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Samedi Me
At first, Joe posted something I imagine he thought went over like this:



When really, it went over like this:



And then I was all like:



And Joe responded with:



To which I replied:



I may have suggested he did too much of this:



And that maybe he was seen in the community like this:



Still he persisted:



I acknowledged his point of view:



And maybe I was a little overzealous:



But in the end I think I made my point:



And no matter where Joe winds up, I'm sure his poetry career will take off:

The R Folder

Samedi Me
This was inspired by a few things. Conversations I've had with Jessica Mason-Paull, reading Oliva Gatwood's blog, watching Lauren Perry work through her poem "Rape Robot Reboot", and reading up on the Jezebel website regarding Daniel Tosh and his "jokes", with some inspiration by Patton Oswalt.

I'm very open to feedback on this one.

The R FolderCollapse )

Thoughts on Steubenville

Samedi Me
I was watching the defendents allocute at the Steubenville rape trial today, and I couldn't help notice the difference betwee the two defendants, Trent Mays and Ma'lik Richardson. Trent Mays didn't mention he was sorry about the rape once, just he was sorry "those pictures were taken" - the non-apology apology that so many people think suffices in the face of shitty behavior. Ma'lik seemed genuinely sad - parts knowing his future is destroyed, the pain he caused the victim, and what seemed to be remorse for giving into the pack mentality that happened that night.

I've been watching a lot of "Daria" re-runs lately. It's taken me back to high school - which was not an entirely pleasant experience. Cardinal Newman was an odd an experience - it was not a large school, so while the divisions between the cliques were there, everyone still knew each other and you couldn't really hide or retreat from other cliques. This could be both good and bad, but for me, mostly bad. I sublimated a lot of what I was, and it took a long time of find my own identity.

Newman wasn't the level of jockocracy that some schools were, but there was still those perks being given to the football team that were subsequently jammed down everyone's elses throats. I couldn't have given two shits about pep rallies or football games, but since everyone knew everyone there was still that "Hey, you're going to game, right?" mentality, and of course, I did. We all did.

We were the herd and the football team were the hyenas. I don't recall much about them, a fairly bland lot (although I'm sure they excelled later at life, blah blah blah), but there was one in particular... The story was that he was beating his girlfriend. No one did anything. Including yours truly. Why? I imagine the experience was similar to what happened in Steubenville before Anonymous got involved (and damn, how awesome is Anonymous?)... You don't rock the boat and you definately don't get in the way of a group of students the administration has decided to elevate above you (I know there's a difference between the Nuremburg Rallies and pep rallies - I'm heard pressed to come up with a real difference, other than Jew-hating).

I'm glad these guys are getting what's coming to them, but it doesn't address the predatory and hive-mind natures inherent in high school. For every one of these little atrocities, another 100 goes unpunished. It sucks, and the only answer is fundamentally change American society, so you know, good luck with that. I feel a little bad for Ma'lik - he had been conditioned to see everything he did as good, as if he were the little kid from the Twilight Zone, but there's remorse there. The other kid - raised a monster, defiant when he gave his statement to the judge, and only started to break down after Ma'lik gave his statement.

He probably realized he just missed his chance to appear human before the judge.

Fuck that guy.

Update to State Senate recommendations

Samedi Me
Anyone with a "Y" next to their name does not deserve your vote - these are the legislators who voted for Arizona's racist "Birther" Bill:

A "Y" to the right of their name means they voted for it. Vote for their opponent.

Klute's Big Election Rodeo!

Samedi Me
So, it's that time of year when people start coming up to me and saying "Hey, so, this election on Tuesday. You keep in touch with all that political bullshit. Who should I vote for?".

First off, shame on you. Voting is a right earned in blood, both on some godforsaken battlefield where your grandfather lost his best friend, Brooklyn Pete, trying to take back Hill 214 from the Reds, and here on the streets (ed. - Not sure you can make a joke about somebody named "Brooklyn Pete" and make a serious statement about voting. Just sayin'). Second, it's time to increase my voting power! One man, one vote? One Klute, X amount of votes!

But seriously, thanks for coming to me for advice. And here are some of the people that I think have earned your vote - but I encourage you to take the time out and at least do some cursory research as to why you should cast your vote for them.

President

If you gotta ask me who I'm supporting here, you don't know me all that well. Barack Obama.

Arizona Senate

Richard Carmona

Maricopa County Sheriff

Paul Penzone

US House of Represenatives (by district)

AZ-01: Ann Kirkpatrick
AZ-02: Ron Barber
AZ-03: Raul Grijalva
AZ-04: Richard Grayson
AZ-05: NO ENDORSEMENT (Don't know anything about Spencer Morgan - Matt Salmon is objectionable though)
AZ-06: Matt Jette (Don't know anything about him, but I reeeealy dislike David Schweikert)
AZ-07: NO ENDORSEMENT (I actually am not a huge fan of Ed Pastor, as my former Congressman, he was not very responsive to community needs, in my opinion)
AZ-08: NO ENDORSEMENT (Same as AZ-05, although Trent Franks is even more objectionable than Matt Salmon)
AZ-09: Krysten Sinema

County Attorney

Richard Kielsky

Corporation Commission

DO NOT SKIP THESE ON YOUR BALLOT. These are such important races, and everyone's always "Corporation Commission? No way man, I'm for the people!". These are the people who set your electric rates, and can push for solar or coal/petro plants. These are important:

Paul Newman
Sandra Kennedy
Marcia Busching

State Senator

You're mostly on your own here. I'll do the few I know about.

District 5: Beth Weisser
District 11: Jo Holt
District 24: Katie Hobbs

State Representative

Same thing as State Senator. I'll endorse who I know.

District 24: Lela Alston & Chad Campbell

Maricopa County Supervisor

Same thing as the last two.

District 3: Lillia Alvarez

Ballot Propositions (with explanations!)

Prop 114: NO.

Reason: Although I like the idea behind this: Someone tries to break into your home, and you shoot them, the robber can't sue you. Here's the problem with that: We live in Arizona. Remember when Arizona passed the "stand your ground" law? Remember how that hiker died when that guy from the 'burbs got scared by his dogs? Yeah, Arizonans will abuse the hell out of this.

Prop 115: NO.

Reason: My father once told me we all have an obligation to die, we take our old outmoded ways of thinking with us when we go, and when we do go, we make room for the new ideas and new people. I like that. Judges should be cycled out faster than not in my opinion, so keeping them on the bench longer just keeps outmoded ways in place.

Prop 116: NO.

Reason: Tea Party bullshit. Any time I see the words "helps small business" these days, I know it actually means "helps giant corporations". Fuck that.

UPDATE 11/6: OK, maybe this isn't "Tea Party bullshit", but it is "bullshit". It's basically a giant giveaway to businesses, allegedly a "small business" tax credit, but it doesn't look like it's limited to small business. Freeport-McMoran gets the same tax credit as John Q. Public's Emporium Galorium. Also, having Tom Jenney write a defense of it? Guaranteed to make me think it's not a good idea.

Maybe I'm wrong: Prop 116 explained. But I'm still voting NO.

Prop 117: NO.

Reason: More Tea Party bullshit.

Prop 118: YES.

Reason: This one's actually really confusing, lots of math involved. It seems like an OK idea - it's a metric of distribution of state funds earned by sale of state land to schools, and varies from year to year. The real reason for support? Jack Harper of Surprise was against putting it on the ballot, which means it's probably a REAL good idea.

Prop 119: NO.

Reason: Again, this one's confusing, but it boils down to: Let's give state land to the military. Oppose.

Prop 120: NO.

Reason: Ultimate Tea Party bullshit. Sovereignty statement added to the Arizona Constitution which is completely unenforceable, and really just cheapens the AZ Constitution by being in their. You live in a Federal system, Tea Party idiots. Do we keep having to explain this over and over?

Prop 121: NO.

Reason: I want to support the jungle primary. I really do. But there's just something not right about it.

Prop 204: HUGE YES.

Reason: Makes the current 1 penny sales tax thing we all agreed on a few years ago by voting it in place permanent. Money goes to schools. It's been successful. Keep it.

Judge Retention

I don't fucking know. Skip unless there's a judge you really don't like.
Samedi Me
So, this is going to be an interesting post. I hope parties involved will take any snark in the spirit intended, and not see this as condescending, or if it seems condescending, know that it's coming from a friendly place.

So earlier today, Bill voiced his opposition to Dr. Richard Carmona for Arizona Senator. I'm pretty sure this doesn't translate into support for the Republican opponent, but in an election as close as this one's going to be, not voting for Carmona will have the same effect as voting FOR Jeff Flake. The reason for this opposition, boils down to this ad:



Bill feels that this ad plays the Arizona voter for a sucker, in that the two current *Republican* Arizona Senators would never endorse the Democrat for Senate, and the ad is deceptively edited to make it seem as if they are doing just that.

First off, I'm going to disagree with that. Here are some stills of the add with my emphasis:

kyl-surgeon general

This quite clearly gives the context that Kyl is not talking about recommending Carmona for Senator, but for Surgeon General, under Bush the Lesser in 2002.

mccain-carmona

Throughout the ad, this appears as each of the Senators is speaking about Richard Carmona's credentials during the Surgeon General confirmation hearing. Again, throughout the ad, these are there to remind the viewer that this about Carmona as Surgeon General, NOT for as Senator. It even gives the date of "2002".

It is not meant to mislead, and in fact, the only way this could be construed as support for Carmona as Senator by McCain and Kyl is if you are not watching, but only listening to the ad (or have really bad eyesight, I suppose, but then, that's not Carmona's problem - he's not Surgeon General anymore).

Which brings me to my second point. The confirmation hearing for Carmona was held in 2002. In 2002, Bush the Lesser was President. The Senate majority was Republican. There was a 0% chance of Carmona's nomination NOT being accepted. So this is as unguarded a moment that you're going to get in the public face of American politics these days. Carmona had this ad produced for one simple reason: to try to show to the Arizona that the personal attacks against Carmona are bullshit politics. Carmona's been portrayed as a bully to women on his staff, a gladhander trying to secure perks if he ran for office (that one by Kyl himself), an unthinking "rubber stamp" for Obama, etc. This ad *specifically* counters that perception by showing that before Boy Wonder Flake decided he wanted to be Senator, McCain and Kyl were actual human beings with actual feelings about Dr. Carmona. And they were positive.

This isn't California or Vermont or some other liberal enclacve - if Carmona wants to win as a Democrat, he's got to show to the half of Republicans who haven't given themselves over to the "Baracky Bin Al-Hussein Sotero Shabazz NObama" faction of the Republican Party that he's could actually work with them.

Which takes me to my last point about the ad, if I'm wrong and it is indeed deceitful, your comment about how we shouldn't be like the other guys to win. Well, let me paraphrase Patrick Hare here:

Save it for the drum circle, hippie.

This is a high stakes election where control of the Senate is in play. Yeah, the Democrats will probably keep it, what with McCaskill, Donnelly, Warren, Nelson, Murphy, King, and Stabenow probably going to win, but nothing's assured, and going into the next legislative session, where Obamacare's surivival, immigration reform, climate change legislation, etc. are all going to be on the dock. I'd rather go into that fight having to pick off three or four Republicans to break a filibuster than 5 or 6. It's going to be a rough fucking fight, and if we have to play dirty to win (and I don't even think this qualifies as that dirty, if you're right), so be it.

We could be like the late George McGovern and be nice lose to Nixon, or we can be like LBJ and beat Goldwater to death with this:



If we had an ad like that against Flake, and I was Alexis Tameron, I would run that ad and not stop airing it.

So, why should you vote for Carmona on the issues? There's a shit-ton of retail political issues I could bring up (abortion, immigration, economic policy), negative attacks on Flake which you've heard (Flake supports uranium mining in/near the Grand Canyon, supports holding disaster relief funds contingent on cutting spending elsewhere BEFORE the funds are disseminated - hell, fucking Jeff Flake was against legislation to outlaw dog fighting, for Christ's sake), or just outright smears (the famous "I lied" comment about his support for term-limits or using taxpayer funds to go on vacation), but as all American politics revolve around it, let's just go with this:

Obamacare.

Carmona publicly supports it, in Arizona, and he's running for statewide office. This isn't Grivalja or Schwiekert running in their safe little districts with for or against positions already written in stone in the vox populi - he's supporting Obamacare in a state which elects Jan Brewer on a regular basis. That takes some stones, and it shows he's a man of integrity, placing principle before policy. And before anyone pipes in with "Yeah, well, he thinks it could be tweaked..." Yeah, yeah, blah blah blah. I also think it could be tweaked for the better, but he still supports it, so do I, and that's why he's getting my vote.

So. There we are. I welcome any feedback or debate on this, but I hope I've made the case for both Carmona and the ad.

Vote Quimby.

Engines to power! Turbines to speed!

Samedi Me
Over three long years we've been gone from this blog. We've shed many tears, and many things. But we have returned, ready to pick up right where we left off, confronting Trashy Culture head on. Watch your back, schadenfreude.

Oh. Boy.

You know what I feel like right now? Like this:



Now, Jerome, I know you'll see the trackback. So, you know, welcome back. If I knew you were coming, I'd've baked a cake, as the song goes. Let's catch up!

Catherine King: "We are Roman Catholic converts, but emphatically not the social justice kind. Just to be clear up front."

Catherine, still lapping up the thin gruel of right-wing gemeinschaft. Glenn Beck was so 2010.

Jerome duBois: "Bluntly, we were Tea Party before there was such a profound movement, and we're glad to join up again."

Speaking of hipsterism (!), I can just see Jerome chugging down PBR at the Bikini Lounge, reminding everyone how he was Teabagging before Teabagging was cool.

Me? I'm doing well, still a pretty big wheel down at the cracker factory. I don't know if I've ever thanked you for this little blurb, by the way: “You have one of the blackest hearts I’ve ever had the misfortune to glimpse.” That's part of my standard bio that I use when I feature around the US and Canada, and it never fails to get a chuckle.

I've been in a little bit of a rut lately, though. Complacent. Thought things were easy, and of course, they never, ever are... And the things I love and crave started drifting away. Events have conspired, however, to make 2012 a year of renewal. I started giving a damn about things again.

Not to say I haven't made new friends since you've been gone. Apollo Poetry, Barbara Espinosa, the gang down at Sonoran Alliance, all have been amusing diversions, but really, none have held a candle to your complete wack-a-loon nutjobbery.

So again, really, welcome back. We've all missed you.

Hound of the Romneyvilles

Samedi Me
Been waiting on the nominee to be chosen, to start taking them to school. Romney is a target-rich environment. Here's my first attempt.

Hound of the Romneyvilles

Hound of the RomneyvillesCollapse )

Stalkah!

Samedi Me
So, I've got a new online stalker, "Conservative American". Hell, it could be the same as the old ones who used to follow the IP trackbacks and tried to cause me grief. Basically, this is how the jackass works:



He's actually used the "homosexual" and "communist" bit toward me, totally validating the stereotype for conservative internet douchebaggery.

Add on to it constant ROFLs, LOLs, and other internet terms he pulled up from his copy of Reader's Digest internet tips, and you have someone completely and totally banal.

I don't have good enemies anymore. There used to be a time where I had people like Jerome du Bois. Jerome was a dick, but he was a literate dick who made life interesting.

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