Saturday, September 24, 2005

GenderGappers 2005 - 039

GenderGappers 2005 – 039


It’s not the frontal assaults that have hurt us but the constant nibbling at the edges of our hard won Civil Rights. Perhaps you have noticed how women’s reproductive self determination has been limited, bit by bit.

Roe v Wade was a long time coming; its departure may be only a few more nibbles away as former cases to limit that “settled law”, previously turned down, are re-brought to a new and imbalanced Supreme Court.

A court that will have new members nominated by Bush who talks a big deal about women’s rights, but actually has been actively working to limit them. Oh, yes, there are women in his cabinet; his mother, Barbara and Laura are influences, but don’t be fooled.

For all his talk both Afghanistan and Iraq have limited women’s rights, not extended them and he just gave us his pick for Chief Justice who makes it plain in his decisions that women should be discouraged when it comes to careers outside the home.

And that’s just one of his attitudes, shared with Bush, that indicate his determination to bring this country back into the 19th Century. Women are not the only target. We have already noted the slow erosion of labor union’s power to support worker’s rights.

Taking advantage of the huge damage caused by Katrina, the Bushies are suspending a series of regulations that had guaranteed the going local wage, and affirmative action for minorities, while offering tax incentives for businesses in the affected region.

The assault of this government is against the poor, the working class and the needy. Bush has tried to eliminate Social Security, so necessary to many, and will certainly continue to chip away at who receives it and how it is administered until he kills the program.

Don’t expect an all out shock and awe campaign mounted against Title IX and XI. It will be slow and insidious. Already scholarships for women are being curtailed and the cracks in the glass ceiling are being filled in.

Appointments of women to federal positions by Bush are more often than not political paybacks for men who have given money to his campaigns. Some are as scary as the former head of FEMA who recently resigned following the debacle of Katrina.

Washington, DC — FDA Commissioner Lester Crawford has appointed a man who has spent the majority of his career in the office of veterinary medicine to the position of acting director of the Office of Women's Health at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Dr. Norris Alderson will replace Dr. Susan Wood, a key women's health expert, who resigned on August 31 in protest of the FDA's handling of the application to make Plan B emergency contraception (EC) available over the counter.

Now while tempers flare as officials and politicians look for cover, women’s protective laws in our society were brought forth as whipping boys. The slowness of volunteer fire fighters to reach New Orleans was blamed on laws to protect women. FEMA held them up in Atlanta so they could take classes on sexual harassment and community relations.

The White House claimed that its slowness to respond was due to Bush fearing the repercussions if he overruled a female mayor. The facts belie this but this excuse is still in the talking points as the reason Bush was slow to react.

In other words, the troubles caused by Katrina were compounded by the laws passed to insure women fairness in the workplace. There is action on the way to make this precedent for abolishing these laws. If an employer is charged with harassment, just claim an emergency situation.

More little drops of court appointment water grinding down the edifice of fairness build up by the struggles of brave women will continue just as long as women sit by and let it.
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Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Gendergappers 2005 - Extra


It is said that faith can move mountains but no one seems to know just how far bull shit can be thrown and still keep believers on their knees before this administration.

Posturing somewhere between a political looser and an itinerant preacher, Bush proclaimed, “In the life of our nation we have seen that wondrous things are possible when we act with God’s grace.” Geez-amighty! Hala-looya!

In the life of our nation while he has been controlling the entire government, House, Senate, Supreme Court and Oval Office, we have been inundated with his avowals that he is doing the Lord’s business here on Earth.

So would that mean that the following wondrous things were under the auspices of God’s grace?

Two rigged and stolen elections
Divisive tactics to control free speech
Faith based attempt to meld religion and politics
Tax cuts on the riches Americans
Destruction of the World Trade Center – warnings ignored
Education and other programs mandated that were never funded
Sky rocketing drug prices
Reduction of environmental controls
Strip mining allowed on public lands
Opening Alaska for oil production
Shock and awe preemptive killing of thousands of Iraqi
Reciprocal killings of American troops
Attack against Social Security
Inexperienced cronies appointed to Homeland Security management
Cronies appointed to head up FEMA
The drowning floods of New Orleans with loss of many lives
Patriot Act and Son of Patriot Act
Unfunded entitlement programs sending states into bankruptcy
Renewal of tax cuts to rich
A bankruptcy law that hurts the poor and small businesses
The shame of allowing prisoner torture in Abu Ghraib and Git-Mo
Off shore oil drilling encouraged
Keeps a known felon on staff, Karl Rove, who outed a CIA agent
One humongous national debt

And this is only a partial list of the wondrous things George Bush is responsible for as he admittedly “acts with God’s grace”. His legacy already is that of the most secretive and dangerous administration in the history of the country. The “suffering South” will long remember how he emulated Nero – staying on vacation, playing his guitar while New Orleans flooded and families drowned.

However, a side affect of all these wondrous things is that they illustrate the total folly of combining church and state. The founders of this country knew what they were doing; Bush doesn’t have a clue and doesn’t give a shit.

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Saturday, September 17, 2005

GenderGappers 2005 - 038


Arguably, one of the most important and jaw dropping occurrence regarding the media has been sadly overlooked as the horrors of Katrina occupies the attention of almost everybody. Initially it did have a great effect – many people were so surprised that they did a double take, especially when tuning in to FOX News.

Some even wondered if the end of the world was coming. Even members of the media were aghast. That is, until they slowly comprehended that gosh oh gee, that is what reporting the news is all about. That is journalism. That is what reporters are supposed to do – hunt down the facts and present all the information to the American public.

NBC’s Brian Williams noted that a lasting legacy of Katrina for journalists may be the end of an unusual four year period of deference to people in power. Most of the rest of us were first astounded and then delighted to see the former hoards of media suck-ups actually go after the Bushies hammer and tongs.

It seems that reporters were seeing things that they could not justify by the Republican Party line; things that caused them to start thinking like journalists and for the first time in many years they started working on behalf of their country, not as sycophants of Bush-Power. Nothing like close contact with human misery and death to sound a wake-up call.

Embedded and secluded as they were, and still are, in Afghanistan and Iraq, reporters never seemed to get the full force of the horror of these Bush wars, but they “got it” in New Orleans. Remember how every appointment or nomination by President Clinton was vetted by the media to find and expose every item in the past of these people?

We have just been shown a fresh example of how the press has been laying down on the job for six years. We learned that the former head of FEMA lied on his resume. The media never questioned or investigated but rather took the credentials of “Brownie” and every other appointment to be just what Bush declared them to be. Of course, it didn’t matter until Brown screwed up so badly with Katrina.

One can only hope that the media in its new found mission will now investigate the Bush government “without deference to people in power”. What of the other Bush appointees? Will a media that has located its testicles and taken its cranium out of its rectum continue to serve the American people or will it lapse back into its old lazy habits.

Democratic leaders must continue in the manner of Rep. Nancy Palosi and challenge reporters who take the Bush spin to be fact. Like Palosi, they should ask interviewing reporters if they are on the Bush payroll since they are espousing their causes.

Reporters showed us the facts, but the network and cable head-honchos are stillsucking on the Bush-Power teats. CNN’s Wolf regularly interviews people insisting that they “defend” why they embrace viewpoints that are contrary to the Republican Party line. Tim Russet, likewise -- unbelievable! Meanwhile, Chris Matthews wobbles on the fence.

Now that we have had one miracle, it’s time for another really big one. That is to destroy the secrecy that the Bushies have wrapped everything in to prevent us from knowing what is being done to us. Just as the Bush administration covered up the truth regarding the pollution of air and water caused by the attack on 9/11, it is now covering up the true facts regarding the air and water pollution in New Orleans.

So far we are prevented from learning the death toll and the true cost of Bush bungling because of his inept choices of leaders for EPA, Homeland Security or FEMA, for starters.

This invasive secrecy is terribly costly to every American and to the country and its environment. Now is the time for the media to stand up and continue to break down walls of silence and demand the truth. WE CAN HANDLE IT!

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Friday, September 09, 2005

GenderGappers 2005 - 037


"Never did we dream that they would use our OWN AIRPLANES as weapons." -- April 20, 2004.

"I don't think anyone anticipated the breach of the levees."-- Sept 1, 2005
-- Words to die for from Bush.

Due to the auspicious passing of Chief Justice Rehnquist, John Roberts will most certainly be the next Chief Justice of the Supremes. Confirmation will proceed fairly quickly since the country is nearly totally involved in rescue work necessitated by the floods.

Where it comes to political ploy and politics in general, Bush’s brain, Karl Rove never misses a beat and it makes Bush look both lucky and intelligent. But, when it comes to governing and acting the part of the CEO of the country, Bush falls flat on his face and we suffer.

When this happens, Karl comes to the rescue, pulling dirty political tricks out of his ass that appear to exonerate Bush from responsibility. These are manifested by Bush appearing before a microphone, coached to look sincere and bewildered saying, “Who could have known or Who could have imagined or who could have anticipated?”

This is followed by Bush going around the country talking to groups of thoroughly vetted loyal fans. In the safety of these audiences, his crocodile tears flow as he professes his extreme sorrow over those who have been hurt. He also takes these occasions to blame others for what happened, while professing earnestly that he would take the blame anyway because that’s what presidents do – “And I’m the President!”

Then when the blogs suggest that the administration should and did know and that Bush is misrepresenting the facts, Rove sends out his spin flunkies to his lap-dog media with deliberate lies, deconstructing weasel words and injured innocence.

This administration is identified by arrogance and incompetence. Now the country is deeply troubled and many nations around the world are offering help. Instead of giving them thankful acceptance, the Bush administration is giving most of them the cold shoulder.

How long is it going to take for people to understand that the promise of safety Bush gave to America is illusory? What has and is happening with Katrina should open everyone’s eyes to the fact that the invincible cowboy image is just a mirage.

A teacher, when announcing the exam he was going to give, added this advice his students, “Prepare for the worst because the worst is prepared for you.”

We are more vulnerable than ever with Bush in charge. So far his reign has been disaster after disaster for America, draining both monetary and human resources to a dangerous level. This appears to be just what Karl and George had in mind all the time.

There is a real chance that before the 2008 elections the country will be in such dire straits that Bush will declare martial law and suspend the presidential vote, making him president/king/messiah for life.

Prepare for the worst.
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Thursday, September 08, 2005

GenderGappers 2005 - 036


“And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.” --Matthew 7:27

One thing is as certain as death and taxes. If the hurricane, Katrina, had wrecked havoc on a group of Blue States, we’d be hearing that it was the wrath of God visited on sinning Liberals.

But it was Red States that have suffered this particular “act of God”. Called “act of God” because our culture always blamed calamities, not caused by humans, on the Supernatural. It’s a staple phrase in our insurance policies.

Liberals already know that the real acts of God began as Katrina blew through this area of the Southland. It came with countless acts of kindness from those who had a roof over their heads to those who had lost everything.

It came as people, food, water, supplies and money poured forth from all the other States, both Blue and Red, eager to help those thousands of families in trouble. Brave rescue workers picked others out of the water and from rooftops using helicopters and boats.

We will be seeing more acts of God as the poisonous flood is tamed and order is slowly restored. It will be time consuming and backbreaking to get the water levels down. It is heartbreaking to see the irreparable losses of life and property sustained by so many who had so little to begin with.

But Katrina was not alone in causing this catastrophic act of God. Acts [or in this case, inactions] of men had much to do with it. True, Katrina blew and rained but it was the horrendous floods that broke the back of a city and they were man-made and preventable.,1518,372455,00.html

The flood is not just water sitting in the bowl that used to be New Orleans. For starters, it is sewerage, gasoline, oil, dead bodies, city detritus and tons of other poisonous or caustic materials dissolved out from containers in countless storage areas.

In 2001, long before 9/11, the Bush appointed FEMA and army engineers warned of the imminence of a horrendous catastrophic flood unless steps were taken to immediately correct the problems of pumps and levees.

Not only did Bush ignore these warnings, but he cut the funding for levee maintenance. Instead, he spent the country’s money on lowering taxes for the rich, a quagmire preemptive war in Iraq and getting reelected.

He ignored many warnings about an attack on this country; started a preemptive war with Iraq instead of going after the terrorists that instigated 9/11; he lied over and over again and decimated our National Guard. HE MUST BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE both for causing these conditions and for his monstrous ineptness in dealing with the consequences.

“Ill fares the land, to hastening ills a prey,Where wealth accumulates, and men decay:…”
--The Deserted Village by Oliver Goldsmith
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