Tag Archives: sexism

2020 is going to look a lot like 2016

Senator Elizabeth Warren introduced Bernie Sanders in Boston.

Boston Globe photo

Progressives U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders and U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren appeared together in Boston last week, as pictured above. Far from having gone away quietly, Sanders is fighting for such progressive goals as single-payer health care and free tuition at public colleges and universities. Unfortunately, there’s no reason to think that the 2020 presidential election won’t devolve into another fight between real Democrats (that is, actual progressives) and corporate, sellout Democrats who think that craven identity politics is a political cover for the establishmentarian, pro-corporate, anti-populist, ultimately treasonous Democratic Party to continue to ignore income inequality and to continue to support the socioeconomic status quo.

Bernie Sanders is, I think, going to run for the presidency again in 2020.

He hasn’t ruled it out, and he has remained in the public eye since the preventably disastrous November 2016 presidential election.

He put a book out in November (and his progressive comrade Elizabeth Warren has another book due out later this month), and while the establishment Democrats’ “plan” remains to just sit back and watch the Repugnican Tea Party, under the “leadership” of “President” Pussygrabber, implode (or explode, I suppose), Bernie is out there advocating for a progressive agenda that would improve millions of lives (as is Elizabeth).

Bernie will introduce legislation for single-payer health care, totally bypassing the bogus argument of corporate-friendly Obamacare vs. corporate-friendly Trumpcare (and necessarily so), and he and Warren have introduced legislation for free in-state community college and public four-year college tuition.

Oh, that shit can’t pass, I hear even so-called Democrats mutter.

Um, leadership is about leading — not following. Leadership is about convincing people to go in a new, better direction. Leadership isn’t about watching and waiting for your inept political opponents to hang themselves, and then to continue to stick with the status quo. Nor is leadership about jumping on board something that is progressive only after it’s clearly politically safe to do so, since the majority of the electorate already has gone in that direction (Billary Clinton, for instance, didn’t jump on board the same-sex-marriage bandwagon until after it was safe to do so, after the majority of Americans had already gotten there first [to be fair, ditto for Barack Obama]).

Actual leadership is selfless, it’s hard, and it can be risky — which is why the worthless, sellout, do-nothing establishment “Democrats” don’t lead, but follow.

Unfortunately, Bernie 2020 probably would run into what Bernie 2016 ran into: anti-white racism.*

Yup. I said it.

Bernie was rejected by many, many so-called Democrats primarily if not solely because of his demographics — they wrote him off as just another old white man. He was, yes, racially profiled.

How else to explain that Billary Clinton won the support of 76 percent of black Democratic primary voters and caucus-goers, while Bernie won the support of only 23 percent of them?

Bernie was less well known than Billary, that’s why, you might argue, but then there is this contrasting (and inconvenient) fact: among white Democratic primary voters and caucus-goers, it was much more evenly split — 48.9 percent supported Billary, while 49.1 percent supported Bernie, a difference of only 0.2 percent.

Clearly, there was something racial going on.

And it’s interesting that black Americans supported Billary Clinton to the degree that they did; the Clintons brought us “welfare reform,” a crime bill that filled our prisons disproportionately with non-whites, the job-killing NAFTA, etc.

Maybe blacks still struggle at least in part because they tend to vote against their own best interests. Just sayin’. (And I’m not picking on blacks — many, many Americans routinely vote against their own best interests, such as the poor and working-class white people who voted for Pussygrabber for president.)

Michelle Alexander, author of The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, wrote this of Billary Clinton in February 2016:

Hillary Clinton loves black people. And black people love Hillary — or so it seems. Black politicians have lined up in droves to endorse her, eager to prove their loyalty to the Clintons in the hopes that their faithfulness will be remembered and rewarded.

Black pastors are opening their church doors, and the Clintons are making themselves comfortably at home once again, engaging effortlessly in all the usual rituals associated with “courting the black vote,” a pursuit that typically begins and ends with Democratic politicians making black people feel liked and taken seriously.

Doingsomething concrete to improve the conditions under which most black people live is generally not required.

Hillary is looking to gain momentum on the campaign trail as the primaries move out of Iowa and New Hampshire and into states like South Carolina, where large pockets of black voters can be found. According to some polls, she leads Bernie Sanders by as much as 60 percent among African Americans. It seems that we — black people — are her winning card, one that Hillary is eager to play.

And it seems we’re eager to get played. Again.

The love affair between black folks and the Clintons has been going on for a long time. It began back in 1992, when Bill Clinton was running for president. He threw on some shades and played the saxophone on The Arsenio Hall Show.

It seems silly in retrospect, but many of us fell for that. At a time when a popular slogan was “It’s a black thing, you wouldn’t understand,” Bill Clinton seemed to get us. When Toni Morrison dubbed him our first black president, we nodded our heads. We had our boy in the White House. Or at least we thought we did.

Black voters have been remarkably loyal to the Clintons for more than 25 years. It’s true that we eventually lined up behind Barack Obama in 2008, but it’s a measure of the Clinton allure that Hillary led Obama among black voters until he started winning caucuses and primaries.

Now Hillary is running again. This time she’s facing a democratic socialist who promises a political revolution that will bring universal healthcare, a living wage, an end to rampant Wall Street greed, and the dismantling of the vast prison state — many of the same goals that Martin Luther King Jr. championed at the end of his life.

Even so, black folks are sticking with the Clinton brand.

What have the Clintons done to earn such devotion? Did they take extreme political risks to defend the rights of African Americans? Did they courageously stand up to right-wing demagoguery about black communities? Did they help usher in a new era of hope and prosperity for neighborhoods devastated by deindustrialization, globalization, and the disappearance of work?

No. Quite the opposite. …

Read Alexander’s article, and fuck, just Google “What did the Clintons do for black Americans?” (While you’re at it, Google “What did Obama do for black Americans?”)

Clearly, black Americans had no logical reason to vote for Billary over Bernie, certainly not at the rate of 76 percent to 23 percent.

Still, myths die hard. Blacks understood that they were “supposed” to vote for Billary, and so they did.

And the race-based Bernie bashing continues. There were those black-supremacist idiots who called a crowd gathered for Bernie Sanders “white supremacist liberals” while they shut down Bernie’s planned speech in Seattle in August 2015. They had no coherent anti-Bernie argument; indeed, I’m sure that they were mostly if not wholly unaware of his record (including the NAACP’s having given him a score of 100 percent on their agenda [and former NAACP head Ben Jealous went on to endorse Bernie]). Bernie’s record didn’t matter to these black supremacists, you see, because Bernie’s sin was that of having been born while white.

Similarly, in a recent piece for Salon.com, Chauncey DeVega takes two sentences from recent remarks by Bernie (at the rally in Boston pictured above) and then runs with it.

Bernie said, as DeVega reported: “Some people think that the people who voted for Trump are racists and sexists and homophobes and deplorable folks. I don’t agree, because I’ve been there.” (“Been there” as in he has met and spoken with these people, I presume he meant.)

Bernie immediately followed that up with, “Let me tell you something else some of you might not agree with: It wasn’t that Donald Trump won the election, it was that the Democratic Party lost the election.”

That apparently wasn’t convenient to DeVega’s argument, though, so he left it out of his article, which he had begun with:

In the United States, white liberals and progressives have historically shown a serious inability to grapple with the realities of the color line and the enduring power of white supremacy. Many of them are either unable or unwilling to understand that fighting against class inequality does not necessarily remedy the specific harms done to African-Americans and other people of color by white racism.

That’s just a more academic, “nicer” way of calling Bernie Sanders and his supporters “white supremacist liberals,” methinks.

Bernie also had said: “We need a Democratic Party that is not a party of the liberal elite but of the working class of this country; we need a party that is a grassroots party, where candidates are talking to working people, not spending their time raising money for the wealthy and the powerful.”

DeVega didn’t quote that, either. Better to simply paint Bernie as a denier of racism, because it appears that the same black Americans who stupidly supported corporate whore Billary Clinton primarily out of black identity than even for their own best fucking interests are going to try to shove corporate whore U.S. Sen. Cory Booker down our throats as the 2020 Democratic Party presidential candidate.

Booker is black, you see, and for years he cravenly has promoted himself as the next Barack Obama, and it’s supposed to be enough that he’s black.

Booker, whose most recent big act was to vote in the U.S. Senate to deny Americans access to cheaper pharmaceuticals because he takes a lot of money from Big Pharma — I don’t call someone a “corporate whore” for nothing — very much appears to me to be the next one to take the mantle of being Best for Blacks (this mantle was passed from Bill Clinton to Barack Obama to Billary Clinton and, I surmise, now goes to Booker; the mantle keeps getting passed, even though no one who wears it actually does anything significant for black Americans).

If I’m “racist” for being a while male who has called Corey Booker a corporate whore, know that the managing editor of the Black Agenda Report, a Bruce A. Dixon, earlier this year called Booker a “corporate hooker” and a “corporate whore.” He wrote (the links are his):

After losing the White House to the most unpopular president in history, Democrats have lots to say, but even more to avoid saying, lest they expose themselves as every bit as much corporate tools as their Republican foes.

New Jersey [U.S.] Senator Cory Booker is their ideal spokesperson, a cynical, photogenic and utterly dependable corporate whore who can be counted on to keep the anti-Trump rabble safely inside the Democrats’ big stinky tent. …

The Democrats leading the charge against Trump must meet exacting qualifications. They have to be loyal servants of the one percenters, of banksters, hedge funds, charter-school sugar daddies and privatizers of all kinds. They must be dependable supporters of apartheid Israel, of military contractors, drone warfare and U.S. military interventions of all kinds around the world.

To boost their party’s fortunes in this new era, Democratic Party spokespeople need to be gifted hypocrites willing to pose as advocates of immigrants and champions of civil liberties going forward, even though they unflinchingly supported the biggest deportation and mass-surveillance regimes in history implemented by the Democrat who just left the White House.

They must focus narrowly on the handful of issues on which corporate Dems actually disagree with Republicans, like abortion rights [and, I’ll add, LGBT rights — and other identity politics], and not stray to areas which might indict their own party along with Republicans.

And they must absolve their party of responsibility for running an incompetent campaign by blaming the Russians. Hillary is history, but her big stinking tent is still there, and Democrats are crying for a “united front” against Trump, led by spokespeople who can stick to the corporate script.

Cory Booker is a great fit. As Glen Ford, who has followed his career in Black Agenda Report and Black Commentator since 2002, notes, charter-school sugar daddies from the Olin, Bradley and Walton Family Foundations and the Manhattan Institute funded his early career. Cory’s wealthy friends bankrolled and promoted a slick Hollywood documentary, “Street Fight,” to ensure his 2006 election to Newark’s City Hall. …

In 2010 on the Oprah show, Booker announced a $100 million “gift” from Facebook owner Mark Zuckerberg to Newark’s public schools, whose budget was still controlled by statehouse Republicans, to implement the latest “run-the-school-like-a-business” nostrums of Cory’s old friends. Three years later, when Booker left Newark for the U.S. Senate, there was little to show for the money.

The one percenters take good care of their guy Cory, giving him three times the cash raised for all his opponents together in the 2013 Democratic primary, and he takes good care of them.

When the anti-Romney rhetoric in 2012 strayed to touch on how the hedge fund Republican actually made those millions, it was Obama surrogate Cory Booker who stepped up on “Meet The Press” to defend the predatory economics of hedge funds, calling outrage against disaster capitalism “useless rhetoric.”

After all, Goldman Sachs was and still is one of Booker’s major contributors. Cory hit the Senate just in time to vote for a major school voucher bill in 2014. …

Cory’s a whore, but a loyal one. If he did for passing motorists what he does for charter-school sugar daddies, hedge funds, Israeli apartheid and Big Pharma, he could be arrested for prostitution.

But Cory’s in the big time, and he’s a leading Democratic spokeshead against Trump. If you’re a Democrat, he’s one of your leaders.

He’s Cory Booker, corporate hooker.

The battle for the heart and soul of the Democratic Party continues. Ain’t nothin’ changed but the date.

To be clear, I wholly agree with Chauncey DeVega’s assertion that “fighting against class inequality does not necessarily remedy the specific harms done to African-Americans and other people of color by white racism.” It is a mistake to ignore racism (and other forms of discrimination) and to focus only on class and income inequality.

However, nor should identity politics supplant the battle against income inequality, and that’s what we saw happen with Billary Clinton’s awful presidential campaign, and that’s what has happened with the establishmentarian Democratic Party, because the establishmentarian Democratic Party’s corporate sugar daddies are OK with identity politics, since for the most part identity politics doesn’t threaten their obscene profiteering (indeed, they even have found that in many instances, they can profit from identity politics).

Significantly addressing income inequality, however, does threaten the establishmentarian Democratic Party’s corporate sugar daddies’ profiteering, and that’s why the establishmentarian Democratic Party has refused to significantly address income inequality for decades.

And further to be clear, a huge chunk of those who voted for Pussygrabber indeed were motivated, at least unconsciously if not always consciously, by racism. I believe that and so I wouldn’t have gone as far as Bernie Sanders did in his remarks (specifically I refer to his remark that “Some people think that the people who voted for Trump are racists and sexists and homophobes and deplorable folks. I don’t agree, because I’ve been there”).

Or I at least would have said it differently; I surmise that Bernie’s meaning, which he did not express well, was that not all of the people who voted for Pussygrabber are racists and sexists and homophobes and otherwise deplorables.

I think that that’s most likely what Bernie meant and I think that that’s probably the truth; I think that there are some incredibly stupid white people who voted for Pussygrabber against their own best interests, incredibly stupidly truly believing that (billionaire!) Pussygrabber magically was going to “make America great again,” that he’d bring all of the jobs back, and with those jobs, the 1950s-era national prosperity. For those people, it seems to me, identity politics wasn’t their No. 1 concern; the economy and their own dismal personal experience of it was.

What Bernie is trying to do, I surmise, is get back some of those white voters in the Rust-Belt states who voted for Pussygrabber instead of for Billary and who thus threw the Electoral College to Pussygrabber. No, I don’t think that Bernie wants the racists and the sexists and the homophobes, but that he wants those whose No. 1 concern is the economy. But they probably won’t vote for a Democrat as long as the Democratic Party keeps calling them “deplorables,” as deplorable as many (if not even most) of them actually are.

White Americans still make up more than 60 percent of the nation’s population (per the U.S. Census Bureau), and calling them deplorable probably isn’t a great strategy to win a presidential election. Just sayin’. It’s the numbers, folks; whites remain the racial majority in the United States of America.

And as deplorable as many if not even most Pussygrabber voters are, I still put the onus for Pussygrabber’s “win” of the White House on Billary Clinton. She took the Rust-Belt states for granted because they’d gone to the Democratic presidential candidates since the 1980s, and so she’d thought that she already had them sewn up. She and her team of Billarybots in their bubble fucked up big time, Russia or no Russia.

I agree wholeheartedly with Bernie’s assertion that “It wasn’t that Donald Trump won the election, it was that the Democratic Party lost the election.”

If the Democratic Party fronts yet another corporate whore in 2020 — like Cory Booker — then the result will be the same. (Don’t even make me get into the cliche of the definition of “insanity.”)

The fight for the 2020 Democratic Party presidential nomination will be much like the 2016 fight, I think, except that while the 2016 racial battle (Bernie was the “white” candidate and Billary the “black” candidate) for the most part wasn’t very openly, frequently nationally discussed, the racial battle will be quite openly and frequently nationally discussed in 2020 (well, starting no later than in 2019).

It really comes down to this: Which candidate is the most progressive? Which candidate is most likely to carry out policies that would benefit the highest number of Americans possible?

Would that candidate be yet another corporate whore, who has a long record of doing only what’s best for his or her corporate sponsors (and thus his or her corporate overlords)? Would that candidate be a corporate whore who only cravenly can run only on identity politics, since his or her actual record only shows what a corporate whore he or she actually is?

Or would the candidate most likely to carry out policies that would benefit the highest number of Americans possible (which is my non-negotiable litmus test) be an actual progressive, such as Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren, who has a long actual record of opposing corporate malfeasance and standing up for the average American?

For those of us who oppose the illegitimate Pussygrabber regime, that’s our choice in 2020, as it was in 2016.

I’m sure that if the pro-corporate Democratic Party establishment fronts corporate hooker Cory Booker, it and the Bookerbots (Hookerbots?) will call those of us actual Democrats (that is, we true progressives) who oppose Booker “racist,” just as the Billarybots called those of us who rejected her for the very same reasons “sexist” and “misogynist.”

Calling those of us who rejected corporate whore Billary Clinton (because she is a corporate whore) “Bernie bros” didn’t win her the White House, did it?

Craven identity politics (including slandering one’s actually progressive political opponents as “racist” or “sexist” or whatever) won’t put Cory Booker or any other corporate whore who uses the label of “Democrat” into the White House in 2020, either.

We progressives can — and we will — keep on playing this game.

I and millions of other progressives simply won’t budge. We won’t rest until the Democratic Party is progressive again (or until it has been replaced by another actually progressive party).

Call us “sexist,” “racist,” “crazy,” “Communist,” “radical,” “extreme,” “hippie,” whatever slanderous bullshit you want to call us to lamely try to get us to acquiesce to your center-right, sellout, self-serving, pro-corporate, treasonous bullshit. Our days of supporting the sellout Democratic Party, which is just a hollow husk of what it once was, are long gone.

P.S. To be clear, I don’t want to understate the importance of the Democratic Party (or a new, truly progressive party) standing up for the civil rights of racial and other minorities. It’s that we must walk and chew gum at the same time. Engaging in identity politics (in the good, non-toxic way) or battling income inequality is a false choice. We must do both.

And of course Bernie Sanders can’t know what it’s like to be black. (Or Latino. Or a woman. Or gay. Or…) He can know only what it’s like to be Bernie Sanders. And the state that he has represented in Congress since the early 1990s, Vermont, is overwhelmingly white, which is what it is.

I believe that Bernie’s heart is in the right place, and that as president he’d do the right thing for the highest number of people possible, and that with continued dialogue, he would get even better in terms of understanding and representing minority groups’ concerns.

Sadly and pathetically, though, I sense that blacks’ biggest problem with Bernie hasn’t actually been that he has been deficient on black issues, but that he isn’t black. Under these black supremacists’ “logic,” a U.S. president (at least a Democratic U.S. president) from here on out must always be black, then, even though blacks are only 13 percent of Americans. (Gee, that’s fair! And so democratic!)

I’m gay, but I’m not going to demand that a presidential candidate be gay, even though we have yet to have our first out non-heterosexual president.

I’m going to demand only that a presidential candidate be progressive, and I’m always going to support the most progressive (yet still viable) presidential candidate, regardless of that candidate’s sex, race, sexual orientation or age (as long as he or she can still do the job, I’m not worried about a candidate’s age). Unlike it is for too many so-called Democrats, for me it’s not all about me and my own identity group. It’s about what’s best for the highest number of people.

The Democratic Party shouldn’t be the vehicle through which any minority group tries to gain political control of the majority. I will put that fact out there, because that’s what identity politics, in its most toxic forms, actually aims for: the tyranny of the minority over the majority.

That’s not progressive and that’s not democratic.

Finally, for the record, I’m fine with Elizabeth Warren as the 2020 Democratic Party presidential nominee if Bernie doesn’t run, but I’m concerned that her nationwide favorability ratings aren’t nearly as high as Bernie’s.

That disparity is due, I’m sure, because he already has conducted a presidential campaign, and thus is better known to the national electorate, and I surmise that Warren has been a victim of actual misogyny (recall that Yertle McConnell infamously said of Warren, “She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted”) more than Billary Clinton ever has been. (People just don’t like Billary, regardless of her sex. It’s her personality, her character and her record, not her XX chromosomes. [Nor is it Russia.])

What I hope happens is that Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren keep working together as a dynamic duo. A Sanders-Warren ticket for 2020 would be incredible.

*To be fair, plenty of faux feminists also discriminated against Bernie because he is a man, and supported Billary for no other apparent reason than that she is a woman.

To support one person over another primarily because of his or her sex is to be sexist.

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Time to panic, Bernie supporters?

Democratic presidential candidate, Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., reacts to supporters during a concert hosted by his campaign Friday, Oct. 23, 2015, in Davenport, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

Associated Press photo

U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders reacts to supporters during an appearance in Davenport, Iowa, last week. Reports of Bernie’s political death have been greatly exaggerated; I can see Billary Clinton imploding like Howard Dean and I can see Bernie rising like Lazarus like John Kerry did in 2004. In any event, I have a novel, even revolutionary, idea: Let’s let the people caucus and vote! Let’s let the people decide!

Billary Clinton has had a decent month (at least so we’re told). The corporately owned and controlled media pronounced her the “winner” of the October 13 debate, even though post-debate focus groups and online polls showed Bernie Sanders to be the clear winner.

This month Billary had Katy Perry perform for her, while Bernie Sanders was impersonated by Larry David proclaiming (as Bernie) that he owns only one pair of underwear and not only doesn’t have a superPAC, but doesn’t even have a backpack, and thus has to lug everything around with him (ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!).

This month Billary survived her “Benghazigate” inquisitors, which, for some bizarre reason, widely has been seen as some sort of “accomplishment” for her. As “Benghazigate” always has been trumped-up bullshit anyway, what, exactly, did she accomplish?

No matter; when you’re Billary Clinton, you don’t have to have any actual accomplishments; you have the surname, and for many if not even most of those who call themselves “Democrats,” that’s enough.

Bernie Sanders apparently maintains a slim lead over Billary in New Hampshire, but Joe Biden’s belated announcement that he isn’t running still hasn’t taken full effect in the polling. Therefore, I’m not panicking over the polling that gives Billary a wide, double-digit lead over Bernie in Iowa right now. The post-Biden dust still hasn’t settled in the polling. We’re going to have to see.

That said, yes, I’d say that if Bernie doesn’t come in at No. 1 in New Hampshire or in Iowa – if Billary comes in at No. 1 in both states – no, I don’t see Bernie recovering from that.

Should Bernie win Iowa and New Hampshire (I still expect him to win New Hampshire, but I am concerned about how he’s doing in Iowa right now), we could see Billary collapse, but I don’t expect her to give up; I expect her to do what she did against Barack Obama in 2008, which was to keep going for as long as she could (indeed, the 2008 Democratic presidential primary fight ran all the way to June 2008).

In the meantime, to anyone who is predicting Bernie’s loss to Billary already, I say:

  • The first voting (in Iowa on February 1) is still more than three full months away. Billary, apparently way too high on undeserved praise from the corporately owned and controlled mass media punditry, keeps making offensive and untruthful statements (characteristic of her 2008 run for the White House), such as that the odiously homophobic Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) that her hubby signed into law actually was meant to staunch the bleeding where LGBT rights are concerned, and that Bernie Sanders is sexist! (Women who shamelessly mendaciously play the feminism card for personal and political gain only hurt the feminist movement; Billary should be ashamed of herself, but, as she amply has demonstrated over the many years, she is unburdened by anything remotely resembling a normal human sense of shame.) Also, the FBI is still investigating Billary and those involved in her home-brewed e-mail server. A lot can happen in the political world in three months.
  • Two words: Howard. Dean. Howard Dean for a long time was the “inevitable” 2004 Democratic Party presidential nominee. Only he imploded spectacularly in Iowa in early 2004, coming in at third place, behind both first-place winner John Kerry, whose moribund campaign had come back from the dead like Lazarus on crack, and behind second-place winner John Edwards. In the end, the only state that Dean won was his home state of Vermont. (No, that Bernie also is from Vermont doesn’t mean that he’s destined to share Dean’s fate, and yes, I can see Bernie making a John-Kerry-like resurrection after he’s already been written off as politically dead.)
  • Four words: Donald Trump. Ben. Carson. These two “men” have topped the Repugnican Tea Party presidential polling for a while now, yet few who truly know anything about political science and U.S. history really see either of them ultimately gaining the party’s nomination. (Neither has held elected office, and never in my lifetime of more than 45 years has anyone made it to the White House who had not been at least a U.S. senator or the governor of a state.) Why would it be that Donald Trump and Ben Carson can fall from their lofty perches, but Billary can’t fall from hers?
  • Finally, but certainly not the least importantly: Let the fucking people vote and caucus! Let the people decide! If Bernie Sanders ultimately comes in at No. 2 to Billary Clinton, so be it, but it’s to be decided by those voting and caucusingnot by the punditry. Not even by me (although it should be…).

The only thing that we Bernie Sanders supporters have to fear is fear itself. The Billarybots would love for us to become dispirited and thus disarm (yes, that’s a pun on Team Billary’s lame attempt to make gun control a big issue [funny, it hasn’t been until very recently that Billary ever made gun control a big issue; the timing of her new-found “concern” is awfully interesting]).

The corporately owned and controlled media would benefit much more from long-time corporate whore Billary Clinton sitting in the Oval Office than they would from democratic socialist Bernie Sanders, so when they report that Bernie can’t win, consider the source and ask yourself if the corporately owned and controlled mass media care more about your welfare than they do their own.

We Bernie Sanders supporters must ignore the naysayers, who have a right-of-center agenda of their own, and continue to support him as we have been. I just gave him another donation, for instance, and there’s no way in hell that I’m ever casting a vote for Billary Clinton, no matter what bile and venom spews from the mouths of the Billarybots.

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Sooooo NOT ready for Billary

File photo of Hillary Clinton arriving to take part in a Center for American Progress roundtable discussion  in Washington

Reuters photo

The centerpiece of the presidential campaign of Billary Clinton — whose actual record is that of having collected titles instead of actually having accomplished anything — is that she is a woman, when even the wingnuts were poised to possibly put Sarah Palin in the White House in 2008. Billary has nothing except for her co-option of the “Democratic Party” label and the probably-fatal lack of imagination of today’s Democratic Party, which apparently sees nothing wrong with center-right political dynasties.

“Hillary Clinton Is About to Launch the Most Boring Presidential Campaign in Years,” a writer for Vice.com proclaims.

I wholeheartedly agree. This launch is scheduled to happen today.

Billary already was old news when she lost the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination to Barack Obama. Recall that she came in at third place in Iowa in January 2008, behind the now-disgraced John Edwards at second place and Obama at first. True, it was close — Edwards got 30 percent of the vote to Clinton’s 29 percent, but, as Wikipedia correctly notes, “Clinton’s surprising third-place finish in the popular vote [in the first contest of the primary season] damaged her image as the ‘inevitable’ nominee. However, she remained upbeat, saying, ‘This race begins tonight and ends when Democrats throughout America have their say. Our campaign was built for a marathon.'”

In that marathon — and it was a marathon; it wasn’t until June 2008 that Billary conceded to Obama — Billary acted like the cocky hare, while Team Obama knew, like the tortoise knew, that slow and steady wins the race, as Obama carefully cobbled together delegates from regions around the nation that Billary apparently felt she already had in the bag and/or could afford to lose.

Billary also acted like a major asshole (I’d say “bitch” or perhaps even “cunt,” but that would be sexist, so I’ll be entirely equal-opportunity here) the more desperate she became to try to beat Obama. Although the states of Florida and Michigan had violated the Democratic Party’s rules and held their primaries too early — risking having their delegates not being allowed to cast votes at the convention, as the party had warned them might happen — and even though Obama had not even appeared on Michigan’s primary ballot, Billary insisted that she be given the delegates for the two states even though the two states clearly had violated the rules of the game (and again, even though Obama had not even appeared on Michigan’s ballot).

In April 2008, Billary, pathetically desperately trying to cast herself as one of the good old boys in the red-to-purplish states in order to scrape together some more badly-needed delegates, infamously referred to Obama as an “out-of-touch” “elitist” (based on remarks that he’d made at a fundraiser in San Francisco that were secretly recorded and were reported out of context; Team Billary really pounced on this opportunity to call Obama a limousine liberal, when Billary is the Queen — King? — of the Limousine Liberals).

I, for one, never forget a politician’s stunning display of low character. Either of the two crimes that I just mentioned — Billary’s tacking to the right and trying to appeal to what would become the “tea-party” set in order to try to beat Obama in the 2008 primaries, which was treasonous to the Democratic Party (which is what the Clintons always have been about: dragging the Democratic Party further and further to the right and further corporatizing it so that today it looks like Repugnican Lite), and her blatantly anti-democratic, power-grabbing demand that she simply be given the delegates for whom Obama did not even compete* — disqualify Billary from the Oval Office, but taken together, there is no question that the incidents amply showed Billary’s true colors.

There’s no way in hell that I’ll give this woman a penny, much more my vote.

As I noted, Billary was old hat in 2008, but now, seven years later, she’s still on the kick that we should put her in the Oval Office primarily because she’s a woman, because it would amount to Billary cracking “the highest and hardest glass ceiling.”

The 67-year-old Billary largely is living in the past, apparently acting out her own old wounds; she apparently wishes to keep the glass ceiling alive primarily for her own benefit.

I’m not convinced that in 2015, years after Billary’s 2008 run, the American voters have a problem with putting a woman in the White House, despite Billary’s apparent claims of being the victim of sexism and misogyny.

In fact, in 2006, 92 percent of Americans said in a CBS News/New York Times poll that they’d vote for a woman for president if they believed that she is qualified. (In fact, that 2006 poll found that “Men are actually more likely than women to say the country is ready for a woman to be president. Sixty percent of men say so, compared to 51 percent of women.” [!])

True, in 2006 apparently no more than 60 percent of those polled believed that a woman would be elected president in the next decade, but in early 2014 a Rasmussen poll found that 77 percent of respondents believed that a woman would be elected president in the next 10 years.

So Billary can’t factually claim that she is up against the same level of sexism that she might have been in 2008.

But I don’t believe that Billary was fighting against sexism in 2008; in 2008, as she still is today, Billary was fighting against (in no special order) her own utter lack of charisma, her record of having held titles (first lady, U.S. senator, U.S. secretary of state) instead of having actually accomplished anything, her nauseating sense of dynastic entitlement (as I said, in the 2008 marathon she was the hare), and her stunning low character (to the list of examples of which I’ll add the fact that she kept her State Department e-mails on her own server entirely under her own control [control freak much?]).

However, it’s so much easier and so much more convenient to ignore one’s own glaring shortcomings and falsely claim that he or she is a victim based upon his or her mere membership in an historically oppressed group of individuals. (Vote for Hillary or you hate all women!)

I criminally have dragged my feet here in pointing out than in 2008 even the Repugnicans cast their vote for the ticket of John McCainosaurus and Sarah Palin. Given the fact that McCainosaurus was 72 years old when voters went to the polls in November 2008, there was a good chance that had McCainosaurus won the White House, we would have seen a President Palin, especially if McCainosaurus had eked out a second presidential term. (The life expectancy for an American white male is around 76 years. The oldest president in U.S. history, the execrable Ronald Reagan, was almost, but not quite, 70 years old when he was inaugurated in 1980.)

So given that even the wingnuts were poised in 2008 to potentially put the first woman in the Oval Office (albeit via the vice presidency), for Billary to claim that it’s a novel idea today is bullshit.

And it can’t boost Billary’s chances for 2016 that a Pew Research Center study released in early 2015 showed that “In all, 38 percent of Americans said they hope that a woman is elected [president] in their lifetimes, while 57 percent said it doesn’t matter to them.”

My stance is that I’m fine with having our first female president — just not Billary Clinton, who has demonstrated amply over many years that as president she would be lackluster at best. (And, of course, I could write a whole separate piece on how beyond fucked up it is that the American national political imagination is so bankrupt that we still have presidential candidates with the surnames of Clinton and Bush.)

The quality of the presidential candidate trumps his or her possession of the XX or the XY chromosomes, just as it does other superficial considerations, such as race, national origin and sexual orientation.

I want the most progressive president that we can get — period.

During the 2008 Democratic presidential primary season I supported Obama over Clinton, hands down, and race and sex had nothing to do with it; I perceived Obama as the more progressive politician of the two (and I still do, although perhaps that’s not saying much, given how much Obama squandered his political capital, especially in the critical years of 2009 and 2010).

As I have noted, my pick for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination is U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who probably isn’t running (it’s unlikely but not absolutely impossible that she’ll run). However, even if a yet another white male candidate emerges as a viable candidate for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination (and if Warren doesn’t run, as probably will be the case), if he strikes me as progressive enough, I will support him, as much as I’d like to see Warren in the White House.

For diversity’s sake I’d love the 2016 Democratic Party standard-bearer to be Warren, who is a woman and progressive — a real Democrat, not the self-serving, dynastic DINO sellout that Billary is — but always, when push comes to shove, I’m going to support the most progressive candidate, regardless of his or her demographics.

Except for Billary.

If it comes down to only Billary — if she faces no viable challenger for the Democratic Party’s 2016 presidential nomination — then I will sit 2016 out. I will not participate in the fucking charade that Billary Clinton would make even a minimally acceptable president.

And I don’t think that I’m alone.

Most Democrats won’t admit how boring and unexciting the charisma- and character-free Billary is — she has co-opted the “Democratic” label, and they won’t go against the label in “polite” company — but the enthusiasm that Billary cannot and will not/would not instill within the Democratic Party base cannot bode well for the party in November 2016 if Billary is the party’s presidential candidate.

If Billary wins the nomination next year, the Repugnican Tea Party traitors will be much more enthusiastic than will be the Democrats in November 2016, and thus the members of the Repugnican Tea Party will turn out in droves to vote, especially after having been, in their sick and twisted minds, exiled to the wilderness during the eight-year run of the Communist Kenyan Barack Hussein Obama.

The brick wall is right in front of the Democratic Party, in plain view, but I expect the Democratic Party to be true to itself and drive right into it nonetheless.

After all, monarch Billary tends to get what she wants — whether it’s good for the rest of us or not.

P.S. I just watched “Saturday Night Live’s” clever and rather scathing (but deserved) cold open from last night. I always have suspected that Tina Fey’s spot-on Sarah Palin hurt the McCainosaurus-Palin ticket, and I have to wonder if, similarly, Kate McKinnon’s spot-on Billary Clinton is going to hurt Billary.

P.P.S. How could I have forgotten to mention Billary’s vote, as a carpetbagging U.S. senator for New York, for the unelected Bush regime’s illegal, immoral, unprovoked and unjust Vietraq War in October 2002?

It was, as a Huffington Post commentator has put it, probably the most important vote of Billary’s U.S. Senate career, and she wholly fucked it up. She did not vote for what was wise or what was right, but voted in the way that she calculated would most benefit her politically. (Twenty-one Democrats in the U.S. Senate voted no to the 29 Senate Democrats, including Billary, who voted yes, so it’s not like Billary had to vote yes; and the one Repugnican in the U.S. Senate at the time who voted against the Vietraq War, Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island, now is considering running for the White House as a Democrat.)

As the Huffington Post commentator notes of the October 2002 vote to give the Bush regime authorization “to unleash military force against Iraq at any time, without further consultation with Congress, let alone a declaration of war”: “The disastrous impact of that hideous example of strategic miscalculation is still with us, witnessed by the tectonic convulsions ripping the Arab world, and the rise of the Islamic State, which emerged out of the cauldron created by the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003.”

Not to mention the more than 4,000 U.S. troops killed in Vietraq, the tens of thousands of Iraqi civilians who have died because of the Vietraq War, and the cost of the Vietraq War to the U.S. taxpayers of more than $2 trillion — all of this at least in part because Billary and her craven ilk caved in to the post-9/11 hysteria which the unelected Bush regime used like the Reichstag fire.

*In  the end, Queen/King Billary pretty much got her way, unsurprisingly. As Wikipedia notes:

None of the top candidates campaigned in Florida or Michigan. The events were described in the media as “beauty contests,” and voter turnout in both states was relatively low when compared with record-high turnout in other states. Nevertheless, Clinton claimed wins in Florida and Michigan, and she flew to Fort Lauderdale on the night of the Florida election to thank supporters for what she called a “tremendous victory.” [Gee, reminds me of someone else who falsely claimed a victory in the state of Florida…] 

As the primaries continued, various groups tried to negotiate a resolution to the standoff between the [Democratic National Committee] and the state parties. The Clinton campaign advocated first for the results to stand and then for a new round of voting to take place in Michigan and Florida, while the Obama campaign deferred the matter to the DNC, while expressing a wish that the delegations be seated in some form. On all sides, Democrats worried that a failure to resolve the problem could lead to a rules or credential fight at the convention and low Democratic turnout in the general election in November.

On May 31, 2008, the DNC Rules and Bylaws Committee voted unanimously (27-0) to restore half-votes to all the Florida delegates, including superdelegates. The Michigan delegates were also given half-votes, with 69 delegates pledged to Hillary Clinton and 59 to Barack Obama; this proposed change [passed] by 19-8.

Michigan and Florida had flouted the pre-established rules and should have suffered the consequences. And how Billary was awarded more delegates for Michigan than was Obama when Obama hadn’t even appeared on the ballot escapes me, other than more evidence of the fact that the Clintons are fucking bullies with a colossal sense of entitlement — indeed, they wish to be a Dynasty.

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Jonathan Chait got it mostly right on the toxic identity politics of today

Jonathan Chait's epic race fail: How a story about racism and Obama goes horribly wrong

Left-of-center writer Jonathan Chait has committed the sin of telling the truth about our self-appointed political-correctness police, those who use their membership within an historically victimized and oppressed group to victimize and oppress others (men, mostly, and mostly white men, but sometimes white women as well). It indeed in so many quarters is open season on all white males, who are deemed automatically to be oppressors and victimizers because of their immutable characteristics of being male and being white. (As a gay white male, my non-heterosexuality gives me only so much cover for being a member of a class of victims, as homophobes widely consider homosexuality to be mutable. [Of course, it doesn’t fucking matter whether it’s mutable or not; we all should have the freedom to express ourselves sexually as we please, as long as we do so consensually.])

New York magazine writer Jonathan Chait started a shitstorm when he wrote about toxic PC (political correctness) police. Had he been completely wrong, he probably would have been ignored, but since he spoke so much unflattering truth, I’m one of only a handful of Internet commentators who have yet to comment on his comments.

First off, it’s necessary to describe the environment in which all of us Americans operate: to such a large degree stupid white men (emphasis there on “stupid”) still rule, as evidenced by the popularity of “American Sniper.” Not only is the Clint Eastwood film still No. 1, despite Eastwood’s penchant for talking to a vacant chair (actually, for “American Sniper’s” target audience, I’m sure that was in Eastwood’s favor), but the book American Sniper is No. 1 on amazon.com, and in amazon.com’s top-100-selling book titles there are no fewer than four different versions of the same fucking book (as I type this sentence) — plus an apparent knock-off book about yet another American sniper called The Reaper.

So mindless, blind worship of stupid, murderous (or at least violent or at least aggressive) white men widely misconstrued as “heroes” continues. (This could be its own blog piece, and indeed, was going to be, but I’ll get it over with here: “American sniper” Chris Kyle, who died by the sword as he lived by the sword, was no “hero.” He was part of an illegal and immoral occupying force in Iraq. As part of that illegal and immoral occupying force, he slaughtered a bunch of people who were, at least in their own eyes, defending their nation from a foreign occupying force [duh]. As Iraq had posed zero threat to the United States, as Iraq had not killed any Americans and had had no capability of killing Americans en masse [yeah, those Iraqi “WMDs” claimed by the war criminals who comprised the illegitimate Bush regime have yet to be found], there is no valid argument that Kyle was “protecting our freedoms” or some other jingoistic, Nazi-like bullshit. Kyle very apparently just really, really liked to slaughter people, and if he were Muslim instead of “Christian” and weren’t taking the big dirt nap, he probably would be a member of ISIS right now, slaughtering people left and right with gleeful abandon.)

So that is the nasty backdrop (part of it, anyway) against which those of us who aren’t stupid white men (again, emphasis on “stupid,” not on “white” or on “men”) or one of their worshipers must live in the United States of America.

That is the kind of background and context that Jonathan Chait’s piece is largely if not wholly missing, and I fault him for that fairly glaring omission, as well as for apparently not having allowed his piece to gestate long enough before birthing it upon the nation. (I often if not usually let something gestate for at least a few days before I finally give birth to it, such as this piece.) Further, the gravity of the topic — political correctness (which falls under the umbrella of identity politics) — could merit its own book, so no magazine article or blog piece (not even this one) could do it more than partial justice.

But Chait describes fairly well the phenomenon in which so many members of historically oppressed groups identify so much with being oppressed (whether these members as individuals actually have been very oppressed as individuals themselves or not) that they are hyper-vigilant about any signs of oppression.

Seriously — it used to be that people were just oppressed. And oppression was a bad thing. You didn’t want to be oppressed.

Now, being a member of an historically oppressed group is très chic. And apparently maintaining your membership in your très-chic group of oppressed people means constantly finding fresh meat, fresh new examples of how you have been oppressed, so if there aren’t any actual examples of how you have been oppressed, you’ll wildly exaggerate or even fabricate such “examples.”

Since you haven’t been (very) oppressed yourself lately, you’ll gladly piggy-back on to others’ (real or exaggerated or fabricated) oppression. That’s always fun.

If you didn’t jump on the Michael Brown bandwagon, for instance, to many that means that you are a white supremacist who supports the gunning down of black men, especially young black men, by white fascist cops who enjoy killing black men.

Never mind that it still remains quite unsettled as to whether or not Michael Brown actually went for the cop’s gun before the cop shot him dead. The cop claims that Brown did, and not only was the cop not indicted by a grand jury (which, indeed, might have been a bogus process), but the U.S. Department of Justice also declined to bring charges against the cop for civil-rights violations (granted, proving a civil-rights violation can be a high bar to clear, I know from personal experience).

It’s disturbing that so many people jumped to conclusions and have held fast to them. If your identity politics is that of the oppressed black American, then of course Michael Brown was innocent, a “gentle giant,” and was gunned down by whitey primarily if not solely for his race, and if your identity politics is that of the right-wing white person whose worldview at least verges on white supremacy if it isn’t already fully there, then of course Brown was a thug (and the phrase “black thug” would be redundant) and of course the white police officer only did what he had to do.

Either Brown went after the cop’s gun or he did not. (If I went after a cop’s gun, I’d expect to get shot.) The cop, under our existing (deeply flawed) legal structure, used deadly force against Brown legally or he did not. But whatever actually happened on that August day in Ferguson, Missouri, has little to nothing to do with identity politics, yet for many if not most Americans, their identity politics dictates the “facts.” That’s scary.

(The Eric Garner case, as I have written, at the bare minimum was a clear-cut case of manslaughter by the thuggish white cop, and, entirely unlike the Brown case, we have video of Garner incident, so “I can’t breathe” is an apt slogan of protest, whereas I never was on board with the “Hands up! Don’t shoot!” meme because there is no evidence that Brown ever put his hands up in surrender — there are only biased claims that he did.)

The case of Woody Allen, too, also wasn’t about the actual knowledge of actual facts but was about identity politics.

Women whom Rush Limbaugh might call “femi-Nazis” have asserted that of course Mia Farrow, being a woman, told the truth that Allen had molested their adopted daughter, even though the allegation came during a nasty custody battle — and that of course Allen, being a man, was guilty as charged. Never mind that none of us was there and has any actual knowledge of what did or what did not happen; we have only the claims and counter-claims of the members of a deeply broken family whose dirty laundry has been scattered all over the public square.

This is some highly toxic shit.

The case of Bill Cosby, though, and that of Arnold “Baby Daddy” Schwarzenegger when he was running for California governor in a bullshit recall election in 2003 that had amounted to a do-over election since the bumbling Repugnican candidate had lost the election in 2002: When several women have come forward publicly to state that a man has sexually harassed or sexually assaulted them, to call all of them liars (as so many did to the at-least six women who came forward about the past deeds of the future Gov. Groper) very most often is a misogynist, patriarchal thing to do.

I have little to no doubt in my mind that Bill Cosby (and Baby Daddy Schwarzenegger) serially sexually harassed and sexually assaulted women.

But actual victimization is diminished when victimization is falsely claimed or is claimed whether or not there is any evidence to support the claim of victimization — usually out of identity politics. Perversely, many if not even most members of an historically oppressed group very apparently want the latest example of possible victimization (such as the shooting death of Michael Brown) to be true victimization because, in their eyes, it strengthens their political power as claimants of oppression.

It’s perverse that oppression has morphed from something that no one wanted into something that so many cherish to the point that they’ll happily fabricate it if they deem that to do so will advance themselves somehow.

(In his piece, Chait correctly notes that “It [identity politics and its concomitant claims of perpetual and ubiquitous victimhood] also makes money. Every media company knows that stories about race and gender bias draw huge audiences, making identity politics a reliable profit center in a media industry beset by insecurity.” Indeed, both Slate.com and Salon.com, two of my favorite websites, have resident identity-politics writers, taking the feminist and the black angles, mostly, and I routinely read these writers’ pieces, and often if not usually I agree with them [Slate.com’s Jamelle Bouie rocks], but sometimes, yeah, it’s apparent that they’re really milking it. [Sorry, Salon.com’s Brittney Cooper, but in his article Chait calls you out on your frequent hysteria and hyperbole fairly fairly.])

This professional “victimhood,” is, I suspect, what has eaten at Chait, but that he perhaps did not articulate well enough in his now-infamous article.

And of his article, this paragraph, I think, is the money shot:

If a person who is accused of bias attempts to defend his intentions, he merely compounds his own guilt. (Here one might find oneself accused of man/white/straightsplaining.) It is likewise taboo to request that the accusation be rendered in a less hostile manner. This is called “tone policing.” If you are accused of bias, or “called out,” reflection and apology are the only acceptable response — to dispute a call-out only makes it worse. There is no allowance in p.c. culture for the possibility that the accusation may be erroneous. A white person or a man can achieve the status of “ally,” however, if he follows the rules of p.c. dialogue. A community, virtual or real, that adheres to the rules is deemed “safe.” The extensive terminology plays a crucial role, locking in shared ideological assumptions that make meaningful disagreement impossible.

The emphasis there is mine. In the most rabid “p.c. culture,” indeed, “There is no allowance … for the possibility that the accusation [of an act of oppression or victimization] may be erroneous.” Within this toxic, tightly closed-off atmosphere, facts and evidence have no place at all; the politics of group identity rules supreme. Woody Allen molested his adopted daughter. Period. If you disagree with this, then you hate women and/or you are a pedophile yourself. Michael Brown was a “gentle giant” (never mind the very inconvenient video footage of him roughing up a convenience store clerk while he stole cigarillos from him on the day of his death) who was gunned down in cold blood by a white supremacist police officer. Period. If you disagree with this, then you are a white supremacist.

And indeed, as Chait writes, “A white person or a man can achieve the status of ‘ally,’ however, if he follows the rules of p.c. dialogue.” Yup. That means going along with all manner of blatantly bullshit groupthink in order to get along, lest you be called a misogynist or racist/white supremacist or worse.

The goal of “p.c. culture” as it stands today indeed so often seems to be to push all white men into a corner, indeed, to destroy all white men or, minimally, to make all white men feel perpetually guilty (and thus perpetually disempowered) because, of course, merely by their having been born white and male, they inherently are the evil victimizers and oppressors of others (of women and of black people, mostly, but of other groups, too, of course). It’s not their individual deeds that make white males automatically-guilty victimizers and oppressors, but their mere membership within the group of white males, you see.

This is the sorry state of affairs even though the origin of “p.c. culture” was the fact that white men were pushing too many others into a corner due to those others’ immutable differences from white men, and pushing others into a corner based upon their immutable differences from oneself is a bad thing to do.

To such a large degree, the victims (well, in so many cases, the “victims”) have become the victimizers, and today the victims don’t even have to be actual victims to call themselves victims, and their actual victimization of others isn’t victimization because they are victims, and a victim cannot also be a victimizer, you see.

Get it? These are the new rules.

These new rules have got to go.

Jonathan Chait got it (mostly) right, which is why we’ve seen the reaction to him that we’ve seen.

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Memo to the maenads: Misandry is not feminist

A depiction of the maenads attacking Achilles.

The Woody Allen chatter won’t end (although it has died down a bit, thankfully), and it’s not the pro-Woody camp that is perpetuating it, but the pro-Mia-Farrow camp, the members of which have an ax to grind — an ax with with to castrate, apparently.

The New York Times on Sunday published Allen’s response to Mia Farrow’s adopted daughter Dylan Farrow’s write-up in the New York Times a week earlier, but one typical ax-weilding castrator for Salon.com wrote today (links are the writer’s, not mine):

… It’s been two weeks since Dylan Farrow published her open letter detailing the alleged sexual abuse she experienced at the hands of Woody Allen. Since then, she has addressed the abuse in interviews with People magazine and the Hollywood Reporter.

It’s been 20 years since Allen held a press conference on the steps of Yale University to announce the findings of the Yale-New Haven Sexual Abuse Clinic’s (incredibly fraught) investigation into Farrow’s allegations.

Since then, he hasn’t much addressed the issue, but really, he doesn’t need to. He is a critically celebrated writer and director in a culture convinced of its own righteousness, confident that it would never grant such distinctions to a sexual predator.

Despite enjoying two decades of the presumption of innocence (and a massive accumulation of wealth), Allen was given column inches on the New York Times editorial page to assert his innocence (and impugn Farrow’s mental health and character) — in the name of “balance.” …

So this is the misandrist’s apparent “argument”: That Woody Allen must be guilty as charged because he has wealth and power (and, of course, because he is a man), and that because he has wealth and power (and testicles), the New York Times should not have given him the opportunity to refute Mia Farrow’s adopted daughter’s serious allegations against him that the Times had recently published.

Because “balance,” you see, means that any female should be able to make any allegation against any male, and if the male refutes any such allegation, then it’s a misogynist attack upon all females. The male should just shut the fuck up and take his castration like a man!

If he is innocent, so what? If he is sacrificed by the gonad-slicing maenads, it’s just to make up for all of the wrongs that other men have done to other women!

This is “justice” to a misandrist, you see. It’s a lot like “justice” to the misogynist: the scales of justice are to tip in favor of the misogynist’s or the misandrist’s own sex.

Fuck objectivity, fuck fairness, fuck justice. Fuck facts, fuck truth, fuck decency. It’s all about the war between the sexes and which side of that war you are on.

I consider myself a feminist. I believe wholeheartedly in equal rights for women.

I wish that far more women were in Washington, D.C., where women are woefully underrepresented; I think that our national priorities, as they are played out in D.C., anyway, would change for the better if more women were in power in D.C.

I keep giving money to Wendy Davis, whom I hope becomes the next governor of Texas. From what I know of her I like her, and I fully support women’s right to govern their own reproductive systems. (I’ve given money to Planned Parenthood and to NARAL, too — and I’m a gay man who has no desire to reproduce myself, so this is from my looking at the bigger picture, not from my looking at only my own narrow, selfish interests.)

While I am not excited about the center-right Billary Clinton, whose actual remarkable accomplishments I don’t see, I would love to see a woman — an actually progressive woman — as president of the United States.

But I assure feminists that the path forward for feminists is not to become the flip side of misogynists, to believe and to operate out of the belief that since women historically have been kept down by men, it’s time now for payback, and women now should exact revenge against those who were born with the XY chromosomes.

Because when you exact revenge upon a whole class of human beings, you are sure to harm the innocent, and while you smugly and self-righteously believe that your revenge is justified, it most certainly is not. True justice is meted out on a case-by-case, often one-on-one, basis, never en masse.

On that note, the chatter about Woody Allen isn’t really about Woody Allen. Allen has been just the stand-in for misandrists to publicly vent their hatred and bile. (Indeed, the headline for the bad Salon.com article that I excerpted above begins with the words “A Nation Ruled by Creeps.” Clearly, many if not most if not even all males are “creeps.” It’s not OK for misogynists to paint females with such a broad brush, but it’s perfectly fine for misandrists to do so to males, you see.) And probably all of recent misandrist chatter (using Woody Allen as an excuse) is meant to strike fear in the hearts of all of those who possess testicles.

Interestingly, in the midst of the for-some-reason-still-ongoing chatter about Woody Allen, I received this e-mail today from Change.org. Its subject line is “I told a lie that put my dad in prison.”

It reads:

When I was eight years old, my mom scared me into telling a lie that would change the course of our family’s life.

One day when I was at home watching my dad work, I came out of the bathroom and my mom asked me if my dad had ever touched me. Confused, I said no. But then she asked me again. And I said no. She kept asking, and I kept saying no, until she became angry and threatened to beat me with a belt until I said yes. I was too young to know that my mom was using drugs at the time, and I was scared. So I said yes.

My dad was convicted of sexually assaulting me and has been in prison for over 15 years for a crime he didn’t commit. Now that I’m an adult and a mom, I’m working hard to right this wrong that should have never happened. I started a petition on Change.org asking for the Governor of New York to pardon my innocent father. Click here to sign my petition.

I remember sometimes during dinner my mom would make excuses to leave so she could find drugs. When my dad would try to stop her, they would fight, and I would cry. Now I know it’s because he wanted her to stay home with the family that he was working so hard to keep together.

After my dad was sent to prison, my siblings and I went to live with my grandmother. I told her the whole truth: that my dad had never touched me, and that my mom taught me all the words to say that would get him in trouble. My mom even admits now that this happened during one of her drug binges, and she doesn’t know why she did it.

I’ve been fighting to set my dad free with this evidence since I was 15 years old — but all of my appeals have been denied. I was recently interviewed about my story by national news, and I believe that this wave of public support can help my case. That’s why I started this petition to pressure Governor Cuomo into pardoning him. Will you help me by signing?

Ask Governor Cuomo of New York to pardon my dad Daryl Kelly, an innocent man, by signing my petition on Change.org.

Thank you so much for your support.

Chaneya Kelly

Gee, reading this woman’s story in her own words, what’s a misandrist to do?

My guess is that your hardcore misandrists, your dyed-in-the-wool man-haters, would respond to this case by claiming that of course Chaneya Kelly is lying, that of course her father sexually abused her, that she just wants to get him out of prison for some reason, maybe out of sympathy (which is antithetical to the misandrist, just as it is to the misogynist), or maybe she’s psychologically all caught up with her abuser and so she wants to protect him (I love that pseudo-psychiatric “diagnosis” — under that “logic,” you see, there is no fucking way in hell that a male accused of sexual abuse ever could be innocent; indeed, the accusation itself is tantamount to guilt!).

There is precedent of women instructing their daughters to lie about sexual abuse in order to exact revenge upon or to otherwise damage men. Perhaps especially when women have strategic reason to instruct their daughters to thusly lie — such as in the midst of a custody battle, as Mia Farrow and Woody Allen were when Farrow accused Allen of having sexually abused Dylan — their accusations need to be examined and investigated very carefully, because such lying happens. Just like actual sexual abuse of females at the hands of males also happens.

All of that said, I still don’t maintain that Woody Allen is guilty or innocent. I was not there. I don’t know for sure. The more that the hysterical misandrists pile upon Woody Allen as some sort of misguided apparent self-therapy for their own apparent wounds, the more, perhaps, I tend to suspect his innocence, but when it comes down to it, I still don’t know.

But I do know that I find misandry to be as unacceptable as is misogyny — because I find sex-based discrimination to be intolerable, regardless of who is engaging in it — and if feminism is to succeed, it cannot make misandry its centerpiece.

Because Woody Allen is just a stand-in for all of the males whom the misandrists despise, of course they’ll never let him off the hook, because they most likely will take their hatred of men with them to their graves.

“Since then [two decades ago], he hasn’t much addressed the issue,” the Salon.com maenad whose piece I excerpted above sniveled about Allen.

The belief there, apparently, is that although Woody Allen never even was criminally charged with sexual abuse, nonetheless, he should have continued to have the mere allegations publicly rubbed in his face constantly for the rest of his life. Indeed, his life should have been ruined by the mere allegations. That he went on to earn a lot of money! How unjust! He should have died already, penniless and alone in abject poverty because he had been absolutely ruined by the allegations! That would have been “justice”! (Just like burning “witches” and tarring and feathering always were “justice”!)

What probably incensed the Allen haters the most about his response in the New York Times on Sunday to the Farrows’ recent flare-ups is that he ended it with these words: “This piece will be my final word on this entire matter and no one will be responding on my behalf to any further comments on it by any party. Enough people have been hurt.”

Indeed, the maenads have wanted the back-and-forth in regards to Woody Allen to continue in perpetuity, but that is made much more difficult when he refuses to play their sick and twisted game.

This (probably, hopefully) will be my final word on the matter, too.

Fuck the maenads. I love feminism, but I hate misandry, and I reject it just as I reject misogyny.

P.S. Bill Cosby apparently is the maenads’ next target. The afore-quoted Salon.com maenad also wrote about him in her aforementioned misandrist post, and another maenad who writes for Slate.com asks today, “Why Doesn’t Anyone Care About the Sexual Assault Allegations Against Bill Cosby?”

Um, because we (are trying to) have lives?

Because not all of us are hysterical man-haters trying to stir up shit from the past that may or may not have any factual basis whatsofuckingever?

P.P.S. Wikipedia defines “feminism” as:

… a collection of movements and ideologies aimed at defining, establishing, and defending equal political, economic and social rights for women. This includes seeking to establish equal opportunities for women in education and employment. A feminist advocates or supports the rights and equality of women.

Merriam-Webster defines “feminism” as “the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes; organized activity on behalf of women’s rights and interests.”

I’m on board with those definitions, in no small part because as a gay man I am familiar with being treated unequally, but I’m not on board with misandry, and I disagree vehemently with those who wish to make misandry a prerequisite for counting oneself to be a feminist.

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YES, Sally Ride’s lesbianism matters

Late NASA astronaut Sally Ride (pictured above in 1984), who was the first American woman in space (in 1983 at age 32), died of pancreatic cancer yesterday at age 61. When I first saw the news of her death and saw her photos, I though, “Damn, she was a lesbian!” Shortly thereafter, it was publicly released that she had been in a same-sex relationship for almost three decades — which, the homophobes essentially argue, we should just fucking ignore, and focus only upon the space shit, because homosexuality always should remain in the closet, and you’re actually a homophobe yourself if you maintain otherwise.

I want to go all James Eagan Holmes whenever I hear some fucktard, usually a homophobic heterosexual (but sometimes a self-loathing, heterosexist homosexual), state that a gay man’s or lesbian’s sexual orientation doesn’t matter.

This right-wing fucktard, for instance, whose crap Yahoo! actually published, concludes in a commentary titled “Outing Sally Ride: Her sexual orientation has nothing to do with spaceships”:

For social liberals, Sally Ride’s posthumous out-coming is a luxury problem in the extreme. [Whatever the fuck that sentence means.] She was the first female [and] the youngest [true — at least as far as American astronauts are concerned] and the first gay in outer freaking space [um, that we know of] — and a major force in space policymaking.

What’s more, Ride alone served on the two presidential commissions that investigated both the 1986 Challenger crash and the 2003 Columbia accident, which together killed 14 astronauts. Without fear or favor, Ride concluded that NASA made the same errors in judgment both times.

Is it more important than any of this that, having been married briefly to a man, Ride eventually settled down with a woman? Ride’s identity as both gay and female is an embarrassment of riches that presents an irresistible opportunity, it seems, to kvetch [again: WTF?] rather than celebrate a life astoundingly well led.

This writer apparently is a wingnut who somehow finds the occasion of Sally Ride’s posthumous outing as a lesbian to bash liberals.

Yet it’s the wingnuts’ presidential candidate, multi-millionaire Mormon weirdo Mittens Romney, whose patriarchal, misogynist, homophobic “Christo”fascism holds that Sally Ride never should have been able to have marriage equality with her same-sex partner of almost three decades.

It is the right wing that for decades has made non-heterosexuals second- or third-class citizens. I know. I cannot marry my partner of almost five years here in the “land of the free” (not even here in California, the land of fruits and nuts) because of the freedom- and equality-hating, oppressive right wing, most of them “Christo”fascists that make the members of the Taliban jealous.

And indeed, Sally Ride’s surviving partner of almost three decades won’t be eligible to receive Ride’s Social Security death benefits, as a heterosexually married widow or widower would — and that’s the way that the majority of the Repugnican Tea Party traitors maintain that it should be.

Who is making a big deal of sexual orientation?

I can tell you, as a gay man and as an empathetic human being, that Sally Ride’s sexual orientation was a big deal to her.

My guess is that she heterosexually married out of societal pressure, and that it never felt right to her to be with a member of the opposite sex.* Such a societally forced marriage is wrong to all parties involved. (No? What if heterosexuals felt strong societal pressure to marry members of their own sex, even though they are attracted only to members of the opposite sex?)

And Ride, who was born in 1951 and thus spent her formative years in one of the most conservative decades of our nation’s history, most likely was expected to look, act, think and believe as heterosexual women were expected to.

I can’t imagine that the road to becoming an astronaut (she joined NASA in 1978) was easy for her, and my guess is that she experienced a lot of sexism and heterosexism when she earned her bachelor’s, her master’s and her Ph.D. in physics before she joined NASA. No, she most likely was expected to be a teacher or a nurse or the like and/or a mother and/or a heterosexually married housewife.

Sally Ride most certainly accomplished a lot in her professional life.

Of course, no one ever fucking said that her lesbianism was more important than her professional accomplishments.

But that’s a false fucking comparison in the first fucking place, and of course Sally Ride’s sexual orientation was a big part of her total human being, as it is for 99 percent of us human beings. Among other things, our sexual orientation influences our choice of partners, influences our decision of whether or not to become a parent, and often influences our career choices, based upon societally imposed gender roles (speaking of which, our sexual orientation, if it isn’t “right,” can induce us to pretend to be who and what we are not). Our sexual orientation can even influence where we live. (I’ll stay here in the blue, fairly-homo-friendly-despite-Proposition-H8 state of California, thank you; I’d rather die than move to a red state.)

To ignore these facts, to ignore how much a part of one’s being his or her sexual orientation is, is to dishonor the memory of Sally Ride.

Which is exactly what the wingnuts (and the “liberal” homophobes) do when they state that Sally Ride’s sexual orientation didn’t fucking matter.

It fucking mattered.

These fucking homophobes and hypocrites made fucking sure that it did.

And they still do.

*Wikipedia notes:

Ride was extremely private about her personal life. She married fellow NASA astronaut Steve Hawley in 1982 and they divorced in 1987.

After death, [Ride’s] obituary revealed that [her] partner was Tam E. O’Shaughnessy, a female professor emerita of school psychology at San Diego State University and a childhood friend who met Ride when both were aspiring tennis players.

O’Shaughnessy became a science teacher and writer and, later, the chief operating officer and executive vice president of Ride’s company, Sally Ride Science.She co-authored several books with Ride. Their 27-year relationship was revealed by the company and confirmed by Ride’s sister, who also stated that Ride chose to keep her personal life private, including her sickness and treatments.

Would a heterosexually coupled NASA astronaut have kept his or her union a secret? Why, then, are so many people OK with the fact that so many same-sex couples feel the need to keep their unions secret?

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Mrs. Mittens is NO feminist

Mitt Romney and his wife Ann

AFP photo

Former first lady of Massachusetts Ann Romney is shown with her multi-millionaire husband last month, above, and in 1969, the year of their marriage, below. Mrs. Mittens and the Mittens campaign would have you believe that she’s been the typical stay-at-home mom, just as Mr. Mittens and his campaign would have you believe that he’s your average Joe (the Plumber), too. Bullshit.

Romney family photos

Reuters image

First off, I agree wholeheartedly that any assertion that most stay-at-home moms don’t work is sexist, misogynist, patriarchal and flat-0ut wrong.

It can be a struggle to keep up with even minimal housekeeping for myself and my partner whom I can’t marry because I don’t have equal human and civil rights here in “the land of the free” (where it comes to paying taxes, however, interestingly, I’m quite equal, even more equal than are our loving, tax-evading corporations and our tax-evading, patriotic plutocrats who benefit from them). I can’t imagine adding a child to the mix, even just one, fairly low maintenance, type-B child, the kind you don’t have to ever worry about committing a massacre at his school (I guess that the film “We Need to Talk About Kevin” is still fairly fresh in my mind…).

So yes, most stay-at-home parents are unfairly regarded as having it easy by many who aren’t stay-at-home parents.

But how hard or how easy did Ann Romney — who with Mittens Romney popped out five puppies between 1970 and 1981 — have it?

After all, multi-millionaires like Mittens Romney tend to have plenty of hired help.

But how hard, exactly, Ann Romney has or has not labored as a mother — which is something that we probably cannot ever know — misses, I think, the much larger point.

And that point is: Did Ann Romney, as a Mormon, have any other choice but to become a stay-at-home mother?

Or even more specifically, did Mittens give her any other choice?

Wikipedia notes of Ann Romney: “She converted to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in 1966 [she was born in 1949, so she was a teenager at that time]. She attended Brigham Young University and married Mitt Romney in 1969 [when she was about 20 years old].” Ann Romney’s bio on Wikipedia, especially the information contained under the heading “Early life,” certainly implies that if she hadn’t dated Mittens in high school, she never would have converted from an Episcopalian to a Mormon. My reading of her bio is that it appears that if she wanted to be with Mittens, she had no choice but to convert to Mormonism.

Ann Romney had her first of five sons in 1970, when she was still an undergraduate and when she was, what, all of 21 years old? That seems awfully young to me for Ann Romney to have her entire life already mapped out for her, but that’s what the Mormon cult does: it maps our your entire life for you, whether you’re a male or a female.

The Mormon cult doesn’t care what the individual wants. The Mormon cult considers the individual to be lost and sinful and evil, and the Mormon patriarchy essentially is God, so the individual must do as the Mormon patriarchy commands the individual to do — or be tossed out of the cult (which is the best fucking thing that can happen to any Mormon [except, perhaps, a minor who cannot yet provide for him- or herself]).

So let’s keep all of this in mind before we start to think of Ann Romney as a feminist because one (female*) Democratic Party operative’s  words have been construed as an attack on all stay-at-home moms. Ann Romney, the wife of a multi-millionaire and the former first lady of Massachusetts, for fuck’s sake, is not your typical stay-at-home mom.

And she certainly is no feminist.

No feminist supports a patriarchal, misogynist institution like the Mormon cult or the Repugnican Tea Party.

A feminist supports a woman’s freedom to live her life the way that she wishes to live her life. That means that if she doesn’t want to marry a man or have children, she doesn’t have to — and that, of course, she may use birth control to her heart’s content, and that should she get pregnant but not wish to give birth, she may terminate the pregnancy under the rights guaranteed to her by Roe vs. Wade.**

Ann Romney does not support such freedom for women. Ann Romney is a feminist like Sarah Palin is a feminist.

*The Associated Press notes that the Democratic operative, named Hilary Rosen, “at first buckled down and refused to apologize” for having asserted on CNN Wednesday night that Ann Romney, as a stay-at-home mom “who never worked a day in her life,” is unqualified to talk about the nation’s economy. “But after [Michelle] Obama tweeted her support for all mothers, Rosen said she was sorry to have offended [Ann] Romney or any other women,” the AP reports, adding, “A parent herself, Rosen said her point, stated poorly, was that Ann Romney had the luxury of choosing whether to work outside the home, whereas most American women must work to pay the bills.”

Again, I disagree that Ann Romney, after she converted to Mormonism apparently primarily or even solely to be able to be able to marry Mittens, “had the luxury of choosing whether to work outside the home.” I don’t believe that she had any such choice at all.

**Feminism also means, of course, that lesbians, bisexual and transgendered women deserve all equal human and civil rights, and that if a woman truly wants to be a stay-at-home mom, if that brings her fulfillment, then her choice for her own self-fulfillment should be admired and respected. She should not be deemed a sellout if that is not what she is. (Ann Romney, though — pleeeaaaaase. She certainly seems like such a sellout to me.)

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