Saturday, April 14, 2007

Blogging while female

Originally posted at the Independent Bloggers' Alliance

I first learned about the crass, insensitive remarks of Markos Moulitsas in this post by skippy, and later found a post by Steven D at Booman Tribune. In a later diary, Steven included what Markos actually said:

Look, if you blog, and blog about controversial shit, you'll get idiotic emails. Most of the time, said "death threats" don't even exist -- evidenced by the fact that the crying bloggers and journalists always fail to produce said "death threats". [...]

But so what? It's not as if those cowards will actually act on their threats. For better or for worse, this isn't a country in which media figures -- even hugely controversial ones -- are routinely attacked by anything more dangerous than a cream pie.

Since last night, I saw that skippy had updated his post with the following:

addendum: feminazi, commenting over at echidne's blog, asks this question:

i sent a email to asking them why they support misogynists through advertising. why don't you do the same?

good idea!

Except, I don't know how much choice they have, given that you see this at the bottom of the home page on that blog:

© 2005, Kos Media, LLC
I may be only a C-rate blogger (on a good day), but what do we usually do when we want to hold a public figure accountable for something they've said? Isn't it usually their advertisers that we write to? Or how about writing to some of the politicians and public figures who post diaries at Daily Kos. This Wikipedia article has a list.

I wouldn't recommend this if Markos' remarks were a one time thing, but as shirlstars' comment here indicates, this is part of a pattern of behavior.

See also:

How not to be an asshole: a guide for men

Why the lack of concern for Kathy Sierra ?

Take Back the Blog! March

Finally, as I noted here, I really haven't had it in me to do much blogging lately, and I'm still not feeling all that verbose at this point. But I do consider this to be an important issue, and, even if I don't manage to blog more about it, I'm going to make a point of adding relevant entries to my page of Google shared items, which you can find here.

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Thursday, April 12, 2007

Open Thread

New site for your dose of cuteness--when my brother was here for Easter, he told me about The pics you see below are from that site.

And if you check the left sidebar, I've added a few new items to my Google Reader shared items.

'Night, everybody.

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Kurt Vonnegut 1922-2007

Late last night, I saw the headline that Kurt Vonnegut had died. I had never read any of his books, but thought I recalled him appearing on The Daily Show a while back. Turns out I recalled correctly--you can view the interview here. (He was apparently on a promotional tour for his recently released autobiography, A Man Without a Country.)

I just read this excerpt from from Slaughterhouse Five for the first time last night...

Rosewater was on the next bed, reading, and Billy drew him into the conversation, asked him what he was reading this time.

So Rosewater told him. It was The Gospel from Outer Space, by Kilgore Trout. It was about a visitor from outer space, shaped very much like a Tralfamadorian by the way. The visitor from outer space made a serious study of Christianity, to learn, if he could, why Christians found it so easy to be cruel. He concluded that at least part of the trouble was slipshod storytelling in the New Testament. He supposed that the intent of the Gospels was to teach people, among other things, to be merciful, even
to the lowest of the low.

But the Gospels actually taught this:

Before you kill somebody, make absolutely sure he isn't well connected. So it goes.

The flaw in the Christ stories, said the visitor from outer space, was that Christ, who didn't look like much, was actually the Son of the Most Powerful Being in the Universe. Readers understood that, so, when they came to the crucifixion, they naturally thought, and Rosewater read out loud again:

Oh, boy-they sure picked the wrong guy to lynch that time!

And that thought had a brother: 'There are right people to lynch.' Who? People not well connected. So it goes.

The visitor from outer space made a gift to Earth of a new Gospel. In it, Jesus really was a nobody, and a pain in the neck to a lot of people with better connections than he had. He still got to say all the lovely and puzzling things he said in the other Gospels.

So the people amused themselves one day by nailing him to a cross and planting the cross in the ground. There couldn't possibly be any repercussions, the lynchers thought. The reader would have to think that, too, since the new Gospel hammered home again and again what a nobody Jesus was.

And then, just before the nobody died, the heavens opened up, and there was thunder and lightning. The voice of God came crashing down. He told the people that he was adopting the bum as his son giving him the full powers and privileges of The Son of the Creator of the Universe throughout all eternity. God said this From this moment on, He will punish horribly anybody who torments a bum who has no connections!
I'm going to have to find time to read that book.

Here's the most recent version of Vonnegut's web site that I could find on Internet Archive.
Kurt Vonnegut on Wikepedia.

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Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Extreme video cuteness

I give you, "Otters Holding Hands".

If you're able to view the video, do watch it to the end. I know it looks like nothing new is going to happen, but there's some fresh cuteness at the end. And it's only a minute and 40 seconds long. I'm sure you've all wasted more time for that for less payoff before. :)

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Open Thread

New design by Demetrius...

And another new thing, if you look at the left sidebar toward the bottom of the page, there'sd something called "Renee in Ohio's shared items". I got the idea from Terrance at The Republic of T, who has a "What I'm reading" column in the right sidebar of his blog. Turns out it's through Google Reader, and it's a nice way of being able to point to some interesting/worthwhile posts and stories that I've seen around the internets.

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Monday, April 09, 2007

TBI and the Troops

A Shock Wave of Brain Injuries (TruthOut, April 8, 2007)
About 1,800 US troops are now suffering from traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) caused by penetrating wounds. But neurologists worry that hundreds of thousands more - at least 30 percent of the troops who've engaged in active combat for four months or longer in Iraq and Afghanistan - are at risk of potentially disabling neurological disorders from the blast waves of IEDs and mortars, all without suffering a scratch. For the first time, the US military is treating more head injuries than chest or abdominal wounds, and it is ill-equipped to do so.
With his war, Bush is creating a generation of young Americans who have debilitating brain injuries. Who's going to care for them? Who's going to make up for the salaries and wages they can't earn? Not Bush, that's for damn sure.

TBI Zeroed Out in Presidents Proposed FY 07 Budget(Justice For All, Wednesday, February 22nd 2006)

On Monday, President George W. Bush released a proposed budget for Federal Fiscal Year 2007.

Just like last year, The White House has again proposed the complete elimination of the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Federal TBI Program, which provides grants to state agencies and protection and advocacy organizations to improve access to health and other services for individuals with TBI and their families.
Note that this proposal came some three years into Bush's War, and his oh so loud and insistent claims that he supports the troops - a war which, almost from its first days, has been remarkable for the number of traumatic brain injuries it has produced. Do you see a disconnect here?

There's clearly going to have to be an alliance between veterans organizations and disability organizations. There are so many veterans with permanent, debilitating disabilities coming out of this war; yet, neither the DOD nor the VA has sufficient resources to diagnose them correctly, let alone care for them. And, as we've seen, Bush has prioritized their neglect.

I don't pretend to have answers. I'm merely a person who has lived with the lingering, debilitating results of severe brain trauma for thirty-five years. As such, it both saddens and outrages me to see the thousands, perhaps tens of thousands, of young lives that have been blighted by this callus president in his insistence on prosecuting an unjust and unjustifiable war.

Sen. Clinton Announces Initiative to Improve Detection, Treatment of TBI, March 29, 2007

For Wars Gravely Injured, Challenge to Find Care, March 14th 2007

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For Vicki and John

For all of you that know Vicki Cosgrove and haven’t heard, she and her husband are facing difficult times and prayers and financial support are sorely needed. Please read this diary on DailyKos, recommend it, pass it on to your friends and do what you can to help.

Beyond that, please think about lighting a candle for Vicki and John.

Obama and Edwards to skip Fox debate

Via Yahoo News:

An Obama aide said the Illinois senator had no plans to attend the Sept. 23 debate in Detroit that Fox agreed to co-sponsor with the Congressional Black Caucus Political Education and Leadership Institute.

Obama will take part in a different debate hosted by the institute and CNN in January.

"CNN seemed like a more appropriate host," Obama spokesman Bill Burton said.

Obama's decision comes three days after former Sen. John Edwards, another Democratic presidential candidate, announced he was pulling out of the Fox-sponsored debate.
Read the rest here.

Update: Hillary Clinton has dropped out as well.

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Sunday, April 08, 2007

Open Thread

This Easter photo is of listener's grandbaby.

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Happy Easter

Learn more about this image here.

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