Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Gif of the Day

Jiggle the pears. JIGGLE THEM.

What Rape Culture?


This post isn't funny at all. I'm so sick of reporting on shit like this. Today there's two of them.

Gwinnett man gets time served after sexually abusing captive teen

The whole story is really horrifying and I don't really recommend reading it, but basically a 15-year-old girl was manipulated into moving in with this adult man but because rape culture he could claim it was all totally consensual, then after she turned 16, which is the age of consent in Georgia, he started violating her boundaries, meaning he was sexually assaulting, abusing, and raping her, and refused to let her leave his home (kidnapping).

I don't know how the fuck prosecutors keep letting this shit go with plea deals that reduce kidnapping and rape charges to "first-degree cruelty to children and interstate interference with custody." Now this child rapist gets 0 days in jail because he was allowed "time served" and gets nearly 10 years of probation. I'm. So. Fucking. Tired.


26-year-old pleads guilty to rape of 14-year-old, gets zero jail time and $1,300 in 'fees'

This time, an adult bus driver manipulated a 14-year-old student into going to his house, got her drunk, and raped her. Plea deal down to third-degree rape, lowest level sex offender designation, and 10 years of probation. Because it was only his first offense! He only violated one child in the worst way imaginable!

Look at this, look at all the white men who rape children who get to run around free to rape other children while black people who are caught with weed a couple times are thrown into prison for decades, and tell me that justice exists in this country.

Another False Rape Accusation! From Right-Wing Loser Jacob Wohl

Pete Buttigieg Falsely Accused of Sexual Assault by Far-Right Catfish

I don't know what's funnier - the fact that assholes like Wohl fret constantly over the (very low) rate of false rape accusations from women, or the fact that Wohl and his buddy did an absolutely terrible job and bungled this completely. They didn't even get the guy they made the false report about on board.

Click to enlarge


It's important for everyone to know that I was not sexually assaulted and would never falsely accuse anyone. 
To keep it brief for now- I was approached by a political figure to come to DC to discuss political situations from the standpoint of a gay Republican. When I arrived they discussed Peter Buttigieg and started talking about how they would be working a campaign against him. 
I went to bed and woke up to a fake Twitter @RealHunterKelly and an article that I in no way endorsed or wrote. 
I have since left and am working on a formal statement to give to everyone including the Buttigieg family. 
Thank you for standing behind me and knowing that I would never accept or allow any of this.”

They apparently thought they had successfully bullied this poor man into making the accusation, as he told The Advocate that they forced him to sign a statement accusing Buttigieg of assault and submit to a photo with his university ID for some reason. Wohl's accomplice, Jack Burkman, is sticking to their bullshit story.

So, uh, can Wohl and Burkman be arrested for basically kidnapping Kelly and forcing him to make a false report of a crime that never happened?

Also, are you really so pathetically homophobic that you need to try to make false accusations against the first gay man running for president? Yeah, he's got some attention on him right now but it's way too early for this kind of sabotage and since he's essentially not that different from the more-popular Joe Biden, I doubt there's much chance of him winning. But I guess when your fragile masculinity is threatened by gayness, your brain doesn't work too well.

Also, it was sooooo easy to find a tweet from Burkman that didn't age well, young as it is.

This whole story is just something else. Man, right-wingers suck at everything.

Anyway seriously these guys committed crimes? Arrest them?

Monday, April 29, 2019

Gif of the Day

Wakeup boop.

Abort Donald Trump


If Donald Trump's going to spread intensely absurd and dangerous lies about abortion, then I'm just going to go ahead and advocate for subjective him to an extremely late-term abortion.

It's a pathetic and abhorrent lie that tens of thousands of people heard and instantly believed because their president/god said it.

There is zero chance that this won't lead to more violence against people who work at or ever go to reproductive health clinics. It's also incredibly alarming that he just gets to say this shit, just complete bald-faced lies about something that has never and would never actually happen, and keep on being fucking president. Why can't we impeach him again? Something about it not being practical?

I don't know if Trump was or thought he was referencing the times when parents have to make the heart-wrenching decision of whether to let their newborn baby die because something went so wrong in their development that even if they do survive, it will take multiple operations and even after that, the child will be unlikely to live more than a couple years and will probably suffer a lot during that short life. That is something that happens and it's a horrific and devastating reality that has nothing to do with abortion. It's a huge slap in the face to parents who have been through something that is inconceivable to those of us who haven't been through it to use that reality for vague abortion-related fearmongering political points.

I'm so tired.

Friday, April 26, 2019

Anti-Homeless Hate Is On The Rise


This has been a particular problem in Seattle, where multiple anti-homeless groups masquerading as people who are concerned about safety or whatever the fuck, but as poverty and homelessness get worse across the U.S., it'll spread everywhere.

I'm not sure if I've stressed this on this blog yet, but homeless people are part of the community. The homeless in your community are part of your community. They are the people who have been failed by society. We should be trying to help them. Instead, we've come to blame them for their situations. I see so many people using this blanket blame that allows them to ignore the problem - the idea that if you're homeless, you must deserve it. Blanket this over all homeless people and you don't have to put any effort into helping them or even feeling bad for them, right?

Again, it's the just world fallacy. It's also a symptom of the belief that you have the right to judge people without even knowing them. It's been used to spread hatred of migrants and it's being used spread hatred of homeless people.

The idea of choice also plays a role. I see a lot of homeless-hating assholes claiming that some ridiculously high percentage of homeless people "choose" to be homeless (without sources). They'll claim that such and such family member decided it was easier to be homeless.

I'm sure sometimes that's true. You know how I'm sure? I've considered it. Sometimes paying rent and all the bills just feels so overwhelming. I've held full-time jobs that I've hated so much, so many jobs I've hated, and felt like there is no way for me to function in this world because every regular job I've ever held has made me literally suicidal. I actually considered whether I should buy a van or something I could live in so that I could work a minimal amount and just pay for gas and insurance and a cheap gym membership so I could shower.

Because living a "normal" life was just so hard. I got so tired of it. And if I were a cis dude instead of a cis woman, maybe I would have chosen homelessness because it would have been so much safer for me to do so as a cis dude.

Does that mean all homeless deserve to be harassed by police constantly, to have everyone trying to push them out of any place they try to live, to deny them basic human needs like a place to go to the bathroom?

Seattle has no public toilets. Now Seattle residents who aren't homeless are complaining that there's "trash and shit everywhere." Uh, yeah, hello, where are homeless people supposed to shit? You won't let them stay in one place long enough to dig a latrine. Every shop and restaurant and coffee shop now has locked bathrooms opened by codes you can only get if you buy something.

What would you do if you were homeless? Homelessness can be so stressful, and the dehumanization and hatred from non-homeless is so intense that it's no wonder they stop giving a fuck about anything. You treat people that badly and then you expect them to bag up their trash and take it, where, to one of the locked dumpsters around the city? You expect them to, what, dig holes every time they need to shit? To keep the city that failed them and hates them looking nice? For you?

Are you kidding me?

It's pretty much established fact now that it's cheaper to house homeless people than to leave them homeless. Giving them housing would give them a place to shit and throw out their trash and, if they so choose or if they are compelled by addiction, do their drugs out of your sight. Why would anyone be against it? Because they haven't suffered enough? Because something something "handouts"?

Anyway, be aware of anti-homeless hate and be ready to stand against it. The more that hate spreads and results in laws that make their lives even harder, the more people will die from homelessness. Don't let the rich assholes kill even more people.

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Gif of the Day

I don't know if this is a plant or an animal but I do know that I'm afraid of it.

Twitter Banning White Supremacists Means Banning Republicans

I know what you're thinking, but that is not just my commentary. That is actually literally what Twitter has finally admitted after years of people screaming at them to ban white supremacists.

Why Won’t Twitter Treat White Supremacy Like ISIS? Because It Would Mean Banning Some Republican Politicians Too.

With every sort of content filter, there is a tradeoff, he explained. When a platform aggressively enforces against ISIS content, for instance, it can also flag innocent accounts as well, such as Arabic language broadcasters. Society, in general, accepts the benefit of banning ISIS for inconveniencing some others, he said. 
In separate discussions verified by Motherboard, that employee said Twitter hasn’t taken the same aggressive approach to white supremacist content because the collateral accounts that are impacted can, in some instances, be Republican politicians.

I'm not necessarily surprised but it's amazing to finally hear Twitter basically admit that the reason they can't ban white supremacists is because that would include multiple Republicans. At what point are we going to stop tolerating having a major political party that includes, welcomes, supports, and promotes white supremacists?

Man, we have a fucked up country right here.

“Most people can agree a beheading video or some kind of ISIS content should be proactively removed, but when we try to talk about the alt-right or white nationalism, we get into dangerous territory, where we’re talking about [Iowa Rep.] Steve King or maybe even some of Trump’s tweets, so it becomes hard for social media companies to say all of this ‘this content should be removed,’” Amarasingam said.

This happened just days after Trump tweeted whining that he didn't have enough Twitter followers, and then later that same day had a "meeting" with Jack where the overly-bearded Twitter CEO had to explain that Trump lost a bunch of followers because a lot of them were bots and spam accounts.

Welcome to the United Disaster of America.

Guest Post: New Study Shows Public Universities Prioritize Wealthy White Students

Kate Harveston is a political writer from Pennsylvania. Her favorite topics are feminist-focused, but she writes on a wide variety of social and cultural issues. If you enjoy her work, you can follow her on Twitter or visit her blog, Only Slightly Biased.

It's hardly news that being born white to wealthy parents in the U.S. comes with significant advantages. As the most unequal nation out of all developed countries, those born with the proverbial silver spoon receive everything from higher quality health care to ease with college admissions. The recent scandal involving actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin shows the extent that wealth and fame matter as much if not more than academic prowess when it comes to getting into top schools.
Minorities and the poor have a difficult enough time breaking the cycle of poverty without the American educational system making it harder. Yet despite the fact that the U.S. prides itself on equal opportunity for all, public universities have failed to provide those born into certain families and zip codes the ability to obtain degrees that open doors. This needs to change.
What Researchers Found
Researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles, and the University of Arizona found that public universities recruit out-of-state students from affluent areas more than they court in-state candidates. This practice reveals the avarice which exists even in those institutions presumably dedicated to the greater good. Out-of-state tuition rates mean more revenue for colleges, but at the cost of opportunities for students who meet all entrance requirements save one — the size of their parents' bank account.
Without question, this reality flies in the face of the western ideal of boot strapping as a recipe for success in life. Furthermore, the revelations highlight the extremes of growing income inequality and the societal structures which allow such gaps to widen. The findings also shed dismal light upon the status of race relations in the U.S.
In a nation whose beacon of freedom asks the world to send America their tired, their poor, their huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the study serves as a depressing, yet necessary, reminder that ideals like creating equal opportunities for all requires concrete human action. Many other nations have made far larger strides toward equality than the U.S. Germans, for example, pay little to no tuition, yet can study at some of the most esteemed universities in the world.
Most American college graduates not born into privilege leave school with tens of thousands of dollars in student loan debt, and given current average wages, shelling out the dough for a degree can set young people back financially for decades. Only some are fortunate enough to secure employment where their bosses help to offset their educational costs, while many others continue making student loan payments well into their 40's, 50's or beyond.
Students from disadvantaged backgrounds already face enormous difficulty not only in affording tuition but also in managing the incidental costs of higher education. Textbooks can cost thousands, especially at the graduate level, and while grants and scholarships exist to help, they can prove hard to come by. Many who grew up in poorer homes began working at young ages, providing them with experience but little else to show for their efforts other than passing out exhausted halfway through an all-nighter.
Certainly attaining a university degree isn't the only pathway to financial security. Many who instead opt to attend trade school do earn more than their college-educated peers. However, American youth need role models like teachers, counselors and nurses who come not from privileged backgrounds but from similar circumstances. Asking low-income youth dwelling on the wrong side of the tracks to listen to adults who have no idea what it feels like to go to bed hungry, ever, insults these young people's tenacity to persist despite overwhelming odds.
Fixing the U.S. University Problem
In order to rectify public universities' recruitment of predominantly white, affluent youth over local lower-income students, guidelines mandating the percentages of in-state to out-of-state students will lead to higher acceptance rates of low-income learners. Some schools, such as the University of California, have instituted such measures voluntarily. However, legislators may need to step in and impose such limits on colleges loath to voluntarily comply.
Additionally, universities can switch their recruitment efforts to target those from more varied backgrounds. Politicians should take care to resist referring to such programs as affirmative action, a phrase laden with negative connotations. Rather, elected representatives should laud efforts to increase campus diversity.
True Opportunity for All
Going to college and earning a degree doesn't ensure financial success in life, but it does open doors of opportunities for many. Those opportunities have been reserved for the privileged classes for far too long. As the goal of public educational institutions is to teach all students regardless of their parent's income level, continuing to allow schools taking tax money to recruit primarily from affluent areas represents the ultimate in hypocrisy.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Gif of the Day


Ok So Stephen Moore


A lot of shit has happened already this week so I'm just getting to Stephen Moore and his op-ed about how women shouldn't be allowed to sports.

Trump’s Fed pick wrote that women should be banned from March Madness

It's always amazing to be reminded that the dudes who were saying this same kind of shit online and then coming to my blog and my social accounts to call me a feminazi cunt for being like "um could men stop treating us like shit" were not actually losers in their parents' basements. They were the people making our laws and writing our op-eds in the National Review.

“Here’s the rule change I propose: No more women refs, no women announcers, no women beer venders, no women anything,” he wrote in a 2002 column for the conservative National Review, recently unearthed by CNN’s Andrew Kaczynski and Paul LeBlanc. 
Moore, who now says he was joking, also suggested that female athletes should be paid less than men and mocked women’s political opinions (“sooo malleable”).

Ah, yes, he wrote an entire National Review op-ed as a "joke." Because we all know that the National Review has a reputation for being hilarious. It's basically another The Onion.

Also, and this is not a joke, the National Review is a conservative rag that just today published an article titled "‘Dehumanizing’ Speech Is Still Free Speech" on their website. And Moore wrote multiple articles for them in which he spouted his rank sexist beliefs.

But on Monday, Kaczynski and LeBlanc of CNN published excerpts from a series of National Review columns by Moore, written from 2001 to 2003, in which he complains about women doing a variety of things, such as playing sports, selling beer, and voting.

This guy came straight out of the 1930s I guess.

“This year they allowed a woman ref a men’s NCAA game,” Moore wrote in a 2002 column devoted to March Madness. “The NCAA has been touting this as example of how progressive they are. I see it as an obscenity. Is there no area in life where men can take vacation from women?”

If you hate women so much, why don't you fuck off to Pluto, where there are no women at all! No women to ruin your good times being a sexist shit bucket.

Now he's whining that the public is "pulling a Kavanaugh" against him, which is more appropriate than he knows. I would be shocked if Moore had never assaulted a woman. Men who hate women rarely stop at just hating them.

But also, who wants to bet that Moore has accused women of having a victim complex? LOL.

Anyway, I'm sure he'll be confirmed to the Federal Reserve Board because he was just saying out loud what most Republican men believe. But he'll be out on his ass before too long.

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Gif of the Day

The 90s were amazing.

The Worstest Country on Earth


If you're still riding the high from the Roger Stone post, this is about to pull you down real fast.

US threatens to veto UN resolution on rape as weapon of war, officials say

The US is threatening to veto a United Nations resolution on combatting the use of rape as a weapon of war because of its language on reproductive and sexual health, according to a senior UN official and European diplomats.

So pro-life they'll stop the U.N. from combatting rape as a weapon of war. A+ morals there.

Imagine hating women SO MUCH that you'll veto a resolution on combatting rape as a weapon of war because it kinda sounds like it might also support women who could want abortions. Possibly because they were raped by soldiers.

But that's not all. This veto threat comes after the U.S. also stripped the resolution of its teeth.

But the draft resolution has already been stripped of one of its most important elements, the establishment of a formal mechanism to monitor and report atrocities, because of opposition from the US, Russia and China, which opposed creating a new monitoring body.

OOOOOoooOOOooooooooooOOOhhhhhhHHHHHHHhhhhh InTeReStInG the three nations that are notorious for intense, fascistic monitoring of their citizens is against the creation of "a new monitoring body" that would report these crimes against humanity. How much do the U.S., Russia, and China rely on rape as a weapon of war, exactly?

The ridiculousness of the anti-abortion zeal has reached new heights and it's sickening. Also, transphobia.

In recent months, the Trump administration has taken a hard line, refusing to agree to any UN documents that refer to sexual or reproductive health, on grounds that such language implies support for abortions. It has also opposed the use of the word “gender”, seeking it as a cover for liberal promotion of transgender rights.

REALLY? You won't even let people use the word "gender" now because it, what, reminds you that trans people exist? Giant fuck you, Trump administration.

Again, it's so jarring to have been raised on the constant message that "America is the greatest nation on Earth" and then grow up to see this shit happen on a regular basis. It's not even just the Trump administration. Intense transphobia and anti-abortion rhetoric and lobbying has allowed this to happen. I wish European colonists had never floated their shitty boats over to the Americas and committed mass genocide.

Roger Stone is Broke as a Joke

Even if Donald Trump is never indicted for his crimes and attempted crimes, and I'm 100% sure he will be, thanks in part to the Mueller report, the fact that all this has destroyed Roger Stone honestly makes it all worthwhile.

Broke Roger Stone Is Speaking for Money at a Strip Club

I feel like this article relies on some whorephobia maybe, but every other article from every other outlet I looked at does, too, unfortunately. Still the fact that Roger Stone, who was previously some kind of untouchable entity of pure political sleaze, has to speak at anything less than a mid-size auditorium is pretty amazing. And the mere fact that is is broke as a joke is just mmmmm.

Stone has fallen on hard financial times since he was arrested on federal charges late last year. President Trump’s long-time political adviser is currently awaiting trial on several counts relating to his alleged communications with WikiLeaks during the 2016 election. After pleading not guilty, he was let out on a $250,000 bond. That and lawyers’ fees have rendered him effectively bankrupt, he says.

He's apparently not so broke that he can't afford to hire the Proud Boys as his personal misogynistic security force. Either that or they're doing it for free because they're just that terrible.

Thankfully, local antifa activists are working to deny Stone of any space to spread his toxicity, including at this local strip club. Indeed, men like him and the "Proud Boys" should not be allowed anywhere near sex workers. I don't care if no sex workers are going to be at the event, just having them skulking around where sex workers work makes me uneasy.

It took way too long for Roger Stone to get what was coming to him, being one of the main dudes who helped Richard Nixon commit crimes while president, but this is so beautiful that it almost makes me want to believe in the just world fallacy.

I won't, though.

Monday, April 22, 2019

Gif of the Day

This was part of a whole gif set showing the baby escaping from the enclosure because she can fit through the holes in the fence but I like this alone because it looks like mom is just like "hey excuse me baby" OR is justing giving baby a pat on the back for encouragement.

She ends up getting baby back inside with her so don't worry.

No Justice Found In America's Justice System

This is another one of those stories where there are so many fucked up aspects to it that how the fuck do I headline this blog post without making it really really long.

Woman Jailed For Refusing Paternity Test Demand From Abusive Ex While 7-Months Pregnant, Loses Job and Home and 39 Days of Her Life Due To Total Incompetence of Officials, Finds Out She Has Stage Four Breast Cancer After Release

That is not The Appeal's headline but it incorporates most of the fucked up shit to be found in this story.

It starts out with Adrianna Thurman being found in contempt of court when she was seven months pregnant because her ex, whom she says only did this to further stalk and harass her, filed for a paternity test and she refused. So here we have the first supremely fucked up thing. Apparently, if you're a woman and you're pregnant, an abusive ex can file for a paternity test and if you refuse based on the fact that this person is dangerous to you, you can be thrown in jail. AND, because it's a civil case, the state was not required to provide her with legal counsel.

Then there was how she was treated in jail. She wasn't able to see a doctor for two weeks despite being quite far along in her pregnancy. The jail failed to comply with her request for an extra mattress and blanket, which she was entitled because she was pregnant. They ignored her request to speak with a caseworker so she could even figure out WHY she was being held. Even when her ex tried to help, nothing.

And according to her complaint, even when her ex-boyfriend’s attorney repeatedly asked the division clerk of the court to set a hearing before the court commissioner, he refused to do so, incorrectly claiming that hearings must be initiated by jail officials.

INCORRECTLY CLAIMING so was he lying or is he that incompetent?

One of the most mindblowing parts of this story is that Thurman didn't even know why she had been arrested or why she was being held in jail.

In her complaint, Thurman charges that a series of misconduct and errors led to her lengthy incarceration. She says she was not notified that Family Court Commissioner Mary Greaves had ordered a paternity test. And when she refused to submit her children to the test and the opposing attorney filed a motion for contempt, Commissioner Greaves ordered her arrest, even though the contempt motion was never served to Thurman in person, as the law requires.

Hi yeah what the fuck? How can someone comply with a court order when they don't even know about it???

Thurman was in jail for 39 days on a charge that she didn't even know about, while pregnant, with inadequate medical care and no accommodations for her risky medical condition. Not only that, she was denied bail. All she had done was declined to submit her children to a paternity test. Her bond should have been set at a mere $100.

Thurman also argues that Missouri law dictates she was eligible for $100 bond. Her arrest order, however, stated she would be detained without bond. She was taken to Family Court the day after her arrest, but never brought before Greaves. After that, the court clerk, Michael Young, did not schedule a hearing for 36 days. When Thurman finally went before the commissioner on Nov. 8, according to her complaint, she was lectured about the paternity test and sent back to jail. Greaves’s order that day stated, “This Court will order Respondent be released when Petitioner’s attorney has reported the genetic testing has been completed.”


After this, she was able to submit her kids to the paternity test so that she could be released and fucking care for them.

After this entire clusterfuck, Thurman had lost her job and her home because she couldn't work or pay rent while locked up. Soon after, she gave birth prematurely, which is always a risk to a newborn's health.

And here is the fucked up cherry on top of this fucked up sundae:

Postnatal testing revealed she was suffering from Stage 4 breast cancer, which had gone undetected during her jail stay. A paternity test showed Rush was not the father of her children, according to the lawsuit.

So now she might die because her cancer went undetected, and in late-stage cancer, every day counts. And after all of that, the paternity test was negative, just as she said it would be.

Needless to say, Thurman is suing, and I hope she gets millions. I hope she's set for life on that settlement, if she survives her cancer. Of course, in this shithole country, her hospital bills will probably be in the millions.

I have been unable to determine if Thurman is a white woman or a woman of color, but if I were a betting woman...

Either way, this is a prime example of how our supposed "justice system" barely even functions for people who aren't rich. People's lives can just be utterly ruined over fucking nothing, or over the actions of an abusive man determined to fuck with the woman who escaped his grasp. It takes the side of abusive men, ruins women's lives, risks women's lives, and ends women's lives. At least she didn't go into labor while in prison, or else she might have been shackled and abused while giving birth.

And what does the justice system have to say about all this?

Thurman’s suit says she was informed by jail staff after her release that she had “slipped through the cracks” because they were unsure how to handle someone booked on a civil warrant.

THAT SEEMS LIKE IT WOULD BE AN IMPORTANT PART OF YOUR JOB THAT SHOULD NOT HAVE TAKEN 39 DAYS TO FIGURE OUT OK??? And/or that is an indication that she never should have been jailed in the first place.

And people act like I'm ridiculous for being a prison abolitionist.


2020 Challenger Lineup: Amy Klobuchar

Oh boy, another moderate Democrat candidate! Or, on a global scale, another center-right candidate.

Also, yes, she is the one who has been accused of abuse by former staffers, going so far as to say she's "just like Trump." I'm sure that's an exaggeration, since she hasn't been caught on tape admitting to serial sexual assault and doesn't occasionally suggest just mowing down migrants with machine guns, but worker abuse is highly uncool.

I'm tempted to just give her a bad grade now and end the post, but I guess I'll look at her policy positions.

Klobuchar has said that she likes the idea of the Green New Deal but that it's "not realistic." Humanity surviving climate change if we don't do something drastic soon is also "not realistic" but whatever. She has also said that free four-year college is not realistic. How do other countries manage it, then? Magic? Also, she has not supported Medicare For All, instead saying we should go for a single payer option or something else less effective that would still leave millions without healthcare. But she does at least support the fight to lower prescription drug costs.

She is a former prosecutor who has been accused of taking a "tough on crime" approach. She increased her county's prison population during her term as county prosecutor in Minnesota.

She does support overturning Citizens United and implementing automatic voter registration. She also attempted to pass a bill that would have increased election transparency and address the role of social media companies in spreading election-related propaganda. The Senate killed it, of course.

On immigration, all Wikipedia says is that she "voted for the 2013 Senate immigration reform bill and still supports comprehensive immigration reform."

Klobuchar supports net neutrality and wants to increase U.S. cyber security. She seems like a typical neoliberal on foreign policy, expressing support for a strong military, as though it isn't strong enough already. She has also expressed concern about the national debt, which, whatever.

Her big issue is national infrastructure. She has a whole plan to fix the country up and promised to get it in motion in her first year as President. This includes getting an internet connection to every home in the country by 2022, building green infrastructure, and expanding public transportation. It's a good plan, though I would suspect it doesn't go far enough, but these are some important issues, especially as climate change-related storms get worse.

None of the above was padded with info from her campaign website because, like other candidates I'm not so keen on, said website does not contain any policy position information. All it gives you is a one-page statement about how Klobuchar's grandpa was a coal miner and can't we just stop all the fighting and gridlock?

Klobuchar has a loooooong voting record, possibly having passed the most legislation of any candidate. I don't know if this is good or not, but I feel like it only matters if the legislation she passed is good. Considering her positions, I'm guessing not so much. I'm not going to go through it all because I already know I'm not supporting her.

Amy Klobuchar gets a D+. She would have gotten a C- but I had to bump her down for being abusive. And actually, considering my stance on abusers, I should give her an F. And I might as well because there are so many better candidates ahead of her.

F, Amy Klobuchar. You're surely NOT as bad as Trump, who on this scale would get a Z-. But abuse of your staff is unacceptable and you're irrelevant in a crisis point era that calls for radical action, not moderate shrugs and conservative pandering.

Next week, I finally get to Bernie Sanders! His positions are pretty well known so I'll be spending more time digging into the controversies around him and the arguments as to why people are #NeverBernie. Should be fun/terrible.

Friday, April 19, 2019

Gif of the Day

When the edibles finally kick in.

This Is Why No One Likes Establishment Democrats


So, the Mueller report. Lots of opinions on it. I'm not a lawyer and I am not confident that if I did try to slog through the 400 pages, I would understand the implications of most of it. However, a lot of people are saying it's a roadmap to impeaching Trump, and it very clearly states that Trump is NOT exonerated. So he'll be indicted as soon as he leaves office. Oh fuck, that means he has all the more motivation to end free elections.

Okay well that makes me even angrier at the establishment Democrats who are saying that it's just not worth it to impeach Trump because the Republican-controlled Senate will never go for it!

Can I ask you something? Did you really think that you were the only ones who knew what actual impeachment is, or did you not know?

A lot of average Americans don't know this, but impeachment does not mean removal from office. In a presidential impeachment, the House alone votes to impeach. If they vote in favor of it, the decision of whether this means the President should be removed from office goes to the Senate. This is why Bill Clinton was indeed impeached but was still able to finish his second term as President.

That, of course, leads me to point out that Republicans had no problem impeaching Bill Clinton regardless of the fact that they did not have the necessary supermajority votes in the Senate to get him removed. And in their eyes, that was over him lying about a blowjob. (In my eyes, Bill Clinton should have been impeached, removed from office, and indicted for taking advantage of a young woman he had an incredible amount of power over in an act that is arguably rape. But that doesn't change the fact that Republicans would never consider that rape and so they impeached him for one single lie about a sex act and many of the same Republicans are now supporting a pathological liar who admitted to serial sexual assault on tape.)

Would Trump ever be removed from office without a Democratic supermajority in the Senate? Hell no. Republicans don't have values or souls or anything like that. But do these establishment Democrats really think there is no value in impeachment? Why are they so against it that they are willing to mislead the American public about what impeachment is? Do they really have no desire to put impeachment upon Trump's legacy, making him another Nixon?

What are they out for? Still hoping to hang on to some favor from Republicans?

Alex Pareen of the New Republican is of the opinion that they're gutless. And racist.

Democratic leadership seemingly believes that the party can’t let its candidates campaign on promises to materially improve the lives of voters while also letting its elected officials carry out the responsibilities of their offices. They also believe, deep in their bones, that the country is not on their side. They believe going after Trump too directly will stir his mighty base, rather than imagining that full and transparent investigations into his various fraudulent and corrupt activities may demoralize his staunchest supporters—just as Trump himself was demoralized at the prospect of Mueller’s investigation—while also persuading those people who aren’t already in the cult of MAGA that this administration, and the party that abets it, need to be soundly defeated. 
Once again, we can celebrate a modern example of bipartisanship: a deep conviction, on both sides, that the only legitimate force in American politics is white grievance.

Fuckin' HIT EM Alex.

Honestly, why do these centrist, establishment Democrats think they deserve a single vote from anyone? I cannot wait until Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Ilhan Omar are old enough to run for President.

Anyway, I'm very tired and looking forward to a weekend of getting fuuuuuuuuuuuuucked up happy 4/20 blaze it get really high and contemplate how the Earth is only a tiny speck in a massive universe so it doesn't matter if you spend the whole day getting high.

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Gif of the Day

The best part about Skyrim is that the game sometimes just straight up trolls you.

An Armed Militia Is Rounding Up Immigrants In The U.S. South

Antifa operatives have released a video of a large crowd of Latinx migrants being held at gunpoint by a U.S. militia group. The migrants can be seen nervously shuffling around with many children in the crowd. You can hear white voices order them about, first to stop and stay and then to move here and there in Spanish. It's dark and they're probably terrified. At one point the guy taking the video, presumably part of the militia, says "this is a brand new group invading the camp." At the end, the guy calls the "camp" "Camp Liberty," but it's hard to know if that is serious. He also tells someone to call "BP" and then says "there's no Border Patrol around here, it's just us."

Like Nikki says, the implications are terrifying. If we have fake border patrol militias running around, bold enough to do this, one of these days a similar situation will end in a bloodbath. They don't care about the humanity of the people they're condemning to indefinite incarceration and possibly family separation. They think of them as invaders.

Meanwhile, we're spending another $40 million for more "tent cities" (prison camps) as more migrants arrive and Border Patrol complains that their resources are "stretched thin."

Just let them come in and don't fucking arrest them then. Or process them and let them go because this country is absolutely not full, many communities are under-populated, and immigrants for the most part absolutely help our economy and make our country a better place. Have you noticed food prices going up again? I sure have.

Facebook Teams Up With Tucker Carlson's Daily Caller


Remember the news that Facebook was banning white supremacists? Well, as I thought, they're not banning all of them. Instead, they're partnering with the ones who are a little more subtle. Guess what for!

Facebook teams with rightwing Daily Caller in factchecking program

The social network said Wednesday it had added CheckYourFact.com, which is part of the Daily Caller, as one of its US media partners in an initiative that has faced growing backlash from journalists and internal problems. The collaboration was first reported by Axios. 
Factcheckers in the program are tasked with debunking potential false stories on Facebook to help stop their spread, but some journalists have said the effort hasn’t been effective, and one of its major American partners, Snopes.com, cut ties earlier this year.

The Daily Caller has brought us such hits as "this photo we stole from a sex worker is definitely Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez" and "George Soros controls all these voting machines but we're definitely not antisemitic," plus publishing multiple articles by the white supremacist behind the Charlottesville horror show that ended in the death of Heather Hayer. Not to mention selling its utterly gullible readers shit like a massage belt that promises to give you a six-pack.

They also publish every scare story about migrants that they can possibly dig up while ignoring the increasingly frequent stories about white domestic terrorists with plans to murder Democrats and people of color. And just the fact that Tucker "Defends Child Rape" Carlson is the founder and majority owner of the Daily Caller. Hey Facebook, are you also fans of child marriage and rape? Just wondering.

This is how white supremacy becomes mainstream. Fuckerberg will use CheckYourFact.com to spread right-wing propaganda, and my money's on him launching his presidential campaign when the next Democrat is in the White House and running on white supremacist fearmongering about the increase of brown people and a new Red Scare. It's going to be ugly.

I really should ditch Facebook but honestly so many of my friends and family still use it to plan events that I feel like I'll end up completely socially isolated if I do. And I don't need any help in that respect.

I'm going to have to think on this.

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Gif of the Day

If you don't feel like getting up to join the fight, a tail nom works in a pinch.

2020 Challenger Lineup: Elizabeth Warren

What with the novocaine from my dentist appointment on Monday, I totally forgot about the weekly Democratic presidential candidate outline. And today's candidate is Elizabeth Warren!

Elizabeth Warren rose to fame after she took on the banks following the Great Recession and the bank bailouts that might have helped the economy from completely tanking but also sent the message that big banks can get away with anything if they're big enough. She became something of a progressive hero as she continued to go after Wall Street and demand regulations on the people responsible for the bubble bursts that led straight to the recession.

There were some people hoping that Warren would run in 2016, but she declined, probably not wanting to get in the way of Hillary Clinton. I don't blame her for that. Now that she is running, enthusiasm for her seems to have waned a bit.

I was concerned about the rumors she had ended up taking corporate money. However, I have been unable to verify this. The only people reporting on it are right-wing rags like the Daily Caller and some websites no one has ever heard of but that seem mostly dedicated to (still) attacking Hillary Clinton (seriously get over it, she lost and has mostly disappeared, what is your deal).

According to OpenSecrets.org, which all the "sources" claiming she took corporate money end up back at, her top donors for 2018 include AT&T and Morgan Stanley. HOWEVER, if you look at total vs. individuals columns, you'll notice that all donation from these companies come from individuals. This suggests that, like with other Democrat candidates, these donations actually come from employees of these companies rather than the companies themselves.

Now, I don't personally know whether "individuals" or "employees" in a company can include high-up executives or even CEOs, which would still suggest to me that she is beholden to these corporations. And I don't really know how to find out. If anyone knows please comment with the answer.

As for her policy positions, she is definitely very progressive and her actions and voting record have reflected that. She's still working within capitalism but it's too much to ask for an anti-capitalist candidate at this time. Her ultra-millionaire tax is good, though it could tax more. She is still for having a "strong military" because something something terrorists, but wants to cut the defense budget and even calls out military contractors (a key part of the military industrial complex), which is something I've never seen before in a presidential candidate.

Warren's Native American thing was uhhhh suspect at least? Though I've seen opinions from actual Native Americans that are varied, from "it's good that she got the DNA test" to "who cares" to "she's hurting Native Americans." She did issue an apology, which seemed like a good one to me, but I'm white so my judgment on this issue is limited. Otherwise, she is pro-reparations, including for Native Americans, which is great, and seems pretty good on racial justice. She has called for the abolition of ICE.

I would list all of her major policy positions but it's quicker to just say that if you can think of an issue, she's on the right side of it, by which I mean to the left. She's great on abortion, women's rights, LGBTQ+ issues, environment and climate change, healthcare, and so on. She was for Medicare For All before it was cool and she has nothing but praise for the young diverse congresswomen making noise right now. My only concern is that she seems to have a worrying history of pandering to Israel and met with Netanyahu, though she has urged them to stop bombing Palestine and was against the anti-BDS bill.

I personally had no problem with that one video of her drinking a beer in her kitchen and think that people were pretty ridiculous about it.

Overall, Warren is a proponent of major reforms. She may be as good as it gets when it comes to reformists. I'd prefer revolution, meaning tearing it all down and starting again from the beginning, but no serious presidential candidate is going to be in favor of that. She's had some hiccups along the way and she's not above suspicion in some respects, but she may be about as good as it gets. She's also been a victim of the misogynistic "is she likable?" bullshit that only ever applies to female candidates, and that makes me want to vote for her and champion her all the more.

If you don't want to support Bernie Sanders but want to support a real progressive, I'm pretty sure that Elizabeth Warren is your best choice. I give her an A-, keeping in mind that I'm a tough grader. I'd be fine with ditching Bernie for Liz if that's how it has to be.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Gif of the Day

I'm not entirely sure what is going on here.

New Trump Policy Would Cut Disability Benefits If Disabled People Aren't Miserable


Are you ready for some serious dystopian shit? Or if you're disabled, are you ready for a worsening of the dystopian shit you've already been experiencing but it wasn't explicitly coded into law?

How A Trump Proposal Could Reduce 'Happy' Disabled People

I have a feeling that the headline is the fault of an able-bodied editor. Because what this proposed policy would do would simply reduce disabled people. By which I mean kill them.

A new policy proposal by the Trump administration calls for the surveillance of disabled people’s social media profiles to determine the necessity of their disability benefits. The proposal, which reportedly aims to cut down on the number of fraudulent disability claims would, monitor the profiles of disabled people and flag content that shows them doing physical activities. When it comes down to it, the policy dictates that disabled people shouldn’t be seen living their lives for fear of losing vital financial aid and, possibly, medical care.

None of us like the idea of the government monitoring our social media, though we've mostly accepted that it happens. But imagine living with the knowledge that if you admit to having too much fun on social media, the government will take away your only possible source of income.

Disability fraud, by the way, is very rare. Incredibly rare. It's already very difficult to get these benefits. I know someone who was deeply depressed to the point that he couldn't hold a job and could barely get out of bed most days, but even though his own therapist basically gave up on him and suggested that he seek disability benefits, he was denied. It wasn't until after that we learned that you basically have to go in and act as though it's one of your worst days in order to get benefits, but if your worst days are when you can't get out of bed and you have to get out of bed to go to the interview, then ??????

Disabled people are already expected to be perpetually miserable. If they're ever happy, they're accused of faking it. They already have to put up with that kind of bullshit from culture and from the government, but this would take it to a whole new level.

The proposal, like many of its policies regarding disabled people, shows a fundamental misunderstanding of disability and takes advantage of how social media operates in order to cut them off from the support they need. Disabled people don’t all function in the same way, and disability is not a set of stereotypes like taking selfies staring longingly at the world. They live lives while managing their energy for the activities they can handle and trying to make those they cannot more accessible. 
Additionally, studies have shown that a majority of social media users show only the good in their lives, not the hardships or difficulties. Disabled people should be allowed to share the full scope of their existence without fear they’ll be accused of lying—and even fraud—by the United States Government which will likely reason that if a disabled person is seen going to the mall or taking time to swim or jog, they can be working.

If this policy is put into place, disabled people will either have to give up any authenticity in their social media activity and lean into the stereotypes forced upon them by us able-bodied people or risk losing their benefits, which can literally lead to an early death. It can end their ability to pay for the medical care they need.

There is zero chance that this would save the government money. I would bet money that they would spend more money on this social media monitoring than they would ever save on cutting disability benefits, especially if they only caught the tiny number of people faking it, which won't happen, they will definitely end up mostly cutting benefits from people who need it.

This is eugenics. This is a genocide tactic. Remember how the nazis wanted to exterminate disabled people as well as Jewish people and other ethnic minorities? Targeting disabled people is a common aspect of fascism and genocidal regimes.

They don't care about reducing fraud. Their goal isn't even to reduce disabled happiness. It's just to reduce the number of disabled people, period. Fuck Trump and fuck any person who would support this policy or anything like it.

This is Horrible in Like Eight Different Ways


This story manages to combine so many of the issues that face both trans kids and women/girls, it would be impressive if it wasn't so terrible.

Girl expelled for kneeing boy in crotch during anti-trans Snapchat ‘protest’, family says

Okay so, a trans boy at a high school in Alaska took a selfie in the boys' locker room, where he belongs. Some transphobic cis boys from the same school saw the selfie online and got mad because transphobia and decided to stage a "protest" by invading the girls' locker room to take selfies. When the lead boy entered the girls' locker room, he immediately encountered a girl who, probably alarmed and outraged at the violation of privacy, kneed him right in the crotch in self-defense. Instead of punishing the mob of cis boys committing a deliberate act of sexual harassment in the name of transphobia, the school expelled the cis girl who defended herself.

Let's list all the things wrong here.

  1. General transphobia
  2. Misgendering
  3. Failure to protect a trans student via failure to punish a transphobic act (the boys were punished for trying to enter the girls' locker room but not for transphobia)
  4. Sexual harassment
  5. Punishing a girl for defending herself from boys - misogyny
  6. Showing boys that their victims punished if they commit acts of sexual violation - rape culture
  7. Miscarriage of justice
  8. Denying a girl an education

You can contact the North Pole High School at (907) 488-3761 and/or the school district on Facebook and Twitter.

Monday, April 15, 2019

Gif of the Day

Amazing. Incredible. Perfect. Beautiful. 10/10. A+. I'm going to cry.

The State of Online Media: I Hate It


I'm a little loopy right now because I just had three cavities fixed this morning and my entire chin and lower lip and most of my tongue are completely numb. But I just found out that The Establishment is officially ending. The Establishment has been my favorite site for social justice-oriented culture articles and creative pieces, and it's where all of my own favorite pieces have been published. The South Park article. The one about laziness.

It makes me so sad. It makes me feel pessimistic about the chances of making anything out of this blog, even if I do pull the trigger on re-creating it into Revolutionary Feminism like I said I was going to over a year ago but that costs money. It makes me feel like no online publication run by women, including a number of amazing women of color, could last in the world as it is now.

In their farewell post, they talk about how they tried everything to make enough money to keep going. They didn't try ads, because they're awesome and ethical people. But if they can't survive without ads, what decent website could?

Making money on the internet is such a depressing affair. I'm currently writing for a website that makes money via ads and Facebook monetization, which means that I have to watch my language in ways that I do not like. I can't attack men or white people as a whole, because Facebook considers these to be protected groups in spite of the fact that they are already protected by privilege. Sometimes I end up writing about things I would rather ignore or posting under click bait-y headlines because we fucking need the clicks.

Meanwhile, publications that are neutral or centrist or even actually a little left-leaning keep trying to make me pay to access them after a paltry number of free article views while far-right publications like Breitbart and Fox News remain totally free to access.

The Notre Dame is on fire? Well, so is the entire internet, where most of us now go for our information and to find perspectives on issues that matter to us.

As usual, I don't know how to fix this other than abolishing capitalism. I'm afraid that this is an omen of things to come once the inevitable Trump recession hits. I'm just waiting for one or both of my main clients to drop me because they can't afford to pay me anymore. And let's not forget how things will go to hell once the real impact of climate change hits.

Do we really want to have to live under this shadow of catastrophe all the time? Because that's inevitable under capitalism. I just want to live in a world where I don't have to live with the constant background noise of anxiety about financial collapse, where I can count on having a place to live and access to food and basic healthcare. That should not be too much to ask in 2019.

I'm so tired of this.

Friday, April 12, 2019

Gif of the Day

I don't know if I want the person who made this to be praised or arrested.

Guest Post: How to Support a Friend Who Has Opened up to You About Being Abused


Kate Harveston is a political writer from Pennsylvania. Her favorite topics are feminist-focused, but she writes on a wide variety of social and cultural issues. If you enjoy her work, you can follow her on Twitter or visit her blog, Only Slightly Biased.

I will always love my college bestie. Though distance now separates us, we maintain contact regularly. I also remain forever in her debt, for if it weren't for her patience, her willingness to listen without judgment and her hugs when I broke down in tears, I might have taken my own life years ago.

I am a survivor of physical abuse in a relationship. But I'm not here to focus on the past. What I want to share today is how my beautiful friend gave me the strength to move on and how you can likewise become an angel to other abuse survivors brave enough to share their stories with you.
The Stigma of Abuse
When those in the media speak about physical and sexual abuse, most viewers assume this is an issue that impacts only women. The #MeToo movement focuses primarily on women who have come together in record numbers to share their stories of harassment and assault. But predators attack men and women alike, and abuse can exist in LGBTQ relationships as well.
Women do fall prey more often due to multiple factors ranging from cultural conditioning to body size. Did you know one in four girls become the victim of sexual abuse before they reach their 18th birthday? Many victims of abuse never report what happened to them, whether the trauma occurred only once or continued for many years. When they do come forward, they often face immense shame and even public ridicule, much like Dr. Christine Blasey-Ford did.
When people like me do open up, we normally don't do so easily. We spill our secrets only to our most trusted friends.
Helping Friends Who Come Forward
Even if we hadn't met during freshman orientation, I believe my college bestie and I would have met eventually, anyway. Like me, she had fallen prey to a predator at an earlier point in her life. She asked me to accompany her to a group support session for survivors of abuse even though she didn't yet know my whole story.
As we were newbies, she said going with a friend would give her courage. Little did I expect to find myself running out of the meeting room bawling harder than I ever had. I ran blindly, slid on a muddy patch in the grass, put my head down between my knees and wept in the pouring rain until I felt an arm around me.
After we both dried ourselves off of raindrops and teardrops, we sat on the top bunk of her dorm room bed. For the first time ever, I shared my story with another human being. If she hadn't been so receptive and caring, I may not be writing this today.
Here's how she saved my life.
  1. She listened. My bestie never interrupted me. She let me go on, even when my emotional state made it difficult to follow my story from one point to another. She nodded. She held my hand. She let me know she cared and encouraged me to continue without saying a word.
  2. She skipped the blame game. She didn't need sensitivity training to know that we were both survivors who had journeyed through hell. My bestie knew perfectly well we didn't bring abuse on ourselves.
  3. She asked what I needed. My bestie didn't insist I begin therapy. She did give me the 411 about the free help available on campus. She didn't insist on going to the cops or telling anyone in authority. She simply told me to text her, regardless of the hour, if I felt close to the edge. I hadn't told her I had contemplated suicide. Fellow survivors just know.
  4. She believed me without question. My bestie never asked for the specifics on the abuse I experienced. She never asked why I didn't try telling another adult. She knew once someone is betrayed, especially by a person they trusted so much, they grow anxious about approaching others.
Supporting Survivors
Because many cases of sexual and physical abuse go unreported until physical evidence is lost, women reporting these crimes to law enforcement face heavy scrutiny about one of the most difficult events in their lives. Women who trust a friend enough to open up about such abuse deserve compassion, not cross-examination. During these difficult times where a lot of triggering and upsetting discussion is being thrown around about women in the media and political scene, we need to be there for each other now more than ever. Listening to an abuse survivor may just save a life.

Amazing Girls of Color

We've all seen the photo of the supermassive black hole by now, which exists because of Dr. Katie Bouman, the young woman who is a year younger than me. But have you heard about the eight-year-old Mexican girl who created a solar power panel using only recycled materials while living in an area with scarce resources?

8-year-old Mexican Girl Wins Nuclear Sciences Prize For Her Invention

At just 8 years old, Xóchitl has designed and constructed a solar-powered device to heat water, using only recycled materials, Cultura Colectiva reports. 
For many, this device may seem totally unnecessary.  But, in Xóchitl's community, where resources are scarce, "people don't have the money to buy heaters, so they chop down trees to get firewood [to heat the water]," says Xóchitl.

Could you imagine doing that at age eight? Can you imagine having to worry about hot water at age eight? So many of these stories are both heartwarming and sad, because clearly girls and women of color are brilliant and amazing, but it's also terrible that this little girl was so concerned about her family and neighbors being unable to get hot water and having to cut down trees because they're too poor to afford electric or gas heaters that she spent time she should have been spending playing and being a little girl inventing something that I would have zero clue how to go about putting together.

Anyway, Xóchitl Guadalupe Cruz is amazing, and my hero, and I hope the prize came with some money.

Thursday, April 11, 2019

Gif of the Day

Damn right. I still have scars from the time I worked as a cat handler for a few months last year.