Saturday, April 10, 2010

Watersports Baby Doll Toy?

Meinhardt Raabe - Munchkin, Little Oscar, Dies

"As Coroner I must aver, I thoroughly examined her. And she's not only merely dead, she's really most sincerely dead!"

That line just about every kid who grew up in America can recite from the 1938 film classic, The Wizard of Oz and just saying it I can picture the little man who played the coroner, but I never knew his name.

Meinhardt Raabe was the actor who delivered that classic line, and he died yesterday at 94.  Raabe was uncredited in the film as were most of the little people referred to as "Singer's Midgets" since many came from that performance group.  He never mad another film, but went on to become "Little Oscar" for the Oscar Mayer meat company and traveled across the country in the famous "Wienermobile", a giant hot dog shaped car.

I remember meeting him as a child and receiving a Wiener Whistle from him.  Unfortunately that s long gone.

Rest in peace Mr. Coroner.

Mike Huckabee Is Still A Backwoods Bigot

Mike Huckabee, former governor of Arkansas made this statement about why he believes LGBT people shouldn't be able to marry.
“You don’t go ahead and accommodate every behavioral pattern that is against the ideal,” he said of same-sex marriage. “That would be like saying, well, there are a lot of people who like to use drugs, so let’s go ahead and accommodate those who want who use drugs. There are some people who believe in incest, so we should accommodate them.”

OK cheap shot, but isn't it still legal in Arkansas to call your wife "sister" after you marry her?

On the serious side, comparing gay people to drug users is down right offensive and  just plain ignorant.  Of course as I said he is from Arkansas!  Ba da bing!

Friday, April 09, 2010

Pope Implicated in Another Sex Abuse Cover-up

The list of these just keeps getting longer and rather than admit that then Cardinal Ratzinger did indeed help to keep child abusers in the priesthood, the Vatican just keeps quibbling.

I had an NPR Driveway Moment his evening listening to the story of a California priest who actually asked to be defrocked and was refused by the Vatican.  This started in 1981 and after multiple letters and near pleading with the Vatican's doctrinal unit, run by Ratzinger, he was granted the move in 1987.  Several letters show Ratzinger denied the defrocking for the "good of the universal Church".

The Guardian has much much more.

Cheerleaders Play "Watersports" Prank - Pee Flavored Drinks

Even the kinkiest among us knows you don't do this without consent.  A group of cheerleaders in Saginaw, Texas decided it would be funny to flavor their teammates drinks with pee.  So they aquired and/or produced the urine and added it to their fellow cheerleader's soft drinks.  When the victims of the prank said the drinks tasted funny, the perpetrators said it was from candy they put in the drinks.

Later they confessed it was piss, and things got ugly from that point on.

As a health and safety disclaimer, though urine from a healthy person is relatively safe, diseases can be carried in it. So far HIV has not been shown to be transmitted through urine, but hepatitis can be.  It's the kind of risk you don't want to spring on someone as a joke.

More Pollen Than Ever - No Wonder I am Miserable

A university of Colorado clinician, Dr. William Storms says, "It's the worst I've seen in 10 years."

Sniff.  Well by the trash can full of tissues (no snide comments either) I can assure the good doctor he is right.

From Colorado to Texas pollen levels are at record highs and if you are like me you are suffering.  I could tell something was up by the thin film of yellow on my normally red car.  Thick with visible pollen.

Traditional Values Coalition - Lying About ENDA - Is Lying a Traditional Value?

As the prospect of ENDA becomming a real law nears, the far right has kicked its lie machine into overdrive. 

The delightful folks over at the Traditional Values Coalition are flat out lying about ENDA and they are doing it using the American Psychiatric Association's DSM 4.  For those  who don't know, that is a manual that describes in detail all the varieties of behavior and mental disorders as a way of classifying them for accurate diagnosis.  Unfortunately, a lot of folks who have no business using this book  cherry pick phrases and twist them to their own ends.

Just like the fundamentalists who read only the parts of the Bible that they like, the Traditional Values Coalition has taken parts of the DSM and is using them out of context.  Pam's House Blend has the story.

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Qatar Diplomat Causes Bomb Scare And Gets Away With It

Here's a great idea.  Take that Qatar Diplomat who joked with Air Marshals about lighting his shoes on fire when he was arrested for trying to smoke in the bathroom on an airplane, and deport his ass via Somalia.

This joker was on his way to visit...wait for Al Qaeda prisoner in the Denver Super Max prison!  Where has he been for the past 9 years?  Doesn't he remember the shoe bomber, 9/11 or just about anything that has gone on involving terrorists of Middle Eastern extraction?  And because he has diplomatic imunity we can't prosecute him! If I had done that, I would be locked up so tight I couldn't sweat without permission from the guards, but this joker goes free!  Qatar has some 'splainin to do!

Fox News Poll Shows "Tea Baggers" Viewed Less Favorable Than IRS!

To listen to Fox, and God save you if you have the time or inclination to do that, you'd think the Tea Baggers were a HUGH movement sweeping the country by storm.  Well, the latest Fox poll shows that the Tea Baggers are not even as popular as the IRS.  Enjoy!

Malcolm McLaren - "Inventor of Punk Rock" - Dies at 64

Malcolm McLaren, impresario, producer and composer died at 64.  He was a former manager of the Sex Pistols in his early career and later began a solo career as a recoding artist and composer.  He once claimed to have been the inventor of punk rock.

I fondly remember his album Duck Rock with the catchy hit single Buffalo Gals.  He also twisted some classical music into thumping disco hots including Madame Butterfly and Carmen.

He was a great creative force and his music and inventiveness will be missed.

DA Wants to Arrest Teachers for State Mandated Sex Education

What do you do when you try to follow a state law and then the DA tells you if you comply he will arrest you?

Say what?

Well that is the case in Wisconsin where the new Healthy Youth Act instructs schools that offer age appropriate sex education to include the use of contraceptives in the lessons.  In other words how to put on a condom, etc.  It's pretty basic sex ed stuff and parents have the option of pulling their kids out of the class if they see fit.

Here is where the DA (DIstrict Attorney, not dumb ass, but you be the judge) comes in.  Juneau County District Attorney Scott Southworth fired off a letter to the county's school districts threatening them with prosecution if they held the classes.  Southworth threatened to charge the teachers with "misdemeanor or felony delinquency of a minor".

In his view telling kids how to prevent pregnancy and disease is a crime. "Moreover, the teacher could be charged with this crime even if the child does not actually engage in the criminal behavior," Southworth added.

So this zealot for whatever reason has decided that a teacher informing kids who might be sexually active about contraception would be encouraging delenquency and guilty of a sex crime.  Oh Puleeze!

In study after study "abstenence only" sex education has been shown to be ineffetive and downright useless at preventing disease and unwanted pregnancies.  Why would a DA do this?  My guess is he has strong religious views that are driving him and he is seeking reelection in a fundamentalist district. Or, he is just plain kicked-in-the-head-stupid.  My guess is the later.

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Newt Gingrich Lying Again!

Apparently if your are a Republican politician, you just can't stop lying.  Adulterer and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich decided the Death Panel lie wasn't working any more so now he has started another.  This time he warns of "16,000 IRS agents" who will constitute "a health Gestapo".  Wow, specific numbers?  Must be true? 

Hardly! says any action by the IRS will probably be handing out tax credits made possible by the new bill. 

Sometimes the BIG LIE is about all the GOP has left.  Watch for this whopper to be repeated over and over again hoping it will stick.  What can you do?  Tell the truth, over and over again. 

Another Right Wing Wacko Arrested for Making Death Threats

I have to wonder what Charles Allen Wilson expected when he left a profanity laced threat on Senator Patty Murry's voice mail?

When you call someone up leaves the cheery recording, "there's a target on your back only takes one piece of lead. Kill the (expletive) senator!" it's not a joke. That is a direct death threat and no mater how you parse it it's wrong.

What's worse, the guy who left it had a blocked number. Luckily the FBI wasn't deterred and found the caller and confirmed his threat by posing as an anti-health care reformer. Sure enough he repeated the threat and told the caller he had a gun and would use it.

This kind of anger is being stirred up by the Tea Baggers and their media friends at Fox. They sit back like kids on a playground goading others into a fight. Once the actual violence begins they shake their heads and wonder how it got this far.

Well, I know it seems like a pat answer, but in this case it's true, blame the media.

Specifically, Fox and the right wing noise machine have got their minions so scared that they would resort to violence to stop Congress from passing a bill that will bring them better and more affordable medical care. Go figure?

I have read much of the bill and it is far from socialized medicine, in fact it is a boon to insurance companies. Why the vehemence? That comes from the GOP and the right who is really angry that they lost the election, and they have diverted that anger into anything the President wants. It's all about race people, if you don't believe it listen to the "protesters" at the Tea Bagger rallies and their name calling and racial epithets.

The calls of "we want our country back" really mean "we don't like the fact that we lost" and "we don't want a black man in the White House". The level of anger is not over health care reform it's over a bunch of white people who are incensed that things in this country have changed and racial prejudice is dying. The Tea Party is the last gasp of racism, fighting with all its strength to stay alive.

Luckily, the tide of history is sweeping over these folks and they will soon fade away. They won't go quietly, and until they either learn to live with a more egalitarian power structure or they shrink back into the backwoods, they will be noisy. They will also bear watching.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Censored Moments in Cinema History

The Dallas Voice posted this just a few minutes ago.  The clips are wonderful and the idea that these were once considered scandalous amazes me.  I am reminded of the reel of film that is shown at the end of Cinema Paradiso of the great kisses that were excised from films in a small Italian town. Thanks to Tammye Nash for finding this clip.

Here is that scene from Cinema Paradiso. Life imitates art or vice versa?

The Real English Patient May Have Been Gay!

So I guess the "chick flick" the English Patient will have to be reshot, but this time with a decidedly non-chick angle. According to letters discovered by the Heinrich Barth Institute for African Studies in Cologne, the hero of the story in real-life, Count Laszlo de Almásy had a male lover. In fact they say he might have had several.

So instead of being a womanizer as in the film, he was a prolific gay lover and his correspondence shows he might have even been involved with royalty. The names of several Egyptian princes pop up in them.

According to a report in "the correspondences also suggest that Almásy died of amoebic dysentery in 1951 and not of a morphine overdose, as believed until now."

That will be some rewrite!

Standing Cat - Video

OK, it's silly but cute.  This cat standing to see out a window looks like a person, almost!

California Scientist May Have Proof of a Parallel Universe

I love physics, more specifically Quantum Physics.  Though I will never be able to "grock" the formulas and complex mathematics, I get the basic premise and  really love the whole "spooky action at a distance" that Einstein described.

When you begin to delve into the quanta, the smallest most basic stuff of reality, things get very fuzzy, in fact they look down right fictional.  That's why the latest experiment by Andrew Cleland at the University of California, Santa Barbara is so fascinating. In his experiment he was able to show that an object in this universe might be connected or entangled with a similar object in a parallel universe.

Got you attention now, don't I?

What the scientist did was seemingly simple.  He took an ultra tiny metal "paddle" and cooled it to very low temperatures and then under a vacuum and very controlled conditions, he "plucked it" causing it to vibrate.  What was observed was not just the paddle vibrating, but simultaneously NOT vibrating.  Now that is strange and yet it is what one would expect from an object in both universes at the same time.

"When you observe something in one state, one theory is it split the universe into two parts," Cleland told  That is something physicists have been postulating for a while, but it was only at the subatomic level.  Now this may be evidence that back up here in the big world things may be equally as spooky.

This one bears watching.

Monday, April 05, 2010

Phelps Son Speaks Out Against Gay-Hating Father

If you have never been to, don't bother.  It will only make you angry or want to puke or both. That notorious website is the home of Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka, Kansas.  It is the handiwork of Fred Phelps and his family who regularly show up at funerals of gays, and service members to parade with their inflammatory signs.

To say they are inflammatory is putting it mildly.  Their demonstrations often are the source of angry and sometimes violent backlashes by people enraged at the rhetoric used by the Phelps cult.

Now Phleps estranged son comes forward to talk about the "church" and his less than perfect family life.  Nate Phelps now lives in British Columbia and drives a cab.  He and his family are happy to be away from his radical father and his angry messages.

In an interview for Vision TV, Phelps tells of his father abusing his mother and constantly haranguing his children with threats of hell.  Sounds like Nate lived in a hell for quite a while before he left for good in 1980.

More here at the Gazette.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Happy Easter

Easter is here, and with it come the thousands of once-a-year Christians.  Our church was packed to standing room only at every service this morning which was a good thing, however next week I can guarantee there will be only a few hundred in attendance. 

The Sunday after Easter is called "low Sunday" by the clergy in many churches because of the low attendance.So if you were ever wanting to visit a church but were not comfortable in crowds, next Sunday is for you!

Seriously, I don;t have a problem with all the visitors.  It gives many of them exposure to our church and I know for a fact some end up coming back. 

Meanwhile, go out and find those eggs!