July 11, 2008
In which I have a heavy dose of cynicism with my coffee
Yeah, this is great and all. And I'm sure the Supreme Court will happily oppose the Bush administration and agree with the ACLU when this case reaches them, right?
I understand Greenwald's intent on this, and I of course agree with his views on the legality of the FISA law. But I really think the lawsuits at this point are hand-washing. Democrats caved. Royally. They totally cowed to Bush on this one, and now having a court case that will undoubtedly be denied by the Roberts majority is just a way to cast final blame on someone other than some spineless Democrats.
I want there to be a healthy court system in this country, but part of that is not using it as the scapegoat for ineptitude earlier down the road.
Brotherhood of the descending pants
I know this is one of those "turn in your liberal card now" opinions, but I just really, really can't get bent out of shape about the admittedly-overzealous regulations in some cities about not having pants sag below your ass.
Yes, I understand that, fundamentally, this is discriminatory- clearly the style that is specifically being targeted is one associated with young black men. As one commentor on Pandagon noted, in the more racist states that passed laws like this it's basically a way to legalize cops harassing black people.
But as I've made clear over and over and over again, I can't stand moronic quasi-libertarian "anything that even remotely suggests we can't do anything we want is anti-freedom raaaaargh" rhetoric and defending the inherent act of showing off your ass crack in public leaps past calling people who hate smoking "Nazis" by light years. Beyond "because I can," there's nothing fundamentally practical or appropriate about the fashion "style" to begin with, and if you're wasting your time defending it, well, then, you need a more fulfilling job. Now get off my lawn, all of you.
July 7, 2008
Holy jumping mother of god
I have just ruined pants I am not even wearing.
"Obligatory Jesse Helms cartoon"
In light of this week's installment, please not that I, by comparison, gave Reagan a pass. Ronald Reagan was an odious man, but his death along with Jesse Helms' reminded me this weekend of a line someone said- "Republicans don't actually hate black people. They hate poor people, who very often are black." Reagan personified the greed of modern conservatism, and his sin for which his legacy should stain him forever will be that horrific employment of racial animosity for the purpose of advancing personal wealth among the majority of voters.
I forgot who exactly said that quote up there, but I also know that Helms was an exception to that rule. Jesse Helms actually hated black people. And no one punished him for it. He retired, having been re-elected repeatedly by a majority of North Carolinians who decided that something like this wasn't racist at all, because they're fucking assholes. And when you watch that, keep in mind this isn't the remnants of a racist past that has advanced with the rest of the country. That ad was from 1990. And when it became socially awkward for Helms to openly degrade the existence of blacks, he switched to open hatred of gays.
He hated people who loved each other. He hated people who loved music. He hated parents who wanted a public education system and music programs to make them smarter and more artistic and more open to the beauty of this world than a vile person like him was ever capable of being. He hated art. He hated.
Jesse Helms was more than a greedy right-wing conservative. He was a man who simply hated people and devoted his life and career to making others suffer because of his dislike of him. Helms tried to destroy more people than Tim McVeigh ever dreamed of, and yet Helms, ironically, will end up with government buildings named after him.
Of course, I don't work for the Associated Press, who apparently decided none of this was relevant. Because they hate you too.