WKBT News anchor Jennifer Livingston’s on-air respsonse to her Bully (Oct. 2nd, 2012)

This Woman Totally Rocks…

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‘Slut-shaming’ President Obama’s mother can make you a lot of money

From Holy Bullies and Headless Monsters:  http://holybulliesandheadlessmonsters.blogspot.com/2012/09/call-obamas-mother-slut-can-make-you.html

By Alvin McEwen
September 29, 2012

Reposted with permission

This isn’t necessary a gay issue, but someone needs to shout ENOUGH! 
An excellent piece in The Daily Beast has caught my eye and raised my nerves because of the following passage:

D’Souza argues that part of the reason Ann Dunham sent Obama to live with her parents in Hawaii was so she could pursue affairs with Indonesian men. “Ann’s sexual adventuring may seem a little surprising in view of the fact that she was a large woman who kept getting larger,” he writes. On the next page, he continues, “Learning about Ann’s sexual adventures in Indonesia, I realized how wrong I had been to consider Barack Obama Sr. the playboy … Ann … was the real playgirl, and despite all her reservations about power, she was using her American background and economic and social power to purchase the romantic attention of third-world men.” 

The woman in this passage is Ann Dunham, President Obama’s mother.

And the man who wrote those unproven and highly ugly comments about her is Dinesh D’Souza, a conservative writer and columnist. That passage came from the most recent entity in his anti-Obama trilogy, Obama’s America.

In 2010,  he wrote a nonsensical book called The Roots of Obama’s Rage, which pushed the hilariously ugly theory that Obama fosters a secret hate of America. Thanks to conservative and right-wing hype, that book was a “success.” This year, he published a continuation piece called Obama’s America, which is a companion piece for a movie he produced called Obama 2016. Both of these entities, with more help from conservative and right-wing hype, are also successes. However they, like his original book on Obama, have been roundly condemned by mainstream media as crackpot nonsense with a phony intellectual glaze.

Now I try not to allow conservative so-and-so’s like D’Souza or Ann Coulter, Michelle Malkin, Rush Limbaugh, and the other assorted denizens (I want to call them worse but it would ruin the integrity of this piece) to bother me.

I don’t watch them. If any of them are on my television, I turn the channel.

These folks make a living off of wingnut welfare and think tank money. Their lifeblood is funding by mysterious wealthy individuals with Napoleon complexes and more money than common sense. And their food is resentment and chaos. Every angry American is like $100 in their bank accounts.

But this is going too far. To D’Souza, it’s as if Obama is a succulent piece of meat on a dinner table which he has picked clean. However failing to be satiated, D’Souza now seems to be busying himself with breaking the bones of the meat and sucking out the marrow in loud, repulsive slurps.

One has to ask who else in the Obama family will he go after while under the false veneer of “pursuing the truth?”

Of course this is Dinesh D’Souza who makes his money as an “analyst” for various right-wing think tanks such as the Hoover Institution and the American Enterprise Institution. And he is the same man who wrote The End of Racism, a book so outrageous that it offended black conservatives because it claimed that “black culture” was inferior to “white culture,” that segregation was misguided paternalism, “based on the code of the Christian and the gentleman” and intended to protect blacks, and that parts of the Civil Rights Act should be repealed.

So why should we be surprised with how low he has stooped here?

Also there is a HIGH degree of Obama Derangement Syndrome out there. The same Daily Beast article says that another film about the president, Dreams from my Real Father, not only pushes a ridiculous theory that Obama’s real father was a black communist, but that his mother modeled in 1950s bondage and fetish porn.  Allegedly, millions of copies of this film is being sent out to voters in several states including Florida, Nevada, New Hampshire, and Nevada.

So again, why should we be surprised when there seems to be a market out there for lurid beliefs about Obama.

It’s understandable that many of us are desensitized to this stuff. In all truthfulness, these videos and D’Souza’s books  probably won’t have any effect on the electorate who should be used to Obama being called everything including the Anti-Christ.  At least let’s hope not.

But consider this – D’Souza at the very least has been featured on legitimate news program such as CNN hawking his visual and literary firewater without any form of shame.

And all in the name of the false equivalency of supposedly presenting both sides of a “political argument.”

When is the media going to dispense with this nonsense and call bullshit for what it is – bullshit. It would be nice to see D’Souza subjected to a moment not unlike the ending of the tale “The Emperor’s New Clothes,” when all it took was the innocence of a child to break through the pretext of nonsense which was going on.

Would it have hurt for someone with a mainstream news reputation to tell D’Souza the equivalent of the statement, “you know you are so full of shit, right?” (Editor’s note – in all honesty, HBO host Bill Maher did actually do this but it really didn’t resonate in the media like it would have if someone like Soledad O’Brien had done it)

I honestly feel embarrassed by asking this question but how does it feel to be members of the most powerful nation in the world and instead of discussing the pertinent issues which confront us, being forced to listen to idiots push ludicrous theories on whether or not the president’s mother was either an overweight slut or a freak who engaged in fetish porn?

If you don’t feel a little ashamed at this, then check your pulse because you may be dead.

EXTRA: It has been pointed out by Rational Wiki the distortion techniques used by D’Souza.

  1. D’Souza has an aggressive and rhetorical speaking and debating style, which makes him sound forceful and convincing. He uses the Gish Gallop frequently and effectively, rebuffing his opponent for not addressing every point he makes.
  2. He frequently employs caricatures and strawmen of atheist positions. He presents these positions so as to make them sound whimsical or silly, while presenting his own statements with an air of utmost gravity, no matter how lunatic or far-fetched they may be.
  3. He is a big fan of quote mining. Not content with simply taking his opponent’s statements out of context, he will take a quote about a topic completely unrelated to the one under discussion and re-frame it to make it sound as if his opponent is uninformed or delusional.
  4. A main weapon in his debating arsenal is the emotional appeal, where he paint his opponent’s position as false because some of its implications may be distasteful to certain members of the audience.
  5. He enjoys painting his opponents as vicious critics of innocuous policies and events, and himself as a paragon of intellectual virtue. While not going as far as character assassination (at least not in a face-to-face debate), he does subtly attack the character of his opponent.
  6. He often says that an assertion by his opponent, or even the opponent’s entire position, is invalid because it is not intuitively or obviously true. He paints this as a “common sense” argument, where he calls upon the audience to evaluate an assertion using their own intuition. In reality, this is a denial of the obvious fact that many things are counterintuitive and require expertise beyond the experience of the average person (but don’t take our word for it; ask your neighbor about quantum mechanics or the economics of sub-Saharan Africa). This is a particularly effective tactic, as it shifts audience opinion to his side.
  7. Thanks to his wide repertoire of tactics, he rarely is forced to allow a point by his opponent to pass unchallenged. This projects the illusion of competence, whereas most of his rebuttals are intellectually dishonest and completely invalid.
  8. When all else fails, he will spout outright lies and half truths, pulling facts and statistics out of thin air to give his argument some credibility. This amounts to an argument from authority, which he seems to derive from his public “reputation” as a political commentator, academic and writer.
  9. Lately, he appears to carry around a sizable library of books to debates, frequently flashing them at his opponent and at the audience, while stating that they completely prove his own, or disprove his opponent’s points. These are usually self published works by fringe lunatics (which are not worth the toilet paper they are printed on). This is argument from authority on steroids, since no one except him has read the book. Therefore, his opponent cannot call him out on it, and is forced to let the point go without comment.
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Former Hitler Youth now Pope: Gays Are ‘A Concept Of Human Nature That Has Proven Defective’ And Threaten The Family

So sayth the  former Nazi turned satin dress and red Prada pump wearing head of the pedophile support organization known as the Catholic Church

From The New Civil Rights Movement: http://thenewcivilrightsmovement.com/1-pope-gays-are-a-defection-of-human-nature-that-threaten-the-family/politics/2012/10/01/50059

by David Badash
on October 1, 2012

Pope Benedict XVI says that gay people are “a concept of human nature that has proven defective,” that threaten the family, and are not “fully-developed” human beings. The Pope, continuing his holy war on gay marriage, made the remarks late last month to a group of French Bishops he invited to the Vatican, in a desperate attempt to push back new French president Francois Hollande’s promise to legalize same-sex marriage.

“The family is threatened in many places by a faulty conception of human nature.” Some translations have him saying the word “defective,” according to Care2. ”The family that is the foundation of social life is threatened in many places, following a concept of human nature that has proven defective,” another report states.

”Marriage and the family are institutions that must be promoted and defended from every possible misrepresentation of their true nature, since whatever is injurious to them is injurious to society itself.”

Pope Benedict also claimed his positions are “not at all backward-looking but prophetic,” adding that the Church must “promote those values that permit the full development of the human person.”

Pope Benedict is working overtime to stop same-sex marriage from taking hold in France. Over the summer, the Catholic Church revived a tradition originally begun in the 17th century and abandoned almost 100 years ago, to bash gay people, and included a prayer that calls children “objects of desires” for gay parents.

Continue reading at:  http://thenewcivilrightsmovement.com/1-pope-gays-are-a-defection-of-human-nature-that-threaten-the-family/politics/2012/10/01/50059

Tammy Baldwin Is Surging

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The end of men? Cardboard man is dead. Now let’s redefine masculinity

From The Guardian UK:  http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/sep/30/end-of-men-redefine-masculinity

A new book is right to highlight the male identity crisis caused by economic change. But where’s the manifesto for a new man?

The Guardian, Sunday 30 September 2012

The cover of the book is as simple as can be: just bold type set into a pink and yellow design, as if to evoke the Sex Pistols’ Never Mind the Bollocks. And the title is of a piece: The End of Men, subtitled And the Rise of Women. Published in a couple of weeks, it’s the second book by Hanna Rosin, a senior editor at Atlantic magazine, and everyone involved obviously wants to kick up as big a stink as possible. Apart from, perhaps, the author – who dedicates her work to her nine year-old son, “with apologies for the title”.

At first sight, it’s another one of those archetypal American screeds, light on research, annoyingly solipsistic, and firmly rooted in the slightly absurd milieu where, à la Naomi Wolf, people get writer’s block after being served rumly shaped pasta. But its argument is simple enough: as developed countries shed what little remains of traditional industries and the effects of the crash linger on, women are doing much better than men, something also evident in the rising economies of east Asia. “Plastic woman” – adaptable, well-educated – is besting “cardboard man”, who surveys endlessly changing realities and crumples into defeatism.

A hardened pair of stereotypes have certainly taken root in Britain, the US and elsewhere; they bubble away in political rhetoric and government reform programmes (education and welfare, among others), and sit increasingly immovably in both countries’ cultures. Men – of all classes, incidentally – are seen as slovenly and inept; women, almost axiomatically, are stronger and more ambitious.

In the UK a quarter of women are now their family’s main breadwinner – a huge rise since 1969, when the figure was 4%. For every two men who get a BA degree in the states, there are three women. Boys may have outperformed girls in this year’s stats for A* grades at A-level, but applications from young women to British universities still outstrip those from men. Figures from the Higher Education Statistics Agency show that female school-leavers are 30% more likely to apply to university than their male counterparts. And get this: according to Rosin’s book, 75% of couples in American fertility clinics now express a preference for a girl rather than a boy.

Continue reading at:  http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/sep/30/end-of-men-redefine-masculinity

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The Myth of Male Decline

From The New York Times:  http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/30/opinion/sunday/the-myth-of-male-decline.html

Published: September 29, 2012

SCROLL through the titles and subtitles of recent books, and you will read that women have become “The Richer Sex,” that “The Rise of Women Has Turned Men Into Boys,” and that we may even be seeing “The End of Men.” Several of the authors of these books posit that we are on the verge of a “new majority of female breadwinners,” where middle-class wives lord over their husbands while demoralized single men take refuge in perpetual adolescence.

How is it, then, that men still control the most important industries, especially technology, occupy most of the positions on the lists of the richest Americans, and continue to make more money than women who have similar skills and education? And why do women make up only 17 percent of Congress?

These books and the cultural anxiety they represent reflect, but exaggerate, a transformation in the distribution of power over the past half-century. Fifty years ago, every male American was entitled to what the sociologist R. W. Connell called a “patriarchal dividend” — a lifelong affirmative-action program for men.

The size of that dividend varied according to race and class, but all men could count on women’s being excluded from the most desirable jobs and promotions in their line of work, so the average male high school graduate earned more than the average female college graduate working the same hours. At home, the patriarchal dividend gave husbands the right to decide where the family would live and to make unilateral financial decisions. Male privilege even trumped female consent to sex, so marital rape was not a crime.

The curtailment of such male entitlements and the expansion of women’s legal and economic rights have transformed American life, but they have hardly produced a matriarchy. Indeed, in many arenas the progress of women has actually stalled over the past 15 years.

Let’s begin by determining which is “the richer sex.”

Continue reading at:  http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/30/opinion/sunday/the-myth-of-male-decline.html

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Women in science, you have nothing to fear but your own subconscious

From The Guardian UK:   http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/occams-corner/2012/sep/25/2

New research reinforces the idea that the accumulation of small, inherent biases against women in science can hinder their advancement

Posted by
Tuesday 25 September 2012

A few days ago I received an invitation to an afternoon of scientific lectures taking place at my university. The notice was issued by the head of the school, who would host, and consisted of four speakers. The event was to be chaired by a fifth person, and followed by a panel discussion with four additional professors. Ten people in total were taking part – and all of them were men.

I have always been fascinated by the skewed gender ratios at higher levels in the academic life sciences. Unlike disciplines such as physics, chemistry or engineering, where female students are thin on the ground, biology can claim no such shortage of raw professorial material. It is, in fact, positively burgeoning with young women. When I started my PhD in Seattle in 1990, our department was fifty-fifty for both PhD students and post-docs. In the UK, the number of women and men earning undergraduate degrees in the life sciences is also balanced, a trend that carries on into the PhD phase. When you go to international scientific conferences, the audiences are teeming with women – even if the podia usually are not. It is only later that the jaw-dropping attrition begins: the pool of women biologists is whittled away relentlessly until, by the end, only 15% of professors are female1. Numbers of PhDs awarded in the biological sciences have been largely gender balanced for many years now (over 40% from 1993, according to governmental figures from the United States2), so it is unlikely merely to be a lag at this point. In short, old men are being replaced with younger models.

It’s difficult to understand exactly why this happens: there are many possible explanations, and combinations of factors may also come into play. But decades of research in the social sciences, along with the numbers, suggest where not to look for answers. Are men simply better at science, and therefore outcompete women on a level playing field? The equal number of PhD students in biology (and the excellent grades girls achieve in high school) belie this idea, and the notion of female inferiority is rarely voiced these days (except by anonymous commenters in certain online venues).

Is it more personal? Biologists work long hours, and the desire to have a decent work/life balance may drive many women out of the profession of their own accord. The life sciences career path is rife with short-term contracts, which also don’t help those wanting to start a family. Meanwhile, a study published in 2010 showed that women scientists shoulder on average approximately twice as many household chores as their male partners, and also bore more childcare responsibilities. This might seem trivial, but it wouldn’t help women to compete, either3.

Continue reading at:  http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/occams-corner/2012/sep/25/2

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Mitt Romney: Great Expectations

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Spain and Greece Are Being Forced to Suffer to Save Germany From High Inflation

From Truth Out: http://truth-out.org/news/item/11868-spain-and-greece-are-being-forced-to-suffer-to-save-germany-from-high-inflation

By Dean Baker
Monday, 01 October 2012

People in eurozone countries are sleeping in the streets and eating out of dumpsters in increasing numbers due to the callous austerity demands of the now-infamous troika: the European Central Bank, the European Commission and the International Monetary Fund.

In both Greece and Spain, tens of thousands of people turned out in the streets for protests against the austerity measures being imposed by their governments. These measures are necessary in order for these governments to stay in the good graces of the troika that controls the rescue funds: the European Central Bank (ECB), the European Commission and the International Monetary Fund. The troika wants to see these countries hitting their budget deficit targets as a condition of being eligible to receive continued to support.

The problem with the troika’s agenda is that the budget cuts and tax increases they demand as a condition of continued support lead to a further contraction of the economies of Greece, Spain and other crisis countries. When the economies contract, tax collections fall and spending on transfers like unemployment insurance rise. This leads to larger deficits, causing the countries to again fall below the deficit targets.

While imposing austerity demands on the crisis countries might be great sport in Berlin and Brussels (you get to show how tough you are), it is ruining millions of lives in the crisis countries. The New York Times had an article on Spain last week in which it reported the country’s 25 percent unemployment rate has pushed many formerly middle-class people to sleeping in the streets and eating out of garbage cans. It reported that many restaurants and grocery stores are now putting locks on their dumpsters to keep people from eating from them. There are similar horror stories in the other crisis countries in the eurozone.

The absurdity of this suffering is that it is entirely preventable. If the ECB was determined as a matter of policy to promote a higher rate of wage growth and inflation in Germany, then it could facilitate the sort of growth that could bring the unemployment rates in Spain, Greece and elsewhere to more normal levels.

Continue reading at:    http://truth-out.org/news/item/11868-spain-and-greece-are-being-forced-to-suffer-to-save-germany-from-high-inflation

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Polar Obsession (National Geographic)

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50 months to avoid climate disaster – and a change is in the air

From The Guardian UK:  http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/blog/2012/sep/30/50-months-climate-change

At the halfway point to a climate gamble, 50 contributor ideas give just a taste of the creativity and innovation available to us

Posted by Andrew Simms
Sunday 30 September 2012

“One or other of us will have to go,” Oscar Wilde is supposed to have said on his deathbed to the hated wallpaper in his room. The perilous acceleration of Arctic ice loss, and the imminent threat of irreversible climate change poses a similar ultimatum to the economic system that is pushing us over the brink. For society’s sake I hope this time we redecorate.

Fortunately, many people are queuing up to propose better designs, rather than just cursing the interiors, as you can read about here.

Monday 1 October marks the halfway point in a 100-month countdown to a game of climate roulette.

On a very conservative estimate, 50 months from now, the dice become loaded against us in terms of keeping under a 2C temperature rise. This level matters because beyond it an environmental “domino effect” is likely to operate. In a volatile and unpredictable dynamic, things like melting ice, and the release of carbon from the planet’s surface are set to feed off each other, accelerating and reinforcing the warming effect.

The time frame follows an estimate of risk of rising greenhouse gas concentrations from the world’s leading authority on climate change, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), that passed a certain point, it will no longer be “likely” that we stay the right side of the line. Some consider even a 2C rise too much, but it is the limit that the EU and others have signed up to.

Extraordinarily, however, in spite of the stakes, the issue has receded from the political frontline like a wave shrinking down a beach. This could, though, merely be a prelude to it returning with a vengeance. Politicians may have turned their backs, others have not.

Continue reading at:  http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/blog/2012/sep/30/50-months-climate-change

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Big Pharma’s Newest Money-Making Scheme: Adult ADHD

From Alternet:  http://www.alternet.org/personal-health/big-pharmas-newest-money-making-scheme-adult-adhd

Who belongs to this “untapped” market? Just about anybody.

By Evelyn Pringle, Martha Rosenberg
September 27, 2012

 There is good news and bad news about attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) — that is, if you’re a drug company. The bad news is the kid market has peaked out with 4.5 million U.S. children now carrying the label. The good news is adult ADHD is an emerging market. In fact, adult ADHD, with symptoms similar to pediatric ADHD such as impulsivity, distractibility and difficulty paying attention, following instructions and meeting deadlines, is the next big thing.

“Immature adult market continues to offer greatest commercial potential,” read a 2008 press release to the pharmaceutical industry from the market research agency Datamonitor: “Estimated to be twice the size of the pediatric ADHD population, the highly prevalent, yet largely untapped, adult ADHD population continues to represent an attractive niche to target.”

So who might consider themselves part of this “untapped” market?

Like astrology in which anyone relates to Scorpio’s horoscope, almost everyone who takes an adult ADHD quiz will discover they are “sick.” To qualify as having attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder according to the most recent draft of the American Psychiatric Association’s DSM-5, soon to be published, you need to suffer from six or more of the following symptoms for at least six months.

Continue reading at:  http://www.alternet.org/personal-health/big-pharmas-newest-money-making-scheme-adult-adhd

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