Thursday, December 31, 2009

Is the Cotton Bowl Still the Cotton Bowl?

Lured away by visions of luxury suites and big screen video, the Cotton Bowl is playing in a domed stadium in Arlington, TX instead of it's namesake venue. Kind of strange and to me, very sad.

Football has always been a rougher sport that it's more genteel brethren like Baseball. It is played in the winter and fall and that has always been part of the game. Inclement weather made games less predictable and made fan loyalty a real statement of fortitude. Yes games were often played in snow, rain or sometimes blazing heat (after all it is Texas here) but the Cotton Bowl has always been played in the Cotton Bowl.

The venerable old stadium has gotten yet another face lift, additional seating and amenities. It's still in Fair Park, the crown jewel of the Dallas Park system and it's got history. I wonder if the fans will feel the same way about Jerry Jones hi-tech glitterdome?

Most people know, I am not big fan of football, but college ball is a different story. The games have more heart and the fans go through hell and high water to cheer their teams to victory. This year they will watch most of the action on a humongous TV screen and dine on snacks served in luxury suites instead of popcorn and cotton candy.

It just won't be the same.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Portrait of Dorian Gray - Hot Gay Movie?

This film was released back in September and I never saw it. I am trying to track down whether it was released in the US or just the UK, but this scene is wonderfully hot.

Cheney Has A Big Mouth & The White House Says So!

From the "it's about time file", the White House has issued a response to the criticism lodged by Dick Cheney about President Obama's measured response to the attempted airline bombing.
"There has been a lot of discussion online and in the mainstream media about our response to various critics of the President, specifically former Vice President Cheney, who have been coming out of the woodwork since the incident on Christmas Day. I think we all agree that there should be honest debate about these issues, but it is telling that Vice President Cheney and others seem to be more focused on criticizing the Administration than condemning the attackers."
The post on the White House blog goes on to say:
"...for seven years after 9/11, while our national security was overwhelmingly focused on Iraq – a country that had no al Qaeda presence before our invasion – Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda's leadership was able to set up camp in the border region of Pakistan and Afghanistan, where they continued to plot attacks against the United States. Meanwhile, al Qaeda also regenerated in places like Yemen and Somalia, establishing new safe-havens that have grown over a period of years. It was President Obama who finally implemented a strategy of winding down the war in Iraq, and actually focusing our resources on the war against al Qaeda..."
An then the best line in the whole post:
"To put it simply: this President is not interested in bellicose rhetoric, he is focused on action. Seven years of bellicose rhetoric failed to reduce the threat from al Qaeda and succeeded in dividing this country. And it seems strangely off-key now, at a time when our country is under attack, for the architect of those policies to be attacking the President."
Read the whole thing and you will probably feel like I did... it's about fucking time!

More States Allow First Cousins to Marry than Gays

While researching same sex marriage I found this disturbing map. It was generated by the New York Times and published in Chicago Now. The map shows a comparison of states where same-sex marriage is legal vs. states where you can marry your first cousin. Go figure!

I will have to apologize to my friend from Mississippi, looks like Ole' Miss is not a Cousin Marryin' state!

The Graying of Gays

OK, I am no spring chicken anymore, in fact I doubt I ever was, so the prospect of growing older concerns me. I know it is inevitable, but it is what will happen to me and my friends as we age that bothers me.

Oh I am well aware of the physical problems, but it's the prospect of geriatric care that is my real concern. A recent article in an Australian publication details the problems facing gays as they age. Discrimination and unreasonable treatment by nursing home staffs is certainly a biggie. I know there are speical facilities for LGBT people, but they are few and far between. The general public needs to understand the challenges of the aging sexual minorities.

Once upon a time, I was involved in a project to create a retirement community for leatherman and leatherwomen. Unfortunately, that project stalled when the dot com boom busted. I sincerely believe it is still a very necessary project and hope it can be resurrected before I am old enough to need it.

I will continue to write about this as I find out more, but in the mean time, I urge you to seriously think about what you will do when you get too old to care for yourself.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Canada Bans Carry-on Luggage

Well, if anything good has come from the latest terrorist attempt is that Canada is banning carry-on luggage with the exception of purses, laptops, medical devices and camera bags. This will ease long backups at screening checkpoints and inspections.

The good thing for us travelers is we don't have to put up with people trying to cram full sized suitcases into the overhead bins. People travel like refugees carrying so much junk they take forever to board. We also won't have to wait in line inside the airplanes while people try to unjam their bags.

I check my luggage because I don't like lugging it around inside the airport and hoisting it in and out of the plane. Now the airlines will also get the benefit of extra luggage fees, which they surely won't reject.

Battlestar Galactica Rhapsody

OK, I admit it I am a scifi geek. That's why this video cracks me up. The whole plot of the series condensed into a single video set to Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody. Great satire!

Full Body Scans and Other Fun Flying Events!

As I entered the passenger screening area of the Indianapolis Airport, I noticed devices I thought were the infamous "puffer" machines. Puffers or whiffers or whatever supposedly smell explosives on a person and wonder of wonder, they don't work very well. Still some airports spent millions to buy the fluky machines and now most sit idle because of problems.

Nope, these were not what I thought, instead these were the body scanner machines called "millimeter wave scanners" and essentially they are a virtual strip search. Images from these can see details including a person's gender and just about every detail of what is beneath your clothing.

I stepped into a booth and was told to spread my legs and hold my hands over my head. A device swung around me and then I was asked to do the same facing a different direction. It was painless, but mysterious in that no one told me what it was doing.

To my surprise not everyone was asked to go through this gadget and that is what bothers me. The TSA is playing an odds game. They figure a random screening will either deter or catch any suspected bad guys, but as has been shown over and over it doesn't work. The man with the bomb on the plane to Detroit when through screening both in Nigeria and the Netherlands and still managed to get explosives on the plane. Perhaps these body scanners would have seen the material he carried in his crotch, maybe not.

The whole point is, there is no such thing as absolute safety. If we are going to screen passengers, then screen them all, otherwise it's a coin toss. My partner and I wondered if a few good old-fashioned bomb sniffing dogs would have been more efficient. Probably so, but they don't make millions for technology companies and in the end I still think it's all about money.

Airports may end up looking like armed camps and passengers may be asked to submit to body cavity searches and still a clever terrorist will figure a way to disrupt things. They might simply switch to car bombs or something not related to transportation at all. The point is Terrorism is something we are going to have to live with unless someone figures a way to get at the root cause. That is not a simple solution and one that may have no answers.

Meanwhile, the Obama administrations statement that the system worked is silly, almost as silly as the Bush administration's assurances that we would defeat the terrorists by attacking Iraq.

This one is going to take real strategy and most likely its solution will not involve warfare and bluster, but negotiations and PR. The terrorists have already won, but we don't realize it. We are a nation that seems to be pretty much terrified, and unless we get over that and start dealing with our fears, you can count on more high tech gadgets that make our lives less enjoyable.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Terrorists Aided by New Media

Listening to CNN today as they ranted and conjectured about the failed incendiary bomb attempt, I realized that they are complicit in the plot. The 24 hour news cycle delights in these kinds of events. This one, in particular must have been disappointing to them, but they are making the best of it.

Disappointing in these respects. First it was a failure. They guy tried to light something chemically and it fizzled or just burned and ended up setting his leg on fire. Secondly, there was little panic in the air or on the ground. Passengers and the crew, from all reports and the crew acted quickly to put the fire out and restrain the guy. The passengers in the rear of the plane didn't really know what happened and from first interviews were not very upset. A few thought it was firecrackers and in fact some news reports called it fireworks.

CNN was not content with this and kept on pushing in heir interviews asking eyewitnesses over and over if they were terrified. They weren't. They asked if the plane was in a state of panic, it wasn't, but that didn't stop them from trying to put words in the passengers mouths.

Finally they found one susceptible woman who used the word terrified and that is the quote that is used over and over in the press today.

The news media aids and abets terrorists when they try to milk these events for ratings and sensationalism and it's time someone said so. Terrorists mission is to what? Terrorize! Without CNN and Fox and others marching a parade of alleged experts past their cameras giving conjecture about what if and maybe...well they create the very fear the terrorists want.

This was a failed attempt and a pretty bad one at that. There will be more of these and undoubtedly some may be successful, but if the news media continues to blow everything even remotely resembling terrorism into a major story we will continue to be a country paralyzed by fear.

The truth is terrorists will continue to attack us. The genie is out of the bottle and they know how easy it is for a determined individual or small group to wreak havoc, and with the help of the voracious appetite of the new media they will undoubtedly succeed beyond anything they could have expected.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Bill James - Mecklenburg County Bigot, and Proud of it!

When commissioner Vilma Leake had finished her impassioned story about her son who dies of AIDS during a debate on including same-sex partner benefits to county workers in Mecklenburg County, South Carolina, her colleague leaned over and asked, "Your son was a homo, really?"

The bigot who said this was Bill James, a county commissioner. It is amazing how insensitive and cruel people can be, particularly bigots like Bill James. People's capacity to be heartless amazes me.

Just so any of my readers from Mecklenburg County might wonder, this picture is what a bigot looks like.

Two Brave Gay Men Marry - in Uganda!

Somehow I am reminded of the Jews who amidst the cruelty of Nazi Germany managed to survive when I read about this story. Two men in Uganda, with the blessing of their parents were married in a traditional tribal ceremony. It sounds beautiful and more than that it is amazingly brave.

With the Anti-homosexuality laws there, which carry penalties including death for just being gay, these two and their families take a grave risk. Still the description in a blog I discovered bears reading.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Mexico City Recognizes Same-Sex Marriages

OK, USA, you are falling behind. Mexico City just announced it is recognizing same-sex marriages. DC, Mexico City...hey why not Dallas, TX?

Dubai Gay Scene? Not So Much.

Speaking of places not likely to show up in the Dameron guide, Dubai makes the list. This really great story of a visit to the Emirates "gay scene" takes a lot of the luster off this oil rich, but financially strapped oasis of excess.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Franken Does the Unthinkable - Acts Like a Democrat!

Wow! Al Franken acting like an actual Democrat and like a real Senator! If only he could get his colleagues to do the same!

His amendment prohibiting defense contractors from barring their employees from pursuing legal remedies for workplace crimes passed and was signed into law by President Obama. It's about time!

The GOP blocked this bill which allows an employee who is abused or threatened on the job to use the courts to seek remedies, just like any American can. The GOP doesn't like this because their Master, Halliburton/KBR will now be liable for a gang rape of a contractor by other employees.

Constituents got mad about this and let the GOP know in no uncertain terms they had better not block this bill and now it has become law! Way to go Senator Franken! Now get your fellow Democrats to grow a pair and actually act like the majority party not a bunch of sempering wimps!

Questions About Prostitution? Call David Vitter!

Christian Terrorists In UK

A group calling itself Christian Voice in the United Kingdon is advocating the same kinds of genocidal laws as Uganda for the UK. The movements spokesperson, Stephen Green, quotes a few carefully picked lines of scripture to justify the Uganda law and he advocates the same kind of penalty in England.

So what about terrorists? Well, someone who advocates killing people because of a few dusty and often mistranslated verses in a Holy Book, are exactly the kind of people we have been calling terrorists, at least as long as they have Arab names. Well, it's time we called a spade a space, this radical group is no better than the radical Islamic groups who would kill innocent people as part of their holy war. The only difference is that they are using the King James Bible and not the Holy Koran.

Green has been arrested before for distributing homophobic pamphlets at the Cardiff Mardi Gras celebration back in 2006. He sees the law in Uganda as just and the worlds condemnation of it as wrong.

"I hope and pray... that the Western homosexuals and abortionists who are trying to corrupt their youth will be sent a firm message to stop their wickedness."

Wickedness indeed!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Climate Change Treaty? What Climate Change Treaty?

Like the bandits in Treasure of the Sierra Madre, the political leaders have been sitting around the big smoky campfire of the worlds fossil fuel economy saying, "Climate change treaties? We don't got no climate change treaty. We don't need no stinkin' climate change treaty!" (that was paraphrased for all you Bogart purists)

The problem is it's not a joke. The industrialized countries of the world came together and after days of childish bickering failed to get a binding treaty hammered out. Essentially the whole thing was an exercise in finger pointing. "No you pollute more than us!"

Developing countries want cash to curb their emissions, the biggest polluters can't agree on how much to cut the emissions and the entire world looses!

Much of the rancor is about transparency. China, no surprise, want's non of it when it comes to monitoring actual carbon emission levels. Seeing China's track record this is no surprise. Try to find real data on defective products manufactured in won't.

At best this will be a political agreement that might set the stage for a future treaty. Very disappointing and sad for all of us mere humans.

Now, guess I better look into that beach front property in Waco.

O'Reilly Calls Laura Ingrahman "Blind Ideologue"

Well even Bill O'Reilly can see through this crap. Media Matters caught this nifty interchange as she scolds Bill for actually liking Michelle Obama.

Fox News - Subversive & Anti-American

I have just about had it with Fox News. It's time to call it like I see it with them. First of all, they are owned and controled by a foreign national. They are propogandistic arm of a political movement that seeks to destroy the American government. Let me ellaborate.

Though the followers of Fox are most likely American citizens who would be outraged if they saw a foreign country taking over say, our ports and shipping as Dubai World corp tri3ed to do a few years ago, they seem perfectly content to have a foreigner, Rupert Murdock, controlling the press in this country. Funny that double standard, or do they even know it?

Beyond that Fox is effectively and perhaps actually a propaganda arm of the far right wing. These people will tell you that they do not like government and feel almost every government program and office should be dismantled. That sounds pretty much like someone seeking to destroy the infrastructure of our government.

Lastly, Fox has been caught using fake photos and downright lying on poll numbers in recent months.

It all adds up to an organization that if looked at objectively could be considered anti-American and subversive.

Why am I bringing this up? Because Fox and it's parent company News Corporation are about to hold up the cable companies for ransom. They seek to drastically raise their rates for programming. So, I ask you, how much are you willing to pay to support this anti-American group? I would write or call your cable company and ask them to cancel the contracts with Fox or make it an optional pay-per-view service. And while you are at it tell them why!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Pepsi Says "No Thanks" To Super Bowl Ads.

Pepsi joins FedEx on the sidelines at this year's Super Bowl. Siting costs both companies have decided the exposure is not worth the exorbitant outlay of cash necessary for those golden Super Bowl seconds. Last year spots (30 seconds) went for an astounding $3 million a pop.

Pepsi has decided to spend its money doing something good for the country. They are offering $20 million in funds to "refresh" communities. What a concept! A big corporation actually giving back to the community?

I have to wonder if the Super Bowl hasn't gotten too expensive for the return in exposure. After all, Tivo has turned expensive ads into blurs as people pause the action and head for the John during commercial breaks.

Digital Magazine Concept Has Potential

The idea of replacing books with a Kindle has absolutely no appeal to me, however this conceptual piece for a possible future of magazines resonates with me a lot. I like magazines, but tossing them into the recycling bin seems wasteful and they do take up way too much room on my coffee table.

The work by Bonnier working with design agency BERG makes me want one NOW!

Mag+ (video prototype footage only) from Bonnier on Vimeo.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Microsoft Steals Code And Admits It!

For years folks in the geeky set have suspected that Microsoft appropriates code from other developers and finally someone has proven it. Juku, Microsoft's new micro-blogging software turns out to be an exact copy of Plurk. To be fair it turns out a Chinese vendor hired by Microsoft copied the Plurk code to build Juku.

On the good side, Microsoft has fessed up to the theft and has shut down Juku indefinitely. I suspect they will just buy Plurk instead, that's the Microsoft business model from what I can tell.
Now if they can just find a way to replace Vista on my computer with a good operating system I would be content.

This once again shows that the term "R&D" in China means "receive and duplicate".

Oral Roberts Dead at 91

Oral Roberts, for all his hell fire and brimstone, faith healing and mumbo jumbo did start a really nice hospital in Tulsa. Though the university that bears his name is suspect in my book, at least he tried to give back to the community....the straight community. Deep in his bible thumping heart, Oral was a homophobe tried and true. He also had some pretty strange views about sex, as he entones below in this priceless clip from YouTube posted by Queerty. May he rest in peace.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Senate Close to Health Care Reform - And If You Believe That...!

As the Holidays approach, the Senate has decided to gift wrap a turd and call it Health Care Reform. Bowing to the whiner from Connecticut, the Senate is gutting the Medicare extension that would cover folks like me 55+ and essentially have a bill that is "better than nothing".

Why do we always have to lower the bar when it comes to legislation? Perhaps because the Senate is so concerned with some kind of non-existent voter backlash that they would rather do "nothing" and call it "something". All so they can say the delivered on Health Care Reform. What they delivered was a steaming bag of crap, served up hot and burning on the doorsteps of American citizens.

Monday, December 14, 2009

One Tough Nut! S&M Pistachio Ad

This was way too cool not to share.

Write Harry Reid NOW! Tell Him to Keep Medicare Expansion in Health Care Bill

Harry Reid is starting to buckle to Joe Lieberman and he has to be convinced to stop. Politico reports that the White House is urging a deal with Lieberman which might involve dropping the extension of Medicare to 55+ which is one of the biggest parts of the bill.

Write, call, fax email Harry Reid and tell him to grow a pair and stop cratering to Joe Lieberman. Lieberman will only have another thing he wants after the Sentae drops the Medicare expansion. He is a deal breaker and thinks only of himself, so guess what? It's time the democrats get over Joe and start getting the right bill passed. F*%K Joe Lieberman, and pass this already hobbled reform bill. If the Senate doesn't stop cutting it there will be no reform except in the name of the bill.

Now get out there and start calling!

Joe Barton, Idiot Or A Liar ? Maybe Both.

Watching an interview with Joe Barton I was struck at the calm way he describes Global Warming as a net benefit to mankind. Yes, you heard me right, "Smokey" Joe Barton, Congressman from Texas believes or says he believes that since CO2 is something we create when we breathe it must be OK for the ecosystem. I guess he sees no problem with higher sea levels, increased desertification and worse. All not only predicted, but proven to be actually happening.

Watch this an tell me if you think he is just "kicked in the head" stupid or a very skilled liar.

10 Iranian Men Await Execution For Being Gay

It's not just African countries that abuse and imprison LGBT people. It comes as no surprise that Iran is holding 12 young men in prison for "sodomy". What's worse is they are awaiting execution!

Though Iran may look pretty civilized from pictures of it's street life, modern cars, neon signs and lots of internet cafes, its still in the Dark Ages as far as human rights. The dictatorship of the Supreme Leader teamed with President Ahmadinejad makes Iran a pretty bad spot for being gay.

According to an article in Gay City News:
The information about the ten youths currently under sentence of death for sodomy (lavaat in Persian) was released on November 25 in a joint appeal by the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC), the Iranian Queer Organization (IRQO), and COC of the Netherlands, the world’s oldest LGBT rights group, founded in 1946. The three organizations called on Western countries “with significant diplomatic and economic ties to Iran, including Germany, France, Canada, as well as the European Union, to pursue diplomatic efforts to cease these executions.”
The US already has problems with Iran and so diplomatic ties are sketchy at best. Seems like Uganda has plenty of company as far as "not ready for prime time" countries.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

President Obama Condemns Uganda Anti-Homosexuality Law!

I don't know if it was because of pressure from the LGBT community or because of genuine personal conviction, and I hope it is the latter, but the White House has issued a strong statement on the Uganda law I have been railing about for the last few weeks.
"The President strongly opposes efforts, such as the draft law pending in Uganda, that would criminalize homosexuality and move against the tide of history."
More here.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Uganda Moderates - A Little - On Anti-Homosexuality Bill

The proposed law which enraged LGBT activists and just about anyone interested in human rights in Uganda has been amended. The new Anti-Homosexuality Bill still makes it a crime to be LGBT but dropped the death penalty and life in prison portions of the proposed law.

It's not much of a step, but I suppose in Uganda even that is something. Still Uganda is not about to show up in the Bob Damron's Guide any time soon.

Gay Man Injured By Bouncer In Straight Bar

What was he thinking? A gay man walked into a nightclub in Queens New York and began dancing with his partner! The bouncer grabbed him and told him to stop and when he resisted he was beaten and tossed out. What was he thinking?

Maybe, just maybe he was thinking, "hey straight people go into gay bars and dance together all the time, so why not the reverse?"

Considering he is a well known New York gay activist, that is a pretty sure bet. Now the cops might just charge the bouncer with a hate crime and good for them! Equality is a two way street, and as long as an establishment is open to the public, there is absolutely no reason two men or two women can't dance together. Especially in New York City!

I would expect and frankly hope more of this happens, the dancing that is not the beating. We might not be able to get married, but we sure as hell can dance anywhere we please. Does that sound like a "fuck you"? Take it however you wish.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Glen Beck - "Abolish Medicare"

Most mornings I stroll through the mall attached to my office building and sit at a coffee shop to read and get my morning dose of caffeine. As with many malls in America, this one has its share of "mall walkers", mostly senior citizens out to get some exercise and indulge in this new social activity.

A group is always gathered at a table nearby where they discuss everything from grand kids to politics. From the conversations I have overheard, they are conservative and must listen to Glen Beck or Limbaugh from the quotes they spout.

I have to wonder how they would react to Glen Beck's latest tirade on Medicare.
"...why don’t you just abolish Medicare, because it’s so wildly corrupt and out of control. It’s so inefficient, it is so bad and there’s $47 billion in suspected wrong payments, okay, in Medicare."
I would make a bet that every one of those folks at that table are actually beneficiaries of Medicare and so are many of Becks loyal listeners.

In reality, Medicare is actually more efficient at providing health care and costs less than private plans.
Of course that is "reality" and I keep forgetting that conservatives create their own "reality". Go figure!

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Former GOP Lawmaker In S&M Scandal.

OK, when a politician says he is "leaving office to spend more time with his family", that always means caught with his hand in the cookie jar, either sexually or monetarily. Well the case of former Missouri Speaker of the House Rod Jetton ( is that a porn name or what?) gets even more fun. And did I say this loser was behind anti-gay legislative efforts in his home state?

Jetton was already facing corruption allegations, but the latest news of his sexual escapades is choice.

Seems Jetton was a bit kinky, and he and his girlfriend (not his wife, mind you) were planning an evening of rough sex. They even arranged a safe-word, "green balloon" but forgot the third part of the BDSM mantra, "Safe, Sane & Consensual". You see Rod brought along a couple of bottles of wine and after his gal pal indulged in a glass or two, she began "fading in and out".

After an evening of very rough sex which included choking and face slapping she was upset. He told her as he was leaving, you should have used your safe word. And there is the problem!

If you are drunk, or in this case perhaps drugged (there is a suspicion of that as well) you can't give consent and if your are "fading in and out" remembering "green balloons" is tantamount to calculus.
Of course that is making the assumption that Rod and his friend had any kind of education in basic BDSM safety and protocol. HAH! (Sorry that was unavoidable, fat chance a homophobic Republican would ever be out enough to get any kind of educaton in BDSM safety!)

Read all about it and let this be a lesson to any would be kinksters, you can't give consent if you are drunk!

Is The Senate Selling Out? Dropping Public Option.

Carefully parsing his words, Harry Reid, Senate Majority Leader said the Senate had reached a "broad agreement". That is double speak for throwing in the towel. Other Senators leaked the details to the press and the "broad agreement" includes dropping the public option on health care in favor of "non-profit" private insurance option overseen by the federal Office of Personnel Management. That is a similar deal to what federal employees get...similar is the key word.

One bright spot is that Medicare would be extended to people 55 and older.

My suspicion is that this alleged not for profit deal insures that insurers will get at least the cash flow if not the complete profits from this bill. Cash flow can be a profit center, especially if you are skilled at bilking every dime of interest and add-ons as insurance companies are.

What a lot of people forget is that one of the biggest insurance companies in the country started as a "not for profit" alternative to private health insurance. Blue Cross & Blue Shield was started prior to my birth back in the depression. It was a product of Baylor Hospital who wanted to find a way to provide insurance for working class folks like teachers and to make sure they got paid for their hospital services. It was not for profit up until the 1980's (thanks to the Regan-Bush years) when it became the big time money maker it is today.

So don't expect that non profit thing to last. Meanwhile, the another bright spot was the defeat of an anti-abortion amendment that would have denied coverage for abortion to people covered under the bill. That little gem was another attempt by the GOP to take away a woman's rights. I suspect most Republican men would like to see women's sufferage repealed. But that is another story.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Pepsi Says They Are Appalled By Beenie Man Concert

Apparently enough people wrote Pepsi about their sponsorship of a Beenie Man concert in Uganda that they issued the following statement.

"We are appalled by the performer’s lyrics and find them repugnant. Our bottling partner in Uganda was not aware of the performer's views and never would have sponsored the concert with this knowledge.... Moving forward, we will work closely with our bottling partners to be more vigilant about the events associated with our brands."

Good for Pepsi and good for all those who write and told the soft drink giant how outraged you were. For those who didn't know, Beenie Man is a Jamaican singer whose homophobic lyrics included exhortations to "slit the throats" of gay men.

Stem Cells To Kill HIV? Hope Or Hype?

This year I have posted at least three stories on dramatic advances in the fight against HIV/AIDS only to be crestfallen by the follow up that either indicated the stories were complete hype or the results when reanalyzed were inconclusive. Now comes an announcement by UCLA that they have a "proof of concept" around using genetically engineered stem cells as a vaccine against HIV.

Until I see a patient walking around completely cured of the virus, I can only say...blah, blah, blah! This sounds like hype to secure either funding or to make a first claim on a patent. Today, medical research seems to be about getting patentable drugs and processes rather than about curing disease. The big winners find a way to make previously deadly diseases "manageable". That is medical double speak for , not a cure, but still big profits.

Skeptical? You betcha! The "Living with HIV" industry is worth billions of dollars a year. A cure though it would be wonderful would only generate income until the disease was wiped out. I suspect if polio were an emerging epidemic today, there would be no vaccine, but lots of drugs to "manage" the disease.

Monday, December 07, 2009

McDonald's To Transgender Applicant - "We Don't Hire Faggots!"

Seems like some folks just can't handle transgendered people. The manager of a McDonald's in Florida left a message for a transgendered job applicant on their answering machine. The gist of it was this:
"It doesn't matter how many times you go down there: You will not get hired. We do not hire faggots."
Nice sentiment from the house of Ronald McDonald. Pam's House Blend has the recording.

Joe Lieberman - Self-Interest Over The Public Interest

Uganda Make Me Crazy!

After being pounded by emails and comments from Ugandans defending their Middle Ages bill which makes homosexuality a capital offense, now it looks like Pepsi is in the mix. The soft drink sponsored concerts by Beenie Man, the Jamaican singer whose lyrics endorse killing gay people.

At the Pepsi sponsored concert Beenie Man is reported to have song that gay men should have their throats slit. Now that doesn't sound like the "Pepsi Generation" I remember.

Write or call Pepsi and ask them why they are sponsoring a singer who endorses murder? Or you can sign the online petition here.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Porn Study Ends - No Porn Virgins Found!

Well that must have been a disappointing moment. Researchers at the University of Montreal failed to find a single male in his 20s who hadn't been exposed to porn. Back to the drawing board on that study!

So next time someone gives you grief for watching porn give them the link to this story. If they calim they have never done it, they most likely have their pants on fire, and not from the porn!

Fair Park Esplanade Fountains Dazzle This Weekend!

For those who know me, it's no surprise I am excited about the new fountains going into Fair Park. The installation was inspired by the Bellagio fountains in Las Vegas and will give the park's esplanade a wonderful focal piece. Additionally, the two statues often referred to as the "chorus" are back. These disappeared after the 1936 Centennial and have been lovingly recreated to grace the grand entrance of the park.

Below is a computer simulation of the lighting and fountains as they will look starting this weekend during the Holiday in the Park celebration.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

New York Senator Monserrate - Convicted Abuser Voted Against Gay Marriage

A nice little tidbit exposed on the Daily Show. Once again Jon Steward is a better reporter that CNN, FOX, and all the other networks combined. He even showed the surveillance footage used to convict him of assault against his girlfriend.

It's here in this segment of The Daily Show:

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
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Uganda Be Kidding Me!

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NY Democrats Who Voted Against Marriage Equality - Traitors!

OK so here are the names of the NY Senators who voted against Marriage Equality:
  • Addabbo
  • Aubertine
  • Diaz
  • Huntley
  • Kruger
  • Monserrate
  • Onorato
  • Stachowski
None should be reelected and any LGBT person or their allies should actively work to oust them in the primary. With Democrats like these they might as well be Republicans (but please don't elect more Republicans!)

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Bishop Says "Gays Won't Go The Heaven" - What About Pedophile Priests & The Church That Protects Them?

Well, the headline says it all. Cardinal Javier Lozano Barragan made the statement that homosexuals and transsexuals "will never enter the kingdom of heaven".

Then in a backhanded attempt to sound like a man of God he intoned,
"People are not born homosexual, they become homosexual, for different reasons: education issues or because they did not develop their own identity during adolescence. It may not be their fault, but acting against nature and the dignity of the human body is an insult to God."

Of course the good Cardinal like every other Catholic official remains mute on the systematic cover up by the church of the dozens of pedophile priests who have molested children in recent history. Ain't is swell that folks like him actually know how God thinks?

This Christmas, Pass The Red Kettle By

It's hard to miss the Salvation Army red kettles. They are outside most store and malls with a volunteer ringing a bell which I am sure drives retailers crazy.

I used to drop a dollar or two into the pot every time I passed one until I found out that the Salvation Army, actually a worldwide religious organization actively works to obstruct LGBT rights. If you thought all they did was rescue drunks, think again.

In Scotland the Salvation Army actively lobbied to prevent a repeal of anti-gay laws while at home a few years ago they worked in tandem with the Bush administration to remove any barriers to discrimination against LGBT people while still receiving government funds through the "faith biased" initiates program.

John Aravosis over at Americablog pulled this from their website last year regarding their Austrailian barnch:
"[Homosexual activity is] as rebellion against God's plan for the created order.... Homosexual practice, however, is, in the light of Scripture, clearly unacceptable. Such activity is chosen behaviour and is thus a matter of the will. It is therefore able to be directed or restrained in the same way heterosexual urges are controlled. Homosexual practice would render any person ineligible for full membership (soldiership) in the [Salvation] Army." - Salvation Army Australia Web site (emphasis added)
This year why not donate to your local Food Bank, or to the Human Rights Campaign Fund?

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Merry Christmas, You're Deported!

Ah, in the spirit of the season the Salvation Army and Houston Fire Department are asking for birth certificates or Social Security cards for the children they are handing out toys to. Yes, St. Nick now works for the IMS in Houston. Something you might want to remember when being asked to donate a toy or other item to these organizations.

Funny, I don't remember Jesus attaching strings to His miracles? Maybe Lou Dobbs is really Santa Clause?

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Whale Go Boom!

OK this is an old video, but I first saw it almost 40 years ago when it was first shot... of course the it was on 16mm film.

News reporter Paul Linnman of Portland, OR was sent to cover the story of a dead whale that washed up on shore. The parks department or some other rocket scientist figured they could blow the whale carcas up and the shore birds and crabs would take care of the pulverized remains.

The proceeded to pack the whale with a ton of dynamite and pushed the plunger. The story is below. Obviously no one thought this through and from the huge pieces of blubber falling and destroying cars parked 1/4 mile away, it clearly belongs in the "hey watch this" hall of fame.

Minaret Ban In Switzerland?

I can't imagine this happening here...note the irony in my voice.

Right wing voters in Switzerland look poised to win an election that will prohibit mosques from building minarets. Seems they don't want people thinking that radical Islam is spreading in their country. So they ban minarets?

Seems the right wing Swiss are as crazy as the GOP.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Dubai Awash In Debt - Asks For Hiatus On Repayments

The city state of Dubai, also known as what I call the "Architecture Factory" is putting on the brakes. Driven by immense debt incurred in it's insane building projects, like the worlds tallest skyscraper in the middle of the desert or the palm shaped islands, the emirate is over $60 billion in debt.
The call for a debt standstill for 6 month has shaken the world markets. Seems everyone is surprised that Dubai is in trouble. I have to wonder do these folks who are the power brokers in he world markets every do some basic arithmetic?

Sheik Mohammed has been spending like a drunk who thinks he won the lottery and now everyone else is figuring it out. Certainly hope he doesn't take the rest of the middle east down with him.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

GOP Rewriting History Again - No Terror Attacks Under Bush?

Sure feels like 1984 at least the fictional one. Dana Perino is trying to rewrite history in an interview where she claims there were no terrorist attacks under the Bush administration. Hummm? So what was 9/11 and that Anthrax thing?

Atlanta Police Sued By Eagle Patrons

Lambda Legal is representing 19 individuals in a lawsuit over the police raid on the Atlanta Eagle. From an interview in OnTop Magazine, Greg Nevins, supervising senior staff attorney in Lambda Legal's Southern Regional Office made this statement:

“The illegal activity going on in the Atlanta Eagle that night was committed by the APD (Atlanta Police Department).... If it is APD procedure for elderly men and wounded veterans to be thrown to the floor and harassed simply for being in a bar having a drink after work, then the APD should change its procedure."
During the raid, no one was allowed to leave the building and police forced 62 patrons to lay prone on the floor while they collected IDs. Anyone questioning their activity was told, “Don't speak until spoken to” or “Shut up.”

Maybe the patrons of the Rainbow Lounge should take note? The Fort Worth Police and TABC have clearly covered up their tracks with their lame investigations that found no wrongdoing, yet one of the men they detained was sent to the hospital with a brain injury. Where is the outrage?

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

An Ocean On Mars?

Last night my partner and I were looking at Google Mars. It's a wonderful program developed from the photographs taken by several Mars probes and includes details I had never seen before. We were postulating the features that are obviously due to erosion.

Today, I find this article which states that Mars once had a great ocean in its northern hemisphere and was a damp and rainy place. Pretty cool stuff. Especially when you consider how similar Mars and Earth are and that leads to the obvious question, was there life on Mars?

Hummm? Damp rainy, oceans, most likely a richer atmosphere? I suspect it is only a matter of time before we find the first Martian fossils.

I hope I am around to see that. I can only wonder how it will affect the theology of folks who cannot envision a God big enough for life on other worlds. Should be some interesting crises of faith.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Anti Gay Hate Crimes Rise Alarmingly

The latest report from the FBI shows that hate crimes against LGBT people are rising at a rate of nearly 11%. That is reason for alarm.

The statistics are a bit dusty, since these were from 2008, but I guess it takes time for law enforcement officials from around the country to compile them. Of the 1706 people who were targets of sexual orientation hate crimes here is the breakdown according to the FBI:
57.5 % were victims of an offender’s anti-male homosexual bias.
27.3 % were victims because of an anti-homosexual bias.
11.6 % were victims because of an anti-female homosexual bias.
2.0 % were victims because of an anti-heterosexual bias.
1.6 % were victims because of an anti-bisexual bias.
The breakdown reflects a couple of strange things, first the general anti-homosexual category seems odd anbd the lact of "transgendered" as a category is also troubling. With the new Byrd/Shepard Hate Crimes Act in place I suspect the next compilation will include trangendered victims as well.

DADT Hearings On Hold - Indefinitely

Senator Carl Levin, who in October said that Don't Ask Don't Tell would be brought up at a Senate hearing in November has apparently decided it is not a wise move and has pulled it off the table.

In an article on the blog sources are quoted as saying the issue will most likely be tucked into next years DOD appropriations bill. This confirms what Barney Frank intimated in an Advocate magazine interview last week.

Once again the Democrats are delaying LGBT issues. I have to wonder if they really plan to do anything or just delay hoping we will forget? Here's the deal, we won't forget!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Airport Blogging

Stuck at the airport so I am bored. Only bright spot was watching a crowd of Palin fans "boo" her as she left a book signingbefore signing all their books. Small comfort!

Jon Stewart & Mick Foley On Protecting Gay Rights

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Thursday, November 19, 2009

Virginia Foxx Rewrites History

The Republicans continue to try to rewrite history. If it wasn't bad enought that Fox News is using faked footage to imply broad support of the radical right agenda, now another Fox, this one in Congress is just plain telling big fat lies!

Representative Virginia Foxx (R-NC) told these whoppers:
"Actually, the GOP has been the leader in starting good environmental programs in this country.... Just as we were the people who passed the civil rights bills back in the ’60s without very much help from our colleagues across the aisle,”
Of course she forgets it was during the Kennedy/Johnson years that the Civil Rights Act was debated and passed. She also forgets that a good portion of southern Democrats might as well have been Republicans since they were about as ultra-conservative.

Fox and Foxx are full of crap, but that's just my opinion!

Fox Claims Disciplinary Action For Fake Footage Of Palin

In the category of "I'll believe it when I see it", Fox has said they will discipline the people responsible for the fake footage of alleged crowds at a Sarah Palin book signing. The actual footage was of a campaign rally last year.

This follows their other false footage from the anti-health care reform on Sean Hannity's show where they actually showed footage from the "teabagger" rally months previously. Fox seem unable to live in the real world, and like the GOP they continue to create their own reality. The problem is now the FCC may get involved for them disseminating false information.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Fox News Fakes More Footage!

Fox News, or as I call it the "all GOP Channel", has been fudging their footage again. This time in support of their favorite celebrity, Sarah Palin. Afternoon host Gregg Jarrett breathlessly spoke of the huge crowds Palin is drawing at her book signings and the showed footage of her behind a teleprompter waving at the crowd, holding McCain for President signs? Oh come now!

How stupid do you think the average Fox viewer is? Never mind that rhetorical question!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Palin Gets On My Nerves

Will someone call Sarah Palin and tell her that her 15 minutes of fame are up!

Her fiction filled book seems to be everywhere, yet I have met no one but pundits and fact checkers who have read it. She is all over television and frankly, she gives me a headache.

Her fake folksiness act no longer works and though she is an easy target for Tina Fey, I just wish she would go away.

Presidential material? Nobody in the GOP seriously thinks so unless they just want to put a smartly dressed air head in the White House....oh wait, they already did that with George W!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Water on the Moon!

Water on the MOON! Now that is big news.

The recent NASA mission that bombarded the lunar surface generated a plume including a significant amount of water vapor. This means our vision of the moon being a cold dry place is wrong and it could have implications for further exploration and for the search for life on other worlds as well.

Coney Island Redux

Last month, my partner and I paid a cold rainy visit to Coney Island to make a pilgrimage to Gargiulio's restaurant. It's a tradition for me to have a great Italian dinner at one of Coney Island's landmarks. The other landmarks are dwindling. Astroland, though never a great amusement park was still a remnant of what Coney Island used to be, is long gone. Luna Park and Steeplechase are dim memories for only the older crowd, and the last remnants of Coney are the Cyclone roller coaster, Wonderwheel Park and the Sideshow by the Seashore.

Today the city gave the aging fun-zone new hope. New York announced a 12.5 acre amusement park and major revival projects for the boardwalk and entertainment areas surrounding it. Read more here on Huffington Post.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

GOP Funds Abortions

No really! Their health insurance program for the Republican National Committee actually pays for abortions. The hypocritical votes of Republicans forcing a "no publicly funded abortions" clause in the health insurance reform is amazingly cynical.

Of course I should have expected no less.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Lou Dobbs - Buh Bye!

Tonight Lou Dobbs leaves CNN. I suspect in a few days he will show up on FOX. His once semi-coherent voice has become a shrill call for the right as he rants about illegal aliens and other far right diatribes.

Perhaps he will be happier somewhere else?

Veteran's Day

I always try to spend a few moments in meditation remembering the veterans who have gone to war in the name of our freedom. Though I have often disagreed with the government as to the need for the wars they wage, I never have lost respect for the men and women who fight them.

I also spend a little time praying for peace. I pray for a day when nations work out their problems at a negotiating table and not a battlefield. Want to get involved? Check out the Dallas Peace House.

AIG CEO Feels Restricted By Government Pay Czar

Spending the first two weeks on the job telecommuting from his villa on the Adriatic Sea where he oversees wine production in his vineyard, Robert Benmosche feels pinched. Apparently he resents government oversight of the company the US Taxpayers now own and wants more "freedom" to dole out bonuses to his execs.

My heart bleeds for him!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Mayan Calendars & UFOs

As the opening day of the new disaster movie 2012 nears, the internet is abuzz with pseudo-science! Talk of the end of the world abounds and yet it is nothing new. Back in 1844 a guy named William Miller claimed that Jesus was coming back and he knew the exact date. October 22, 1844!

Thousands of his wide eyed followers gathered for the second coming and waited with breathless anticipation. The next morning brought disappointment, yet Miller continued to wait for Jesus until his death several years later. That event "the great disappointment" actually gave birth to the Adventist movement and eventually the 7th Day Adventist Church.

Maybe a new church will form in 2013?

The Mayan calendar is segmented into cycles and one does end in 2012, but another begins immediately following that.

Other crackpots claim a planetary alignment will throw the earth off kilter or some such crap. According to NASA, don't hold your breath. Once again it's a load of hooey, but this time it's being exploited for profit by writers and movie makers instead of religious zealots.

So have fun at the movie and sleep well knowing that we have a much better chance of destroying ourselved with our weapons and carbon emissions than we do of an apocalypse in 2012.

Monday, November 09, 2009

Don't Ask, Don't Give

Interesting tactic launched by the folks at AmericaBlog and one that might get the attention of the White House. The Gay-TM is officially turned off until the President and his people begin prodding Congress to do the right thing and repeal DOMA, DADT and pass ENDA! So many acronyms!

Here is the petition.

Far Right Forms New Party In Florida

Conservatives have circled the wagons in Florida and are engaged in a circular firing squad. Not content with Charlie Crist who many of the right wing-nuts consider too liberal they have formed a new political party. The Tea Party!

This is pretty good news for progressives. If the GOP splits into right wing and further right wing, their power will be even further limited than it is now. My hope is that this kind of schism will relegate the Republicans and their ilk to a minor Southern party with little actual power. Now if we can only get the Democrats to understand how powerful their position is and start behaving like the majority party!

Joe Leiberman Still In The Pocket Of Health Insurance

How to put this tactfully? Sen. Joe Lieberman is a dick. yup that just about sums it up as kindly as I can put it. He has sworn to kill the health care bill so long as there is any chance of reasonable and affordable insurance for all Americans. He still clings to the delusion that private companies do it better.

Well, Joe, go take your Ayn Rand books and invisible hand of the market and stuff it. You know very well the insurance companies will do everything they can to gouge American's however and whenever they can. Just try jumping through the hoops to get any kind of procedure approved... oh that's right, you have GOVERNMENT HEALTH INSURANCE!

What a piece of work you are!

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Fundamentalists Stone Adulterer

Ah the delights of fundamentalism!

In Somalia, the country without a government, or at least one that works, a crowd of fundamentalists stoned an adulterer to death. The woman he impregnated will be killed once she has her baby. I guess "life is sacred" to these Muslim fundamentalists. In truth, these might as well be Christian fundamentalists. If they really believe the Bible is inerrant, there should be more stoning and public executions. (Deut. 22:22)

The whole fundamentalist problem is an inability to do critical thinking and a willingness to consider anything written as truth. So for the fundamentalists reading this, it is written:

"Thou shalt not inflict thine own ignorance upon others."

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Stupid Torture Gadget - As Seen On TV!

It's no secret that I am kinky, but even I have to wonder at the genius of this product. It forces the wearer to be humiliated but to perform an uncomfortable exercise that borders on torture. And to think I try to come up with SM ideas when there are things like this being sold on QVC!

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Democrat Wins NY Seat Held For 150 Years By GOP

While some pundits are making hay with the GOP wins in New Jersey and Virginia gubinatorial races, the New York District that has been staunchly Republican for 150 years elected a Democrat to the US House. The race, breathlessly watched by conservatives because of it's ultra right wing candidate, Doug Hoffman, was won by Democrat Bill Owens. There were two conservatives running, one moderate and the other far right and their campaigns effectively split the vote to give Owens the win.

So while a couple of governors are now Republican, the US House gains another Democrat. Sounds like a toss up to me, and far from some kind of plebicite on President Obama as some media mavins would have you believe.

Maine Marriage Fails By Thin Margin

Score another win for bigotry and the Mormon and Catholic Church! Voters in Maine rejected the Same-Sex Marriage law spurred on by church funded campaigns. The margin of victory was very thin, but enough for a defeat, making Maine the second state to take away rights from LGBT people.

If there was any positive spin to be had it was that the margins were razor thin, roughly 51.8% to 48.2%

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Ohio Rapist May Be Murderer - Met Victims Online!

The home of a convicted sex criminal in Cleveland, Ohio continues to yield bodies of victims. What's worse is the stench from the bodies had been reported for a long time yet nothing was done. Located next to a building where they made sausage, authorities suspected it was the meat processing that was the culprit.

Now as body after body is pulled form crawl space and dug up in the back yard the truth is coming to light. It's a shocking story and one that has a twist people in the BDSM/Leather community need to take heed.

It is looking like the man who is accused of the crimes may have met some of his victims on

Let that one sink in for a while!

Anonymous hook ups are a bad idea, and yet people in our community still persist in making them. Word to the wise: if you can't verrify who the person is, and what reputation they have, DON'T HOOK UP!

Real Free Credit Report! The FTC Flexes Its Creative Muscles

Those ads with the singing slackers whose credit got screwed up have always seemed a bit strange to me. I checked out the alleged "free" report and the catch is that you have to sign up for a paid service to get the "free" report.

Now the FTC, which apparently has finally woken from it's Bush Era induced slumber has taken steps to fight back. You see, an annual credit report has been free for some time. Now they are staging their own commercials to promote the real free service and debunk the fake ones. Enjoy!

Friday, October 30, 2009

"This Is It" Really Is!

I just got back from seeing Michael Jackson's "This Is It" and I am exhausted. What an emotional rollercoaster of a film. The music and dancing, even though it was rehersal was thrilling. The concert, if it had come to fruition would have been legendary. That was part of the emotional rollercoaster. The great genius of Jackson and his crew shines through and though I was exhillirated by the performances, I was sadded=ned to know it would never be seen on stage...had it not been for this film.

I first though they made the film just to recoup some of the money the producers of the concert lost when Jackson died, but after seeing it, I get the feeling they felt an obligation. An oblgation to Jackson and his art that this concert highlighted. The special effects were amazig just in the rehersal, I can't imagine what they would have been like on stage in London.

Not to spiol things but Jackson's entrance in the newly revitalized Thriller as he crawled out of a giant mechanical spider was genius. There is that word again!

If you get a chance to see this film, don't pss it up. It really is "It"!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Senate Adds $50 Million For "Abstenince Only" Sex Education

"Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

That bumper sticker wisdom is something I hear in 12 step meetings and though it has been overused, it is true. Pity the Senate never heard it!

Yes the Senate...same group who brought you a watered down health care reform bill has approved a little known amendment by Orin Hatch (Utah Republican). This little gem reinstates $50 million in funding for "abstinence only" sex education.

Let me repeat, $50 million in funding for "abstinence only" sex education!

Study after study shows that this approach is discredited and ineffective. In fact under this kind of alleged sex education pregnancy rates increase! So how crazy is that?

Well when you are lobbied by a big time Washington firm funded by a pro-life catholic millionaire, I guess it makes sense. After all, Washington is bought and sold by lobby firms so why should the health of our kids be any roadblock to a personal agenda of a rich guy?

Write and call and visit your Senator and/or Representative and tell them to stop the insanity.

Monday, October 26, 2009

The GAP Goes Anorexic

Walking by the GAP this morning I saw their visual merchandise people putting up a new window display. This isn't anything unusual since they change these displays about every month, but the image today was startling. There was a larger than life photo of what I assume was a woman wearing ultra tight jeans and a bare midriff top. Her face looked normal enough but her body was impossibly thin.

Like Calvin Klein, the GAP has decided to Photoshop inches off their models to make them look like Auschwitz survivors. If this woman is really as thin as she appears in the photo, she would be too frail to stand, and her face is bigger than her waist!

I understand fashion marketing. Clothes that are designed impossibly thin on paper, look better on tall thin models. The problem is, these artificially reduced bodies hold up impossible ideals for people. Worse still, the whole "skinny look" looks good on only a tiny fraction of men and women, on the rest it just looks ludicrous.

American's as a whole are overweight, and I am no exception, but to design clothes for only emaciated bulimics is silly. I guess the fashion industry is so drunk on their own Kool-Aid that they forget what actually looks good on the street.

How long will it be until the GAP has to fess up to it's deceptive window display and apologize like Ralph Lauren. Of course he did fire the model he Photoshopped for being too fat. She was a size 4!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Repeal Of DADT On Agenda For November!

The wheels of the Gods grind exceedingly slow...but it looks like the Senate Armed Services Committee will take up the repeal of "Don't Ask Don't Tell in November". A spokeswoman for committee chairman Carl Levin confirmed this to CNN on Friday. Maybe this will be the beginnings of real change?

Friday, October 23, 2009

New Site Tells Story Of Atlanta Eagle Raid

"On September 10, 2009, a SWAT-team of Atlanta police officers detained and searched over 60 people without a warrant, probable cause, or even reasonable suspicion of any criminal activity, just because they were patrons at a gay bar called the Atlanta Eagle."
Thus begins the web site put online to educate the LGBT public about the raid on the Atlanta Eagle. Check it out and get angry...with the authorities and the police!

Microsoft Launches Retail Store - Apple Store Knock-off?

Remember when Microsoft mimicked the Macintosh Graphical User Interface and called it Windows? Well now they have knocked-off the Apple Store and called it the Microsoft Store. Window dressing!

The new store opened in Arizona to much brouhaha from Microsoft and immediately underwhelmed patrons. The new store was even had a former Apple Store designer on the team.

As Windows 7 makes it emergence, allegedly a product that will "fix" all the problems of Windows Vista, a product that was supposed to "enhance" the features of XP, the new store marks Microsoft's first move into the retail world. Let's hope the next version of the store is something original and not just a parody of the real deal at Apple.

I wonder if they will shut down at random times and completely rearrange the store eliminating popular products and changing the names of others?

Hate Crimes Bill Finally Passes And Includes LGBT Protections!

Attached to a defense appropriation bill, the Matthew Shepard-James Byrd Hate Crimes Prevention Act is finally law or at least will be when President Obama signs it today.

This long awaited step toward full rights and protections for all people has languished in Congress for far too long. The bill includes race, ethnicity, religion, sex, sexual orientation and gender identity! It was finally attached to a must-pass defense spending bill as a tactic to push it through. Though it has nothing to do with defense, this tactic is a common one to get bills passed.

Of course the far-right is pissed. They are claiming it will stifle freedom of religion? really? The law only covers actions not speech, so unless your religion is one that actively participates in hate crimes you've got nothing to worry about. That might make some folks nervous who are militant white supremacists or neo-nazis but for everyone else it's not going to affect us.

What it will do is make hate crimes easie to prosecute at a federal level and that is a good thing.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

GOP Tries Lying Again, This Time On Twitter!

So the GOP is not content to be a marginalized party of racists and hate mongers, now they are trying to defraud the American public by creating fake accounts on Twitter and masquerading as pissed off Democrats. Twitter caught wind of the scam and shut them down.

33 fake accounts created by Connecticut Republicans meant to impersonate Democratic state representatives have been pulled from the micro-blogging site. Now I guess the GOP will have to try to impersonate real public servants or maybe just get more in step with America as a whole and stop acting like spoiled kids on the playground.

I doubt it!

Sen. Dan Inouye Favors Rape!

Yes, now a Democrat has moved toward the Pro Rape camp and seems to be wanting to remove the Franken amendment from the Defense Appropriation Bill. That is the amendment that would alloy victims of "gang Rape" to sue their employers when they were raped on the job. Specifically it's about Halliburton, no surprise there.

Seems Senator Inouye has been getting pounded by defense lobbyists who are trying to convince him that allowing employees who were raped on the job to sue would hurt their contracts. Good, they should provide adiquate security to insure that doesn't happen. Every other company in America would be liable for that kind of thing, but because Halliburton is a defense contractor they get a pass to put a "don't sue us" clause in their contract for employees.

So, I encourage you to write the Senator from Hawaii about this or call his office and encourage him to defend American's right to a safe workplace and vote for the Franken Amendment.

Pat Robertson Thinks Gays Want To Destroy Marriage...And Other Fantasies

Sometimes Pat Robertson can be downright funny, but most of the time he is annoying and occasionally infuriating. After watching this clip, I am not sure whether to be mad or laugh. Pat on his hour of propaganda, the 700 Club has determined that gays are not out to gain equal rights such as marriage, but to destroy marriage completely.

News Alert for Pat: Heterosexuals have done a pretty good job of that already! Want to save marriage, outlaw divorce! Yeah right.

Watch this clip and let me know whether you laughed or threw a brick at your computer.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

South Pacific On Broadway - What A Show!

Last week my partner and I spent a few days in New York City after the National Equality March. We were lucky to get tickets for the revival of South Pacific, the Rogers and Hammerstein classic about love, war and racial prejudice set on a military base.

The venue of the Vivian Beaumont Theater at Lincoln Center is an amazing place to see this big a production. The theater is a thrust stage with seating on three sides, more suited to intimate plays than big musicals, yet this production uses hat intimacy to its advantage.

Actors who might normally play their roles more broadly on a big theater stage can lend more subtle touches in the Beaumont and it works well in this show. The orchestra, a big ensemble for such a small venue was lush and forceful without overwhelming the action on the stage.

For me Paulo Szot in the role of Emile de Becque was a revelation. I had always associated the role with Rossano Brazzi in the 1950s movie of the show, but Szot gives de Becque character real depth. His singing brought me to tears along with much of the audience. What a telant!

Kelli O'Hara as Nelly Forbush is spot on with her accent, so much that my partner thought she was actually from Arkansas. An this girl can sing!

Finally, Danny Burstein was a real audience favorite as Luther Billis. The Billis character has several great songs, and a real chance to show the actors comic talents in the "Honey Bun" drag number.

This South Pacific is timeless, and if you get a chance to see it, don't pass it up.

Pope Recruits Homophobic Anglicans

In a direct response to the inclusion of LGBT people in the Anglican church, the Pope has made it easier for Anglicans to convert to Catholicism. According to a New York Times article:
Pope Benedict XVI approved a new church provision that will allow Anglicans to join the Catholic Church while maintaining many of their distinctive spiritual and liturgical traditions, including having married priests.
His invite is designed to gather the homophobic members of the Anglican church who have broken away from the Episcopal Church in America after the ordination of openly gay priests and Bishop Gene Robinson.

So much for God's grace, love and inclusion in the Catholic Church!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Frail & Emaciated - The Latest Fashion?

By the look of the runway models at the recent Fashion Week in New York you would have thought the country was suffering from Cholera. The frail and sickly looking twigs that pass for models border on the disgusting. Ralph Lauren even recently retouched a photo to make his model look even thinner!

At a time when Americans are larger than ever, designers are making clothes for people suffering from starvation. Come on guys, I know you really hate the women you design for but please don't try to kill them!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Is FOX Real News? Is Pro-Wrestling Real?

Finally the administration is telling the truth and it's high time the media listened. Here is the deal:

FOX News is simply a propaganda arm of the Republican Party.

There are no "ifs", "ands" or "buts" about this and anyone who hase even half paid attention knows this. Now, it's time the real media stopped taking their lead from FOX and started doing their job. Reporting the news.

Listen to NPR some day or the BBC and you will hear real news. They have no agenda, they try to be objective and they spend time investigation stories instead of just reading press releases or having alleged news shows which feature talking heads spouting party lines.

I am so friggin' tired of a reporter simply saying "he said - she said" instead of finding the facts behind the talking oints I want to scream. Some pundit saying "blah-blah" is not news, it is one man's opinion and nothing more. Try actually finding the facts and when anyone, including politicians of eaither party lie, call them on it! For God's sake that is one reason why we have freedom of the press, so start exercising it!

Oh yea, and Pro Wrestling? Well it's a wonderful athletic display of strength and tumbling abilities but a real contest? Please. Years ago during the heydays of World Class Championship Wrestling at the Sportatorium in Dallas, I used to run a ringside camera for the television feed. The director always knew when to call for us to get a shot of an "unexpected" move. Nuff said.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Balloon Boy - Or Not!

I go out of town for a few days and don't watch TV and what do I miss? BALLOON BOY!

I caught a glimpse of it in J&R Music World in New York. For the uninitiated, J&R is a temple to anything electronic. A block long complex of stores that have everything imaginable that needs batteries or plugs into the wall.

Well, while waiting for a clerk at J&R I saw an image on the wall-sized Plasma TV that looked a lot like a stunt my partner and I tried several years ago. We constructed a bunch of balloons with glow sticks attached to release in the dark hoping to spark a little talk-radio buzz about UFOs. We got nada! Not a peep by anyone even though the ascending glows looked pretty cool.

Well here was a monster sized version, except some guy actually made a Mylar flying saucer balloon and the press was all over it. Not as a UFO but because somebody somewhere said a kid was in it. For hours the 24 hour news junkies followed pictures of the obviously unmanned or un-kidded balloon drifted aimlessly over Colorado.

Meanwhile lots of "real" news was happening but oh noooo, we had to watch endless pictures of a flimsy Mylar balloon and hear announcers ramble ad nauseam about how they really didn't know anything about it.

Turns out there was no kid on board and now the Sheriff is trying to drum up charges because he is so embarrassed he was wasting time following a damned balloon.

Ain't TV grand!