twitter.com/alangrayson
Remember what is good for investors is bad for hard working people who create the profits.
Thursday September 8, 2011
Bangalore (Reuters) – Bank of America Corp officials have discussed slashing roughly 40,000 jobs during the first wave of a restructuring, the Wall Street Journal said, citing people familiar with the plans.
The number of job cuts are not final and could change. The restructuring aims to reduce the bank’s workforce of 280,000 over a period of years, the Journal said.
BofA could not immediately be reached for comment by Reuters outside regular U.S. business hours.
The Journal said BofA executives met Thursday at Charlotte, North Carolina, where the bank is headquartered, and will gather again Friday to make final decisions on the reductions, putting the finishing touches on five months of work.
Investors are pressing BofA to improve its performance after it lost money in four of the last six quarters and its stock has fallen by half this year.
The Journal said the proposed job cuts may exceed BofA’s last big cutback in 2008 when it called for 30,000 to 35,000 job cuts over three years. That move was triggered by an economic slowdown and the planned takeover of securities firm Merrill Lynch & Co.
Continue reading at: http://finance.yahoo.com/news/BofA-discussing-about-40000-rb-3979901818.html
By Common Dreams: http://www.commondreams.org/view/2011/09/08-8
by John Buell
Published on Thursday, September 8, 2011 by CommonDreams.org
A conservative friend of mine likes to say that he votes his pocket book. The push to cut taxes, roll back environmental regulations, eradicate unions, and reduce the size and scope of the safety net is good for him. He will have more money to spend and be able to live in more comfort and security. This conception of self-interested voting seems like common sense, but I wonder if it really captures all that is going on in their psyche when wealthy citizens endorse and support libertarian or corporatist political agendas.
Self-interest, even in narrow monetary terms, can be misjudged. In a recent blog post, Paul Krugman reminds us “just how consistently, awesomely wrong the [Wall Street] Journal opinion section has been for two decades now. Think about it… by reading that section you could have learned… that Clinton’s tax hike would cause a recession and send stocks plunging. Dow 36,000! American households are saving plenty thanks to capital gains on their houses. Interest rates will soar thanks to Obama’s deficits…”
Krugman goes on to add: “it seems likely that you could have made a lot of money by betting against whatever that page predicts.”
At the very least the wealthy seem a bit schizophrenic. If they vote their pocket books electing Tea Party or corporatist Republicans every time elections roll around, they also vote almost daily via stock, bond, commodity, and other forms of speculative investments. If those votes are any guide, wealthy investors hardly feel secure even as more governments embrace austerity, deregulation, and privatization.
Those fortunes have depended more on various forms of government intervention than they recognize or acknowledge. Robert Reich argues “An economy so dependent on the spending of a few is also prone to great booms and busts. The rich splurge and speculate when their savings are doing well. But when the values of their assets tumble, they pull back. That can lead to wild gyrations. Sound familiar?” As Financial Times columnist Martin Wolff puts it, “The massive fiscal deficits of today, particularly in countries where huge financial crises occurred, are not the result of deliberate Keynesian stimulus: even in the US, the ill-targeted and inadequate stimulus amounted to less than 6 per cent of gross domestic product or, at most, a fifth of the actual deficits over three years. The latter were largely the result of the crisis: governments let fiscal deficits rise, as the private sector savagely retrenched. To have prevented this would have caused a catastrophe.”
Continue reading at: http://www.commondreams.org/view/2011/09/08-8
By L. Randall Wray and Stephanie Kelton
Posted on Sep 8, 2011
On Thursday night Barack Obama delivered his highly anticipated jobs speech. At this point, only those closest to the president know exactly how he intends to help spur the economy and create jobs, but reports suggest that he is mulling a $300 billion jobs package that includes more of the same—a one-year extension of the payroll tax cut, a continuation of unemployment benefits, some additional spending on infrastructure and tax incentives to encourage businesses to hire and invest in new capital. Too little of what will work and too much of what won’t for an economy that’s teetering on the brink of a double-dip recession and a president who is running out of time to deliver jobs.
There’s little doubt that extending unemployment benefits will help those who are struggling to find work. But continuing the payments we’re already making doesn’t add a single dollar of new demand to the economy. Nor does extending the payroll tax cut, which simply allows workers to keep the extra 2 percent they’ve already been getting. There will be no boost in consumer spending from these measures, although they account for more than half of the $300 billion plan the president is said to be considering. For the same price tag, the president could do something truly different—he could eliminate unemployment altogether.
The job market is much worse than the official numbers suggest. Officially, we’ve got 14 million unemployed Americans looking for jobs—about four job seekers for every job vacancy. But those 14 million Americans are also competing with 8.8 million part-time workers who are hoping to land a full-time job. Since the recession began, employers have cut so many hours from the workweek that it is equivalent to the loss of a million more jobs. Add to that the roughly 2.6 million people who gave up looking for a job, and you’ve got about 25 million people needing more work and an economy that is creating no new jobs.
Whatever the president promises, it is certain to be too little, too late. Indeed, as Eric Tymoigne has shown, by some measures job performance since the start of the “recovery” has been even worse than during the Great Depression. At the rate we’re going, it will take nine years to return to the pre-recession employment level; by contrast, in the 1930s the jobs lost in the aftermath of the Great Crash had been fully restored within seven years. The difference was the New Deal, which created jobs for 13 million Americans. President Obama has never displayed any Rooseveltian sense of purpose and he will not propose any comprehensive job creation programs like the New Deal’s WPA and the CCC.