More Issues Than National Geographic

lib


Checking in with an old friend:

Salvage is the story of Parastrata Ava, a “so-girl” on a deep space merchant ship who commits an unpardonable sin. A so-girl is something like an assistant manager but in this case, Ava can only manage other women. That’s because the deep space merchant ships have been in operation for so long that each one of them has become its own little polygamous tribe. Think of it like a cross between the Taliban and the FLDS church traveling the Silk Roads of the galaxy. Every now and again, two merchant ships will dock at a space station above Earth for some genetic swapping, er, marriages. This involves sending some young 16 year old girl as a bride to the other ship. She has no idea who she is going to marry or whether she will be a first, second or fifth wife of her husband. There’s no choice in the matter and she’s not supposed to ask questions. Virginity is highly prized and, as you can imagine, sometimes these weddings go disastrously wrong. Without giving too much of the plot away, this is what happens to Ava and she is forced to flee the space station or face an honor killing via the airlock.

In spite of the fact that Ava has never been on earth before and has no cardiovascular conditioning, she manages to survive her abrupt introduction to gravity. Ava’s story starts to resemble many hero narratives complete with a wise guide character who teaches her some basics and then dies tragically, leaving her to figure the rest out for herself. Ava has been raised in a fundamentalist religious society but it’s remarkable how quickly she manages to discard all of that indoctrination. I think it’s the fact that she is forced to survive on her own that makes it so easy for her to see how useless the religious dogma is to her new circumstances.

One such revelation occurs when she tells a young earth friend one of the foundation myths of her ship. It’s about a ship on a voyage that was trying to hide from a marauding ship in the vicinity. One of the women was singing and the men on the ship told her to shut up or she would attract the attention of the pirates. But the woman said that was nonsense and kept singing. Sure enough, the pirate ship found them and havoc ensued. And that’s why women on deep space vessels were forbidden from singing on penalty of death! Ava believes this story like it’s Eve’s curse until her young friend points out that her science book says that sound doesn’t carry in space. Then it dawns on Ava that the myth was just another clever way to blame women for everything and keep them in their place.

It also dawned on me that there are a lot of silly myths that women are supposed to swallow without question even today that are intended to keep them in their place. The Genesis creation story is just one. The biblical obsession with virginity is another. Maybe 3000 years ago it was important for inheritance rights, because, after all, you could only be sure of who your mother was back then and even up until blood typing, you could never be 100% sure who your father was. But in the 21st century, we have genetic testing to keep everyone honest. The notions that a woman must guard her virginity or be considered worthless coupled with all of the societal baggage that goes with being a female just seems antiquated in the light of new technology and contraceptives. It does make you wonder who it is that fundamentalism is trying to protect. It also makes me cringe when I see even women on the left who claim to be feminists consistently deferring to men, ignoring their own concerns. The indoctrination is very, very deep.

Anyway, I immediately thought of Jill Duggar, Duggar family valedictorian, now Jill Dillard, when I read this book. As many of you may know, she is the first of the Duggar girls to get married. She and her hubby tied the knot on that non-Christian holiday, Midsummer’s Night Eve, and they saved their first kiss for the altar. A lot of people think that’s correct and virginal and special but I think that saving such an intimate thing as a kiss for a spectacle in a church full of a 1000 people who all but “hubba-hubba!” and cat-call in the pews, is a bit on the obscene side and looks like a violation of their privacy. Rather than looking uber Christian and sacred, it reminds me of something pagan, barbaric and tribal.
Yeah, I think the so-called Christians out there should know what some of us see during these Quiverfull weddings. We have a completely different interpretation of what we are witnessing and it’s vaguely horrifying, not spiritual. What did we miss? The parading of the blood stained sheets the next morning? Was there a contract to return the bride to Jim-Bob if Jill’s hymen turned out to be too easily ruptured? Why not actually watch to make sure the marriage is consummated like royals did thousands of years ago? These people are way too involved in their children’s private lives. A Duggar wedding, while preceded by a chaste courtship that’s supposed to be all about getting to know your future spouse’s character, turns out to be focused almost entirely on sex and not companionship. It seems strange and the reverse of what most everyone we know does these days. We know that when it comes to relationships, the thrill is gone all too quickly and it’s only when you decide there are other things to keep you together that you get married. That’s the sacred that the Duggars seem to miss. And it’s not like the Quiverfull movement doesn’t have it’s share of miserable marriages and those that end in divorce. Vyckie Garrison of No Longer Quivering is a testament to the failure of these unions and the destruction they wreck on the young people forced into them.


This isn’t the first time that our old friend has mentioned the Duggar family. I know this is true because the first time I ever heard of the Duggars was in one of her posts way back when TC was one big happy dysfunctional family.

In case (like me) you didn’t know, the Duggars star in a reality television show on TLC:

19 Kids and Counting (formerly 17 Kids and Counting and 18 Kids and Counting), rendered graphically as 19 Kids & Counting in its onscreen logo, is an American reality television show on TLC. The show is about the Duggar family, which consists of parents Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar and their 19 children—nine girls and ten boys (including two sets of twins), all of whose names begin with the letter “J”. The series began on September 29, 2008.


I honestly can’t remember the last time I watched a show on TLC. But who would want to watch a silly show like that?

It’s no surprise that the Duggar family is critically important to TLC. The long-running hit show “19 Kids and Counting” attracts millions of viewers every week — and by extension, millions of ad dollars — and has already spawned one spin-off.

And as the series debuted a new special on Tuesday night (“A Duggar Leaves Home,” in which Amy Duggar goes to Nashville to pursue her singing dreams), it’s very clear: The Duggars — parents Jim Bob and Michelle and their dozens of kids, grandkids, aunts, uncles and cousins — have quietly become one of the most powerful families on reality TV.

We mean this in the “under-the-radar” sense of the word “quiet. (With 19 kids and multiple grandchildren, the Duggars don’t really do anything without a lot of noise.)

While the unusual family gets its fair share of tabloid coverage, it’s not nearly as much as, for example, the Robertsons on “Duck Dynasty.” Plus, the antics of the Arkansas-based Duggar clan can’t begin to compete with, say, the Kardashians. The Duggars are deeply conservative, religious people who don’t kiss before marriage. The Kardashians … do other things.

Still, “19 Kids and Counting” has developed an extremely devoted fan base over the many years on the air: It started in 2008 on TLC as “17 Kids and Counting.” The series was in the Top 15 of cable shows across television last week, regularly tapping into key demographics.


I think I’m beginning to understand why our old friend has a problem with the Duggars. She has more issues than National Geographic, and many of them have to do with a certain religion. Let’s see what someone who is a little less biased against religion thinks.

Take it away, Amanda Marcotte:

Sex Scandal Rocks the Duggars’ Christian Patriarchy Movement

The far-right Christian Patriarchy—brought to American audiences by the Duggar family—is on the verge of collapse after a series of alleged sex scandals involving the movement’s leaders.

Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar have put many years and a lot of work into putting a smiling, nearly normal-seeming face on the extreme Christian right. The couple adheres to a fringe strain of fundamentalist Christianity dubbed the “Christian patriarchy” or sometimes the “Quiverfull” movement, and while there is a lot of internal diversity to the movement, they generally preach a combination of beliefs that run counter to mainstream America: absolute female submission, a ban on dating, homeschooling, a rejection of higher education for women, and shunning of contraception in favor of trying to have as many children as humanly possible. The movement is controversial even within Christian right circles, but the Duggars have tried to counter that with their popular reality TV show 19 Kids & Counting, where they present themselves as a wholesome everyday family that just happens to be a little more fecund and conservative than average.

The strategy has been surprisingly effective, with Michelle Duggar being able to act like she’s just like any other reality TV star, giving sex tips and sharing recipes. Jim Bob has also been able to turn their fame into an opportunity to get political power, chumming around with presidential candidates and speaking at more mainstream conservative events. While many in the Christian right are still skeptical of Biblical patriarchy’s extremism, this charm offensive has clearly softened up resistance and is giving this fringe an ability to throw their political weight around. The fact that Republicans have started to step up the anti-contraception rhetoric lately appears, in part, to be the result of this tiny group of extremists Christians putting a smiley face on absolutist anti-contraception sentiments.

But right as the Duggars are beginning to cash in on all this hard propaganda work, it seems the world they come from—the tiny but growing world of strict Biblical patriarchy—is in real danger of collapsing. While adherents to this form of Christianity, like the Duggars, like to paint an uber-wholesome face on their families and beliefs, ugly truths are finally starting to leak out regarding the problems of infidelity and alleged sexual abuse in the community.

The latest scandal is a doozy. Back in November 2013, Doug Phillips, who, in his capacity as the president of Vision Forum Ministries, is probably the most important leader in the world of Biblical patriarchy, confessed to cheating on his wife and resigned as president of his ministry. “I engaged in a lengthy, inappropriate relationship with a woman,” he wrote. “While we did not ‘know’ each other in a Biblical sense, it was nevertheless inappropriately romantic and affectionate.” Shortly after his confession, Vision Forum Ministries closed up shop, unable to continue with the stink of sex scandal upon them.

It’s hard to underestimate the importance of Phillips in the small world of extreme fundamentalists. His father is one of the most critical founding fathers of the Christian right movement generally, and Doug extended his work by largely building this culture of the far Christian right as we know it, especially if you watch 19 Kids & Counting. The Duggar family are friends and acolytes of Phillips, and Vision Forum, in turn, has used Michelle Duggar in their efforts to demonize contraception, including giving her an award for “Mother of the Year” for having so many children.


Okay, I was making a funny when I said Amanda Marcotte is less biased against religion. Anybody who knows anything about her knows she foams at the mouth at the mere mention of Christianity.

There is a deep gulf between the progressive left and the religious right in this country. Having spent some time in both camps I have come to realize that the hysterical hatred for fundamentalist Christians is really misplaced. They are not evil.

The Duggars’ religious beliefs and lifestyle is not my cup of tea, but that doesn’t make them wrong. They don’t seem to be hurting anybody. They may seem weird to most of us, but they also appear to be happy and successful. Like the Romneys, they probably would make good neighbors.

Frankly, if I had to choose between nanny-state socialism and libertarian/capitalist Christianity I would take the latter. At least Christians understand forgiveness. If you want to go after an oppressive patriarchal religion that abuses women, start with Islam.

I had more I wanted to say but I’m running late so I’ll stop here.


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123 Responses to More Issues Than National Geographic

  1. mothy67 says:

    That was bizarre. Seriously, analyzing a religion based on a reality tv show?

    • Lulu says:

      Watching a reality show is for the lazy. It is easier than person to person interaction, study, or questioning your prejudices which we all have. All this person has to do is sit on their ass and judge others. Lazy ignorance is what journalism and commentary is now.

  2. The Klown says:
  3. DeniseVB says:

    I wish RD would be as concerned about how real women are treated under radical Islam in the real world than some mythical teenager. Does she know they’ll rip your fingernails off if you apply a coat of nail polish ?

    Maybe I am turning libertarianish, it just seems closer to living by the golden rule than the other ideologies. In my world, the Duggars and Kardashians are equals 😉

  4. angienc says:

    Duggars are guilty by association with this Phillips creep and no-sex scandal, but not Obama with Tony Rezko or Rev. Wright or Bill Ayers.
    Intellectually dishonest loons (and no, not the Duggars).

    • Lauren says:

      Agree angie. The Duggars are so “un-cool” and “too Christain” for those Intellectually dishonest loons and that includes RD. The level of intolerance spewing from the left is shameful and divisive.

  5. Lulu says:

    Respect is reciprocal. If you respect me I will probably respect you. If you don’t GFY. I see a lot of butthurt from this writer. I don’t think the “issues” are about religion. I think it is something else which I will not guess about but it isn’t religion which was a convenient thing to fixate and transfer hostility to/on while growing up. I rejected religion without rejecting my community or family and they were all fine with it. Intolerance goes both ways.

    • mothy67 says:

      I rejected religion many many years ago, but the continual assault on Catholics brought me home in a way. Like family I can accept criticism of them but do not cross a line I will not be pretty in my response. The Varieties of Religious Experience by William James and The Sacred and the Profane(will not attempt to spell author’s name) are two dry books that made me go wow. I was raised Catholic , it is a part of me. I know many of the issues people have. Fine. Of late the attacks are more savage. Islam gets a pass. Pisses me off.

      • mothy67 says:

        Think it is just Sacred and Profane without the the

        • mothy67 says:

          HaHa I am not as stupid as I think it is The Sacred and the Profand: The Nature of Religion by Mircea Eliade. I went to his wiki page and no mention. I knew I read it. Had to go to his bibliography to find it. Got a little worried about dementia .

          • Lulu says:

            I was a raised Southern Baptist. It did not make sense to me from a very early age. At age 10 or so I figured out that my grandfather was a heathen too even though he was a very moral, kind and decent person. He said it was fine to question everything and he did too. And never let ANYONE tell you what or how to think. I pretty much never looked back and could not be dragged to church from then on and I am fine with people of faith. I simply am not.

          • WMCB says:

            Lulu, I don’t care for spiteful, coercive, monomaniacal people – whether they are religious or atheist. People that just want to live their life, or even advance their view or persuade, don’t bother me, so long as they are not a dick about it.

          • elliesmom says:

            I’m an affable atheist. I don’t think about religion much. I like Christmas. I don’t feel I’m harmed when people pray for me. I don’t know if any of my relatives or friends are atheists, too, because I’ve never asked them. It’s not a “religion” for me. It’s just a matter of what I believe or don’t believe. I get upset when people say if you don’t believe in a god, you can’t have a moral compass. That’s insulting. I don’t insult them, and I expect the same respect. I know an acknowledged atheist has little chance of being elected to a major political office. I suspect there are more of us than will admit to being an atheist because it can stand in the way of getting what you want. If you don’t believe in god, you don’t worry about being smite down for going to church and saying prayers you don’t mean. I prefer to be honest, but if I wanted to be president badly enough, I don’t know what I’d do. It’s easy to judge when it doesn’t affect you personally.

    • Lauren says:

      Live and let live. WTF?

  6. elliesmom says:

    I took high school biology in 1965. The press was reporting on the coming “population explosion”, and we were being conditioned that smart, intelligent people would voluntarily limit the size of their families to prevent the famine that would eventually kill off the human population. I was a kid who always asked questions that got me in trouble. “If all of the smart, intelligent people stop having kids, won’t the average IQ of the human population go down?” We then got into a discussion of intelligence and “nature vs. nurture”. But I pointed out in this case it doesn’t matter because you either inherit your intelligence from your parents or you’re going to be raised by someone with a certain level of intelligence, which would lead to the same result. Poor Miss LaPlante never brought up population control again. The next year she quit teaching to go to veterinary school. (With a name like that, she should have been a botanist.) Today I would ask her “Is it not human nature to want to increase your own numbers if everyone around you is telling you your kind will be a minority group in the near future?”

  7. mothy67 says:

    I asked downstairs and I’d go look but I indolence is one of my few redeeming qualities so I am going to ask again. Can this be true:

    http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2011/07/atf-tampa-division-walked-guns-to-honduras-and-to-ms13-gang-members-video/

  8. WMCB says:

    It all makes a lot more sense once you grok the idea that progressivism IS a religion, albeit one with no deity. And it’s a narrow, puritan, tribal, punishing one to boot. Seriously. Think about it.

    Overarching ideas that MUST be adhered to regardless of evidence in front of your face? Check.
    Grandiose belief that they can re-write human nature and the state of humanity itself? Check.
    Vicious punishment not only for those that stray, but for the insufficiently devout? Check.
    Demands that any self-interest be subjugated to the “higher calling” of their faith? Check.
    Convenient evil spirits (racism! sexism! hater!) on which to blame any event or action with which they are uncomfortable? Check.
    Original sin (privilege) for which even endless atonement will never cleanse your soul? Check.
    A Magisterium (academia, press, think tanks) that interprets sin/redemption, and adjusts doctrine for the faithful? Check.

    It is a pinch-lipped, sour-faced, hysterical, purge-practicing, demanding, shaming, shunning, RELIGION. Its interactions and dynamics are those of a RELIGION. It behaves EXACTLY like a pack of ecstatic Puritans.

    And once you see that, and it all falls into place, it’s difficult to unsee it.

    • mothy67 says:

      Amen
      And the climate changd/ global warming fits right in.

    • Lulu says:

      Burn the witch! Then divvy up their belongings. The witch burning was a nice pretext for theft or resource allocation. Same old thing over and over. You know what the number one thing the early Puritans fought over? Firewood. They didn’t want to cut it but wanted what others had cut to be allocated to them. They would expel people who wouldn’t hand over their firewood. They would accuse each other of shit so they could get their “undeserved” firewood.

      • WMCB says:

        Yup. The progs really do have that puritan strain running through them: though after the failures of prohibition and “improving the poor”, etc, they largely dropped the whole God thing. They kept the superior, “I know what’s best for mankind” attitude, tho.

        I’d rather deal with a priest who wants to save my immortal soul than a prog who wants to run my life. But that’s me.

      • foxyladi14 says:

        Wow Lulu thanks my lesson for the day. 🙂

    • Lauren says:

      Yup. And they are damn mean spirited to boot!

    • DandyTIger says:

      Bingo! And once you see that, all their little gossip circles and pursed lips and looking down on the unwashed comes into relief.

  9. WMCB says:

    Oh, great. A Malaysian passenger airliner has been shot down at Ukraine border. Lots of blame flying, but no one knows yet if was Russia, Ukraine army, or Ukraine rebels. All have capability.

    Great. The world is going mad. Again.

    • mothy67 says:

      What would either side have to gain by this?

      • WMCB says:

        Don’t know specifically, but the world is a powderkeg at the moment. Powers are shifting about and jockeying for position. Countries are seeking alliances and realignments for a post-USA world. A lot of it has to do with the rape of the dollar by us, and trade imbalances.

        We have been literally destroying all of our authority both in geopolitics and as the reserve currency, for years now. The end of USA as Big Dog does not mean peace and harmony. It means ALL the dogs snapping and biting for dominance.

        • Monster from the Id says:

          Whoever did it probably mistook it for an enemy aircraft. The people on both sides surely know that deliberately shooting down a neutral civilian aircraft would be a PR disaster for their side, so I’m guessing SNAFU. 😦

    • votermom says:

      Are they sure it was shot down?
      Jeeze.
      I am never ever ever gonna fly Malaysia Air. They are having some serious bad juju.

  10. WMCB says:

  11. mothy67 says:

    We are now a joke. I have friends all over the world who think we are all just stupid. We are neutered under obama but how does downing a passenger jet benefit either side? Who will rally behind the nation that took down a civilian jet? How much will this effect the markets?
    An act like that has an agenda. Do not see how it benefits either side. Maybe it was a third party trying to rain hell down on both.

    • mothy67 says:

      Maybe someone was aboard that plane that others wanted to be no more. Ukraine nor Russia wins anything by killing 290 people on a passenger flight. Framing the other, maybe.

  12. foxyladi14 says:

    Amen!!!! 🙂

  13. threewickets says:

    There are atheism political activists online who are Muslim sockpuppets trolling anti-Christian or anti-Jewish messages, and also Jewish sockpuppets trolling anti-Muslim or anti-Christian messages.

    • mothy67 says:

      Or maybe it is the opposite. Too confusing to spell out but be the anti to prove the anti wrong all the while being the anti. Damn I wonder if trolls get hazard pay.

      • WMCB says:

        Assume the whole world is either lying or mistaken at least some of the time, other than those you know *really* well. Works for me.

        • mothy67 says:

          Pre-2008 I would have said I was a devout atheist then the attacks started against Catholics and they never let up. I will defend mine. I was never a divinity student or a great thinker At 47 I reflect on where my life has taken me. I could never be free like my friends. Foot loose and fancy free. I was stick in the mud. When I tried to be uncaring about the way I acted I was filled with guilt. Wasn’t me. I do not judge(often) but I think guilt can be healthy. Shame is a different story-destructive. The same way the abscence of guilt can be. I am no zealot in fact I usually only talk to God when the Penguins are in the playoffs.

    • threewickets says:

      Not talking about RD obviously. Just a lot of deceitfully motivated trolls out there, just as there are plenty of legitimately motivated activists against religious political fundamentalism. Takes some effort to tell them apart.

  14. The Klown says:
    • Lulu says:

      That your smirk is crooked?
      That someone told you that you were funny and they lied.
      That you should go out and get a job instead of twitting your banality.

  15. WMCB says:

    Re: geopolitical stuff, absolutely.

  16. WMCB says:

    I always find it amusing when I, who has turned on TV news maaaaybeeee….. 3 times?…. in the past 2 years get hit with the slavering “YOU FAUX NEWZ BRAINWASHED BECKHANNITYORILEY LAPDOG!”

  17. WMCB says:

    RD’s obsessive fixation on the evuhl Christianists as the source of all depravity is not substantially psychologically different from a damaged religious nut’s fixation on demonic influences. Religious or anti-religious, a bent human being behaves remarkably the same.

    In either case, I would say that whatever horrible things happened to you as a child, you need to stop projecting and take it to a therapist, not the rest of us.

    • mothy67 says:

      Stop that right now you make her sound kind of sexy in a Coen brothers film kind of way.

      • WMCB says:

        I don’t hate RD. Actually, I mostly don’t even think about RD unless the topic comes up.

        • The Klown says:

          I used to admire her. Then her life fell apart and she changed. She is not the same person she was back in 2008-2009.

          • mothy67 says:

            Why because things suddenly didn’t go her way or did she suffer a tragedy? Remember the song “Running to Stand Still” I think it was U2 and to be honest I just love the title.
            I am this I am that I did this I did that I am deserving I am so angry I can no longer listen.blah blah blah be weak hurt and then grow

            http://youtube.com/?#/watch?v=0eCv0bXFppc

          • 1539days says:

            She used to be more conservative in her blog, in the sense that she understood the role of business and some of the craziness of the socialist left. I think Sarah Palin really rubbed her the wrong way and she started to see Palin supporters as brainwashed.

            Losing your job is tough. I remember when I was out of work in 2004 and I became a Lieberman supporter. Then John Kerry won the nomination and I just couldn’t go for that or the sleazy lawyer running with him.

          • lildoggy4u says:

            Its very stressful remodeling your basement , then the rest of your home. Reviewing Apple products, being let down when Occupy Wall Street doesn’t live up to your expectations after the euphoria of walking across some bridge and seeing a big spotlight and don’t forget hating your mother and the Pharmaceutical Industry (are there no other jobs?). Then moving to a new house. I got tired of all the sharing.

          • The Klown says:

            Yeah, she spent a lot of money for someone who was supposedly in financial trouble. I wish I was poor like that.

          • Lulu says:

            I had forgot about the Bat Light. It reminded me of scenes from Triumph of the Will by Riefenstahl updated by the modernity of the grunge element being overcome by pop culture imagery and the parroting of shitty movie dialog. Very emotional and moving./s/ Protesting the concentrations of wealth and the inherent evil of materialism followed by a kitchen remodel with bluestone (or something like that). Very compelling stuff./s/ I just want to know why not Formica? It has that 60’s hipster retro vibe no? Fake wood for fake people? Why destroy the earth with giant machines digging out rocks and leaving open pits that little animals could fall into for a countertop? /more S/

        • mothy67 says:

          I did not mean to imply you were criticizing her. I know nothing about her. She was living in Jersey but named her blog in deference to her childhood home and had a picture of the confluence of the three rivers. Thomas Wolfe wrote You Cannot Go Home Again, tim cain wonders if you can ever can ever breathe without doing so.
          I think she is intelligent but highly guarded. I have to prove nothing but I have to prove everything. I am so poor– here is my new professionally done new kitchen.
          Bet she sends the same mixed signals to her self.

          • WMCB says:

            IMO, those neither those who eternally run from home nor those who never question home are happiest. (“Home” here is not just a place, but one’s early defining culture as well.)

            Those who have made geniune peace with “home”, whether embracing it or moving on, seem happiest to me.

        • foxyladi14 says:

          Same here. 😀

  18. WMCB says:

    • Lulu says:

      I got a long boring but essential (I invest small amounts of money in IT) lecture recently on IT in general. All the easy to invent or advance stuff has been invented or improved. A plateau of sorts has been hit. The stuff in IT from now on will be more costly in R&R and the rapid changes and continual obsolescence that we saw are now in the past.

      The horrible economy has had a dreadful impact on IT. Where business, gov, education, etc were constantly trying to keep up or improve the lack of money due to the Obama-economy is making systems be patched up to limp along the norm if they do enough of what their basic function is. Simple basic open source programs that people used to pay a small fortune for do just fine for many small businesses and for personal use and are something that people can save money with and screw Microsoft who took advantage for years of a virtual monopoly. And the IRS scandal of exploding hard drives is not helping IT sales either. If the federal government cannot get value out of hardware a small company can’t either so why buy new. If Obama wasn’t IT’s ideological soumate they would be raising hell about the IRS (and FEC and EPA) claiming their hardware and software systems are garbage.

      Is Microsoft ditching expensive employees. Yes. But their business has slowed down partially because of the tech cycle and partly because of their own stupid ideological bent which has hurt their own business model. More stupid smart people. Screw ’em.

      • The Klown says:

        I am using Windows XP on my Emachine desktop computer and it does everything I need. Microsoft has millions of satisfied customers like me who don’t feel the need to pay for an expensive upgrade.

        I am dreading the day I finally have to upgrade, because I’ll end up with some “new and improved” version that doesn’t have the bugs worked out.

  19. mothy67 says:

    Silence I hear from the gay gestapo that according to the CDC only 1.6 of the population identifies as gay or bisexual.. Nary a peep(always wanted to say nary a anything). Another bogus study based on absurd data. First time you see a new doctor for a sprained ankle they will ask you. How many people will lie and say I am straight to get approval. I say any port in a storm. Poor intern asked me how many sexual partners I have had. . I said do you mean today — less than six. Kid dropped his pen and was so flustered. I apologized and told him I wanted him to feel uncomfortable because he made me feel that way. I had been to the doctor’s and ER many times and never had to answer questions like that. Guess it’s part of the ACA but he spent more time asking me survey questions than asking me how I felt. I lied and I am sure my responses were thrown out because I did so. “How many partners have you had” Does family count?
    Anywho 1.6 seems kind of low I’d double it. But we all know government science can never be wrong. Just funny noone is challenging the numbers because to do so would mean challenging other (global warming) numbers.

    • WMCB says:

      I won’t answer those questions, either. Or the census. And store checkout clerks look at me like I’m crazy when they ask for my zipcode or email and I simply look them in the eye and say, “No.” It’s like the very idea of privacy is so WEIRD to them!

      Too bad. None of that is any of your damn business.

    • The Klown says:

      gay gestapo = gaystapo

    • 1539days says:

      This is a symptom of trying to put human sexuality into a box. Are you bisexual if the mix is 90% to 10%? Are you bisexual if you had an ‘experience’ when you were younger. Can you still be gay if you’ve had hetero sex or even never had sex as an adult?

  20. mothy67 says:

    I wonder on this site alone how many people would count themselves as assholes. Klown gets numero eins if he wants it but wow I am an idiot any others

    • WMCB says:

      I can be an asshole. I’m actually extremely nice in person or socially, but I get so sick of being told what I’m allowed to think/discuss/ponder/say in this proggie world that I go deliberately oppositional. Because fuck you.

      • mothy67 says:

        I gather you know what I mean by asshole. I read an article that claimed that us like-minded people are the counter culture of today. We are the new radicals.

        http://m.youtube.com/?#/watch?v=DL7-CKirWZE

        • WMCB says:

          Yes. And any counterculture is going to be a mix of crazies, sane, cerebral, emotional, very committed, watchers-in-the-wings, polite debaters, assholes, etc.

          But Progs are truly blind to the fact that they are The Establishment, and that the danger to them ain’t the GOP. So I’m perfectly happy for them to keep focusing there. That’s not who is going to take them down.

          We live in interesting times.

          • mothy67 says:

            I confess it pains me to a great extent to have watched all of my college friends get on the obama train. Smart fucking people who went all in. Careers and reputations are tied to obama. Never are going to admit they were wrong. Want to blame everyone else. Too bad for them I was right.
            I express that the best environment for a child is with a mother and a father. I think there are thousands of kids in need of good homes and I believe same sex couples can provide that. A safe loving place but you cannot argue that you can reproduce without the other sex. If gay is natural and earth is god then god is saying you do not make a baby with two eggs or two loads of sperm.
            You can love a kid why does it have to share your DNA. I worry so much about my baby girl and her future. I looked up archery. Thought well that will stand out on a college application. She is fucking seven spending way too much time learning French. I go to her holding back tears in my eyes saying I don’t want to push you to hard. Monstervsaid thank you. What an impossible brat.
            Anywho I love my Shaypup. Almost eight years. She has straight A’s, all star team for softball . A good kid.
            Why if you feel the need to care does it have to be your dna. I could not love my pup anymore if she was mine.

          • WMCB says:

            Sigh. Timothy, it always gets back to damn common sense: “There is nothing wrong with society having *general* norms. It makes for a stable society. Stop trying to tear down every norm or tradition in the name of ‘Progress’ just for the hell of it. There is also nothing wrong with society having outliers. Leave them the hell alone, treat them like the human beings they are, don’t persecute them.”

            This is not fucking rocket science.

      • The Klown says:

        I am basically a nice guy, but if you give me a reason . . .

        Ironically, I never get in trouble for being an asshole. It’s when I try to be nice that shit happens.

    • 1539days says:

      I have realized that I am kind of an asshole to people. Mostly, I just want to have things done the right (my) way. At work, I’m willing to take on complicated projects, but when people keep changing their minds I’ll blow up at them. So, I’d consider myself as having bad temperament but getting good results.

  21. lyn says:

    Here’s a good story about food stamp fraud in my little town. Sixty-five people were charged with trafficking in food stamp benefits.
    “In fact, state workers watched the fraud go unabated for two years, seeing thousands of dollars illegally flow out of the food stamp program. An investigator in early 2013 warned the fraud was growing at an “alarming rate.” Yet arrests wouldn’t be made for another 17 months.”
    “A break by Eric Shepherd of the Klamath County Sheriff’s Office moved the case from pending to active.
    “As Shepherd investigated a cartel-linked drug group, he developed a source with links to the Mexican meat market. The source told the detective that he was regularly wiring money to a Mexican cartel via the market, working to pay off a $67,000 debt. He told Shepherd the market was a front, paying discounted rates for food stamp cards.”
    http://www.oregonlive.com/pacific-northwest-news/index.ssf/2014/07/massive_oregon_food_stamp_frau.html#incart_m-rpt-1

  22. The Klown says:

    COMEDY GOLD! MSNBC pranked by Howard Stern fan:

    • mothy67 says:

      I do not find this funny. Breaking news she had no prep time and he slides in an obnoxious career killin jibe. GROSS. Her producers should have never let it get that far.

      Poor tastr.

      • Mary says:

        But that’s miss Kristol Ball, resident sanctimonious MSNBC know-it-all, Mothy.

        Couldn’t happen to a more appropriate person. LOL

      • Constance says:

        I think there are quite a few producers at MSNBC who should be fired. That would be a start towards building back a trustworthy news station.

        • Lauren says:

          Who cares about MSMBC? Their ratings continue to tank because nobody watches( accept for some brief comic relief). A trustworthy news station is a contradiction in terms now days..

    • elliesmom says:

      I’d like to be able to take credit for this comment, but it was someone on HotAir – “You would think someone named “Kristol Ball” would have seen that coming.”

    • DandyTIger says:

      Best part, she didn’t pay attention to what they guy said and asked two, not just one, two follow up questions. What an idiots. No sympathy for her or her producers.

      • 1539days says:

        Perfect metaphor for MSNBC. The hosts who only hear what they want. And I bet she still hates Rush Limbaugh more than Howard Stern.

  23. foxyladi14 says:

    😆 Shared it.

    • The Klown says:

      Apparently we are not supposed to laugh at that clip. Something something about inappropriate and/or bad taste.

      I laughed my ass off.

  24. WMCB says:

    Was talking to a UK friend on facebook about party lines for telephone service. What amazes me most about them now is the degree of trust, unwritten rules, and sense of community that had to exist for that to work. It’s quite unimaginable today, even though I remember it.

    You mean, people didn’t used to distrust and fuck over their neighbors? At least not routinely? Um, nope. We didn’t.

    • elliesmom says:

      We didn’t have a choice. A party line was all that was available. My grandmother lived with us, and she would spend hours on the phone, which drove the other people on our line nuts with good reason. When the first private lines were strung down our street, all of the neighbors said to just give one to her, and the rest of the street could share just fine.

  25. WMCB says:

    LMAO because a pile of anarchocapitalists just followed me on Twitter, because I was having a sane **theoretical** conversation with someone about the benefits of organic societies that adhere to local culture, and how much structure you really need. I always laugh when that happens, when any particular “ism” follows me based on one conversation, because I know for a fact that I will piss them all the hell off tomorrow, and they’ll unfollow en masse. 😀

    Same with traditionalists, marxists, anti-corporatists, whatever. The minute they figure out that while I will dicuss anything, I don’t really **DO** zealotry, they get very discombombulated.

    • The Klown says:

      Human behavior tends to fall into a Bell curve. In any given area there will be some on the far left and some on the far right, with the vast majority in the middle. “Normal” is not a specific point, it is that 80% or so group in the middle muddle.

      • WMCB says:

        I think part of it is that in our warped culture, it is unusual to be willing to have a long discussion of the potential pros of things you don’t necessarily buy into. People are so used to “If you are discussing the downside of corporate power, you’re all Viva La Revolution.” Um, no. But they assume that, because people in our culture simply don’t discuss ideas that are outside of their own political activism.

        If I was filthy rich, I’d have an old-school, real salon. I’d be one of those rich ladies who invited all the heretics (and the priest as well) and absolutely opposed-to-each-other people to come brainstorm and rip each others arguments to shreds. I’d provoke them. Not because I am a supporter of this or that one, but because I think the argument itself is clarifying and useful, if done openly.

  26. mothy67 says:

    OH my God party lines !!!!!!! I had forgotten about those. I grew up across the street from my great grandmother and she was shunned by the women in the neighbourhood. I grew up thinking it was because she was native American. Irish as the day is long but she was still married off to the second son to hide the shame of her getting knocked up. Sassy bitch was the eternal outsider. Never stupid she claimed to be part Cherokee . She was not . She was a poor Irish domestic who got knocked up by a rich punk. Younger brother my pap pap married her She was as tough as they come. She would listen in on party lines and then tell people what they wanted to hear. Paid her to button her lip. She was good. Jet black hair and ravishing blue eyes and formidable cheek bones.
    I can analyze my mum mum to death or I can celebrate the beauty of the woman. She re-used foil wrap many times and had me listen in on the party line. I was 5.

    B

  27. The Klown says:
    • WMCB says:

      If cons have a brain in their heads, will hammer the jobs-to-others issue. They will be resisted by mainstream GOP as well as Dems, tho.

  28. The Klown says:

    FYI:
    I am not covering the airline crash for two main reasons:

    1. We don’t know all the facts.

    2. I have nothing of value to add.

    I realize that this is a radical and crazy idea, but I’m going to wait and see what develops before offering an opinion.

  29. mothy67 says:

    My call is it is third party. So who wants to make noise and why? If we had a President he
    /she would be all over this. Golfing can wait til international crisies are averted. Has even had Justin Beiber or the latest White House spokesperson issue a statement or are they still in jammiesxrocking back and forth saying Hobby Lobby bad waiting for medd.
    This whole administration is kids on crack.. They think nothing through.

    • WMCB says:

      I saw that the WH called early on and demanded that the wreckage not be disturbed. So what is the first thing Putin does? Make off with the black box. He is drinking Obama’s milkshake, and flouting him on purpose, because he knows he’s a wimp.

      I predict that this will all be brushed under the rug, and the USA will do precisely squat. And it’s not that I think we ought to go to war with Russia or anything – of course not! I serously suspect some idiot rebel commander effed up and thought it was a Ukranian pol’s plane. It’s that you want Russia to be unsure of what you might do.

      Freaking kindergarteners understand more about politics and projecting power than this fool.

      • mothy67 says:

        I have bit my tongue for farvtoo long. I was a student at Temple when Lockerbie took place. I knew people on that plane. I remember the 92 bombing of the WTC I was nearby. Then I watched my home go up in flames in 2001. I knew 5 people and all got out alive. One friend’s father did not. I am so beyond accommodating it makes me sick. I went to remorial service for fallen fighters and there were people outside with prayer rugs. One might believe they were not assholes and one would be mistaken. I spoke to them and they were praising 9/11. Bet you do not see that on news at eleven and if you do it will say something like muslims reflecting on the day.
        FUCK OFF AND THEN FUCK OFF AGAIN TWICE there is no such thing as moderate islam

        For the record I am not islamaphopic I just have zero nada zilch nothing. I am not phobic. I just despise the cretins. World has gone Lady Gaga when one of the 600 executions goes awry but the US is inhumane when thousands are butchered everyday all over the world. Somehow because I flush after I pee in Pittsburgh some little girl in Calcutta dies from something. Sorry I may make a post look like a Mensa candidate but I am not that daft. Water is everywhere here. I smm not hurting kids in Africa if I flush after I piss but you betchacI got a notice. My aunt who in some sort of illegal Catholic voodoo Satanic mass that I am pretty sure involves kids reading was told she cannot collect her rainwater over a certain amount. Personal consumption. No more no less. Outside of creating covens and raising the dead she used it to wash her hair. No can do.

  30. leslie says:

    Bronco just landed on the WH lawn but made no comments about the Malaysia plane saying he wanted to get more information. I bet he’s gonna go to bed – or wherever – and have someon read him the cliff notes tomorrow morning. That way he can use the same old excuse “I learned about it all the same way you did”.

  31. threewickets says:

  32. WMCB says:

  33. WMCB says:

    Well, maybe a few liberals are waking the hell up. Although for this guy, it took a personal freind being killed to do it:

  34. WMCB says:

    Once again, Obama makes decisions based on political theater, not competence. Sorry, but someone who has never flown a jet has no business commanding our entire Pacific Air Force.

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