Archive for the ‘politics’ Category

repulsive posturing

Friday, November 13th, 2009

The poor might suffer, but hey, it’s worth it if it makes the gays miserable! From the Washington Post:

The Catholic Archdiocese of Washington said Wednesday that it will be unable to continue the social service programs it runs for the District if the city doesn’t change a proposed same-sex marriage law, a threat that could affect tens of thousands of people the church helps with adoption, homelessness and health care.

Here’s the full and rather pathetic story.

UPDATE now I’ve had more time to think about it. It’s a bit like when the fundamentalist churches were complaining in the last few months that hate crimes legislation was a bad thing because it might curb their freedom of speech. Well, brothers and sisters if you are worried that your religious speech might be hateful then maybe you should be examining your speech and beliefs. But at least those churches didn’t go cutting off aid to the poor and needy.

And finally, here’s a very sweet video from Sesame Street where Grover talks with a kid about marriage. At no point do they say that it should be a man and a woman – it could be any type of marriage. It’s very cute and also kind of moving.

our children is learning

Tuesday, September 8th, 2009

Toby is back to school now – first grade already. He seems to be really into it, very happy to be back and with his friends, although they shuffle the kids each year so he’s getting to know some new ones. He still sees his other friends at recess, so he’s keeping those friendships alive too.

Today they showed the address to America’s students from President Obama. There was some ridiculous kerfuffle from some Republican politicians, allegedly worried that Obama was going to indoctrinate the kids with Socialism, but of course it was a fairly regular speech about Working Hard and Doing The Right Thing (some of the opposition crumbled pretty fast when they saw the text of the speech – in the end even Newt Gingrich and Laura Bush said that it was a good speech which the kids should hear). Toby seemed pretty inspired – he gave quite a few details and knew that it’s the right thing to do well for yourself, your parents, your school and your country.

Also coming up – a lot of excitement about the new They Might Be Giants CD – Here Comes Science. We have their last couple of kids’ CDs – Here Come the 123s and Here Come the ABCs. So far advance reviews of the new one have been pretty good – here’s one of the songs for your enjoyment:

this man is clearly an idiot

Monday, May 4th, 2009

Ladies and gentlemen, a poster child for Republicans: “Joe” the “Plumber”:

In the last month, same-sex marriage has become legal in Iowa and Vermont. What do you think about same-sex marriage at a state level?

At a state level, it’s up to them. I don’t want it to be a federal thing. I personally still think it’s wrong. People don’t understand the dictionary—it’s called queer. Queer means strange and unusual. It’s not like a slur, like you would call a white person a honky or something like that. You know, God is pretty explicit in what we’re supposed to do—what man and woman are for. Now, at the same time, we’re supposed to love everybody and accept people, and preach against the sins. I’ve had some friends that are actually homosexual. And, I mean, they know where I stand, and they know that I wouldn’t have them anywhere near my children. But at the same time, they’re people, and they’re going to do their thing.

Ugh – God and bigotry using God to justify bigotry.

welfare

Monday, February 16th, 2009

Walking home from work today I saw a big white shiny SUV with a bumper sticker which read “Work harder! Millions on welfare are depending on you!”

I immediately thought “I hope you lose your job and find out what it’s like, you evil bigot” I’m pretty sure that reflexive reaction means I’m a bad person, but even so it was also an offensive sticker. What do you think?

at last

Tuesday, January 20th, 2009

Barack Obama takes the Presidential Oath of office.

I don’t really have much to add beyond what loads of blogs and papers have written about the inauguration. I was at work today and got to my desk after a meeting just in time to be able to watch a stream of President Obama taking his oath of office. I was very close to being sat there with tears running down my face. What a moment, partly because of who we have now, and partly because of who we said goodbye to today. Now, the hard work. Who would want that job, I have no idea, but good luck to him! Some fantastic photos from the Washington Post are here.

Also Garrison Keillor wrote a piece (I’ll try to find a link) about his experience being in the crowd. He said at the end that one of the biggest cheers was when the screens showed the Bushes get into their helicopter, the rotors started to spin as the cheers got louder, and then the aircraft took of and took away the former President – it was like the ice going out on the river after a long winter.

tomorrow

Monday, January 19th, 2009

Is Inauguration Day. And about time. Here are some great pics of the preparations.

not much hope

Sunday, January 11th, 2009

The news from Israel and Gaza about the ongoing violence is pretty nasty at the moment, to say the least. There’s so much history and antagonism from both sides, and I just wish that the human reflex to try to resolve everything through violence wasn’t so pervasive. Apparently, according to this guy, it’s also a godly reflex too (and I’m sure there are plenty of people on the other side who could sound equally objectionable). Sheesh.

economic stimulus package solution

Monday, December 8th, 2008

There’s a lot of talk in the news and government about the economy of course – employment and credit seem to be tanking, retail is suffering, and the main three car manufacturers in the US are begging for money from Congress. President-elect Obama had his weekly address over the weekend, and is talking about a huge stimulus package which would help America with education and infrastructure, also creating about 2.5 million jobs, if it goes the right way. However I think he’s kind of missing the point, and here’s my solution.

It starts with the fact that Emma is a bit addicted to the TV show What Not To Wear, where people with terrible fashion sense, or who are just stuck in a clothing/hairstyle rut, are given an intervention, shown how to choose clothing which flatters them, and styled to help them look and feel better about themselves. In almost all cases they say that they can’t believe how good they feel, and are amazed by the results. And that’s exactly what America needs – a new, better looking, more positive outlook where they can literally and metaphorically get rid of the old wardrobe and bad hair, and learn to be fabulous again.

So my stimulus package would be very much along the lines of What Not To Wear: $5000 per person to spend on a new wardrobe, as long as it is under the supervision of trained stylists, followed by a hair re-style (and makeup for the ladies). This would clearly help the economy, but would also get everyone looking and feeling much better, which would add pep to the step and make everyone feel much more likely to go out shopping, to see and be seen.

Case solved. You’re welcome.

our new first family

Friday, November 7th, 2008

An amazing set of backstage pictures as the Obama family experience election night. Fascinating, real and moving.

Also I’m enjoying hearing newscasters say “President-Elect Obama”

obama reaction

Friday, November 7th, 2008

I haven’t posted about the Obama victory, because to be honest I’m not quite sure how to put it into words. It feels in many ways, to a lot of my friends, like such a relief and release that a lot of us are quite subdued about it. I’m just really looking forward to some sanity and transparency from the government – I’m aware that a lot of people’s hopes will not be met, but it can’t get much worse, can it?

And on the historical nature of who Obama is, I think this cartoon speaks volumes, and at the risk of being over-sentimental, it gets to me every time:

Tom Toles cartoon

Tom Toles cartoon

I heard that there’s a cartoon in a UK newspaper, also of the White House, with a sign next to a small lake saying “Please do not walk on the water”.