Thursday, 30 April 2009

Hamilton Caves to Lying Liars' Propaganda

The City of Hamilton has been forced to accept abortion criminalizers' propaganda on their transit advertising spots. The text of the banned ads, as with the ones that have now been deemed to meet the guidelines set by the Advertising Standards Canada imply that no medical reason is needed for third trimester abortions to be performed by health care practitioners in hospitals and clinics. This is a lie. Case histories are taken, discussions take place between patients and physicians. Medical interventions are documented, health care regulations are observed. Contrary to what is suggested by the adverts, the termination of a pregnancy in its third trimester is taken quite seriously.
After receiving complaints last year, the industry council ruled that Right to Life ads denouncing abortions in the third trimester, which ran nationally, were misleading. Slaman said three new versions of the ads have all been approved by the industry council.

He said the city and Hamilton Right to Life were in mediation with the human rights commission a couple of months ago, but the group did not want to drop its complaint until satisfied that its posters would not be yanked down again.

"We would have liked an apology or, perhaps, a bit of an acknowledgement from the city that it was wrong ... but nobody has been willing to this point to do nything like that," Slaman said.
Awww. How about a Pope-styled apology, something like the City of Hamilton experienced sorrow about the anguish its refusal to run the adverts caused. Or something like that.

Miss California Is a Secret Canadian

I found this at Feministing. I'm going to be on the lookout for more from Jay Smooth.

Watch the video, then go read the comments.

Miss Piggy Protests

Swine flu? Every pig to be slaughtered in Egypt? (Okay, that's only 5 but still.)

Moi thinks that the Real Swine in this story is Monsieur Agri Business. You've heard of him, the powerful figure behind the intensive pork mega-factories in North and Central America? Those hog gulags are vile; pigs would not choose to live that way. Ask George Clooney about his long-time companion Max - he was far better groomed than him, not a whisker or bristle out of place.

Moi does not agree with the tactics used by PETA. But Moi supports the premise that we are all animals. Some uprighteous animals have determined that they are Not-Animals and thus Better-Than-Animals.

Moi is an Agnostic. Organized religions follow different doctrines for raising its flocks of Not-Animals but each have their own Monsieur Religious Business. Yet Moi thinks that Islam and Judaism got it right - Pig is Not to be eaten. Never. Ever.

Celebrated, oui! Admired for her fashion sense, oui! Given Hollywood contracts - absolument! Courted and wooed by George? Swoon!
Update: Moi just read Cathie from Canada blogpost - Moi suggests the name Smithfield Flu.

Wednesday, 29 April 2009

No-fault regrets profferred by Pope

Isn't that just so special? The Church Lady would have been quite pleased at Pope Benedict's performance at a private meeting held in the Vatican between the pontiff, Catholic clergy, Phil Fontaine and delegates from the assembly of First Nations.
Mr. Fontaine said the fact the Pope never used the word "apology" during the 20-minute meeting, which also included the Most Reverend James Weisgerber, president of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, and several B.C. aboriginal leaders, did not diminish in anyway the impact of the statement.
It would seem that the words "sorry", "asking forgiveness", "taking responsibility" or "pedophile priests" were also part of the vocabulary not ever used by the Pope, either in the private audience or in the public statement that the Vatican released. Chief Fontaine offered forgiveness, though the Catholic Church has never allowed individual priests to publicly acknowledge their crimes against the Aboriginal children who were entrusted to them. Some First Nations leaders took exception to the Pope's statement.
... Hereditary Chief Bill Wilson said Wednesday he was angry the Pope did not take direct responsibility for the harm caused by the residential schools experience. "There is no apology," Mr. Wilson said from Musgamagw Band in northern Vancouver Island. "He says he has great sorrow. Well, it's one thing to have sorrow for tragedies that happened in the world. It's quite another thing to accept responsibility for causing them. And the Catholic Church caused a great deal of misery and suffering in this country. And it's not apologizing for anybody."
One has to wonder if the pontiff was expertly coached by civil law specialists in order to ensure that no utterance could be viewed as an admission of guilt and thus be actionable.

Notre Dame Grad? Be Afraid.

Flaming nutbar Randall Terry has your mailing address.
Some University of Notre Dame alumni are angry about mailings they received from Randall Terry’s organization, demanding to know how the anti-abortion activist obtained their private addresses on file with the university.

Notre Dame officials say they have a strict privacy policy and don’t sell or give away alumni mailing lists to outside organizations.

The university plans to deliver a cease and desist order to Terry’s group, ordering him to stop sending mailings using the alumni mailing list, Charles F. Lennon, Alumni Association executive director, said Wednesday.

But Terry doesn't give a rat's ass.
Terry said his group also has received some angry e-mails and phone calls from alumni who didn’t like the mailings. He shrugged off the complaints.

“We dismiss them as having lost their way. Anyone who defends the premier promoter of child killing is not firing on all cylinders,” he said.

Lest we forget, THIS is why we can't ever let the theofascists anywhere near power. They are doing Gord's work and don't give a flying fuck for the laws of the people.

In related news, go have a look at the fetus fetishists' latest weapon -- Air Fetus!

Cool Site

Religious Right Alert. It seems to be newish, this-monthish.

From their About Us page:
Religious Right Alert is written and run by a volunteer group of bloggers from across Canada.

We come from different political and religious backgrounds and share a common interest in observing religious/socio/political intersections, interactions and involvements in Canada. Religious Right Alert has been set up to compile and comment on posts Canadian bloggers have published over the years, as well as traditional media articles.

There has not been a general site in Canada as yet recognizing the observations and hard work done by bloggers. While sites such as Religious Tolerance do an excellent job in explaining theology and beliefs, we are attempting to bring together a vast body of work already done by many.

We will be compiling, commenting and staying current on the movement of religious right groups and individuals across the country and their ties to the larger movement in the US and across the world.

This is a larger effort than the four bloggers who are setting up this site, and we welcome volunteers, submissions, posts and tips.

I had some fun tripping down memory lane by hitting various tags like Henry Morgentaler.

(But I confess -- I got there tracking back a referring url. DJ's deBeauxOs is linked to here.)

I hope they keep up the good work.

A purveyor of hate speech.

Shane Murphy, the second-in-command aboard the American merchant ship seized by pirates, lashed out at Rush Limbaugh for the talk show host's racial characterization in discussing the rescue of the ship's captain by the Navy. Murphy ... called Limbaugh a purveyor of "hate speech."

From here. As Limbaugh's tin star rises in the firmament of tea-baggers, Joe-the-Plumber wannabes, disgruntled Republicans and assorted religious fundamentalist rightwingnutter neo-cons in the US, a number of individuals and organizations are sensing a sea-change and are lambasting the porky talk-trash radio host.

Murphy will be branded a “RINO,” or a tool of liberals, or a liberal himself — or, worse ... someone who is just too dense to get Limbaugh’s humor, sophisticated wit, cutting-edge satire, insightful political perception and brilliance of analysis.

Republicans who keep defending, enabling, and apologizing for Limbaugh’s shtick are indeed tolerating it. Each time we do a post critical of a Limbaugh comment we get lots emails, often bordering on the abusive, and quite often with the same accusatory tone filled insinuations as Limbaugh’s broadcasts. Almost all say those of us who criticize Limbaugh and how he has lowered the bar on serious debate and sandbagged bipartisan cooperation and respect in this country “just don’t get it.” The fact is: Democrats, independents and Republicans who don’t approve of Limbaugh’s brand of rhetoric DO get it.

As for Limbaugh's favourite props, sexism and misogyny ... let's hear it from our Tennessee feminazi sisters:
Speaking of sexist creeps who pollute the public airwaves with misogyny, there are rules against broadcasting offensive garbage during the hours when children are the possible audience. But it is perfectly acceptable for sexist swine like Rush to use the public airwaves to defame and denigrate women and girls at any and all hours of the day. Women will never attain equality while it is acceptable, and even profitable, to pollute the culture with misogyny!

Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Fundy FAIL!

Sebelius confirmed as secretary of health and human services by a Senate vote of 65-31.

Despite fundy SHRIEEEKING, a MASSIVE phone campaign by Team Sarah (yeah, Palin), and loony conspiracy theories from fuckwits like Tony Perkins.
Tony Perkins, the president of the Family Research Council, weighed in on the latest development in the debate over Sebelius.

"What do sick pigs have to do with widespread, taxpayer-funded abortion? More than you might think," he told "As panic spreads over a potential swine flu pandemic, liberals are already scheming how they can use the health scare to win the confirmation of [the] pro-abortion extremist."

You think they're getting it yet?

Nah, me neither.

Scientific information VS religious zealotry propaganda.

Last week we wrote about Apple's ill-advised facilitation of an iPod download.

Since then, pediatricians have announced that the term for injuries caused by parents' or infant care-givers' actions has been changed from 'Shaken Baby Syndrome' to the more scientifically appropriate 'Abusive Head Trauma'. In Canada, the Canadian Medical Association Journal recently reported that a study provided evidence that appropriately targeted campaigns to increase awareness about the harm that can be caused to infants and babies are effective. In fact, it recommended that the information presented by a limited number of instructors could be reinforced by

"... multiple exposures through prenatal, maternity and postnatal health care providers, media and community support organizations," write Dr. Ronald Barr and coauthors. Dr. Barr is head of community child health at the Child & Family Research Institute and professor of pediatrics in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of British Columbia.

"These findings complement the small number of reports that have reported that practical and contextually relevant materials presented to parents before or shortly after birth can change knowledge and behaviours and perhaps reduce the incidence of shaken baby syndrome ..."

One has to wonder about individuals who respond to the CBC news item with comments like these:

Here We are talking about Shaken baby syndrome and change to Abusive head injury. But we don't have to forget that Shaken baby syndromes are based on Unproven, Junk science. There is no proff that shaking cause the head injury and here Canada 143 cases put on inquiry. my conclusion of this all event is to save thier job as child advocate pediatician because they thought that we cann't servive under Shaken baby syndrome termilogy. Moreover they get open field to do whatever they want to do with any kid addmite in Hospital as head injury and Pediatrician can hide all mistake they made at hospital by sutting down mouth of parents and caregiver by alligating kid have Abusive head trama. ...

Here we are talking about life science not build a CN tower. Do you have any medical literature that you prove a SBS in Lab? Any buddy see the Baby was Shaken? Is it Bacterial Or a Viral dieases that you can grow on aggar media? Is it a Litmuspaper test that you can see colour change looking at light? Is it a Giemsa stain test that you can see under microcsope? If Yes, late me know which medical literature have all these tests ruslts. If NO then who write all literatue? Those want prove theire finding at legal battle. Is not POV, IS TRUTH

Don't those pronouncements have the familiar ring of zygote zealots who cherry-pick scientific information that purportedly supports their abortion-criminalizing, contraceptive-demonizing screeds and yet who deride any challenge, even medical, to their Gawd-given control over women and children's well-being and safety?
Edited to update a link that was no longer available.

Monday, 27 April 2009

Fun with Fundy Spam!

Harass your MP with just two clicks of the mouse! Hell, harass all of them!

At the moment the fundies are frothing over May 14, the 40th anniversary of decriminalization of abortion in Canada.

So some genius has come up with a new e-tool (emphasis on tool) that will send an email on a subject of their choosing to every MP.

Here's how it works:
This website is designed to promote wholesome family values in Canada.

It gives Canadians who care about morals and decency a simple, effective, and convenient opportunity to contact Canadian Members of Parliament regarding Bills that have been or are about to be introduced into the House of Commons.

We continually monitor Bills and focus on those that, if made into laws, would have significant moral consequences for Canadians and impact Family values.

We provide an overview of each Bill on the site, and indicate whether Members of Parliament should be urged to vote for or against the Bill.

After selecting a Bill from the drop-down menu of the main page, you will go to the email form.

A drop-down list on the email form page allows you to select one Member of Parliament; if you do not select a Member of Parliament from the drop-down list, your email will automatically be emailed to every Member of Parliament (by default), which we encourage you to do.

You may elect to modify the letter. Shorter letters are typically more convincing and effective.

You may also change the subject line of the email you are sending.However, all emails will be monitored. If your position goes against our position regarding a Bill, your email will not be sent!

Hmmmm. All emails will be monitored. Like, by a real person, with not much of a real life to attend to? It would be a terrible shame to waste that person's time with a bunch of emails 'against their position', wouldn't it?

Well. Wouldn't it?

Saturday, 25 April 2009

SHRIEEEEKING from across the pond

While Merkin fundies are SHRIEEEKING over the FDA's sensible decision to stop playing politics comply with a court order to make emergency contraception available to 17-year-olds, Brit fundies are SHRIEEEEKING about this.
Furious parents called up radio phone-in shows in their hundreds to complain about the first television ad for the morning-after pill, which broke last night.

AEEIIII! An ad! On telly!

It's kinda odd, isn't it? The cartoon woman's surprise/shock/distress countered by the bouncy music. Not to mention the Pink.

So, the usual lying liars trot out their usual lies.
The ProLife Alliance has also condemned the ad claiming: "It is advertised inaccurately as emergency contraception when in fact its major function is to cause the abortion of an embryo that has already been conceived, not as suggested by the name to prevent conception."

Um. No. That's bullshit.

Anyway, good on ya, Britain. May we see such sense here.

Thursday, 23 April 2009

You Go, Kathleeen

Sebelius vetoes another sneaky attempt to recriminalize abortion.
Sebelius said the bill would not have reduced abortions and would likely be unconstitutional.

“The provisions in this bill that would allow for the criminal prosecution of a physician intending to comply with the law will lead to the intimidation of health care providers and reduce access to comprehensive health care for women, even when it is necessary to preserve their lives and health,” she wrote in a statement announcing the veto.

“While I agree that we should try to reduce the number of abortions, it cannot be at the increased risk to the life or health of women.”

Here’s more from Sebelius’ statement:

“As Governor of Kansas, I have worked hard to reduce abortions by supporting a range of initiatives including adoption incentives, encouraging parental involvement and individual responsibility for young men and women, expanding health services for Kansas children, promoting access to affordable contraceptives, expanded maternal and infant health services and promotional efforts, providing funds for proven successful pregnancy maintenance programs and encouraging age-appropriate sex education.

“These efforts have resulted in reducing the number of abortions by more than 10% in the last six years in Kansas. I am confident that with a more united effort to reduce the number of unplanned pregnancies, combined with creating conditions that provide support and assistance for mothers and their babies, we will have even greater success reducing abortions in our state.”

And, as JJ reports, the Rethugnicans are stamping their tiny feet and delaying Sebelius's inevitable confirmation as HHS secretary.

Pro-choice WIN.

ARGGG! I've been mispledding Governor Sebelius's name! I got some editing to do.

No iPhone Shake-A-Babe game.

While rightwingnutters, religious zealots and assorted abortion criminalizing batshit crazies drool over this, organizations who are seriously committed to the health and safety of vulnerable babies and infants who have come into this world expressed strong concerns about an iPhone game.

Apple Inc. pulled a 99-cent iPhone game called "Baby Shaker" from its iTunes store Wednesday after its premise — quiet a crying baby with a vigorous shake — prompted outrage.

According to screen shots posted on several Web sites, "Baby Shaker" displayed black-and-white line drawings of a baby. The iTunes description included the line, "See how long you can endure his or her adorable cries before you just have to find a way to quiet the baby down!" Once the iPhone owner finishes shaking the device, the on-screen baby is depicted with large red X's over its eyes. ...

Public outcry ensued, with organizations including the National Center on Shaken Baby Syndrome and the Sarah Jane Brain Foundation condemning Apple for approving the game's sale.

For those not familiar with Shaken Baby Syndrome it's important to stress that grave injuries occur when parents, care-givers and child minders are unaware of the extreme harm this action can produce and unable to access other strategies to calm and soothe a crying infant. In recent years a number of community-based initiatives have been successful in reducing incidents and increasing awareness of this public health issue.

Shaken Baby Syndrome is neither a laughing nor a gaming matter.

What Gigi Said

SHE has a post about this:
A California couple signed adoption papers Monday, April 20, 2009, so the husband could adopt his wife’s two previously aborted children and give them his last name. It may be the first such posthumous adoption of an aborted child.
. . .
Stoddart said that it wasn’t possible to do an adoption in the eyes of the law because there was no birth certificate for the aborted children, no legal acknowledgement that they ever existed. But it would be possible for Stan and Lisa to a ceremonial adoption, to sign paperwork with each other that reflected their desire for the adoption to take place and their desire to honor the personhood of the two children Lisa had briefly parented. Before each other, before God, and before witnesses, they would be embracing the children as a part of their marriage.

To which regular BBW commenter but otherwise perfectly sane person Gigi replied:
Is there no depth of the creepy weirdness to which you pro-lifers WON'T sink?

UPPITY-DATE: Of course, SHE has more to say on this.

MORE UPPITY-DATE: The gals at Prowomanprolife can't decide whether it's creepy or sweet. SHE weighs in, of course. Moi, I'm giggling.

Head, heart and feet planted in the Dark Ages.

Dominican Republic legislators kneel and cave to the pressure wielded by Catholic Church lobbyists of medieval minds.

A truck full of female police officers, dressed in black riot protection gear, pulled up in front of the General Assembly building here to confront and control the crowd of women who had gathered on Tuesday to protest a "right to life" amendment to the Dominican constitution.

Having failed to reverse the country’s strict abortion laws two years ago, various women’s groups assembled to protest a new constitutional amendment, Article 30, which reads: "The right to life is inviolable from conception until death" – for the fetus, that is, not for the pregnant woman. The amendment was introduced along with 43 others by President Leonel Fernandez, who asked for his entire party’s support. The debate has pitted civil society and medical groups against the heavy influence of the Catholic Church.

Both the College of Physicians and the Dominican Gynecology and Obstetrics Society have public positions in favour of therapeutic abortion to save the life of the mother or in the case of rape or incest.

More murderous misogyny from the Vatican Taliban. More mothers, wives, daughters, sisters dead from illegal abortions.

Wednesday, 22 April 2009


This is simply marvelous.

h/t arborman at Bread and Roses

Update on the L'Aquila earthquakes.

It has been over two weeks now since L'Aquila and the surrounding areas in central Italy were struck by earthquakes. As expected, prime minister Silvio Berlusconi is lukewarm to the idea that an inquiry should be conducted to investigate shoddy construction practices and to hold those guilty of such deliberate actions accountable for the death of hundreds, due to the collapse of buildings.
Senior Italian officials on Sunday backed an enquiry into whether illegal construction worsened the toll from this month's earthquake, despite criticism from Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi. Prosecutors are examining whether sub-standard building work was responsible for the collapse of many modern buildings in the central Abruzzo region, where the April 6 quake killed at least 294 people. ... President Giorgio Napolitano, one of Italy's most trusted politicians, said on Saturday a disregard for building regulations had worsened the damage. ... Berlusconi, Italy's second-richest man, started his own fortune in the construction sector.

In other news, Pope Benedict XVI has not yet visited L'Aquila which is located about 100 kms from Rome.

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Michael Coren and his own private Christian Taliban.

There's more powerful and insightful writing to read this morning at The Galloping Beaver: The comfort of Michael Coren's cubicle.

Michael Coren's sexism and deeply entrenched derision for women's rights is
on display here. From his opening sentence to to his closing paragraph, he bleats and shrieeeks the standard operating glurge and propaganda that others of his tribe have spewed for centuries.

Canada sacrifices another victim on the altar of equality!!!! ... If captured, of course, such a woman would be repeatedly raped. And tortured. Again, I'm not meant to say this. Not Canadian, not CBC, not Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Not the sort of thing we're supposed to feel, so we pretend that men and women in the army, police and fire service are given the same tests and have to fulfil the same requirements. Yet truth still breaks through. We rightly condemn Islamic extremists in Afghanistan because they treat women so badly. Then we allow one of our own to give her life so that we can congratulate ourselves on how liberal and egalitarian we are, lie about how gender differences don't matter and then encourage our generals and politicians to obscure the truth on television about soldiers and causes.

What hypocrites we have become. Poor, poor Karine -- this is not the way it should have been.

You are the hypocrite Michael Coren. Women are captured, repeatedly raped and tortured every day of the week here in Canada. Young Aboriginal women. Children confined to home and hearth by fundamentalist christian religious doctrine. Girls lured here from Eastern Europe and South-East Asian countries under the guise of employment in the service industry.

But I don't think that offends you so much, does it Michael? Somewhere in that reptilian sub-brain of yours, you believe that fathers, uncles, brothers, husbands, priests, ministers, coaches and other men who are entrusted with the well-being of women and girls are blameless if they are tempted into sin. The clients who support the sex industry are men who look, think and act exactly like you, Michael Coren.

Here's the truth about Karine Blais and other women who chose to join the military. They are trained to defend themselves, not as women but as soldiers.

But you and your tribe of Christian Taliban men would much prefer that women remain vulnerable and compliant, happy in the roles that you and Old Boys' Club have determined to be appropriate for them - which is essentially to be available to service the needs of the men who would control their lives.

Dave defended Karine Blais' right to be in a combat position, and her right to be remembered for the pride she took in the choices she made. He is from the tribe of men who truly respect women, not as chattel to male wants, but as autonomous, strong and resourceful human beings and equally responsible team-mates.

Monday, 20 April 2009

Life imitating art imitating life? Not quite.

From the BBC, this news item investigates a notorious tabloid's claim that the father of a girl who was a member of the amazingly talented crew of actors from Slumdog Millionaire agreed to sell his daughter to people who posed as a wealthy couple from Dubai.

Rafiq Qureshi said he had not accepted a deal to sell nine-year-old Rubina Ali into adoption.

The News of the World said Mr Qureshi had demanded £200,000 from its reporters, who were posing as a wealthy family from Dubai looking to adopt.

Mr Qureshi told the BBC the media had "made fun of our poverty". "They tricked us into this fakery but we came out unscathed," said Rubina's father, who is a carpenter in Mumbai.

The News of the World is a UK tabloid whose writers take a very active hand in news-gathering. They were involved from the get-go in this sting operation for the purpose of securing a juicy story. In reality those who mainly profited from the exploitation of Rubina Ali in this alleged negociation would be the publishers of The News of The World, from the tabloid sales their version of the story generated. Nouveau colonialism, as it were.

Australian Idiocy

How the hell did this come about?
Tegan Simone Leach, 19, is believed to be the first woman charged in Queensland in nearly 50 years for organising her own miscarriage and is facing up to 14 years in jail.

Pro-abortion lobbyists are rallying in Brisbane today against the landmark test case saying it "sets an ugly precedent for the rights of women".

Ms Leach's partner Sergie Brennan, 21, who lives with his girlfriend at their Mt Sheridan home, in Cairns south, also has been charged with attempting to procure and supply drugs to procure an abortion.

In Australia, abortion is the subject of state law rather than federal law. In Queensland, it is legal only with medical supervision. (One state, Victoria, recently decriminalized the procedure and according to one nutbar, was visited by Gord's wrathful fire as a result.)

What I want to know it -- how the f*ck did police come to be involved in this?
Police allege a family member obtained the abortion pill misoprostol from a doctor in the Ukraine and smuggled it into Australia on a flight to Cairns on December 25.

The pill was then allegedly successfully used by Ms Leach to terminate her pregnancy and induce a miscarriage at 60 days.

Who ratted them out? And why?

Another supposedly damning fact is the allegation that the pair did not ask about the lawful process for obtaining an abortion. Huh? Like maybe they knew that most abortions in their state are carried out in private clinics with a minimum cost of $370.

So, good. The pro-choice forces there are taking up this cause as a definitive demonstration of the idiocy of the law. But really. Putting these kids through this, when it appears they acted responsibly . . . .

(I found an earlier report that mentions a police search of the couple's home. WTF? I'm going to try to find out more.)

Sunday, 19 April 2009

Hypocrisy and the Fetus Fetishists

SHE says I don't understand what hypocrisy is. I wonder if the object of HER girl-lust, Sarah Palin does.

Poor Sarah is having a rough week. While she was being celebrated by fetus fetishists for CHOOSING not to abort her fifth child, back in Alaska the legislators were restive.

First, they rejected her 'controversial' nominee for attorney general, Wayne Anthony Ross.
According to Legislative Research Services, it was the first time in state history a head of a state agency has failed to be confirmed by the Legislature. All the Democrats in the Legislature voted against Ross and were joined by nine Republicans, including the Senate president and House speaker.

Controversial? Boy howdy.

In addition to being a gun-nut, a racist, and a 'men's rights' advocate, Ross is apparently cool with marital rape:
According to Burton, who detailed the allegations for me, Ross allegedly declared during a speech before a 1991 gathering of the “father’s rights” group Dads Against Discrimination, “If a guy can’t rape his wife, who’s he gonna rape?”

So, how did Palin take this rebuff?

Not well. Oh, looky, she's accusing legislators of hypocrisy.
Palin said the "hypocrisy" is that the state House last year unanimously passed a citation praising Ross as a distinguished Alaskan and a vocal proponent of free speech whose career has been dedicated to defending individual rights.

"The hypocrisy there is quite glaring. I believe they need to be called out on that," Palin said. The legislature passed the citation to honor Ross' 65 birthday.

Well, Sarah, the legislators don't appear to see hypocrisy in giving some nutbar a phony honour while refusing to put him in charge of the state's legal system.

(You can read more about Ross, who sports his initials, WAR, on the vanity plate of his Hummer here.)

But wait, the bad news continues. 'A top priority' of Palin's also failed last week.
The Legislature dealt another blow to Gov. Sarah Palin on Friday when a bill requiring girls under 17 to tell their parents they're about to have an abortion failed to move from committee, effectively ending its chance of passage this year.
. . .
Controversies surrounding the bill include its requirement a teen must wait 48 hours after telling a parent before having the abortion, and the fact it forbids coercing a minor to have an abortion but is silent on forcing a minor to have a baby.
. . .
She was particularly public about her desire to get an abortion bill passed, holding a press conference in February announcing that she was behind it. What Palin really wanted was a law saying parents not only must be told about an impending abortion but also give permission before a teen could undergo the procedure.
. . .
It was clear the state Senate wouldn't pass a consent bill, so Coghill and Palin said they'd settle for parental notification.

Ah, hypocrisy as it is practised by fetish fetishists. Forbid coercing a minor to have an abortion but totally OK with forcing her to be pregnant.

Am I getting this right, SUZY?

SHE keeps distorting our words.

Canadian Cynic: You keep using that word. Go read LuLu's post about Blob Blogging Wingnut.

Many of us have had to deal with the ongoing intellectual dishonesty and the meretricious posts and comments of Blob Blogging Wingnut as SHE twists the words of prochoice women to say whatever suits HER abortion-criminalizing agenda.

Some, like Gigi, stubbornly keep commenting in an effort to maintain a voice of reason and logic over in that batshit, rightwingnutty place. Others, like
brebis noire, are ready to give up talking sense in the presence of insanity and abuse.

My own thoughts about Blob Blogging Wingnut is that HER rage is sublimated into the creation of a perfect façade of hearth-loving earth-mother who complies with the dictates of the Catholic Church because it provides safety and shelter from a confusing world. Disobedience and rebellion would mean that SHE'd be on the street, with no visible means of support for her and her three daughters.

HER fear and HER self-hatred run so deep that SHE toadies to the loathsome misogyny of commenter "ken" at her blog and SoCon Or Bust.

SHE is a sad, fearful and angry person.

Update: As much as I know that people like to rubberneck and gawk when quarrels erupt between women, DAMMIT JANET! is not going to make disputes with Blob Blogging Wingnut a staple of our blogging menu. Rumbles of that ongoing shrieeekfest unfortunately has reached our ears.

A few words about the accusations regarding ad hominem attacks. Many weeks ago, I spoke candidly about the circumstances my mother faced back in the 1950s when, in spite of (or perhaps because of) my parents using the Vatican Roulette birth control method, she became pregnant. I wrote about her ambivalence - she spoke to me about that, years later - regarding that event and I contrasted it my joyful and whole-hearted decision to carry my own daughter to term. I ventured the opinion that this ill-timed pregnancy for my mom might have been aborted, if such medical interventions had been legal and available back then. I expressed my support for my mother and reiterated that this choice would have been hers to make.

Blob Blogging Wingnut saw that as a opportunity to proclaim that this was evidence that I did not value my own life as a fetus. Project much, BBW?

Saturday, 18 April 2009

Choice for me, not for thee: Part 2

SHE took exception to my calling Sarah Palin a hypocrite. To defend the object of her girl-crush, SHE got the motorized goalposts humming, redefining 'choice' and 'hypocrisy'. (Go read the comments there if you've got a few neurons to waste.)

I want to offer further evidence of fetus fetishists' penchant for 'Choice for me, not for thee'. This is a dandy article by Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada's Joyce Arthur titled 'The only moral abortion is my abortion'. In it, Joyce records anecdotes from abortion providers faced by demands from fetus fetishists for the very procedure they abhor. It's an interesting, if not very surprising read.

A couple of samples:
"My first encounter with this phenomenon came when I was doing a 2-week follow-up at a family planning clinic. The woman's anti-choice values spoke indirectly through her expression and body language. She told me that she had been offended by the other women in the abortion clinic waiting room because they were using abortion as a form of birth control, but her condom had broken so she had no choice! I had real difficulty not pointing out that she did have a choice, and she had made it! Just like the other women in the waiting room." (Physician, Ontario)

"We have anti-choice women in for abortions all the time. Many of them are just naive and ignorant until they find themselves with an unwanted pregnancy. Many of them are not malicious. They just haven't given it the proper amount of thought until it completely affects them. They can be judgmental about their friends, family, and other women. Then suddenly they become pregnant. Suddenly they see the truth. That it should only be their own choice. Unfortunately, many also think that somehow they are different than everyone else and they deserve to have an abortion, while no one else does." (Physician, Washington State)

Butbutbut. I'm different! They're sluts but I made a mistake! The condom broke! Waaaah!

What is this called? Oh yeah -- cognitive dissonance. Or, hypocrisy.

BONUS: Wisdom beyond her days from Emma the Embryo.

(Edited to remove childish redirect to fetal porn. SUZY doesn't want traffic from pro-choice blogs, I guess.)

The Unbearable Wrongness of Benedict.

Over at Canadian Cynic, psa delivers one fine, fine rant. Fire the Pope encapsulates and sharpens the arguments that the Pope and his ecclesiastical goon squad have lost sight of and touch with humanity.
The DAMMIT JANET! crew has delivered a number of observations about the perorations of the Pontiff, here. psa's rant is sublime. Go read.

Friday, 17 April 2009

Out of the mouth of the Con-adjusted.

Via Canadian Cynic, we learn of Stephen Taylor's disingenuous deconstruction of the attack ads campaign the HarperCons initiated to discredit Stéphane Dion.

When Stephane Dion was leader of the Liberal Party of Canada, the Conservatives did their best to define the man and then allowed that definition to shine through the Conservative-adjusted lenses of the news media and electorate.

Now there's a pile of verbosity that could be summed up in fewer words: spin, disinformation and malevolence.

Chutzpah's just another word for an expression we use in francophone Canada - "Du front tout l'tour d'la tête" - coming and going. Especially going.

Only time can tell when the accumulated arrogance, smug narcissism and authoritarism will spell out another word: hubris.

Choice for Me, Not for Thee

Sarah Palin drew a crowd of about 3,000 at a fetus fetishist bunfest in Indiana last night.

Interestingly, when she spoke of finding out that her most recent child would have Down syndrome, she said she considered 'changing the circumstances'.
“There just for a fleeting moment I thought, I knew, nobody knows me here. Nobody would ever know. I thought, wow, it is easy. It could be easy to think maybe of trying to change the circumstances. No one would know. No one would ever know.”

But it was time, she said, to “walk the walk” in regards to her long-standing pro-life convictions.

“I had just enough faith to know that trying to change the circumstances wasn’t any answer,” she said.

Nobody would know because abortion is a medical procedure covered by doctor-patient confidentiality rules.

And yes, wow, it's easy because abortion is safe and legal, and for a relatively well-off person like Palin, easily accessible.

She CHOSE not to change the circumstances. We feminists fought for and continue to fight for that right she exercised.

She thinks she made the right choice. Fine. But Palin and the rest of the anti-choice gang would take the right to choose away from the rest of us.

They really don't get irony, do they?

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Only in the US you say? Pity (party).

JJ at unrepentantoldhippie and Scott at scott's diatribes look southward to the fauxgrassroots, more like astroturf 'tea party' protests happening in the US.

Here are more suggestions on the beverages likely consumed by ignoranti who populate these pseudo-demos.

Constant Comment Blather - a pungent mix of freeze-dried limbaughburger cheezy bits mixed with instant tea pellets, MSG and GMO high-fructose corn syrup.

Redneck Rose - a traditional infusion.

Sour Grapes Medley - a bitter mouthful of old grievances, fetid ideologies and republicon trash talk.

As many have said, the whole 'tea party' gimmick is a thinly veiled attack on Obama's presidency since most of the economic strategies that makes the teabaggers shrieeek were initiated on Dubya's watch.

Minnesota Tax Dollars at Work

I love stories about fetus fetishists' claims to have saved the baybeez. But the FFs in Minnesota may have bitten off more than they can chew.

A group is crediting a state-funded program 'that encourages women to carry their pregnancy to term' with a drop in abortions of 0.6% in 2007.

First -- WTF? A state-funded program? Here's how it is described:
Positive Alternatives awards grants to 37 groups, many of which are religion-based. The Highland LifeCare Center, Inc., in St. Paul, for example, tells pregnant women, “Having an abortion may affect more than just your body and your mind — it may have an impact on your relationship with God. What is God’s desire for you in this situation? How does God see your unborn child? These are important questions to consider.”

Oh. Right. Several USian states fund fake pregnancy centres, aka 'crisis pregnancy centres'.

The program costs $4.75 million every two years.

Well, gosh darn it, that's taxpayer money well spent then, isn't it? And how timely to be releasing this info today on Teabagging Day. (*chortle* no, I'm not getting into that).

Hold on, what's that?
“[The] statement … is disingenuous at best and is probably due to a decrease in unintended pregnancies,” said Linnea House, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Minnesota.

She points out that a 0.6% drop actually represents just 23 fewer abortions in 2007. Then she does the math.
“Their numbers show that this is an investment of $206,521 per woman,” said House. “By comparison, an investment in family planning programs, programs the MCCL has consistently fought against, helps nearly 50,000 women and every dollar invested will save the state at least $5 in return.”

In other words, funding fundies to try to guilt-trip women out of having abortions is another 'ideological boondoggle of historic proportions', just like funding abstinence-only sex ed.

I hope Minnesota Teabaggers hear about this one.

Monday, 13 April 2009

Slow news day at the Beeb - maybe.

In order to get the blogging engines revved up, bloggers often check out a range of information sources for inspiration and intellectual grist. Sometimes the posts almost writes itself since a news item can provide a choice argument to a post in construction. Or it can be the last straw, when the brain switches to RANT mode.

Today, aside from the latest updates on the Somali pirates story, the BBC has 4 top stories about the boggling range of pleasure-seeking behaviours that confound and delight human beings. Hard versus soft news.
High-speed sex costly in Norway - A man faces a hefty fine and a driving ban after being caught having sex with his girlfriend while speeding on a motorway in Norway, police have said.
Who knew Norwegians take that whole orgasm = la petite mort metaphor to extreme limits? Now we know why the parrot pined for the fjords.

Scientists find 'pleasure nerves' Mothers use touch to sooth their babies. Scientists say they understand more about how the body responds to pleasurable touch.

Touch deprivation as well as physical contact with the intent to cause pain has been demonstrated to cause mental health disorders. It's high time research was done to chart the specific ways that touch is positive, appropriate and enhances brain development.

Woman with lingerie turned away - A Brazilian woman was refused entry to the UK when she arrived at Newcastle Airport with luggage containing only T-shirts, a dressing gown and lingerie. UK Border Agency officials said they suspected the 32-year-old of being involved in the sex industry.
If those officials are so vigilant about such things, then how do criminal organizations manage to traffick thousands of girls, boys and young women for the purpose of physical and sexual enslavement?

Paraguay leader admits love-child - The ex-bishop admitted having an affair with a woman 30 years his junior. Paraguay's President Fernando Lugo has admitted he is the father of a child who was conceived when he was still a Roman Catholic bishop.
Perhaps if the Vatican accepted the consecration of women as clergy and gave permission for priests to marry, the opressive reign of its abusive power would end and the Catholic Church could follow through on the humane transformations that John XXIII proposed. Just saying.

Sunday, 12 April 2009

In Afghanistan, are the only good politicians the murdered ones?

Today's news item:

A provincial official known for fighting for women's rights in Afghanistan was gunned down in the southern part of the country on Sunday, officials said. Gunmen killed Sitara Achakzai outside her home in Kandahar city ... as she was getting out of her car... Qari Yousef Ahmedi, a Taliban spokesman, claimed responsibility for the attack. ...

Achakzai, a dual German-Afghan citizen, spent the years of Taliban rule in Germany and returned to her native country to fight for women's rights, said Shahida Bibi, a member of the Kandahar women's association who worked with Achakzai. [She] was a member of Kandahar's provincial council, and had been vocal in encouraging women to take jobs and encouraging them to fight for equal rights.

I've lost track of the number of legislators and advocates for women's human rights - education and safety from personal violence for example - who have been murdered since the fall of the Taliban. In view of the laws that Karzai's current sham of a legislative assembly is attempting to pass, it appears that corruption and coercion are imbedded in the political fabric of Afghanistan.

Afghanistan is a complex nation of embattled regions, and a firmly entrenched history of tribal hostilities and horrendous human rights abuse against a population battered by the power plays between feodal warlords, fundamentalist islamists and a small community of well-educated women and men, many of whom members of the diaspora living anywhere but in Afghanistan.

A Royal Cock-up?

The would-be leader of the Socialist Party in France, Ségolène Royal is a well-versed and skilled communicator. Thus her recent performance in Dakar, Sénégal (her birthplace) is neither accidental nor a gaffe.
Former French Socialist presidential candidate Ségolène Royal has sparked a controversy in France during her visit to Senegal, when she issued an apology ... for a 2007 speech by French President Nicolas Sarkozy. [He] had said that African man had never really made his mark in history ... Though well-meant, the speech has been criticized for its paternalistic tone and for reiterating the supremacy of Europe.

“There are some who have come here and said, ‘The African man has not made his mark in history, yet,’” said Ségolène Royal, before a gathering of about 500 people. “Pardon, pardon, pardon, for this humiliating discourse which should never have been uttered and I tell you in full confidence that it does not represent the views of France or the French people.”
Royal has been unfairly compared to Margaret Thatcher; though she is tough minded and does not suffer fools gladly, her personal and public choices stem from a different perspective. For example, when she was 19 years old, she sued her estranged father; even though he had abandoned his family, he refused all divorce proceedings from her mother in order to avoid paying support to finance his children's education. She won the case after many years in court.
During the presidential campaign that opposed Royal to Sarkozy, her political views - particularly with regard to immigration policy - were criticized by La gauche in Europe for their retrograde implications. Nonetheless Ségolène's media-savvy style, which is a blend of the best/worst of macho confrontation and feminine seduction, is a blast of fresh air in the stale environment of male-dominated discourse. Her reputation for throwing spanners in the well-oiled machinery of social and political conventions is well-deserved.
The political cartoon came from this website.

Saturday, 11 April 2009

If security at the airport is lackadaisical, who you're gonna call?

All joking about the RCMP aside, the topic of this communiqué quietly released on Easter Saturday has got to be a barn-burner in some banana republic, possibly the one the ReformaTories aka the republiCons are attempting to create in Canada.
Canadian travellers will be safer as a result of a new information-sharing agreement to conduct expanded criminal background checks for workers with access to secure areas at Canada's airports. ... This Memorandum of Understanding will allow for greater information sharing between the RCMP and Transport Canada and will enable Transport Canada to base security clearance decisions on more complete data from a broader range of intelligence sources. "We have a duty to keep Canadians safe and secure when they travel," said Minister Baird. "This agreement is a big step forward in protecting Canadian passengers and employees against potential threats."
WTF? Uh-oh. Someone in Stevie's Cabinet has been watching far too many episodes of 24 and indulging delusions about playing rough with boys in uniform.
The Greater Toronto Airport Authority had suspended escorting privileges of the officers involved following reports that they allowed Transport Minister John Baird and Liberal Senator Colin Kenny to walk onto the tarmac and other restricted areas wearing baseball caps and windbreakers.

Why officer, are you happy to see me or is that a big Taser in your pocket?


These are not eggs left by the Easter bunny.

If you click on this link, it takes you to a video cam live-streaming the action from an eyrie located in a tall tree on Hornby Island. The parent eagles each take turns sitting on two eggs that were laid in March. The ambient sound is lovely - many other birds are heard in the background - but sit back from your speakers when Mama or Papa Eagle decides to let loose with an eardrum-piercing cry. There's also a wide-angle view camera installed in a perch above the nest that gives you a different perspective of its location, with regard to other trees, the shoreline, a couple of buildings and even a road far below.

Be patient. Mama and Papa often adjust their position and when they do, you'll catch a glimpse of the eggs. And soon there will be eaglets pecking their way out of the shell, keeping their parents busy with the task of feeding them and tending to their needs.
Today is a noisy day at the Hornby Eagles' eyrie; unfortunately the wind flow is playing havoc with the microphone.

F-Word Awards

The Canadian F-Word Awards are on again. Organized and hosted by the fabulous Drs. Pale and Prole at A Creative Revolution.

Fun! Glory! Great reading!

Go. Vote.

UPDATE: Modesty be damned. Go vote for JJ.

Friday, 10 April 2009

Moonies, and Catlicks, and Kennedys. Oh My!

While I don't know how much to trust The Washington Times -- after all, it is owned by the Moonies -- this story is generating a bit of heat. Referring to an Italian journalist, it claims that the Vatican has rejected three of the Obama admin's proposed ambassadors to the Vatican. The reason: all three were Catlick, but they were all pro-choice. (The Vatican denies that it has rejected any one, but then on the trustworthy-scale, I'd rate the Moonies and the Catlick Church about even.)

An outfit called Americans United for Separation of Church and State is, understandably, not pleased.
When U.S.-Vatican ties were proposed during the Reagan administration, Americans United vigorously opposed the move and warned that there would be problems down the line. It just wasn’t right, AU argued, for the U.S. government to have formal diplomatic relations with a church. . .

Americans United tried to raise some of these issues in court, challenging the diplomatic exchange on church-state grounds. Unfortunately, a federal appeals court refused to deal with the issue and dismissed the lawsuit on a technicality, saying AU did not even have the right to even bring the case.

So now it appears that not only must the U.S. ambassador to the Vatican be Catholic, they must oppose legal abortion as well. I wonder what other qualifications a potential ambassador must meet? Must he or she oppose same-sex marriage as well? Can he or she be divorced? Will someone check up on the candidate to make certain he or she attends mass every week?

Imposing such qualifications on ambassadors would seem to violate the clear provisions of Article VI of the Constitution, which bans religious tests for federal office.

I just investigated and holy crap! Canada has an ambassador to the Holey Sea too! Who knew? (Paging deBeauxOs . . . )

Today, Good Friday, the rumour mill has coughed up the fourth candidate for the US job -- Caroline Kennedy. Somehow, I don't think His Poopiness will be any better pleased, even if she is a celeb of sorts.

UPPITY-DATE: The Pope says 'nope' to Caroline.

Cruelty-free chocolate tastes better.

There are hard questions regarding chocolate that go beyond whether one first chomps on the ears or the tail of a chocolate Easter bunny.
Questions around provenance, for example. Nestle and Lindt, two major players in the global production of commercial chocolate purchase cocoa crops from densely planted, heavily fertilised and pesticide-sprayed plantations in Ivory Coast, Ghana, Malaysia and Brazil.
But far more serious is the issue of child slave labour.

... the big household names, such as Cadbury Schweppes, Mars and Nestle, refuse to speak individually on the thorny issue of child labour. They describe it as an "industry" issue. They say they are setting up a trust foundation and that surveys have been commissioned. They've also signed an international protocol.

The International Labour Organization (ILO) reports that
... 30% of children under age 15 in sub-Saharan Africa engage in child labor, mostly in agricultural activities including cocoa farming. Of the 200,000 children working in the Ivory Coast cocoa industry, the ILO claims - a maximum of 6% (12,000 children) may be victims of human trafficking or slavery.
Fair trade chocolate products can be found everywhere nowadays; there were even Green & Black tablets on sale at the local Blockbuster recently. An important aspect of fair trade is offering the farmers an opportunity to also participate in the transformation process, which creates more jobs in addition to those dedicated to agriculture employment. Fairly traded chocolate are available from Cocoa Camino (from La Siembra, Canada's largest fair trade chocolate company), Dagoba and others, here.
Another concern, but not as pressing from an ethical and human rights perspective is the ongoing debate among European Union governments and their chocolate producers regarding changes to chocolate purity standards.
How much vegetable fat -- other than cocoa butter -- can you put in chocolate and still call it chocolate? ... The EU's chocolate debate pits eight purist nations against seven that take a relaxed view of chocolate. Belgium, France, Italy, Spain, Luxembourg, Germany, Greece and the Netherlands ban cocoa-butter substitutes in chocolate. The others [are] Britain, Ireland, Denmark, Portugal, Austria, Finland and Switzerland ...
With respect to fairly traded and organic chocolates, regulating whether products are adulterated with GMO soya, canola or corn oil, for example, is not as urgent a matter since farming and manufacturing practices are transparent and open to accountability.


There are a bunch of wonderful parodies of what Montreal Simon calls The Attack of the Homophobe Zombies ad. (If you haven't seen the original, Simon has it at that link.)

Having spent the last little while giggling at these creations, I want to share the best one -- so far -- with our readers.


Wednesday, 8 April 2009

Bonus! The Red Cross is providing marshmellows.

There are far, far, far worse things in the world than having Stephen Harper as a prime minister.

Such as ....?

The Italian prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi ... said the 17,000 people made homeless by Monday's earthquake should think of themselves as being on a "camping weekend". ... The quake, which devastated the city of L'Aquila and surrounding towns and villages, has now claimed 260 lives.

Berlusconi told the reporter for the N-TV channel that the homeless quake victims "lacked nothing". "They have medicaments. They have hot food. They have shelter for the night," he said. "Of course, their current lodgings are a bit temporary. But they should see it like a weekend of camping." ...

His remarks – which seem to have been intended to reassure the public – scarcely correspond to the experiences of the homeless. Between Monday and Tuesday, they had to endure a night of driving rain and hail during which temperatures fell to 4C ...

Meanwhile, the Vatican reports that the Pope will visit the disaster area after Easter Sunday or when the ground in L'Aquila stops shaking.
Update: The Italian press is reporting that questions are being raised about the materials and techniques used to build a recently constructed residential complex which collapsed, trapping and injuring dozens of people. A firefighter observed that it wasn't the earthquake that killed people but the buildings.

Tuesday, 7 April 2009

Could the earthquake in Italy be a providential sign?

Though I'm really shocked and appalled that God the Father would cause all those people to die just to get Benedict XVI's attention and to let him know that the Catholic Church is MASSIVELY wrong by not supporting women who, by virtue of their familial role and responsibilities, are most likely to ensure continuity and perseverance of religious faith in Africa.

Most fundamentalist Christians view their God as cruel and vengeful but isn't there another way to let the Pope know that his position on condoms should be revised? Hopefully those members of the Catholic Church that God punished for blind allegiance to ecclesiastical ideology, as well as those who are collateral damage, will experience illumination, healing and divine consolation.

By the way, this post was inspired by the pithy response that the habitually verbose Blob Blogging Wingnut posted at her site on March 24:
Unreported in the MSM: children of abortion chain owner died in MT plane crash...just feet from Tomb of the Unborn Just has that ironic feel about it. But what the news sources fail to mention is... the [cemetery] contains... the Tomb of the Unborn... erected as a dedication to all babies who have died because of abortion.What else is the mainstream news not telling you? The family who died in the crash near the location of the abortion victim's memorial, is the family of Irving 'Bud' Feldkamp, owner of the largest for-profit abortion chain in the nation....It strikes me as a providential sign.Though I'm really sad the abortion chain owner lost his kids. I wouldn't wish that on anyone. I genuinely hope he and his wife experience healing and divine consolation.

Now we wait for the shrieeeking to start, because when progressives try to make sense of rightwingnuttery and attempt to verify if there is any logic to their pontifications by applying them to similar events, fundamentalists become quite wrathful.

Sebelius v. Fetus Fetishists, Round Umpty-two

Oy. Seems both JJ at Unrepentant Old Hippie and I here spoke too soon.

At the federal level, while not one fetus-fetishizing senator brought up her pro-choice credentials as an impediment to her confirmation as Health and Human Secretary, Kathleen Sebelius is still governor of Kansas and her home-grown fundies have just thrown her a doozy.

Across the Excited States, various state legislatures have been busily erecting more legal barriers to abortion. In Kansas, they recently passed a law requiring doctors to make an ultrasound available to women seeking abortions.

As a Kansas City Star editorialist puts it:
The bill was a win-win situation for abortion opponents. If Sebelius signed it, they'd get what they wanted. If she vetoed it, they'd raise a fuss in advance of her Senate confirmation hearings for the job of U.S. health and human services secretary.

She signed the bill.

They came up with a new one -- a bill
that would allow patients and their relatives to sue doctors for damages if they came to believe that a late-term abortion was illegal. Physicians would also have to give a detailed medical accounting to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment after performing a late-term abortion.

The editorialist and I agree -- she has to veto it. Imagine the shenanigans of zygote zealots trying to manipulate a woman who's had an abortion into 'coming to believe' that it was illegal. (WTF does that even mean?) And the detailed medical 'accounting' puts patient privacy at risk.

Sadly, while the grown-ups seem to be taking charge at the national level, the state houses are still full of panty-sniffers.

Monday, 6 April 2009

And those who defend pedophilia crawl out ...

from the underside of a big rock that was lifted to shed some light upon the sexual exploitation of children (emphasis ours).

oldowleyes wrote: "Wow, if your male your not even allowed to pay cash or ask for a quiet private room w/o out being suspected of being a pedophile. What a bunch of clowns Canadian governments are turning out to be, go back into your holes of institutional discrimination. While your at it, I suggest you get those illegal Family Relation Laws* off your books, or someday soon your going to be on the hook for billions in a class action law suit."
boardhead wrote: "Great. Now any 35 year old man with a young looking 20 year old girl will get a label. I'm all for the initiative as well, but most 18 yr. old girls these days are promiscuous with older men, and some look younger than 18, which will cause problems for some guys who are doing nothing wrong."
Most of the commenters who responded favourably to this campaign appeared to be women. The purpose of this initiative from the government of Alberta, Child and Youth Services division is to target adults who sexually exploit vulnerable girls and boys in rooms rented from commercial lodging establishments such as resorts, hotels and motels.

I have traveled with my daughter and her girlfriend, when they were teenagers. If I had seen hotel staff chat informally with them to ensure that neither had been kidnapped or were being coerced to participate in child prostitution, as part of precautionary measures that screened all guests, I would not have reacted in anger or fear. But perhaps
men like Dickie Evans who engage in duplicitous sexual behaviour know that they have something to hide.

This appears to be the legislation that oldowleyes finds objectionable.

Saturday, 4 April 2009

The Queen gets hug. In public view. From commoner.

"Bet that's the first time a black woman ever put her arm around your Queen!" said my New York friend on the phone. Oh, come on, I said. Aren't you being slightly racist here, for a good East Coast Democrat? She's Queen of Jamaica, too, you know, and half the Caribbean, and Tuvalu and Papua New Guinea. I'll give you that Michelle Obama is the tallest black woman who ever embraced the Queen, but no way is she the first.
here. There was a frisson that rippled through the media when Queen Elizabeth II was photographed at an official G20 function with US First Lady Michelle Obama, arms extended around each other's waist ... errr, given the difference in height, Obama actually reached around The Queen's shoulder, in a spontaneous BFF gesture.
It always helps to have the right touch, and the Obamas apparently do. ... The latter gesture — a near hug that caused the British press to drop its crumpets — was the touch heard ’round the world, rehashed and analyzed on television and the Internet as both a major breach of protocol and a kindly, inoffensive act.

The photographs of the event, and some of the tongue-in-cheek discussion that followed was a welcome antidote to the shameful removal of two Israeli cabinet ministers from public view by two fundamentalist Jewish publications this week.

North Dakota: Grown-Ups in Charge

There are several 'personhood' initiatives at various stages in various US state legislatures. Fetus fetishists want to use a religious -- as opposed to accepted medical -- definition of pregnancy and to create rights for a two-celled blastocyte.

While the measure passed the House in North Dakota, the Senate is obviously saner.
Senators voted 29-16 Friday to reject legislation that sought to define as a human being "any organism with the genome of homo sapiens." The "personhood" status would include a developing embryo from the moment of conception, whether inside or outside the womb.

Hmmm. 29 to 16. Pretty convincing majority of normal people, eh?

Yeah, well, we know they will never give up. Blob Blogging Wingnut said of the 'personhood' initiatives:
It's only a matter of time before the equality of all human beings is recognized. Get used to it.

Um. No. YOU get used to having grown-ups in charge.

Friday, 3 April 2009

Hundreds of women were murdered on Terrazas' watch.

Demonstrations in Montréal, Ottawa and Mexico were held today to express opposition to the presence of Francisco Barrio Terrazas, Mexico's new ambassador to Canada.
From here:

[He] assumed the cushy diplomatic posting on February 26th, 2009. He had previously served as mayor of Ciudad Juarez, known as the Murder Capital of North America, and later as governor of Chihuahua state.
Representing the regime of Felipe Calderón in Canada is a man who governed a city where more
four hundred women have been killed since 1993. Many of the women killed were sexually assaulted first. Barrio Terrazas refused to call for an investigation until 1998.

"We can't accept that Canada, a model country that's culture is based on the respect of human rights and rule of law, could shelter a person who tolerated the murder and rapes of women and girls," reads a statement concerning Barrio Terrazas' appointment from May our Daughters Come Home, a women's group based in Juarez.

In Montréal several organizations, including la Fédération des femmes du Québec released statements protesting his appointment and deploring his complicity in allowing the murders of women to continue unchecked and undermining investigations into the criminal activities that have brutalized women in Ciudad Juarez.

Removing women from the picture, deliberately.

Two fundamentalist Orthodox Jewish newspapers in Israel altered an official photograph of the new cabinet picture to remove the two female cabinet ministers.

Limor Livnat and Sofa Landver were grouped with the rest of the 30-member cabinet for their inaugural photo.

But Yated Neeman newspaper digitally changed the picture by replacing them with two men. The Shaa Tova newspaper blacked the women out.

Publishing pictures of women is viewed by many ultra-orthodox Jews as a violation of female modesty.

I heard about this on Radio-Canada this morning. Are fundamentalist zealots in the planet's three major religions conspiring and competing to see who can put on the most MASSIVE display of misogyny? The actions taken, which range from allowing men to rape their wives with impunity in Afghanistan to the Pope's deliberate obfuscation of scientific research, are a clear violation of women's basic human rights. Using photoshop to remove women from view seems benign, in comparison but such incidents demonstrate that religious clerics persist in using doctrine and ideology to punish women who dare to act like human beings.