It is my new favorite weekly routine to watch Gossip Girl, then immediately read the NYMAG Reality Index. The clever writers of this blog ask their readers to weigh in on the realness of the events in Gossip Girl.
I would just like to say that if Serena was on ANTM Ms. Jay would have been all over her for that horrific runway walk. Where's the stomp? Where's the "fierce-ness?!?"
Jane Treays traveled to Colorado Springs, CO to explore the newest advancement in the "Purity Balls" world. What is it? These Christian fathers have now called upon their daughters to not only sustain from sex until marriage, but kissing as well. The encourage their daughters to "live the fairytale." The Thrill of the Chaste
Wow. I don't even know where to begin. Ok, how bout here: "There is a core question that women have in their being, and that is: ‘Am I beauti-ful? Am I worthy of being pursued?’ ” he explained. “It must be enforced by the father, the man in their life." That's right. The core question of our very being is, Am I beautiful? Even more troubling is eleven year old Hannah regurgitating her fathers unrealistic ideals on purity. Yikes. Isn't their something to be said from the lessons learned through the trials of dating? That's not to say that these girls should be sleeping around, but to treat every potential date as a test of one's purity, is a little overwhelming.
Dorothy Samuels sticks it to Sarah Palin and demands answers concerning her decision to charge rape victims for rape kits and forensic exams in Wasalia while she was Mayor. Samuels demands Answers from Palin. If they are anything like the answers she gave Katie Couric we can be prepared to be confused and gravely concerned for the potential future of the United States.
Dude, how awesome was this week's episode of Gossip Girl? If you are sick of bitching about Palin or asking, "Um, where the hell is Obama?" then relax and watch the bitches of Gossip Girl. I must say I was disappointed with the season at the beginning. In the first episode they pretty much un-did all the drama they achieved in the Season one finale. But now, we're back on track! Dan and Serena are over and hopefully we get to see this awful side of her we have heard so much about! She better stay bitchy, because that is what is keeping me watching. I swear to God if she goes back to that angelic, too cool for school "S" I will stop watching. Who am I kidding? I'll never stop.
Sometimes a family member of mine—a person I greatly respect but whose political views I deplore—forwards me some crazy conservative emails just to get my goat. I'm following directions and posting this breaking news to a blog—just not a blog the email's author would appreciate. Yikes. These guys are nuts.
Biden Is Out
The following is from a source that has been correct on wild rumors like this on 4 out of 7 occasions.
On or about October 5th, Biden will excuse himself from the ticket, citing "health problems", and he will be replaced by Hillary. This is timed to occur after the VP debate on 10/2.
There have been talks all weekend about how to proceed with this information. Generally, the feeling is that we should all go ahead and get it out there to as many blog sites and personal email lists as is possible. I have already seen a few short blurbs about this. The "health problem" cited in those articles was an aneurysm. Probably many of you have heard the same rumblings.
However, at this point, with this information from the DNC, it looks like this Obama strategy will be a go. Therefore, it seems that the best strategy is to get out in front of this Obama maneuver, spell it out in detail, and thereby expose it for the grand manipulation that it is.
So, let's start mixing this one up and cut the Obamites off at the pass. Send this information out to as many people as you can and post it on every website and blog that you can access.
Editor's Note: I've heard this from several sources. Biden is a loose cannon and an amazingly poor choice for VP. Hussein's hatred for Hillary will be trumped by his sponsor's (Soros and gang) rabid desire to hijack America.
I recently bought the fall issue of Bitch, after a few years' break from reading it. I'm still totally annoyed by the non-writing content--ads for LunaPads, fancy socks, P-Mate (because "Real Women Pee Standing UP!"), WeMoon wall calendars, naked lady cross-stitch kits, "Hard Edge Fashion for Deviant Dogs" and so forth not having any place in my reality whatsoever--but a few of the articles in this one really resonated with me.
So now's the time to share some news I just heard- that the mag is in danger, like so many others, of going under in 2009. Having seen beloved NW-based mags like ROCKRGRL and No Depression, as well as Chicago's venerable Punk Planet recently disappear, it's just a sad state of affairs. Here's some of what's going on with Bitch:
"First the bad news: The print publishing industry as a whole is staring into a void. Across the board, newsstand magazine sales are in a slump, subscriber numbers are down, and paper and postal costs continue to rise. But it's not magazines like US Weekly or Vogue that you'll see disappearing from the newsstands—they have the parent companies and the resources to weather industry ill winds. It's the small, independent magazines like Bitch that will disappear, because the odds are already stacked high against us. And simply put: We need to raise $40,000 by October 15th in order to print the next issue of Bitch.
Now the good news: While it's true that $40,000 is a lot of money, we know the number of you Bitch supporters is in the hundreds of thousands. And we're asking each of you who values independent, nonprofit media and intelligent feminist cultural analysis to contribute what you can to ensure that Bitch thrives. And while we can't say what form Bitch will take in the future (our direction will depend, in part, on your feedback), we can say that we've been hard at work to find an innovative publishing model that will allow us to maintain the spirit and integrity of Bitch while also reflecting the changing world around us.
As a nonprofit, reader-funded media organization, our fate really is—and always will be—in your hands. We don't need a parent company. We just need you!"
What I love about Hilary Rodham Clinton is that she isn't defeated. She keeps fighting for what she believes in. Along with Cecile Richards she contributed to this NY Times Op-ed piece entitled, "Blocking Care for Women." This piece bares an alarming light on the proposed rule by theDepartment of Human Health and Resources. Essentially, the new bill would allow health care providers the ultimate authority in deciding what is best for a woman. Women may become victim to ideological beliefs that they themselves do not necessarily believe. It denies women the right to choose for themselves what care they want or need, and this doesn't only concern abortion, but sterilization, contraception and many other health care services.
This is truly frightening. More frightening, is we only have five days to speak up. Please do. Speak up. You don't have to be a feminist to understand that denying women unbiased health care services is wrong.
"Of course we should have seen Sarah Palin coming. All we had to do was look at the music charts. Which song dominated American radio airplay this summer? Not M.I.A.'s "Paper Planes," despite the deserved critical excitement when it jumped into the top five on the back of Pineapple Express; not Miley Cyrus; not the Jonas Brothers; and not even Coldplay. It was Katy Perry's "I Kissed a Girl," a pseudofeminist exploitation number whose cynicism has been topped this year only by the RNC.
Perry is an ex-Christian singer who has seized the main chance. "I Kissed a Girl" marries an overbearing glam-rock shuffle-stomp—think of Gary Glitter's "Rock & Roll Part 2" with the beat audibly fraying at the edges, as if the producers figured the only way to reach America's heart was to pulverize—with Perry's shrill singing, which seems less rooted in a musical style than a personality type. Forget about lesbian until graduation; Perry is a lesbian until the camera switches off—the loudest girl in the Girls Gone Wild infomercial. Each to her own, but she sounds so robotic it's hard to sense much in the way of human impulse there.
The lyrics just make it worse. She kisses a girl—sure, okay. She likes it—um, and? Oh, and she hopes her boyfriend doesn't mind, because sexual autonomy is inextricable from the male gaze, and that's fucking awesome. "I Kissed a Girl" is infuriatingly ass-backward: cynical adherence to outdated values made into titillation, snide calculation dressed up as the underdog, the same old bullshit disguised as rebellion.
Those traits have dominated recent election news. Writing in Salon about why Palin gives her nightmares, Rebecca Traister could have been describing "I Kissed a Girl": "What Palin so seductively represents... is a form of feminine power that is utterly digestible to those who have no intellectual or political use for actual women. It's like some dystopian future... feminism without any feminists." What's worse is that people are falling for it, mistaking a pat on the head for progress. It takes a nation of Katy Perrys to hold us back."
No, no, no. This is not me asking the reader(s) how we beat Sarah Palin, but rather an endearing response said by McCain (Mr. McCain if ya nasty!) when asked how he he felt about Hilary Clinton. Little did he know that in months he would be vying for all those women voters and throwing Sarah Palin at them in a transparent attempt to cover his blatant sexism. So, ladies, there is good news and there is bad news. The good news is that many issues concerning women, and not just only the same pro-choice/anti-choice issue, are being brought to the forefront in this Presidential election. The bad news is that the Republicans are trying to convince women that Sarah Palin is strong proponent for those issues. Read more below. Can You Say 'Sexist'?
So I know that this is kind of a belated post and, at this point, everyone is probably sick of hearing about Sarah Palin, but here's one more interesting article about/perspective on McCain's veep pick...by none other than Gloria Steinem, renown feminist, Hillary supporter, and, now, Obama supporter. Many of you have probably already read it, but, if you haven't, or, perhaps more importantly, if you or anyone you know is still considering voting for the bulldog with lipstick as the-next-best-thing to Hillary, or even out of spite over Obama's nomination, please please please read this first!! Truly being a feminist doesn't mean automatically voting for someone just because she is a woman...it means making a decision that will protect the hard fought battles of our mothers and grandmothers and that will actually better the economic, social and political situation for women across the world. Come on ladies, let's show McCain that we're smarter than he clearly seems to think we are!!! And, if you're about to go play contact sports, go to a kickboxing class, or, for whatever other reason, need to get a little fired up, check out the LA Times Comments Blog for the Steinem article. "Heaping pile of murdered baby corpses" and "Ms. Steinem, put your bra back on" are just a few of the many gems that can be found there....
Matt, I am talking about it. I'm talking about it all the time. It's actually kind of a problem of mine. But I would love to meet you anytime, anywhere and talk more about it. I think it is only right.
As the one who's supposed to contribute sports-related content to this blog, I figured this was a perfect start...
I was listening to a radio morning show in the Bay Area (Alice 97.3) when I heard the announcement of McCain's VP pick.
The station was taking ANY callers who had ANY information about this woman (since no one knew who the hell she was) and one very friendly man phoned in to give listeners some perspective.
He claimed that Palin was no wimp--apparently she played through a broken ankle in a state championship basketball game, fighting to help her team win the title.
The radio host hung up on him and said something along the lines of "I'm sorry, that's really great, but how in the world does playing basketball on a broken ankle qualify you for the VICE PRESIDENCY?"
Answer? It doesn't.
Sarah's the All-American gal who is trying desperately to appeal to all those soccer moms, hockey moms, and pitbulls with lipstick out there who are dumb enough to elect ANY woman to office, regardless of her actual skills, for the sake of seeing their chromosome promoted to an important public office position. McCain made a rash, uninformed decision-- sensing that his campaign was losing mass appeal among voters--to try to capture those voters by naming a female running mate.
In sports terms, he made an offensive move to attack his competitors and catch them off-guard, forcing them to react to a different game plan than they expected. For a while, the GOP might see a brief roar in the crowd as they acknowledge the showboat maneuver he pulled off. But the crowd will die down when he runs back down the court and plays lousy defense because he doesn't remember what his team's strategy even is anymore.
Obama isn't showboating to win the election with sex appeal and unexpected twists and turns in his campaign strategy ("charisma" is not the same thing as "selling out"). He's relying on the actual politics to help him win, and at the end of the day, that's what matters most to our country.
Sarah Palin can go back to Alaska and shoot wolves from helicopters to make herself feel better--and maybe she'll realize that she owes her country (and her gender) more than just a pretty face.
I know I know, I have given entirely too much attention to Sarah Palin. What can I say? I feel that it is very important that we do not let this women near any type of political position where she can continue to work against women. The most upsetting fact to date about Palin is that while she was mayor in Wasilla, Alaska rape victims were charged for their own rape kits. As if mustering the courage to seek help after being raped isn't tough enough, Palin wants you to fork over $1,200 for that help. Rape Kits
However, what has been encouraging over the past couple days is the amount of skeptical criticisms surrounding Palin. Like this or this or this.And she hates polar bears, but it's ok because I don't think they care for her either. Oh and Deepak Chopra chimed in here. And finally, one website that has it all: Women Against Sarah Palin The Gig is up Palin!
Our fellow feminist bloggers, The Lady Finger, recently discovered this incredibly sexist "Strip Tease Quiz" produced by PETA. In an attempt to educate readers on the need for animal birth control they go as far as to work against their own species. But it got me thinking; maybe I should make a quiz in attempt to educate my viewers on the sexism that exists in everyday media. Instead of having a woman do a strip tease, I will have a kitten or a puppy give birth every time you get an answer right! The more puppies and kittens the better! Come on PETA...I like animals, but I like women more. Did Pamela Anderson give you this idea?
Anne Killkenny from Alaska has been spreading her personal knowledge of Sarah Palin around blogs, forums, and email forwards in the form of a nationally addressed letter describing the real Sarah Palin.
So, I know this is a lengthy read for some, but take the time and read it. Become informed on the facts and deceit that is Sarah Palin. The Republicans think they can trick you with this amazingly fresh, energetic face, but in reality it is the same story all over again. She sucks. She is a big corporate-loving, oil hoarding, lying, greedy jerk with a big smile.
In Paper Magazine's August addition they have a piece on Kira Plastinina. Kira is a post communist Russian, SIXTEEN year old fashion designer. Her father discovered her drawings and noticed her talent as a young girl. Since then they have opened over 40 stores in Russia and one opened in New York in May. "Kira is in the 10th grade at an Anglo-American school in Moscow; she works with her design team in Kira Plastinina design studieo and does her homework on the drive home at night. Kira's store in New York features a interactive high-tech photo booth and a giant pink pacifier that doubles as a couch." Um, that sounds kinda rad. Keep an eye out for this girl. She is on the rise. Unfortunately, there is no direct link to the Paper Magazine article, but the article is by Alex Gartenfield and you should check them out, and strongly consider purchasing their magazine. Paper Magazine is worthy of your business
The New York Times today has an article about parents who have children with special needs and who are tempted to vote for McCain-Palin because of Palin's promise that "you will have a friend in the White House." Sarah Palin herself has a child with down syndrome, but offered no details on how she plans to better the situation for special needs parents. Be careful. Don't be fooled, yet again, by empty promises. How can the Republicans help the situation and concurrently privatize health care? Empty Promises
If you are an intelligent person who regularly reads our nation's news, then you have probably seen this lady's mug in the past couple days. Her name is Judith Warner and she has written the most intelligent, and accurate article about Sarah Palin to date. I feel as though feminists and people alike have been attempting to put their finger on what it is exactly about Sarah Palin that is so offensive: Judith Warner has articulated it perfectly. Read this article now. Judith Warner: The Mirrored Ceiling
I just watch Sarah Palin's speech from the RNC and....well.....fuck. The majority of her speech focused on her family history as well as her present family situation. This poor woman was chosen as the VP Candidate mostly because of her family story, and it is depressing that she is whole-heartedly going along with it. I'm not saying that being a mom isn't something to be proud of. It is an amazing job that I think we need to respect more than we do, but I must say that this woman does not have enough political experience to be the Vice President. So, don't flaunt your family around as though tackling families issues is on par with the vice presidency. We all have family issues. Parenting is not the same as diplomacy, it just aint. She picked on Obama for only being the author of two memoirs but not a single law or reform in the State Senate. Really Palin? I think political experience is maybe something you should try to avoid discussing. But by all means, if you must.... Her speech glorified her accomplishments as Governor of Alaska and surprisingly, her stats really rallied the crowds. I guess none of the people there were willing to show their skepticism over her ability to be the Vice President of the United States. Man, I am worried. Four years ago, even eight years ago, I saw Bush on that screen using the same tactics. He was personable, friendly, accessible, sporting a stupid smirk, and for some God-forsaken reason it worked. They laughed at her jokes: "You know what the difference between a hockey mom and a pit-bull is? Lip stick." They embraced her family with all their faults, but they forgot to do one thing: really examine the issues. She continually focused on what should be as opposed to the present situation. She argued that we should be talking about Victory in Iraq, as opposed to giving up. We should be talking about drilling in America to end foreign dependency. We should confront the threat of Iran. Lady, the situation at hand is already pretty grim. Let's work on fixing some things before digging ourselves deeper. It's called humility.
An article in the New York Times this morning and the repeated use of the term “Pro-Life Feminist” on NPR’s morning edition reminded me of my on-going struggle to understand conservative women like Sarah Palin. There are so many contradictions between her actions and ideologies! Conservatives oppose a woman’s right to abortion while at the same time claim to want to reduce the government’s reach into the personal lives of Americans. What could be more personal than a woman’s right to choose? Conservatives also oppose sex education in public schools, despite evidence that rates of teenage pregnancy are never reduced by abstinence-only sex education. Conservatives want to reduce welfare to single mothers while at the same time claiming to champion family values. How can a single mother be a super-mom while working two or three jobs to make ends meet? Conservative female politicians believe it is important for a woman to stay home with her children, but they have chosen to work outside the home by running for office. How do conservative women reconcile all these contradictions? To answer these questions let’s do what I always do—look to our nation’s history to explain our current predicaments.
The oxymoronic term “Pro-life Feminist” reminded me of a book I read for a graduate course on feminist theory. Susan Faludi’s Backlash: The Undeclared War Against America Women exposes the concerted efforts of conservatives to undo the work of 1960s and 70s feminists. Although written in the 1990s, her book helps me put my mind around the always-confusing ideologies of the politically conservative women who baffle me—Sara Palin being a case in point.
Faludi, writing in the early 1990s, recounts the many political and cultural ramifications of the American backlash against feminism. She examines backlash as it occurred in government, politics, pop culture, advertising, fashion, academia, and pop psychology. She goes on to examine the toll the backlash has taken on working women, women’s bodies, and women’s rights. Pointing to women’s dissatisfaction with their lives—something that is never based in fact but is merely supposition—anti-feminists point to women’s lives outside the home and denial of traditional familial roles as the source of this unhappiness. Rather than looking to the social and cultural factors that may have been frustrating women—things like the glass ceiling, continued sexual harassment, and mixed cultural messages that women should achieve all that they can yet never abandon the home—the backlash blamed women for their own unhappiness. If women just stayed at home and embraced their “natural” role of wife and mother they would finally be fulfilled. Faludi never argues that there was a coherent, organized movement against feminism, but that backlash popped up all over the place because changes were taking place in American families and the threat to patriarchy was real. Those who would lose power if patriarchy disappeared fought back—and the fight continues on today and is embodied in the confusing ideologies of politicians like Sarah Palin.
It was announced today that Sarah Palin's 17 year old daughter is preggers. Wait, let me correct that, five months preggers.Even if this child was an Oooops child for Bristol, this unborn child will most certainly be a key spokesperson for John McCain. Essentially, McCain chose his running mate based on her reproductive track record: first, she decided to give birth to a child with down syndrome making her a pro-life role model and secondly, he chose her knowing that her daughter would be sporting a belly on the final stretch of the campaign trail.
Needless to say, McCain and advisers thought of the best way to spin this controversial issue into a positive thing. How is it that teenage pregnancy has become a positive thing? It's almost as though instead of addressing sexual education and advocating birth control we are embracing teenage pregnancy. Sure, the Jamie Lynn Spears and the Bristol Palin's of the world can manage, but what about other teenage girls? The Republicans seem so proud with their Pro-Life Mamma, yet will refuse to increase welfare. If their upper-middle class daughters can do it, anyone can right?