yo yo yo search it!

Saturday, September 17, 2005

it appears blumenthal IS going to do something

to help isabelle and women like her from being CONTINUALLY RAPED over and over and over not only by their assailants but by our court system. i posted the first story a couple of days ago. this is a continuation appearing in todays hartford courant

Suit Brings Call For Victim Protection
September 17, 2005 By LYNNE TUOHY, Courant Staff Writer

Attorney General Richard Blumenthal on Friday called for legislation that would protect assault victims from being sued and harassed by their assailants. Blumenthal was responding to a Courant story Thursday about a woman who was abducted and raped by her estranged husband at knifepoint five years ago. Although Allen Adgers was sentenced to 13 years in prison, "Isabelle" cannot escape his grip. She has been required to appear in courts around the state in response to lawsuits he has filed against her or in which he has subpoenaed her as a witness.

Isabelle - not her real first name - spent much of Friday afternoon on the witness stand in Superior Court in Danbury being questioned by the man convicted of raping her. She was testifying during a hearing on his habeas corpus petition, in which he claims his public defenders were inadequate, depriving him of his right to effective representation. Most of Adgers' lawsuits against her involve variations on his claim that she somehow violated their marital "contract," and he has managed to weave this claim into his petition. Though he pleaded no contest to rape and kidnapping charges in May 2001, he now claims the sex between them was consensual.Attorney James Papillo, the state's top victim advocate, filed a motion to quash the subpoena for Isabelle's testimony before she took the stand Friday. He argued that the subpoena to compel her testimony runs contrary to Connecticut public policy to protect crime victims from court proceedings designed to "further harass, intimidate or torment them."When Judge Referee Stanley Axelrod asked Papillo if he had any case law supporting his motion to quash, Papillo had to concede he did not, highlighting the extraordinary nature of Isabelle's plight............

to protect and serve

but ONLY if you are white i guess

from my local paper;

Police Racism Charge Jars Bristol

Sergeant Resigns, Captain On Leave After Complaint About Broadcast Racial Slurs
September 17, 2005 By DON STACOM, Courant Staff Writer

BRISTOL -- A sergeant resigned abruptly Friday and the police department's second in command was put on administrative leave after accusations surfaced that they broadcast racial slurs over a "pirate" FM radio station.The sergeant periodically used a homemade studio in the basement of his city home for the middle-of-the-night racist broadcasts, according to the NAACP, which held a press conference Friday at police headquarters to publicize the complaint.

The unlicensed broadcasts were billed as WNFR - "Nigger-Free Radio," according to the NAACP and state Rep. Roger Michele, D-Bristol, who lodged the complaint.They both called for a federal Department of Justice investigation.Mayor Gerard Couture appeared stunned by the accusations and scrambled to respond. By late Friday, he had asked State's Attorney Christopher Morano to begin an independent investigation and promised to hire an outside law firm to look into the complaint. At the end of the day, he announced that Sgt. Richard Valentine, a 25-year veteran, had resigned. "He came in and apologized and submitted his resignation," Couture said............................

beautiful yet chilling photo

katrina as it was coming in. taken in alabama

blog site of the day

this is MY kind o' grrrl AND she knits!

jodi's weblog

i know what to do

to get them back in line (the bushwacked kids that is) SEND THEM ALL, EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM, TWINS AT POINT, TO IRAQ (after they help clean up the gulf coast devestation)

Jeb Bush's son arrested for public intoxication, resisting arrest The Associated Press

John Ellis Bush, the youngest son of Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, was arrested early Friday and charged with public intoxication and resisting arrest, law enforcement officials in Texas said. The 21-year-old nephew of President Bush was arrested by the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission at 2:30 a.m. Friday on a corner of Austin's Sixth Street bar district, said spokesman Roger Wade. John Ellis Bush was released on $2,500 bond for resisting arrest, and on a personal recognizance bond for the public intoxication charge, officials said. Alia Faraj, the spokeswoman for Jeb Bush said the incident "is a personal family matter" which the governor and his wife "are dealing with privately."Gov. Bush and his wife Columba appeared Friday evening at the Historical Museum of Southern Florida for a reception. The governor said it was not an appropriate time to discuss specifics of the incident."My son's doing fine. It's a private matter. We will support him. We're sad for him. But I'm not going to discuss it on the public square with 30 cameras," the governor said at the downtown Miami event............

we're all just a bunch of cheap slutty ho-hos any damn way

so what the hell........

Outrage at Musharraf rape remarks

Pakistani activists have reacted with outrage to recent comments on rape victims by President Pervez Musharraf.
He said that rape was a "money-making concern" and many argued it was a way to get money and a visa to emigrate.
Pakistan's most-high profile rape victim, Mukhtar Mai, told the BBC no woman could subject herself to "such a horrendous experience" to make money.
Women's groups and activists protested in Karachi on Friday, shouting: "Down with chauvinism".
'Money for justice'
The president made his comments in an interview with the Washington Post on 13 September, incensing campaigners and others at home.
"You must understand the environment in Pakistan. This has become a money-making concern," he said.
"A lot of people say if you want to go abroad and get a visa for Canada or citizenship and be a millionaire, get yourself raped."

In Karachi on Friday, 19 rights and advocacy groups vented their anger at the remarks, holding banners such as: "Who wants to be a millionaire - just get raped!"
Sumar Mallah, a fisherman whose five-year-old daughter was raped and killed on 5 September, was at the rally.
Mr Mallah said: "The police and the rapists have been insisting that I accept money and forget about my daughter. I will never settle for money. I want justice.".......................

talk about covering your bases..........

i am continually shocked and amazed that these good ol' boyz won't take their vaginas out of their momma's handbags and STAND UP and ADMIT THEIR MISTAKES, OVERSIGHTS AND SHORTCOMINGS.

Mississippi Paper Says Justice Dept. Trying to Blame Environmentalists for New Orleans Flood By E&P Staff Published: September 16, 2005 12:15 PM ET
NEW YORK The Clarion-Ledger of Jackson, Miss., has obtained a copy of an internal e-mail the U.S. Department of Justice sent out this week to various U.S. attorneys' offices. Reporter Jerry Mitchell’s conclusion: “Federal officials appear to be seeking proof to blame the flood of New Orleans on environmental groups, documents show.”He quotes from the e-mail: "Has your district defended any cases on behalf of the (U.S.) Army Corps of Engineers against claims brought by environmental groups seeking to block or otherwise impede the Corps work on the levees protecting New Orleans? If so, please describe the case and the outcome of the litigation."Cynthia Magnuson, a spokeswoman for the Justice Department, told the reporter Thursday she couldn't comment "because it's an internal e-mail."Shown a copy of the e-mail, David Bookbinder, senior attorney for Sierra Club, asked why the officials were “trying to smear us like this?" He added: "It's unfortunate that the Bush administration is trying to shift the blame to environmental groups. It doesn't surprise me at all."Federal officials told Mitchell the e-mail was prompted by a congressional inquiry but wouldn't comment further.

i guess they've not heard the term don't kill the messenger

CPJ: U.S. Military Failing To Probe Journo Killings In Iraq By E&P Staff Published: September 16, 2005 5:55 PM ET
CHICAGO Though American troops have killed 13 journalists in Iraq since the beginning of the war in March 2003, the U.S. military has failed to investigate the killings fully, or implement its own recommendations to improve the safety of the news media, according to a study by the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ). New York City-based CPJ said that in most cases of killed journalists, the military has either failed to investigate at all, or has not made its investigation or conclusions public.“The findings from the few investigations that have been released have not credibly addressed questions of accountability for shooting deaths, and whether U.S. forces are taking necessary measures to differentiate between combatants and civilians in conflict areas,” CPJ said.In several cases, CPJ said, the circumstances of the journalist’s death “suggest indifference by U.S. soldiers to the presence of civilians, including members of the press.”In addition to the 13 journalists killed by U.S. troops, at least 40 other journalists have been killed covering he war. (CPJ statistics do not include the death of journalists by accident or natural causes.) Another 21 media support staff such as drivers and translators have been killed in Iraq, two by U.S. forces, CPJ said...................

the marines have landed

yesterday i ran into a friend. he was in his marine uniform. he and i differ in our feelings on our presence in iraq. i won't argue with HIM because he has been there and i haven't. i see it hurts him when i rant and rave (and i DO rant and rave). he knows how i feel and i know how he feels. i leave it at that. BUT yesterday he told me he is being called up again (he is in the reserves or something like that) possibly to be sent back to iraq early in 2006. in the time since i last saw him he became engaged. i saw a softening of his position on iraq when i looked into his eyes. he did say something to the effect of why feel we shouldn't be there. it is his JOB and DUTY to go where they send him and it doesn't matter if he feels we should be there or not. we talked a great deal about the gulf coast disaster as well. something we DID agree upon. we both felt the military SHOULD have gone in right after the storm left. that is what they (the military are for) to protect us, to bring ORDER. that they WOULD have done immediately if the powers that be had been doing their jobs. ah well

oh we both also agree our governor, jodi rell is doing a kick-ass job even though he is a conservative and i'm a foaming-at-the-mouth liberal. SHOUT OUT TO JODI!

Friday, September 16, 2005

i could NOT resist

who could? i dare ya!!!!

BI, BI, LOVE: Lothario penguin Silo yesterday canoodles with new love Scrappy, who stole Silo from longtime Central Park Zoo companion Roy.Photo: Dan Brinzac


September 16, 2005 -- It's splitsville for New York's favorite gay penguins — and one of the lover-birds has taken up with a fetching female.
Now, the Central Park Zoo is dealing with a gay-straight love triangle Jerry Springer couldn't dream up. And nobody knows who will lay claim to the pair's adopted chick.
The drama started when Silo left Roy, his mate of six years, for Scrappy, a female transplant from SeaWorld who'd never had chicks.
"Silo and Roy stopped spending as much time together or building a nest," said John Rowden, the zoo's curator of animals.
At first, Silo started hanging out with different female birds — but then Scrappy caught his eye.
The new hetero pair built a nest, but never produced an egg. Still, they can be spotted hanging out together in the middle of the penguin display — while Roy sits glumly on the sidelines, all alone.
So-called "gay" penguin couples have been widely noticed in zoos. But scientists have never studied the phenomenon in the wild, so it remains a mystery why two male animals shack up together...............

you reap what you sow

Sexism May Shorten Men's Lives: Study

Thu Sep 15, 7:02 PM ET
THURSDAY, Sept. 15 (HealthDay News) -- In a somewhat unexpected finding, societal male dominance over women -- patriarchy -- may help explain why men have a lower life expectancy than women worldwide. British researchers analyzed rates of female murders and male death rates from all causes in 51 countries in Europe, Asia, Australasia, and North and South America. The prevalence of violence against women was used to indicate the extent of patriarchal control in each of the countries. Socioeconomic factors were also taken into consideration.
The study found that women lived longer than men in all 51 countries. The study also found that those countries with higher rates of female murders (indicating higher levels of patriarchy) also had higher rates for male death and shorter male life expectancies, compared to countries with lower female murder rates, the researchers said.
In fact, statistical analysis showed that variations between countries in rates of violence against women accounted for close to half (49 percent) of the variation in male death rates, the researchers noted.
"Our data suggest that oppression and exploitation harm the oppressors as well as those they oppress," researchers at the University of Liverpool concluded.
They noted that the higher death rate and shorter life expectancy among men is "a preventable social condition, which can potentially be tackled through global social policy."
For example, changes can be made in the way that young males are socialized into patriarchal gender roles, such as the emphasis on risk taking, aggression and suppression of emotions, the researchers said.
The findings appear in the current issue of the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

is this part of the reason

some are squawking about spending some dinero on helping OUR UNITED STATES CITIZENS OF THE GULF REGION REGAIN THEIR FOOTING? you know, i'm not sure how i feel about space exploration (i DO love star trek though. any sci fi for that matter). we have polluted OUR planet now we have to leave our crap in space? NO

NASA to unveil plans for 2018 moon mission By Brian Berger, Space.com
WASHINGTON — NASA briefed senior White House officials Wednesday on its plan to spend $100 billion and the next 12 years building the spacecraft and rockets it needs to put humans back on the moon by 2018.

The U.S. space agency now expects to roll out its lunar exploration plan to key Congressional committees on Friday and to the broader public through a news conference on Monday, Washington sources tell Space.com.
President George W. Bush called in January 2004 for the United States to return to the moon by 2020 as the first major step in a broader space exploration vision aimed at extending the human presence throughout the solar system.
NASA has been working intensely since April on an exploration plan that entails building an 18-foot (5.5-meter) blunt body crew capsule and launchers built from major space shuttle components, including the main engines, solid rocket boosters and massive external fuel tanks.........

Kerry's retort to Bush: Leadership isn't a toll-free number

"Leadership isn't a speech or a toll-free number. Leadership is getting the job done. No American doubts that New Orleans will rise again, they doubt the competence and commitment of this Administration.
Weeks after Katrina, Americans want an end to politics-as-usual that leaves them dangerously and unforgivably unprepared.
Americans want to know that their government will be there when it counts with leadership that keeps them safe, not speeches in the aftermath to explain away the inexcusable."

this was in my local paper yesterday

we are allowing this man to continue to rape isabelle over and over and over again. i am agast, i am shocked, i am angry.

Rapist Keeps Confronting Victim, Via Courts --------------------By LYNNE TUOHYCOURANT STAFF WRITER September 15, 2005DANBURY -- When her ex-husband was sentenced four years ago to 13 years in prison for kidnapping and raping her at knife-point, "Isabelle" thought she was finally beyond the reach of the man who had stalked her and threatened to kill her if she did not return to him. She was wrong. He is stalking her still. And Allen Adgers is using the same judicial system that convicted and sentenced him to obtain the subpoenas that have enabled him to haul Isabelle into court to answer a raft of civil lawsuits he has filed against her, most of them alleging a betrayal of their marriage vows. Adgers, 41, fancies himself a jailhouse lawyer and has filed more than a dozen lawsuits against judges, wardens, a probate judge, the former governor, Connecticut Public Television and, of course, Isabelle. Acting as his own lawyer, Adgers is the one who questions witnesses, including Isabelle. He had her on the witness stand in Superior Court in New London July 26, when he tried to elicit testimony that the sexual assault in Hartford's Keney Park was in fact consensual. It was rapist questioning victim. Adgers, who was living in Hartford at the time, left out the part about abducting her at knifepoint and hitting her in the head with a hammer until she lost consciousness. "So the state was correct when they said that when you offered yourself twice ..." one query by Adgers began."I didn't offer myself. You raped me," Isabelle retorted.He was allowed to ask her who she had sex with on that night in June 2000. "Besides you raping me, no one," she replied. Tired of his badgering, Isabelle announced that she did not want to answer any more questions. "You stay up there as long as I have questions," he ordered. And when she finally left the witness stand, the official transcript captured the remark he made to her: "You got fat, too. Your face look all beat up."Isabelle spent Wednesday in a conference room about the size of a prison cell outside a hearing room in Superior Court in Danbury, waiting to testify in yet another proceeding. She had to take a day off work and travel from the Hartford area, and she will have to return Friday. Adgers refused to interrupt his own testimony to spare her a return trip, and Judge Referee Sidney Axelrod told him he didn't have to. Adgers has stoked fear in Isabelle and angered prosecutors. Attorney James F. Papillo, the state's chief victim advocate, spent the day in the Danbury court and walked away seething and seeing the need for more legislation to protect victims."She's been brutalized by this individual, and the system is allowing him to brutalize her in another way," Papillo said."We've gotten legislation to protect victims from civil lawsuits during the pendency of a [criminal] prosecution," he said. "We need to go beyond that to protect victims like [Isabelle], where someone is using the system to harass her and torment her."After watching Adgers ramble through his presentation, which included disparaging remarks about Axelrod and the credibility of the entire judicial system, Papillo muttered, "What a tremendous waste of judicial resources."Isabelle has moved six times. Each time Adgers has her served with a subpoena he gets a receipt that records the address where service was made - and learns her whereabouts. He has had four years tacked onto his sentence, which now totals 17 years, for sending her harassing letters."Every fear that I had before that I thought was gone is coming back," she said this week. "Now I am stressed out. Now I see him over and over again. I call it a nightmare. It's ridiculous."In New London, Isabelle faced her attacker alone. There was no lawyer to intercede on her behalf. She is 41 years old, 5 feet 2 inches tall, and on the day Adgers attacked her, she says, she believed he was going to kill her. To have to respond to his questions amounted to another assault, she said. "I was in rage. I was in shock," she said. "This was uncalled for. I tried to explain to the judge, but he didn't want to listen."That judge, Robert J. Devine Jr., this week denied Adgers' attempts to secure money damages against Isabelle for not adhering to her marriage vows to support him without question in the face of all adversity. She has appeared in Superior Court in Hartford in response to a variation of the same civil complaint. But because she didn't file a written response, or pleading, to Adgers' lawsuit, she is in danger of having a default judgment in the amount of $100,000 entered against her later this month. Wednesday in Danbury marked the first day of hearings in Adgers' habeas corpus petition - which typically is most convicts' last-ditch effort to win a new trial by claiming new evidence or that their trial lawyers were woefully inadequate. Adgers has managed to weave his violation of the marital contract claim into his habeas petition, and subpoena Isabelle to testify. Senior Assistant State's Attorney Angela R. Macchiarulo made so many objections to Adgers' disjointed presentation that she remained standing through the hearing. "This is merely his attempt to re-victimize the victim," Macchiarulo said during a recess. Isabelle spent most of the day in the small conference room with its slit of a vertical window, still hostage to the man who abducted her five years ago. The night before she said she was doing the best she could and was praying. "I would like tomorrow to be the last day. But coming from him, knowing him, I don't think so," she said. "I don't think this is going to stop."A discussion of this story with Courant Staff Writer Lynne Tuohy is scheduled to be shown on New England Cable News each hour today between 9 a.m. and noon. Copyright 2005, Hartford Courant

why is there NO problem funding

an unjust war based on lies but there is a problem funding programs to help OUR US CITIZENS WHO HAVE BEEN DEVASTATED! yes there MUST be accountability. i agree with that much. but hell what about accountability for iraq? for spending there? and WHO THE F**K is going to account for halliburton being hired to help clean up the gulf? WHO WHO WHO WHO WHO INDEED?????????????? Congress
G.O.P. Split Over Big Plans for Storm Spending
Published: September 16, 2005
WASHINGTON, Sept. 15 - The drive to pour tens of billions of federal dollars
into rebuilding the hurricane-battered Gulf Coast is widening a fissure among
Republicans over fiscal policy, with more of them expressing worry about
unbridled spending.On Thursday, even before President Bush promised that
"federal funds will cover the great majority of the costs of repairing public
infrastructure in the disaster zone," fiscal conservatives from the House and
Senate joined budget watchdog groups in demanding that the administration be
judicious in asking for taxpayer dollars.
One fiscal conservative, Senator
Tom Coburn, Republican of
said Thursday, "I don't believe that everything that should happen in
should be paid for by the rest of the country. I believe there are certain
responsibilities that are due the people of Louisiana."
Senator Jim DeMint,
Republican of
, called for restoring "sanity" to the federal recovery effort.
Congress has approved $62 billion, mostly to cover costs already incurred, and
the price tag is rising. The House and Senate approved tax relief Thursday at an
estimated cost of more than $5 billion on top of $3.5 billion in housing
vouchers approved by the Senate on Wednesday.
"We know we need to help, but
throwing more and more money without accountability at this is not going to
solve the problem," Mr. DeMint said..............

Thursday, September 15, 2005

In pictures: Death stalks birth in Afghanistan

Ziaka's story
Ziaka had been brought to the hospital a few days before. She had lost twins. Her story is typical. She tried to give birth in her remote village, without any skilled assistance.
Ziaka already has three children. But she will never have any more. She suffered a ruptured uterus. Many other Badakhshan women who suffer this complication during birth cannot reach medical care and die of blood loss.

summing it up in a tight little nutshell

Lost Souls in Hell, 1875

Weekly Review
Posted on Tuesday, September 13, 2005. By Paul Ford.

Emergency officials in Louisiana requested 25,000 body bags for victims of Hurricane Katrina, and a total evacuation of New Orleans was ordered. Much of the city was still underwater, though several people who lived on high ground objected to the evacuation. "I haven't even run out of weed yet," said one woman.[The Guardian][The New York Times] Houston, Texas, the headquarters of contractors Halliburton and Baker Hughes, was preparing for a boom; one real-estate firm was offering special financing deals "for hurricane survivors only."[IHT] Wealthy residents of New Orleans were devising ways to rebuild the city with a minimum of poor people.[Raw Story/WSJ] Barbara Bush visited the Astrodome and said that, given that the evacuees were "underprivileged anyway," things were "working out very well" for them,[Editor & Publisher] and Representative Richard Baker gave the hurricane credit for finally cleaning up public housing in New Orleans.[ [Link] ] The government began to award no-bid contracts for the reconstruction,[WebIndia123.com] and President George W. Bush signed an executive order to allow federal contractors working in the wake of Katrina to pay their workers less than the prevailing wage.[CNN Money] When questioned by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi over his administration's response to the storm, Bush asked, "What didn't go right?"[USA Today] He also declared September 16 to be a national day of prayer.[BBC News] Dick Cheney toured the South. "Go fuck yourself, Mr. Cheney," yelled Ben Marble, a Mississippi physician who lost his home in the hurricane. "Go fuck yourself." Marble was handcuffed and later released.[OpEdNews.com] Republicans promised to probe themselves.[Washington Post]
It was revealed that evacuees from the hurricane had been flown to Charleston, West Virginia, where no one expected them, instead of Charleston, South Carolina, where accommodations and doctors were waiting.[The Scotsman] Doctors in New Orleans admitted that they had euthanized critically ill patients rather than leaving them to suffer. "Those who had no chance of making it," said an emergency official, "were given a lot of morphine and lain down in a dark place to die."[Daily Mail] Bob Denver, best known for his role as the hapless, incompetent, shipwrecked Gilligan, died.[SFGate.com] Michael Brown, director of FEMA, was found to have lied on his resume and was removed from the Hurricane Katrina relief effort and sent back to Washington, D.C., to administer FEMA at a national level. .................

i was watching the late late show

with craig ferguson this morning and he was interviewing a columnist from cleveland. i was mighty impressed. she talked of people who were in the service industry who weren't allowed to keep all of their tips and in some cases NONE of their tips. she talked of the people who push wheelchairs in airports being paid LESS than minimum wage and having to depend upon tips (who thinks of that???) she talked about an immigrant to this country from el salvador who joined the service because he wanted to honor his new country and is being shipped to iraq (she commented on who was currently serving in our armed forces and who was NOT currently serving in our armed forces. once again i add, SEND THOSE BUSH-WACKED TWINS OVER {when they are finished cleaning up the gulf coast that is})

connie schultz

Workers' low pay outrages readers

Monday, August 01, 2005
Connie Schultz
Plain Dealer Columnist
Most of you had no idea.

That is the most common re frain so far among thousands of reader phone messages and e-mails from around the country responding to the news that Continental Airline's wheelchair assistants and electric-cart drivers are not paid the minimum wage:

"I had no idea."

Continental subcontracts with Flight Services and Systems Inc. to pay only $3.50 an hour to wheelchair assistants at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport; electric-cart drivers earn $4.50. FSS tells them they have to make up the rest in tips but warns that they will be reprimanded if they're caught soliciting tips from passengers.

FSS spokesman Mark Nichols said that 70 percent of passengers know to tip. If reader response is any indicator, he is dead wrong. And that's one of the kinder assessments offered by readers, who expressed anger and shock at the meager wages. Many also said they were ashamed and embarrassed because they haven't tipped in the past.

One man's message reflected the sentiment of so many:

"I've used those services so many times for friends from church and my own mother, and I never, ever tipped them. I'm a generous tipper, usually 20 to 30 percent. I didn't know they don't make a living wage and must rely on tips. I feel just terrible about this. I owe those people a lot of money."...............

a hero of mine

(and i don't have too many). my friend bruce and i were discussing her this morning. man, i wished she was still around. she would have made THE best president ever. what a commanding majestic voice (and woman too!). someone who was a bit moderate for me BUT there was something about her, you just KNEW she was an honorable woman.

Barbara Jordan: Statement on the Articles of Impeachment
"If the impeachment provision in the Constitution of the United States will not reach the offenses charged here, then perhaps that 18th century Constitution should be abandoned to a 20th century paper shredder."

barbara jordan

Barbara Jordan was the first Black woman to serve in the U.S. Congress from the South.
Barbara Jordan was born in the Fifth Ward of Houston, Texas to a Black Baptist minister, Benjamin Jordan, and a domestic worker, Arlyne Jordan. She attended Roberson Elementary and Phyllis Wheatley High School.
While at Wheatley, she was a member of the Honor Society and excelled in debating. She graduated in 1952 in the upper five percent of her class. She wanted to study political science at the University of Texas-Austin, but was discouraged because the school was still segregated.
She attended Texas Southern University and pledged Delta Sigma Theta Sorority. Barbara was a national champion debater, defeating her opponents from such schools as Yale and Brown and tying Harvard University.
In 1956, she graduated magna cum laude from Texas Southern with a double major in political science and history. She expressed an interest in attending Harvard University School of Law, but opted to go to Boston University and graduated in 1959.
Ms. Jordan taught political science at Tuskegee Institute in Alabama for one year before returning to Houston in 1960 to take the bar examination and set up a private law practice.
She ran for a seat in the Texas House of Representatives in 1962 and 1964, but lost both times.... however, she made history when she was elected to the newly drawn Texas Senate seat in 1966, thereby becoming the first Black to serve in that body since 1883. She was an oddity at that time, as the first Black woman in that state's legislature.
Her brief record in the Texas State Senate is viewed as somewhat of a phenomenon. On March 21, 1967 she became the first Black elected official to preside over that body; she was the first Black state senator to chair a major committee, Labor and Management Relations, and the first freshman senator ever named to the Texas Legislative Council.
When the Texas legislature convened in special session in March, 1972, Senator Jordan was unanimously elected president pro tempore. In June of that year, she was honored by being named Governor for a Day. Shortly, thereafter she decided to run for Congress and was elected, in Nov. 1972, from the newly drawn Eighteenth Congressional District in Houston.
Both as a state senator and as a U.S. Congressman, Jordan sponsored bills that championed the cause of poor, Black, and disadvantaged people. One of the most important bills as senator was the Workman's Compensation Act, which increased the maximum benefits paid to injured workers. As a congresswoman, she sponsored legislation to broaden the Voting Rights Act of 1965 to cover Mexican Americans in Texas and other southwestern states and to extend its authority to those states where minorities had been denied the right to vote or had had their rights restricted by unfair registration practices, such as literacy tests.
She gained national prominence for the position she took and the statement she made at the 1974 impeachment hearing of President Richard Nixon. In casting a "yes" vote, Jordan stated,"My faith in the Constitution is whole, it is complete, it is total."Having become a national celebrity, Ms. Jordan was chosen as a keynote speaker for the Democratic National Convention in 1976, and again in 1992. She was the first Black selected to keynote a major political convention.
President Jimmy Carter considered her for attorney general and U.N. Ambassador but she chose to remain in Congress. She was seriously thinking about challenging Sen. John Tower for re-election in 1978, but became ill and retired from politics.
She became a Professor of Public Affairs at the Lyndon Baines Johnson School of Public Affairs. She was very close to President Johnson, often visiting him at the White House as a state Senator.In 1987, she became an eloquent voice against Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork. She served as an unpaid adviser on ethics for former Gov. Ann Richards of Texas and was praised for her work on the Clinton panel on Immigration Reform.
Barbara Jordan died of complications from pneumonia on January 17, 1996.


A Tribute to Barbara Jordan

The First African-American Woman Everything
Barbara Jordan, the first black representative from Texas

" `We the people' -- it is a very eloquent beginning. But when the Constitution of the United States was completed on the 17th of September in 1787, I was not included in that `We the people.' I felt for many years that somehow George Washington and Alexander Hamilton just left me out by mistake. But through the process of amendment, interpretation and court decision, I have finally been included in `We the people.' "

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

this is a MUST read, especially now

how to prepare if..........

(i got this via my personal favorite political-humor blog, skippy the bush kangaroo from cookie jill

Make a Plan After a major disaster, it is unlikely that emergency response services will be able to immediately respond to everyone’s needs so it’s important to be prepared to take care of yourself and your family. Plan to be on your own for at least the first 72 hours. Download a PDF to help you create a written plan. The following steps will help you prepare for any emergency:
Designate an out-of-area contact person. Try to select someone that is far enough away to not be affected by the same emergency. Provide this person with the names and contact information of the people you want to keep informed of your situation. Instruct family members to call this person and tell them where they are. Long distance phone service is often restored sooner than local service.
Duplicate important documents and keep copies off-site, either in a safety deposit box or with someone you trust. Documents may include: passport, drivers license, social security card, wills, deeds, financial statements, insurance information and prescriptions.
Inventory valuables, in writing and with photographs or video. Keep copies of this information off-site with your other important documents.
Make a
household/family plan. Involve all key people in planning.
Make your
home safe.
Put together a
disaster supply kit. Plan to have supplies for yourself and family for at least 3 days following a disaster.
When planning, consider the special needs of
children, seniors or people with disabilities, family members that don’t speak English and pets...............

i'm not allowed in joisey

my hair isn't big enough! (i can say that, i'm of eye-talian descent. and no, i'm NOT offended by the sopranos. as a matter of fact, i LIKE the show. i'd like it far better if they just brought back furio though!)

ya gotta love this article on the gotti trial coverage. they use the words, 'mook' and 'dressed in upscale moll-wear'.

Family Man

John Gotti Says He's Quit the Mob And Wants a Jury to Send Him Home
By David Segal Washington Post Staff WriterWednesday, September 14, 2005; Page C01

John A. Gotti never took the stand in his five-week trial in Federal District Court on charges of kidnapping, extortion and other types of highly antisocial behavior, but he did get an unexpected chance to shout a few words in his defense. It happened Aug. 12, as a mob defector named Frank Fappiano coolly recounted life in the brutish and trigger-happy Gambino crime family, an organization that Gotti led through much of the '90s.
As Fappiano regaled the jury -- bang! -- a noise like the blast of a shotgun caromed off the walls. For a moment, everyone in Courtroom 26A assumed the worst -- that Fappiano had been whacked in plain sight and would sink to the ground, covered in blood. People momentarily bounced out of their seats, others gasped in fear.
But Fappiano was fine.
"I didn't do it!" Gotti yelled.
The sound had been a burst of feedback through the audio system. It took a while for the chuckles to die down.
Gotti's trial, which went to the jury Friday, had everything you might want from a mob drama, including senseless violence and silly nicknames. (One particular mook was referred to by various informants only as "Gas Pipe," for reasons that can only be guessed.) On hand to watch the show -- arguably the best theater in New York this summer, and no charge for a seat -- was a crowd of lawyers, media people, Gotti relatives and Gambino sympathizers. It looked like the guests for a wedding in which the groom hailed from the Upper West Side and the bride hailed from the New Skyway Diner in Kearny, N.J. Gotti's sister, Victoria, showed up for opening day, dressed in upscale moll-wear. The two sides rarely mixed.
You might think Gotti's shouted punch line simply rephrases his not-guilty plea. But the 41-year-old, who became acting boss when his father, John "the Dapper Don" Gotti, was sent to prison in 1992, isn't arguing that he's an innocent waste management executive, or that the Mafia is a figment of the DA's imagination. Instead, his defense boils down to this: Oh, I was in the mob all right, but I am so over it now. I quit.
"I am not saying he was never a gangster, because he was," Gotti's lawyer, Jeffrey Lichtman, told the jury on the trial's opening day. "I am simply saying he had enough and he wanted out."
Give Gotti points for nerve. Traditionally, there have been just two exit strategies from Cosa Nostra: through the door marked "Witness Protection Program," which requires you to rat out colleagues, or on a slab, which requires you to die.............

i'm ambivilent

i don't know if he's sincere or not. i don't know if someone 'made' him say this or not. if he said this just 24 hours or even 48 hours after katrina, i WOULD have forgiven him (i who lost nothing other than some faith) for this. there would be plenty of time AFTER the clean up to point fingers and shake my head from side to side. i WANT to believe him. i really do. i want him to KNOW it was HIS fault. i want him to make sure the proper people are in place for any jobs he has appointed. i don't EVER want this to happen in MY country again. did he say this because he knows people (from his side now as well) have lost total trust in him? also, why the HELL was the 'president' of iraq by his side? this is an AMERICAN issue. for US alone.

i want to believe you. i want to believe you. i want to believe you. i want to believe you. i want to believe you. i want to believe you. i want to believe you. i want to believe you. i want to believe you. i want to believe you.............

The President
President Says He's Responsible in Storm Lapses

Published: September 14, 2005

WASHINGTON, Sept. 13 - President Bush said on Tuesday that he bore responsibility for any failures of the federal government in its response to Hurricane Katrina and suggested that he was unsure whether the country was adequately prepared for another catastrophic storm or terrorist attack.

"Katrina exposed serious problems in our response capability at all levels of government, and to the extent that the federal government didn't fully do its job right, I take responsibility," Mr. Bush said in an appearance in the East Room with President Jalal Talabani of Iraq. "I want to know what went right and what went wrong."
In response to a reporter who asked if Americans, in the wake of the hurricane, should be concerned about the government's ability to respond to another disaster or a terrorist attack, Mr. Bush said: "I want to know how to better cooperate with state and local government, to be able to answer that very question that you asked: Are we capable of dealing with a severe attack or another severe storm? And that's a very important question."
Throughout his nearly five years in office, Mr. Bush has resisted publicly acknowledging mistakes or shortcomings, and his willingness in this case to edge up to a buck-stops-here statement, however conditional, was evidence of how shaken his presidency has been by the political fallout from the government's handling of the storm.
It also set the stage for a White House effort to pivot from dealing with urgent rescue and relief efforts to setting out a vision of how the federal government could help rebuild devastated communities and re-establish Mr. Bush's image as a leader............

site of the day


About Ladyslipper
Ladyslipper is a North Carolina non-profit, tax-exempt organization which has been involved in many facets of women's music since 1976. Our basic purpose has consistently been to heighten public awareness of the achievements of women artists and musicians, and to expand the scope and availability of musical and literary recordings by women.
One of the unique aspects of our work has been the tri-annual publication of the world's most comprehensive
Catalog & Resource Guide of Recordings by Women This annotated catalog has given millions of people information about and access to recorded works by an expansive variety of female musicians, writers, comics, and composers. Many public and university libraries have added large portions of the catalog to their collections; thus the recordings are accessible to much larger populations, and are archived at the same time.
We distribute recordings to book and record stores nationally and internationally. If you know of a store in your town you'd like to see stocking the titles in the catalog, please introduce us to each other! Additionally, we supply distributors with several labels and titles.
Ladyslipper is also a small independent label; our purpose is to further new musical and artistic directions for women musicians. We have issued albums by Kay Gardner, Nurudafina Pili Abena, Libana, Lisa Thiel, Rhiannon, Casselberry-DuPree, Ruth Barrett, Ubaka Hill, and other innovative artists.
The Ladyslipper NameOur name comes from
an exquisite flower which is one of the few wild orchids native to North America and is currently an endangered species...........

a couple of good questions

The Fear of the Liberals
Corey Robin

[from the September 26, 2005 issue]
It's the fourth anniversary of September 11, and Americans are getting restless about the war in Iraq. Republicans are challenging the President, activists and bloggers are pressing the Democrats and liberal hawks are reconsidering their support for the war. Everyone, it seems, is asking questions.
Two questions, however, have not been asked, perhaps because they might actually help us move beyond where we are and where we've been. First, how is it that few liberals and no leftists in 1968 believed that Lyndon Johnson, arguably the most progressive President in American history, would or could airlift democracy to Vietnam, while many liberals and not a few leftists in 2003 believed that the most reactionary President since William McKinley could and would export democracy to Iraq?
Second, why did certain liberals who opposed the war in Iraq refuse to march against it? The reason they gave was that left-wing groups like ANSWER, which helped organize the antiwar rallies, failed to denounce Saddam's regime. Yet many of those who could not abide an alliance with ANSWER endorsed the war in Afghanistan--even though it was waged by a government that recently invaded three Caribbean countries, funded dirty wars in Latin America and backed the government of Guatemala, the only regime in the Western Hemisphere condemned by a UN-sponsored truth commission for committing acts of genocide. Politics, of course, often entails an unhappy choice of associations. But if the deeds of the US government need not stop liberals from supporting the war in Afghanistan, why should the words--words, mind you, not deeds--of leftists deprive the antiwar movement of these very same liberals' support?
Both questions register a fundamental shift among liberals, and on the left, since the 1960s: from skepticism of to faith in US power, and from faith in to skepticism of popular movements. During the Vietnam era, liberals and leftists believed not only in social justice but also in mass protest. Whether the cause was democracy at home or liberation abroad, men and women afflicted by oppression had to organize themselves for freedom. Yes, some of yesterday's activists were blind to coercion within these movements, and others joined elite cadres bombing their way to liberation. Still, the animating faith of the 1960s was in the democratic capacities of ordinary men and women, making it difficult for liberals and leftists to believe in conquering armies from abroad or shock troops from on high. ................

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

you tell me how the F**K DOES THIS HAPPEN?

Eleven kids found in cages in home
Couple denies abusing or neglecting children

WAKEMAN, Ohio -Sheriff’s deputies found 11 children locked in cages less than 3½ feet high inside a home, but a couple denied they had abused or neglected the children.
A judge on Monday put the children — who range in age from 1 to 14 and who have various disabilities, including autism — in foster homes.
The children were found in nine cages built into the walls of the house near this small city in northern Ohio, according to the Huron County Sheriff’s Office. They had no blankets or pillows, and the cages were rigged with alarms that sounded if opened, Lt. Randy Sommers said.The children told authorities they slept in the cages — 40 inches high and 40 inches deep — at night. Doors to some of the cages were blocked with heavy furniture.
Sharen and Mike Gravelle are adoptive or foster parents for all 11 children
, officials said. Prosecutors were reviewing the case, but no charges had been filed as of Monday night...............

wtf? why have no charges been filed? if these were adopted and foster kids, where are the checks and balances from the autorities? aren't spot checks done? aren't investigations done? were these kids in school? someone is responsible (in addition to the two devils who were given custody of these children).

well at least he called it katrina

unlike the 'first lady' who called it CORINNA (twice). he's STILL a gatsu piedi though. a BIG one at that!

Cheney backed removing FEMA boss from Katrina duty

AUSTIN, Texas, Sept 10 - U.S. Vice President
Dick Cheney' name=c1> SEARCHNews News Photos Images Web' name=c3> Dick Cheney on Saturday said he supported the decision to remove Michael Brown as head of the federal relief effort in the stricken Gulf Coast but refused to say if Brown would eventually be dismissed. Department of
Homeland Security' name=c1> SEARCHNews News Photos Images Web' name=c3> Homeland Security Secretary
Michael Chertoff' name=c1> SEARCHNews News Photos Images Web' name=c3> Michael Chertoff on Friday put Vice Admiral Thad Allen, chief of staff of the
U.S. Coast Guard' name=c1> SEARCHNews News Photos Images Web' name=c3> U.S. Coast Guard, in charge of the relief effort on the ground, sending Brown back to continue administering the
Federal Emergency Management Agency' name=c1> SEARCHNews News Photos Images Web' name=c3> Federal Emergency Management Agency in Washington.
The Bush administration has been under fire for being slow to aid hundreds of thousands of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama residents who were displaced by Hurricane Katrina and the floodwaters that followed when the levees in New Orleans broke.
"Mike Chertoff made those decisions and I certainly support him," Cheney told reporters at the Austin convention center, which is housing about 1,500 evacuees. Some have called for Brown to be fired, but Cheney deferred to Chertoff.
Brown, who has been FEMA's director since 2003, has been singled out for especially harsh criticism, even from some Republicans such as Mississippi Sen. Trent Lott (news, bio, voting record) who said he had been "acting like a private, instead of a general."
The New York Times said Cheney heard complaints about Brown in private meetings with state and local officials and emergency personnel during a trip on Thursday to Mississippi and Louisiana.
In Austin, protesters gathered outside the convention center shouting, "Cheney, you are scumbag" and carrying signs that said "Fire Cheney too" and "Relief not Repression."
Cheney said the evacuees he spoke to in Texas did not raise concerns about the FEMA shake-up but detailed their stories of escaping the devastation.
"Not one of them mentioned any of it," Cheney said in response to a question. "They're all very thankful where they find themselves right now."
He said the federal government will help state and local governments pay for costs of educating children evacuated from their homes, "so that the burden doesn't fall totally on the local school system."
President George W. Bush' name=c1> SEARCHNews News Photos Images Web' name=c3> President George W. Bush travels to the Gulf Coast region on Sunday.
Cheney spent about 20 minutes touring the Austin convention center, walking past the rows of cots with neatly arranged blankets, pillows and sleeping bags.
Among those he spoke to was Telisha Diaz, 23, who said she had spent "four long days" in the New Orleans convention center, but said the Austin experience had been much better.
Michael Craig, 43, who came from New Orleans with his fiancee and three children, said he told Cheney about the evacuation and talked of how he thought it could have been made better.
Cheney held up Texas, which took in tens of thousands of evacuees from Louisiana in places like the Houston Astrodome, as a model of effective crisis management.
"There are a lot of lessons we want to learn out of this process in terms of what works," Cheney said.
"I think we are in fact on our way to getting on top of the whole Katrina exercise," he said, but added, "we've got a lot of work ahead of us obviously."

rove lied? i don't believe it!

yeah ok, i do.....

Texas Fires Lawyer After Story on Rove
Submitted by editor on September 12, 2005 - 1:58pm.
By Michael E. RuaneSource: Washington Post
A staff attorney with the Texas secretary of state said yesterday that she was fired this week for violating press protocols when she spoke to a Washington Post reporter who was working on a story about presidential adviser Karl Rove.
Elizabeth Reyes, 30, of Austin said she was fired Tuesday after she was quoted in a Post story that ran Sept. 3 about tax deductions on Rove's homes in the District and in Texas.
Scott Haywood, a spokesman for Texas Secretary of State Roger Williams, confirmed yesterday that Reyes is no longer employed, but he declined to provide details, saying it was a personnel matter. Haywood had said late last Saturday that Reyes "was not authorized to speak on behalf of the agency."
The Post's story reported that Rove inadvertently received a District homestead tax deduction on his Palisades home, even though he had not been eligible for the benefit for more than three years. Rove was eligible for the deduction when he bought the home in 2001, the story said, but a change in the tax law in 2002 made the deduction available only to District property owners who do not vote elsewhere. Rove is registered to vote in Texas.
The District's Office of Tax and Revenue accepted blame for the mistake in a letter to Rove, expressing regret that it had failed to rescind the deduction. Rove agreed to reimburse the city an estimated $3,400 in back taxes, and a White House spokeswoman said it had been an innocent misunderstanding.
Rove is registered to vote in Kerr County, Tex., the story reported, and he and his wife own two small rental cottages there that Rove claims as his residence. But two local residents said they had never seen Rove there.
When Post reporter Lori Montgomery telephoned the press office of the Texas secretary of state, the press officer was on vacation, and Montgomery was transferred to Reyes. The attorney, who spoke in two separate telephone calls, told Montgomery that it was potential voter fraud in Texas to register in a place where you don't actually live, and she was quoted as saying Rove's cottages don't "sound like a residence to me, because it's not a fixed place of habitation."
Reyes said yesterday that she was not aware that she was talking to a reporter, that she was not aware the discussion was about Rove, and that she had explained in the interviews that an individual's intent to return to Texas is a primary factor in qualifying for residency...................

why did it take a natural disaster?

why didn't they speak up when we sent our men and women off to an UNJUST war (based on lies lies and more lies)??????????????

why now? isn't it too little too late? were THESE lies WORSE than the war lies? which lies are going to be next?

why are we allowing a man to remain in office that says, 'heck of a job brownie' when even a five year old can see the death and distruction and lack of leadership and command all around them? huh huh huh, tell me!

NBC's Williams: Journalists' Gloves Off
Submitted by editor5 on September 12, 2005 - 1:50pm.
By David Bauder
Source: Free Press
NBC’s Brian Williams says the lasting legacy of Hurricane Katrina for journalists may be the end of an unusual four-year period of deference to people in power.
There were so many angry, even incredulous, questions put to Bush administration officials about the response to Katrina that the Salon Web site compiled a “Reporters Gone Wild” video clip. Tim Russert, Anderson Cooper, Ted Koppel and Shepard Smith were among the stars.
The mute button seemingly in place since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks has been turned off.
“By dint of the fact that our country was hit we’ve offered a preponderance of the benefit of the doubt over the past couple of years,” the “Nightly News” anchorman said. “Perhaps we’ve taken something off our fastball and perhaps this is the story that brings a healthy amount of cynicism back to a news media known for it.”
Williams spent much of the past two weeks in New Orleans, huddling in the Superdome with suffering residents and giving one of the first warnings on the “Today” show that the levees had been breached.
Hundreds of reporters, in all media, did heroic work on the Gulf Coast in the deadly storm’s aftermath. None arguably was as financially and symbolically important to his company as the job turned in by Williams.
It could solidify his spot as network news’ top anchor. He was NBC News’ point person at a time its rivals had none, since replacements haven’t been named for the late Peter Jennings at ABC News or Dan Rather at CBS.
“Nightly News” viewership the week after the storm jumped 2.5 million from the week before, its lead over second-place ABC increasing to 1.1 million from 300,000, according to Nielsen Media Research. A Williams-anchored “Dateline NBC” special about Katrina was the most-watched program all week.
When ABC and CBS settle on succession plans, they’ll be playing catch-up.
Williams increased the value of his stock by aggressively seizing an opportunity, said Jeff Alan, author of “Anchoring America: The Changing Face of Network News.”
“Brian handled this as professionally as any of the reporters down there and maybe more so,” Alan said. “Brian knew how much was at stake here. Brian took his anchor hat off and put his human being hat on in a lot of the broadcasts that I saw.”
Williams said he’s focused on a story that will preoccupy the country for many months and probably play a key role in deciding the nation’s next president.
“I have not seen an inch of my own coverage,” he said. “I have very little sense of it and I’m probably the last judge of my own work. I tried to call them as I saw them. And if I let my emotion or anger get the better of me, what some would have called a failing of a journalist I think should be taken the other way around on this story.”
Pointed criticism of the government response has been posted on his daily Web log, particularly on Labor Day when he wrote about food and water being dropped to survivors: “There was water, there was food, and there were choppers to drop both. Why no one was able to combine them in an air drop is a cruel and criminal mystery of this dark chapter in our recent history. The words `failure of imagination’ come to mind.”
His blog also reprinted in full a National Weather Service bulletin from the morning before the storm struck that gave a prescient road map to the destruction, including power outages and water shortages that “will make human suffering incredible by modern standards.”
Williams said he sensed trouble brewing already that Sunday, Aug. 28. At the Superdome, he saw National Guardsman barking orders at people seeking shelter, and patting down small children and the elderly for weapons. The crowd was angry about being forced to stand in line in the rain even though there was a large overhang a few yards away, he said.
“I went back to my hotel to get a few hours of sleep before they sealed the Dome at 6 the next morning thinking, `This is not good,’” he said........

good article!

once again i think the fault lies with LACK OF EDUCATION, both home and in school. BIRTH CONTROL EDUCATION, SEX EDUCATION. no, you don't have to preach everyone should be doing it like bunnies. we all know sex IS going to happen. let's make sure we are safe AND protected from unwanted pregnancies......

subject to debate posted August 11, 2005 (August 29, 2005 issue)
Feminists for (Fetal) Life
Katha Pollitt

Can you be a feminist and be against abortion? Feminists for Life claims to be both, and if you listen long enough to its voluble and likable president, Serrin Foster, you might almost think it's true. FFL is on a major publicity roll these days, because Jane Roberts, wife of Supreme Court nominee John Roberts, is a pro bono legal adviser, former officer and significant donor (she gave between $1,000 and $2,499 in 2003). When I caught up with Foster at the end of a long day that included an hour on NPR's On Point, she talked a blue and quite amusing streak, and although it can be hard to follow an aria that swoops from Susan B. Anthony to telecommuting to water pollution, while never quite answering the actual question, I'm sure she means every word of it. How can you argue with FFL's contention that America does not give pregnant women and mothers the support they need? Feminists, the prochoice kind, have been saying this for years. So far as I can tell, FFL is the only "prolife" organization that talks about women's rights to work and education and the need to make both more compatible with motherhood. It has helped bring housing for mothers and children to Georgetown University and supports the Violence Against Women Act; Foster reminded me that she and I had been on the same side in the mid-1990s in opposing family caps, the denial of additional benefits to women who had more children while on welfare. Why, she wondered, couldn't we all just work together to "help pregnant women"?
The problem is that FFL doesn't just oppose abortion. FFL wants abortion to be illegal. All abortions, period, including those for rape, incest, health, major fetal defects and, although Foster resisted admitting this, even some abortions most doctors would say were necessary to save the woman's life. (Although FFL is not a Catholic organization, its rejection of therapeutic abortion follows Catholic doctrine.) FFL wants doctors who perform abortions to be punished, possibly with prison terms.
It was extremely difficult to get Foster to say what she thought would happen if abortion was banned. At one point she would not concede that women would continue to have abortions if it was recriminalized; at another she argued that criminalization was no big deal: Instructions on self-abortion were posted on the Internet. I had to work to get her to admit that illegal abortion was common before Roe, and that it was dangerous--numbers on abortion deaths were concocted by pre-Roe legalization advocates, she told me. Yet the FFL website prominently features gory stories of abortion mishaps and discredited claims that abortion causes breast cancer. (Challenged on the cancer connection, Foster says they just want women to have medical information. Asked why they don't then link to the 2004 Lancet article debunking their cancer claims, she says they are not medical experts and have considered taking the cancer pages down.) So legal abortion is dangerous but illegal abortion would be safe? When I pointed out that in countries where the operation is banned, such as Brazil and Peru, rates are sky-high and abortion a major cause of injury and death, she professed ignorance. ............

what DO we owe them?

we owe them more than what they're getting. we owe our vietnam vets more than they got and are getting as well. i am amazed people still enlist after they see the treatment we apply to some who have come back broken and bent

comment posted September 12, 2005 (web only)
A War Over Meaning
Robert Jay Lifton & Greg Mitchell

Americans are struggling to come to terms with the devastation of Hurricane Katrina and with deaths that may ultimately number in the thousands. It is important that this near-apocalyptic disaster not eclipse the still-unfolding disaster of the war in Iraq, upon which Katrina may have an unforeseen influence.
At the heart of the matter is what we owe the dead. President Bush, referring recently to Americans killed in Iraq, said that "we owe them something" and must "finish the task that they gave their lives for." Finding himself in the middle of a national debate over the meaning we give to our war dead, he clings to the traditional response--that our soldiers must not have died in vain, and that their deaths represent noble sacrifices on behalf of eternal principles. Now taking hold, however, is an alternative, critical meaning: that these deaths can be rendered significant only by acknowledging the futility of the war itself.
Americans are grappling with these contradictory meanings. But the war's terrible toll (nearly 2,000 US soldiers killed as of this writing, and Iraqi deaths estimated at more than 20,000), together with the increasing recognition that the war is unwinnable, are strengthening the alternative meaning.................

Monday, September 12, 2005

a confederacy of dunces

The statue of Ignatius Reily (singular character of the novel Confederacy of Dunces) stands, as did Ignatius, under the clock at what once was the site of Holmes Department Store on Canal Street, but is now the Royal Sonesta Hotel.

since it IS one of my top favorite three books..........

by john kennedy toole

A green hunting cap squeezed the top of the fleshy balloon of a head. The green earflaps, full of large ears and uncut hair and the fine bristles that grew in the ears themselves, stuck out on either side like turn signals indicating two directions at once. Full, pursed lips protruded beneath the bushy black moustache and, at their corners, sank into little folds filled with disapproval and potato chip crumbs. In the shadow under the green visor of the cap Ignatius J. Reilly's supercilious blue and yellow eyes looked down upon the other people waiting under the clock at the D.H. Holmes department store, studying the crowd of people for signs of bad taste in dress. Several of the outfits, Ignatius noticed, were new enough and expensive enough to be properly considered offenses against taste and decency. Possession of anything new or expensive only reflected a person's lack of theology and geometry; it could even cast doubts upon one's soul.
--from A Confederacy of Dunces

from curled up

...........At the center of A Confederacy of Dunces is that contemptuous hypochondriac, that deadbeat ideologue, that gluttonous moocher Ignatius Reilly. A mountainous college graduate living off his mother's welfare check in her home on one of New Orleans seedy back streets. He spends most of his time waxing melodramatically philosophic, hiding out in the squalor of his bedroom, filling Big Chief writing tablets with his unique brand of Luddite/medievalist/anti-Enlightenment thought and penning incendiary letters to his sex-crazed ex-college-girlfriend Myrna Minkoff. His beleaguered mother by turns dotes and turns on him in their schizophrenic dance between adult child and aging parent..............

a virtual tour

a confederacy of dunces

FEMA: Confederacy of Dunces
Jon Elliston

[from the September 26, 2005 issue]
In a week full of evidence that the federal government is woefully unprepared to respond to natural disasters, the plaintive testimony of Aaron Broussard, president of Jefferson Parish, just outside New Orleans, stood out. "We have been abandoned by our own country," he told NBC's Meet the Press. Broussard recounted how local officials had been told "every single day, 'The cavalry's coming, the cavalry's coming, the cavalry's coming.' The cavalry's still not here yet," he said. "I've begun to hear the hoofs, and we're almost a week out."
It was an eerie echo of the aftermath of 1992's Hurricane Andrew, which killed twenty-three people and exposed deep weaknesses in federal emergency programs. "Where the hell is the cavalry?" the emergency manager of Dade County, Florida, famously pleaded several days after Andrew blew through.
After Andrew the cavalry got its act together. Reforms engineered by President Clinton's Federal Emergency Management Agency director, James Lee Witt, won FEMA bipartisan praise throughout the 1990s. But by the time Hurricane Katrina roared into the Gulf, FEMA--the government entity that could have done the most to alleviate the crisis in the storm's wake--had been seriously hobbled by the Bush Administration. In 2002 FEMA was swallowed by the Department of Homeland Security--a move that the agency's current director, Michael Brown, promised would give the country a new, improved "FEMA on steroids." Instead, much of the agency's natural disaster work was sidelined in favor of antiterrorism programs.
"I am extremely concerned that the ability of our nation to prepare for and respond to disasters has been sharply eroded," Witt told Congress on March 24, 2004. The former director has urged that the agency be withdrawn from DHS--a proposal that's gaining traction in Congress following the Katrina meltdown.
While the Administration's push to privatize key services was draining the agency of some of its most experienced personnel, Bush appointed two FEMA directors with no substantive experience in disaster management. The first, Joe Allbaugh, was Bush's chief of staff in Texas. Allbaugh's handpicked successor, Brown, was an official with the International Arabian Horse Association before coming to FEMA. "Our professional staff are being systematically replaced by politically connected novices and contractors," Pleasant Mann--a seventeen-year FEMA veteran who was then head of the agency's government employees' union--complained to Congress last year. "A lot of the institutional knowledge is gone," Mann commented later. So is morale: In a February 2004 survey of FEMA personnel, 80 percent said FEMA had become "a poorer agency" under DHS.
That's not the worst of it. From its first months in office, the Bush Administration has chipped away at disaster mitigation programs designed to curb precisely the kind of damage now overwhelming Louisiana and neighboring states. Project Impact, a modest but influential mitigation program created by Witt in 1997, had spread to some 250 communities and all fifty states before it got the Bush budget ax in 2001. In Pascagoula, Mississippi, Project Impact was creating a database of structures in the local flood plain--crucial information that could have stemmed some of the havoc that city faces today. Such programs would have brought down the cost of repairing cities like Pascagoula: According to FEMA's own estimates, every dollar spent on mitigation saves roughly two dollars in disaster recovery costs. ...........

john wayne to the rescue!

well not really. i was never a john wayne fan, but i think i like (or at least i like what i have seen and heard so far) this honore dude!

'Ragin Cajun' general becomes icon
Katrina pulled 'classic military maneuver'

Sunday, September 11, 2005; Posted: 7:54 p.m. EDT (23:54 GMT)

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana (AP) -- To troops, he's the "Ragin' Cajun," an affable but demanding general barking orders to resuscitate a drowning city. To his country, he's an icon of leadership in a land hungry for a leader after a hurricane exposed the nation's vulnerability to disasters.
With a can-do attitude and a cigar in hand, Army Lt. Gen. Russel Honore arrived after Hurricane Katrina and directed troops to point weapons down in respect for a stunned and stranded population lacking food, electricity and safety.
Each morning, Honore (pronounced AHN'-ur-ay) boards a Blackhawk helicopter at Camp Shelby in Mississippi, 100 miles north of New Orleans, for a humanitarian mission as head of the military's Joint Task Force Katrina.
Honore was born at home 57 years ago during a hurricane, his mother and an uncle always told him. He grew up poor in Lakeland, La., northwest of Baton Rouge, with 11 siblings, once winning a 4-H contest with the family's lone dairy cow, Weasel.
His daughter and friends live in New Orleans. As a child, he spent two weeks at Charity Hospital, where Katrina's flood waters trapped doctors and patients, after he was hit in the head with a baseball bat.

'I'm a soldier. You get what you see'
Stepping into a crisis that has drawn criticism of leaders at every level of government, Honore was praised for his compassionate approach to residents and his colorful bursts of instructions to troops, delivered in a Louisiana drawl with spits of profanity for emphasis.
"He's a man of action," said Maj. Gen. Bill Caldwell, commanding general of the 82nd Airborne Division in Fort Bragg, North Carolina. "He knows the area, understands the people and doesn't take no for an answer."
Honore has won over even some of the government's harshest critics, including New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin, who blasted the Bush administration's initial response to his city's disaster.
"He came off the doggone chopper, and he started cussing, and people started moving," Nagin told a radio station. "I give the president some credit on this. He sent one John Wayne dude down here that can get some stuff done."
The 6-foot-2 three-star general points out that John Wayne was an actor. "I'm a soldier. You get what you see," he said..................