Monday, December 7, 2009

The perfect Christmas gift for a woman??

My husband is under the impression that this is a fantastic product. Shampoo, conditioner and body wash all rolled into one!
I guess I should expect this under the tree then..

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

What this political mom thought of President Obama's shpeel.

1. The extraordinary amount of women in the audience. Are we finally well-represented in the military or just strategically placed? I was hoping it was the former and felt a little twinge of pride for our sex. In this case gun-toting women rock!

2. Does anyone else think his lips and teeth are blue? Is he not taking enough breaths between each word?

3. I liked his tie.

4. Finally an American political official who says Pakistan correctly.

5. What? Only 1-2 applause break-ins? Is that a record?

But seriously, I'm not for escalating this conflict, so I was really looking to the President to make his case. Boy oh boy can he give a great speech. Light on details, but heavy on patriotic juice. He's a likeable, persuasive man who could probably also sell me the Golden Gate Bridge, but did he sell this fight? I don't know.

From what I've read, the Middle East follows a particular pattern. If they actually want to be helped, progress is made. As we've seen in Iraq they will not be forced. Are the Afghans ready to fight the Taliban and govern themselves? Apparently some are, fighting that is, these spawns from Hell who treat women like the crud stuck on the bottom of their shoes. Perhaps that will turn the tide. But I fear for many things, like the cost in lives and dollars. Money that could be better spent here in the U.S.

I hope he's made the right decision.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Monday, November 9, 2009

You Will Like this!

I hope you can all watch this and get a good laugh. I loved it when Ben Affleck parodied Keith Olbermann, so please know that any offense is not intended. Instead, watch it for the comedy!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Cancel the cable and all your health care problems are solved..

An actual letter to the editor from our local rag on Thursday:

Don't give government control over our health care
The issue is not whether the government does or does not have "death panels"; it's that if the government controls and runs all health care, there is no option. Currently if an insurance company doesn't want to insure you because you have a pre-existing condition (which is within the company's right), you can go out and pay for your own treatment. The government wants to make it illegal for people to do that.
If someone can afford the very best health care in America, they have every right to it and shouldn't be denied that because some people thinks that's unfair. I would have trouble paying for my own health care, but that's OK - I can choose to stop paying for Internet, cable, cell phones, etcs., if I really need to pay for health care. That's my choice, not the government's.
The United States was founded on basic rights and limited power for the government, not entitlements for all. It's time to get back to our roots.
M. Marostica

Sorry, Mr. Marostica, but you forgot to stop paying for food, and your rent or mortgage payment too. Since having the extra 100 or so dollars a month by getting rid of what you mentioned will hardly pay for what can amount to huge health care costs for some sick people. Any idiot knows that, but apparently with you I're obviously healthy and are of course in God's good graces since you weren't born with a pre-existing condition that requires thousands of dollars of care a year because no insurance company will touch you with a ten foot pole.

Maybe you just did something right in heaven and are more blessed than the rest of us poor, unhealthy souls who have brought this financial mess on ourselves because we want to feed and clothe our families, not provide them with cell phones.

This letter does nothing more than reaffirm in my eyes what ass hats people like you are. You give a damn about yourselves only. Sick people are nothing but the crud stuck to the bottom of your shoes. This isn't really about government run health care, this is about people like you and what you're afraid you'll have to give up to actually help someone else in need. That's it plain and simple. What a concept! Caring about other people! Is that "PROMOTING THE GENERAL WELFARE!!!!"

This kind of stuff makes me seethe with such fury, I want to spit fire. I'm just so tired of people being blamed for being sick, for losing their homes and going bankrupt because of it. Like it's their fault somehow, for getting cancer and losing everything. All because they wouldn't cancel the cable?

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

I never win anything...until NOW!

Woo-hoo! My unlucky streak must be over...yeah right, but several hundred people entered this contest and I was one of the lucky three to win a brand spanking new copy of this book.

I believe we lost a great man this year and I'm really looking forward to reading more about this political icon, this "lion" of the Senate. Unlike some who've recently published memoirs..., ahem, Ted Kennedy had a captivating and full life. I'm sure I won't be disappointed.

Special thanks to Bookin' with Bingo for hosting this giveaway.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Picture of the Day - Courtesy of The Daily Dish

This is the kind of thing that moves me. Sorry, but communists taking over our government - since IT'S THE STUPIDEST THING I'VE EVER HEARD, just isn't high on my list of important things to think about. I'm more concerned about why we're ranked No. 37 in the world for our health care system. I'm concerned about our country being the only well-developed country in the ENTIRE world that rations health care based on wealth. That if you can't afford your cancer treatments you're expected to beg. That's what Republican Congressmen are saying - BEG! I'm concerned about our environment and that soon our oceans will be nothing but a giant garbage dump! I'm concerned about the future for my children's sake.

Everyone has different priorities I guess.
For me I prefer not to waste my time because I have bigger fish to fry, like how to pay the bills, how to pay the 10 grand I owe in doctor bills this year because I have crappy insurance, and most especially, what to make for dinner.

What are you worried about?
(Warning - don't turn this political or trollish)

Friday, October 16, 2009

America's Funniest Home Videos - Courtesy of Glenn Beck

Apparently Glenn Beck wants to...(sob)go back,..(tears gushing)to the 70's...(massively crying now)when...Carter was President.

I can't believe people actually watch this guy with a STRAIGHT FACE!

Watch it if you can stand it. It's hard. Believe me.
Thanks to The Daily Dish.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Embrace your inner hickness to get this one..

This picture has inspired me to lose weight, wear sunblock, and stay in school. I don't care if I'm already done. I have to go back!!
Thanks Carlos!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Picture of the Day (from the Daily Dish)

I finally have my revenge on these pesky critters that invade my house in droves every Fall. More deadly fly art here.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Oh, CRAP! The World Is Beginning To Like Us Again...

When my sister served a mission (2002) in Taiwan, church leaders told her to lie and say she was from Canada and not from America so that she would not be assaulted.

When I toured Europe (2004) signs everywhere in every country I visited said things like, "Yankees out!", "Amis go home!", etc.

It seems there was a period of time where the world truly hated us. We were seen by other countries as bullies and believed we could do anything and everything we wanted with no thought of the consequences. My friends from foreign countries have affirmed these last statements to be true. I won't go so far as to say it was all George Bush, though the Iraq War certainly did not help this image. Our country has done many unforgivable things to obtain these feelings from others- just look at we did in the Congo, it was horrible. But it was during Bush's reign that the loathing from other countries seemed, to me, to escalate.

Now we have a president that other countries like. He is a likeable guy- a great smile, good looks- a JFK persona, if you will. And, well, his wife is also mesmerizing. Obama is willing to talk to other countries and show them respect- not immediately start calling French Fries Freedom Fries just because the French disagree with him. The feeling of other countries toward America has changed- drastically. And yet, for some reason, some people believe that is a bad thing.

We lost the 2016 bid for Chicago to host the olympics. I feel as though I am the only one surprised that we lost, but look at it from an IOC voter. If you could choose anywhere in the world, would you rather:

A. Have the olympics at one of the most beautiful beaches in the world with throngs of supermodels walking along the coastline, or

B. Have the olympics where you could see fat people eating at restaurants

To me, it was a no brainer, and I am incredibly happy at where the Olympics will be held. When I think of Chicago, I think of wind and cold- NOT summer and outside activities. The obvious choice, in my mind, won. I do not think for one second it has any bearing on Obama- there are WAY too many other factors involved to blame it on one person.

Now Obama has won the Nobel Peace Prize- and, of course, people are lined up to say why he doesn't deserve it.

I, however, am proud that our nation is once again being seen in a positive light by others. I am excited that missionaries no longer have to lie about where they come from for fear of being beaten. I am thrilled that our president is respected by other national leaders, instead of laughed at. In other words, I like having a president who is liked and respected- and am very confused as to why others don't.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

When will Republicans in Congress quit blaming people for their sickness?

So, according to this senator, or I mean doctor from Wyoming, the top 5 percent of the sickest people in this country are obese smokers who don't eat their fruits and vegetables. So, it's my fault if my thyroid decides to quit working, even though I don't smoke, I eat plenty of veggies and I watch my weight. Somehow I've still brought this upon myself. Why are people who aren't able to get insurance held to a higher standard physically than those who do? Is it because the latter can go to a doctor sooner before small problems escalate? They don't want a public option, but they want to legislate my dietary choices? I wonder how that keeps government out of my life. Hmmm..

Monday, October 5, 2009

Things I would rather do before I read Going Rogue by Sarah Palin

I would rather be eaten by a shark.
(I stole this idea from Letterman.)

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Things I hate today.

Everything is getting on my nerves today. I should've locked myself in my house.

1. People who pick their nose while driving. I can see you in my rearview mirror people!

2. Checkers at the grocery store who mumble while I'm trying to write my check. Don't get me wrong here, I talk just as much as the next girl, but a lot of the time I can't understand a word of what they're saying. Something about her husband, or the new Star Trek movie,'s a mystery. I nod and smile, and grit my teeth.

3. Women who wear tights and boots that are exactly the same color. Where does one end and one begin? Do you need a map to find the zipper? They look like leggings straight from Cat Woman, and you ain't Halle Berry.

4. Shorts that are so short butt cheeks are hanging out like sagging curtains.

5. The fact that I like David Lee Roth better in Van Halen than Sammy Hagar.

6. Glenn Beck (I just always hate him.)

7. Number of wolves killed so far in Idaho - 15. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid.

8. The pretend Republican health care plan that does nothing whatsoever for the problem.

9. Stepping on one of those sticky mousetraps. That glue is from another planet I swear!

10. That Palin's book is already No. 1 before its release. What?

Sheesh, what a day. Next time I'll try to have a more positive attitude.
(hee-hee, that is a good one)
Anybody else got issues?

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

I had no idea kids singing about our presidents was the same as the Khmer Rouge

Be careful when you watch this "liberal indoctrination camp" video. It might make you, oh I don't know, BE PROUD OF YOUR COUNTRY!!!

Another round of spittle is here.
I just don't get it I guess.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

And some are wondering why the news didn't cover this...

I don't mean to overshadow your excellent post Christina, but these people really frighten me. This is what we're up against, and I'm guessing Glenn Beck couldn't be prouder.

The face of health care opposition -

If this isn't blatant racism, then I don't know what is.

What Is Going On?

Our very conservative newspaper in our very ultra-conservative area posted this editorial:

"Why can’t we work together?
First, I want to say that I'm a 32-year Republican, 21-year military veteran, and "straight" — being married for 29 years, to the same woman even — with two sons, one of which has already followed mom and dad into the Air Force. So you can't say I'm not a patriot or don't love my country.
However, for all that time I thought the Republicans stood for fiscal responsibility, small government and minimal intervention in our lives. Well the Bush administration proved me wrong. First they spent trillions on a war against a country that was no threat to us, spending us literally into the poor house.Then they spent untold millions of dollars on trying to tell people what they can and can not do in the privacy of their own bedrooms with their "defense of marriage" and other interventions based upon religious edicts. I thought we had separation of church and state.
And now, when the government wants to spend money on improving the lives of our own residents, they get "angry" about wasteful government spending. Where were they when we first went on this spending spree?

I've been "angry" ever since shortly after I voted for Bush the first time and we invaded Iraq. We could afford a better health care program if we weren't in the poor house from the Bush Republican's wasteful government spending. I agree we need to watch the budget, but people give it a break. Can't we work together on this? Together we should be able to come up with a better way to provide health care for our residents, but many Republicans are ready to do anything to "break Obama." That is not the country I fought for starting in Vietnam through the first Gulf war.Please tell the Republicans in Congress that for the first time I'm ashamed of how we are behaving like spoiled children.

Jeff Hartig"

I was so glad this was posted! FINALLY a voice of reason from the Republican side! This is somebody I could sit down and have a decent conversation with. There are so many things frustrating me right now with politics:
1. The philosophy that my side is ALWAYS right, and your side is ALWAYS wrong- regardless of the issue

2. Rather then trying to have a decent conversation to come to a consensus- or at least a better understanding- name-calling and yelling ensue (I still don't understand why yelling and screaming at a town hall meeting is somehow better then coming prepared with decent, legitimate questions)

3. Every problem America has is Obama's fault- period. If it is mentioned that a large part of the reason we are in the mess we are in is because of a certain other president, we are told to stop blaming him for anything- because it is all Obama's fault (even though he has only been president for 9 months and that other guy was president for 8 years).

4. It seemed in the past some people were willing to cross the aisle to work with the other side- now I don't see that happening at all. Nobody is willing to bend an inch, to be seen as "weak" by their constituents.

These are a few of my observations- if anybody else has other observations, please let me know. But based on these observations, I have decided the following:

1. If you*** start name calling- throwing the term Nazi, Communist, Socialist, Marxist, etc. around- I will immediately cease listening to what you are saying and ignore you. At least have the decency to hold an intelligent conversation about issues, not labels.
2. You should at least be willing to admit that mistakes have been made on both sides, and that one party is never going to be right ALL of the time or I will view you as a crazy partisan lunatic who I don't want to talk to.
3. Pick your battles. There is a battle raging over health care and people chose to get in a huge huffy over the president telling kids to stay in school (I am embarrassed by e-mails I got from people claiming to be Christian in regards to this issue) and even pulled their kids out of school. What is that teaching your children?

4. Respect the other side- even if you disagree with them. Otherwise, we won't get anywhere in our discussion.

5. Listen to the other side- otherwise, I won't listen to you.

If people on both sides would be willing to sit down and follow these rules, I actually think health care reform and other issues would move forward in a positive way. But, I won't hold my breath.

***YOU is being referred to as a very general term- because I engage with everybody on this blog, I don't think any of you break these new "rules" of mine. I am referring to a general atmosphere in the whole of America right now that is very disheartening and, I believe, bringing our country down.

Friday, September 11, 2009

I guess we're back in high school....

Photo courtesy of Carlos at thinkingorsitting

Or should I say pre-school.
No grown-ups allowed in South Carolina apparently. Good luck getting re-elected you big baby.
See here.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Just another rant from a poor, uneducated and uninformed Democrat

If health care isn't a civil right, then what is it I ask? A privilege then? How so exactly? If you develop or are even born with a pre-existing condition, and are either denied insurance coverage altogether or are asked to pay thousands a month in premiums and have a morbidly high deductible, is that just your fault somehow? Are you being punished by God? Are only the "privileged" ones "deserving" of insurance? Is that what you conservatives think? These people deserve what they get? That they want handouts? I just don't get it.

Would you prefer the insurance industry control your lives and make piles, upon piles, upon piles of money on you or the government?

50% of all bankruptcies are medical bill related. Premiums have doubled in the last 10 years alone. Imagine what they will be in 50 years. They project something like more that half the population will not be able to afford insurance by then. And once again it's not the poor or rich - it's the middle class who is going bankrupt. If the middle class fails - the country fails. Let's look to the future. Is it that hard to look ahead a few years? Really?

Competition is one of many answers. We have a President who's willing to give it a go. At least he's trying to come up with a solution. The opposition offers none such that I've heard. They only complain, bring guns to Presidential rallies and shout "Nazi" and "Communist."

I remember the good old days when being a Democrat was just plain liberal. Now it's Socialist, Marxist, Nazi, and Communist. Wow, that's a lot of meanings for so little a word. Oh, and I forgot if your a Dem you're poor, uneducated and lazy (code word for a minority).

Just like this guy. Just a regular hobo Democrat.

And now according to some of you I need to worry about this guy -
The Health Reform Robot who wants to control our very lives!
Watch out people! He means to make sure we all have access to some health coverage of some sort! Even you sick people! He means to help cut costs and keep 1 in every 700 medical dollars being spent in this country from going to the CEO's of giant mammoth insurance companies!
Perish the thought!!
Hide your children from this world ending monster!
And once again I'll end with my all time favorite line:
Good friggin' grief.
(That's code for I think you're nuts.)
Oh, and one more tiny point..
Promote - move up to a higher rank or position; help forward; begin the process of forming or making.
Provide - make preparation; supply or equip, get in what will be required.
Those two definitions sound pretty ambiguous to me.
So in other words -
It's no longer the 1700's! Times and circumstances change.
It's called life.

Monday, August 24, 2009

As the crazies line up once again I say, I love being a Democrat!

Thank you Carlos for bringing this to my attention. And as he says, honorable mention goes to Washington Congressman Rick Larsen: "I've got facts on my side, you've got Glenn Beck."

I couldn't agree more.

And the winner is.....

Glenn Beck mocking the Holocaust. Wonderful.
I see it is possible to make his name as big as his giant head.
What an embarrassment to his religion.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

The "I've-got-mine-so-screw-you" mentality

I'm tired of hearing the horror stories. I'm tired of hearing the all out lies. I'm tired of supposedly "intelligent" people in Congress still professing Obama was born in Kenya and that if health reform passes our grandparents will be killed by the government. These are the people making the laws of our country. How proud I feel.

I consider myself to be a reasonably intelligent person. I'm generally willing to give people, including those in political office the benefit of the doubt, to a certain degree anyway. For instance, I didn't agree with most of what Bush did in office, but I never demonized him, or compared his leadership to probably the worst political regime in centuries. In fact, it's become so popular now to refer to the "Nazi regime" whenever you disagree with Obama, that it's lost its effectiveness. I don't hear anything you say. I just think you're crazy. Nuts. Stupid. The only people actingly Nazi-like are those that keep professing it. Seriously such hate. Really something to be proud of, that I've-got-mine-so-screw-you mentality. And now they're bringing their guns.


I'm tired too, of hearing about health care rationing, when currently it's the insurance companies denying care. Blue shield denying high-tech cancer care even if a doctor recommends it. Cigna denying a liver-transplant to a 17-year-old who is now dead because of it. And then there's my most favorite one of all: you'll wait forever for care like the dreaded Canada. But according to a study by the Commonwealth Fund, Americans wait longer to see primary-care physicians than patients in Britain, Germany, Australia, or New Zealand - all countries with strong-public health systems. Hmm, how interesting. We pay more for our health care than any other country and yet we have some of the worst care and millions without any coverage at all. Another proud moment.

As far as I'm concerned being able to receive health care is a civil right. Everybody should have the right to receive quality care regardless of how sick they are or how much money they make. It's called human kindness. It's called taking care of each other and working together for a solution. It's not bringing up the Nazis. That's just weak and cowardly in my opinion.
Grow up people.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

W.- A Review

Last night my hubby and I watched W.- the film by Oliver Stone about George W. Bush. I don't know if any of you saw it, but I thought I would give a quick review in case anybody was curious.

I actually didn't want to watch this movie. It's pretty obvious I do not like Bush at all, but I didn't want to watch a movie that bashed him and made him look like some sort of monster. I am very skeptical of movies like this because how can anyone know the intimate conversations he had with Cheney, or Laura, or anybody else? So I came into the movie with very low expectations- and I will say, in the end, I was pleasantly surprised as this movie did exceed those low expectations.

The movie focused on the Iraq War and Bush's relationship with his father. The movie was incredibly well researched- and they give you the research notes, annotations, etc. with the DVD. You see a human side of Bush and his administration. You see that mistakes were made (in particular WMD's- or lack thereof), and that Bush seems genuinely distraught that he made those mistakes. I think that regardless of political persuasion, if one came into the movie with an open mind they could learn a few things about Bush that they didn't know before. However, I think it would make most people angry in some way. For my husband and me, we were angry with Cheney (again) and Bush (again) for the way 9/11 and Iraq were handled, and I imagine conservatives would be angry that it shows Bush as a real person who did some things wrong and not a hero that many wish he was (don't be offended, the same can be said of Obama and liberals).

The acting in the movie was OK, but I have to say the character of Condaleeza Rice drove me nuts- I hated the way she talked and how she enabled Bush. I don't know much about her in real life, but my hubs said he thought she was just as annoying in real life, so maybe she is- I don't know.

Overall, I would give the movie a 3 out of 5.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Dead from Health Care Rationing: Americans - 22, Canadians - 0

Rep. Ted Poe (R-TX) in testimony before the house recently went on to say how health care rationing - like in Canada (whatever!) will lead to dead Americans. According to him:
Madam Speaker, a critically ill baby was born in Canada just last month. Her name is Ava Isabella Stinson. She was born 13 weeks premature and weighed only 2 pounds. Unfortunately, Canada rations health care. And since the government must grant permission for one to have health care access, Ava was unable to get the
treatment she needed to survive....Fortunately for her, Ava's parents were able to quickly transport her to Buffalo, New York. Little Ava's life was saved by the best doctors in the world right here in America.

See the whole splendid load of tripe here.

Read the rest of this post on my new hero blog here.

Another good one, a former top insurance exec blows the whistle, is here.

My favorite quote:

Not only does Texas explicitly ration care, but so does US, implicitly. Multiple
have been been published, all of which show around a 25% increased
chance of death for the uninsured. That breaks down to about 22,000 deaths in 2006 due to health care rationing based on wealth.

I remember when Harry and Louise were on the telly lying through their scripted teeth about Clinton's health care plan. And it worked! Never again, never again.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Palin says she'll stump for conservative Democrats?

Excuse me while I choke on my potato salad.. Wait, they're doing the Heimlich right now. Wait ---okay. hahahahahahhahahahhahahhahahahahahahhahahhaha......

Apparently Jupiter and Saturn have their stars and moons crossed. We're now in an alternate universe where Sarah Palin claims she's bipartisan, and Spock is young again (and he has a girlfriend! they even kiss, ugh) and Kirk can't get any if he tried. Kirk for crying out loud! See here and here if you don't believe me.

Ah, no thanks.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Republican Health Care Reform - Don't Get Sick

I want something done about health care in this country. We have a president now whose willing to do something about it. Finally. He wants to spend billions of dollars to do it.

A few years ago we had a president who wanted to do something about Saddam Hussein. He spent billions of dollars to do it. We let him.

I want someone to explain the difference here. I want to know why some people are willing to justify spending billions of dollars on war with other countries, and not justify spending that much on providing health care for every hard-working American.

My husband works harder than anyone I know. Yet he can't get health insurance now because he has a pre-existing condition. Even if the business he worked for provided it, which they don't because they can't afford the premiums, there would still be a waiting period of at least 1-2 years before they covered his medical condition, if they covered it at all. Not everyone can work for huge companies that provide excellent benefits, except Walmart (the largest employer in the US) of course, they make their employees wait two years, or so I heard.

I want to clarify a common misconception perpetuated by the listeners of Rush Limbaugh who take what that doofus says as actual truth - Americans who want some sort of health care reform do not want something for nothing. So let me make something perfectly clear. My husband doesn't want free medical care. My husband, and all Americans who have some sort of medical condition would like the opportunity to buy insurance at a reasonable price, to not have to decide between going bankrupt or going to the doctor if they feel sick. People are dying every day because of this, because they are not going to the doctor. Not poor people; they get Medicaid. Not rich people; they all can afford insurance, or if they can't get it, they can afford to pay out of pocket. It's the MIDDLE CLASS that is taking it in the pants! So unlike the bumper sticker below, I chose a new one to put on my car: Health Care Reform - a Choice Between Life or Death.

I choose life.
What are you choosing?

Monday, June 29, 2009

How to beat the heat - Part One

When the temperature dips into the 90's I try to save on the AC and cook outside. I looove my dutch oven. A few briquet's, a sturdy pot. What more do you need?

A new favorite I made at girl's camp last week that can easily be made at home too:

Chocolate Love Me Not Cherry Cobbler

1 Devil's Chocolate Cake mix (be sure to get the lumps out)
1 cube butter - divided into tablespoons
2 cans unsweetened cherries, partially drained
1 can of Coke
Pour the two cans of cherries with a little juice into the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle with cake mix and dot with butter. Pour the entire can of Coke over the contents. Bake with about 8 briquets on the bottom and 8 on the top. It takes about 30 minutes if you leave the lid on. Serve with ice cream or the bottled whipping cream.
Seriously, this stuff is awesome!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Want the family discount at your local water park? Better have your marriage certificate, birth certificates, SSN's, date of your last pap smear...

According to a recent article in the local rag, a lesbian couple and their three foster children were denied the family discount at Lava Hot Springs, Idaho, a few weeks ago.

Lava Hot Springs, the popular tourist attraction, is where the lesbian couple with their three foster kids were denied the advertised family price because they don't fit the definition of a family, under Idaho Law.

The Lava Foundation's Executive Director, Mark Lowe, said the state doesn't recognize gay or lesbian marriage and defines a family as one male, one female and children.

So, just a heads up people, if you're divorced, or say you have a common law marriage, even if you have children you're no longer a "family" in the eyes of Lava Hot Springs. They've made what they consider a moral decision to exclude a group of people from a benefit they provide to everyone else. One male and female must be present to get the five dollars off, even though Idaho law doesn't define "family" at all. It defines marriage, a whole other ball of wax.

It seems the last time I frequented one of these types of establishments for a scheduled day of sore, tired feet and a permanent wedgie from one too many water slides, that a slew of paper work to prove I was married was not required to get a discount. If a man and woman appear with children, do the Lava police ask if they're married? (Sorry sir, but you look like the type that won't commit...) I've never been asked before. What about the single mother? Is she too denied the discount, she who probably needs it the most?

No matter what you believe regarding the issue of marriage, families come in all shapes and sizes. Some are big, some small. Some thin, some fat. Rich, poor, whatever. Is it really up to anyone, especially the place of your planned summer activities that get your kids away from the tv and out of the house, to decide what constitutes a "family" or not? In 2009, is it possible that a place of business can legally chose whom it serves and whom it doesn't?

Now Lava Hot Springs is threatening to completely do away with family passes.

This whole issue is almost the dumbest thing I've ever heard.

When IS it OK?

In light of this weeks top stories, I had to post. First, we have the hilarious story of this man:

Oh, Governor Sanford- what a stupid, stupid man you are. Of course, it is incredibly sad that he decided to cheat on his wife when he has four sons at home to take care of- that part is a true tragedy. But, honestly, who is dumb enough to simply vanish for three days (4? 5? I forget how many) when you are the GOVERNOR, not tell anybody where you are going, and expect not to get caught? That part is hilarious to me- I think we can all safely put him out of the presidential nominee category!
Then perhaps the saddest story of all- our beloved Jon and Kate. Who could have seen this one coming? Once again, a love affair coming inbetween the most beloved of couples. Love of the camera, and the love of another woman.

Then, on the radio last night, the DJ was asking a very thoughtful and wonderful question. She asked, "When IS it ok to have an affair?" I had to stop and think. Kate is overbearing- surely that is a good enough reason to have an affair. The Argentine was hot- surely that's a good enough reason. One silly woman actually called in and said it was NEVER ok to have an affair, but that idea was (thankfully) quickly quelched by the listeners. So, I decided to come up with my own list of when it is ok to have an affair:
1. When it starts out "innocent" and "accidentally" happens
2. When your spouse is a little controlling
3. When Ben forgets to floss his teeth- totally grosss!
4. When the guy is REALLY REALLY REALLY hot (or, just a little hot)
5. When Ben comes home late from work- that gives me so much extra free time for other activities
6. When I can pretend like I am hiking and lie to the entire country- that's awesome!
7. When I just need to get away from the kids
8. When I happen to accidentally be in a singles bar and somebody hits on me and makes me feel good about myself
9. Whenever Ben makes me mad
10. Pretty much whenever I want it to be OK.
Any other reasons that it's totally OK to have an affair?

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

To Cross, Or Not To Cross

I was going to write about the Palin/Letterman "controversy" but then I decided that Palin was making me angry with her feigned outcry- after Letterman has already apologized- and it is all just a publicity stunt for her and is rediculous, so I will let somebody else tackle that one!
Let me start out by saying that I am a unionist through and through- the teachers union saved my job my first year of teaching when a student plagiarized a paper, his parents threatened to sue me, and the principal asked for my resignation because I refused to back down. Because of this incident, I have been faithful to the union ever since- attending rallies, conferences, negotiations, mediations, etc. I love unions- I LOVE what they have done for our country. I love 40-hour workweeks and weekends and paid vacations- all of which came about thanks to unions. Which is why it is so strange that I am so conflicted at this time.

I do not know if it is nationwide- and I apologize if it is not and you don't know what I am talking about- but our grocery union (Kroger foods) is considering going on strike because they are being asked to take cuts in benefits and pay. I am not sure of all the details. I am conflicted because never in a million years would I think to cross a picket line- but in this instance, I am at odds in my feelings towards this strike. I have two opposing thoughts:

1. We are in a recession. Many people are being asked to make cuts in their benefits and pay, and most people are grateful just to have a job. It is hard for me to sympathize with them.


2. Grocery stores are typically recession-proof. People still have to eat, and often they are eating out less and therefore buying more from stores, not less. Part of me wonders if the CEO and managers are using the recession as an excuse to make cuts, even though they don't need to- a way to force the "all powerful evil union" to give up some of their power, even though they might be making great profits (I do not know if they are or not, but I could see them using the economy as an excuse).
Of course, a more practical problem is this: I still need to buy groceries! Where will I buy them if not from a grocery store? I am ADAMENTLY opposed to shopping at Wal-Mart because of their huge anti-union stance, and I will absolutely NOT shop there, and that leaves me with very few options.

So here's the question: Cross the picket lines, or support the union?

Monday, June 8, 2009

"Rush and Newt Are Winning"

You all know my hatred of Rush, which is why I found this editorial in the Washington Post at least interesting:

A media environment that tilts to the right is obscuring what President Obama stands for and closing off political options that should be part of the public discussion.

Yes, you read that correctly: If you doubt that there is a conservative inclination in the media, consider which arguments you hear regularly and which you don't. When Rush Limbaugh sneezes or Newt Gingrich tweets, their views ricochet from the Internet to cable television and into the traditional media. It is remarkable how successful they are in setting what passes for the news agenda.
The power of the Limbaugh-Gingrich axis means that Obama is regularly cast as somewhere on the far left end of a truncated political spectrum. He's the guy who nominates a "racist" to the Supreme Court (though Gingrich retreated from the word yesterday), wants to weaken America's defenses against terrorism and is proposing a massive government takeover of the private economy. Steve Forbes, writing for his magazine, recently went so far as to compare Obama's economic policies to those of Juan Peron's Argentina.

Democrats are complicit in building up Gingrich and Limbaugh as the main spokesmen for the Republican Party, since Obama polls so much better than either of them. But the media play an independent role by regularly treating far-right views as mainstream positions and by largely ignoring critiques of Obama that come from elected officials on the left.

This was brought home at this week's annual conference of the Campaign for America's Future, a progressive group that supports Obama but worries about how close his economic advisers are to Wall Street, how long our troops will have to stay in Afghanistan and how much he will be willing to compromise to secure health-care reform.

In other words, they see Obama not as the parody created by the far right but as he actually is: a politician with progressive values but moderate instincts who has hewed to the middle of the road in dealing with the economic crisis, health care, Guantanamo and the war in Afghanistan.
While the right wing's rants get wall-to-wall airtime, you almost never hear from the sort of progressive members of Congress who were on an America's Future panel on Tuesday. Reps. Jared Polis of Colorado, Donna Edwards of Maryland and Raul Grijalva of Arizona all said warm things about the president -- they are Democrats, after all -- but also took issue with some of his policies.

All three, for example, are passionately opposed to his military approach to Afghanistan and want a serious debate over the implications of Obama's strategy. "If we don't ask these questions now," said Edwards, "we'll ask these questions 10 years from now -- I guarantee it."
Polis spoke of how Lyndon Johnson's extraordinary progressive legacy "will always be overshadowed by Vietnam" and said that progressives who were challenging the administration's foreign policy were simply trying to "protect and enhance President Obama's legacy by preventing Afghanistan and Iraq from becoming another Vietnam."

As it happens, I am closer than the progressive trio is to Obama's view on Afghanistan. But why are their voices muffled when they raise legitimate concerns, while Limbaugh's rants get amplified? Isn't Afghanistan a more important issue to debate than a single comment by Judge Sonia Sotomayor about the relative wisdom of Latinas?

Polis, Edwards and Grijalva also noted that proposals for a Canadian-style single-payer health-care system, which they support, have fallen off the political radar. Polis urged his activist audience to accept that reality for now and focus its energy on making sure that a government insurance option, known in policy circles as the "public plan," is part of the menu of choices offered by a reformed health-care system.

But Edwards noted that if the public plan, already a compromise from single-payer, is defined as the left's position in the health-care debate, the entire discussion gets skewed to the right. This makes it far more likely that any public option included in a final bill will be a pale version of the original idea.

Her point has broader application. For all the talk of a media love affair with Obama, there is a deep and largely unconscious conservative bias in the media's discussion of policy. The range of acceptable opinion runs from the moderate left to the far right and cuts off more vigorous progressive perspectives.

Democrats love to think that Limbaugh and Gingrich are weakening the conservative side. But guess what? By dragging the media to the right, Rush and Newt are winning.


Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Stories from the Potty - Part One

Speaking of those smarty-pants astronauts who just successfully repaired the Hubble Telescope (Good going ladies and gents!), my son, who is currently in the last phases of diaper wearing, the other day after he spent about 20 minutes squatting on his potty with a grim, then extremely satisfied set to his pouty mouth said with excitement as he looked down into the toilet seat and the great prize in contained within,

"Look mommy, it's a rocket ship with flames coming out of it!"

Definitely a future astronaut in the making...

Monday, May 18, 2009

Interesting Article

Oops! I put this on the wrong site- sorry!!!

I found this article on msnbc (this is NOT where I get my news, but this article was interesting) about how Americans are becoming more pro-life.
I thought some of you might be interested. I agree that because Obama is so left wing in the area of abortion, it is turning many to become more conservative in that area. Any other thoughts?

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day to all animals everywhere

Motherhood, a precious gift.

Brings a tear to your eye seeing just how deeply and tenderly all creatures care for their babies.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Perhaps I am Naive

I have been thinking today about the suicides of two 11-year-old boys who were bullied at school. Obviously, this is incredibly tragic and my heart goes out to their families.

Bullying has now become a hot topic issue. Certainly bullying is not new, and I would think virtually everybody at some point in their lives goes through some type of bullying in one degree or another. So why is it now such a hot topic? Have no other teenagers ever committed suicide or had psychological problems related to this problem? Perhaps it is because they are so young- 11 is a shocking age to consider suicide! Perhaps it is because rather then bullying for race, people are bullying because of one's sexual orientation- perhaps that is seen as a worse reason to bully. I don't know, but I was thinking three things in regards to this issue.

1. I don't have school age children, so I don't even know how this would work. But, if your child is being bullied by another child, can one get a restraining order against that child? That might cause more problems, I don't know. But, it should at least keep that bully away from your child. That would certainly inconvenience the bully's parents, because that child might have to switch schools to stay away from the one who got the restraining order (I may be wrong, but I believe the one who has the restraining order against them is the one who has to make the changes to stay away from the one seeking the order- but, I could be wrong on that).

2. I in NO way want to say that these boys parents are to blame- certainly the bully's parents are MUCH more to blame, but I am wondering why this bullying would lead to suicide. Like I said before, bullying has been going on since Cain and Abel. But is there something we, as parents, can do if our children are on the receiving end of being bullied to help them have the strength and courage and self esteem to overcome the bullying? I don't know what that would be, but it seems that if parents were more involved in their children's lives and taught them that their worth is not based on a few mean kids at school, maybe it would lead to less tragic results. Again, I am NOT blaming these parents, I am just wondering if there are things we can do with our children that would be stronger then the words and possible attacks of the bullies.

3. A lot of blame has been put on the schools. I can understand that, because that is where much bullying begins and/or occurs. I do think there should be some policies specifically related to bullying- including expelling students who bully. I believe most schools do have some policies, but certainly these policies should be strengthened. But, how much can the schools do? They can not provide body guards to every student. They can not walk home with students to make sure they aren't beat up. They can't duct tape kids' mouths shut on the playground. My first year of teaching we had a huge problem with gays being beat up (that seems to be the group to bully right now- at least in our suburbs here). When I say beat up, I mean beat up- to the point where one of them almost died. I think there were 3 having these problems. Many of the beatings occurred on school grounds, but after school hours- after dances, basketball games, or whatever-when adults had left. All 3 of the boys ended up transferring schools and we, as teachers, had to teach gay tolerance programs in our classes. I had no problem teaching these classes- the problem I had was the comments the students made! It was unbelievable the hatred that came out of their mouths. How can I, as a teacher, change that? They are learning this hatred at home and it is being fed by their peers at school. I can't compete with parents in teaching tolerance! That leads me back to my original thought- how much can we really expect the schools to take responsibility for what occurs?

I have zero answers. These are just some things I have been thinking about in regards to this issue.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Save the Pigs

Apparently the pigs of the USA have revolted against the horrible name "Swine Flu" indicting them as killers and sick bearers the world over.

Thankfully, the United States Government has stepped in to help save them from the humiliation of it all. Instead of "Swine Flu" we are now supposed to call this rabid disease the H1N1 Virus. Thank you Congress! I am glad you have nothing better to do then to help the poor pigs- and give us really long names that are hard to say.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Cry Baby

Idaho's Governor, Butch Otter, (yes, that is his name) is living up to my expectations. His latest move is to veto everything that ends up on his desk (35 bills so far) and keep the state legislators in session until he gets what he wants.

The Governor wants to raise the gas tax and the state lawmakers keep voting it down. The Governor says he won't back down and will continue to veto everything until they pass what he wants. Real mature.

This has, so far, been the second longest running session in Idaho and it is costing the tax payers $30,000 a day to keep it going! Apparently this doesn't matter to Governor Otter.

What makes me so angry is why do we have state legislators who vote on things when the Governor won't respect what they decide? Instead the Governor tries to bully them to do what he wants. It just doesn't seem right to me.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

99 Things You Can Do Outside - Happy Earth Day!

1. Make maple syrup.
2. Stand under a redwood/sequoia.
3. Ski down a mountain.
4. See a saguaro cactus.
5. See an alligator in the wild.
6. Find a shell on a beach.
7. Skip a rock on a lake.
8. See a sunrise.
9. Pick an apple from a tree.
10. Grow a sunflower.
11. Sleep under the stars in a sleeping bag.
12. Find the Big Dipper.
13. Climb a sand dune.
14. Walk in the rain with or without an umbrella.
15. Find a fossil.
16. Take a photo of the Grand Canyon.
17. Go to the lowest point of North America-Badwater, CA
18. See a raptor fly.
19. Be able to identify ten birds.
20. See a mushroom.
21. Visit a tide pool.
22. Visit a volcano.
23. Feel an earthquake.
24. See a tornado.
25. Experience a hurricane.
26. Catch snow on your tongue.
27. See a deer in the wild.
28. Touch a dolphin.
29. Go ice skating on a pond.
30. Go fishing.
31. Go snorkeling.
32. Whittle a stick.
33. Gather chicken eggs.
34. Milk a cow or a goat.
35. Ride a horse.
36. See a moose.
37. Gather acorns.
38. Pick berries and eat some.
39. Watch a lightning storm.
40. Build a campfire.
41 Press a flower.
42. Use binoculars to spot a bird.
43. Identify five wildflowers.
44. Take a photo of Half Dome.
45. Find a piece of obsidian.
46. See a tumbleweed.
47. See a wild snake.
48. Watch a spider spin a web.
49. Climb a tree.
50. Get lost on a hike.
51. Watch ants in a colony.
52. Hatch a butterfly.
53. Climb a rock.
54. See the Continental Divide.
55. See the Northern Lights.
56. See a bear in the wild.
57. Dig for worms.
58. Grow a vegetable and then eat it.
59. See a bat flying.
60. Feel a sea star.
61. Swim in the ocean.
62. See a geyser erupt.
63. Walk in the fog.
64. Observe a bee.
65. Find a bird’s nest.
66. See a beaver’s den.
67. Go whale watching.
68. See a banana slug.
69. Stand on the edge of a cliff.
70. Blow a dandelion.
71. Throw a snowball and build a snowman.
72. Cook an egg on the sidewalk...can you actually do that?
73. See a lightning bug. Or do you call it a firefly?
74. Visit a cave.
75. Make a sandcastle.
76. Hear a cricket.
77. Catch a frog.
78. Watch for the first star in the evening.
79. Smell a skunk.
80. Feel pine sap.
81. Feed a duck.
82. Learn to use a compass or GPS.
83. See a buffalo.
84. Get wet in a waterfall.
85. Swim in a lake.
86. Walk on a log.
87. Feel moss.
88. Jump in a pile of leaves.
89. Fly a kite.
90. Walk barefoot in the mud.
91. Hear a sea lion bark.
92. Hear a coyote.
93. Pan for gold.
94. Crack open a nut.
95. Go snowshoeing.
96. Feel a cattail.
97. Smell a pine forest.
98. Sit under a palm tree.
99. Walk across a stream on rocks.

How many have you done?

Monday, April 20, 2009

When can I move to Afghanistan

A controversial law that critics say legalizes marital rape is unconstitutional and leads toward the "Talibanization" of Afghanistan's legal system, according to a petition signed by dozens of Afghan ministers, lawmakers and officials.
The law, quietly passed and signed last month, has stirred international outcry over women's rights. The law says a husband can have sex with his wife every four days unless she is ill, and it regulates when and for what reasons a wife may leave home alone.

What only four days? We women can do it at least every four hours if we have to. Why not make us do it at least once a day? Why give us four days? We can run away and have an affair with our neighbor in four days. We can go to the store, go to work, take the boys to school and let our daughters sit home and knit, oh but wait that's only if we can leave the house. Which now in Afghanistan we can't.

Hmm, that's progress for you. Glad we've Americanized that country. At least these women are taking to the streets. Now that's a protest I can believe in.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Hmm, this guy looks suspicious...

Never judge a book by its cover - part two

I had to put this on both sites I like it so much. Wonderful stuff!

EMBED-Susan Boyle Stuns Crowd with Epic Singing - Watch more free videos

I Dreamed a Dream (from Les Miserables)

I dreamed a dream in time gone by
When hope was high
And life worth living
I dreamed that love would never die
I dreamed that God would be forgiving.

Then I was young and unafraid
And dreams were made and used
And wasted
There was no ransom to be paid
No song unsung
No wine untasted.

But the tigers come at night
With their voices soft as thunder
As they tear your hope apart
As they turn your dream to shame.

And still
I dream he’ll come to me
That we will live the years together
But there are dreams that cannot be
And there are storms
We cannot weather…

I had a dream my life would be
So different form this hell I’m living
so different now from what it seemed
Now life has killed
The dream I dreamed.

The Best Waterboarding in the Caribbean!

On her blog, Miss Universe, Dayana Mendoza after visiting the Guantanamo Bay detention facility called it "a relaxing, calm, and beautiful place."

Hmmm...perhaps she should return to her modeling career.

I'm so happy she represents our universe.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

I'm so sick of it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I borrowed this from the thinking site, I wasn't going to because at first I didn't think it was appropriate (sorry Judi I know how much you like Mr. Beck) but now, I am so sick of the whining I just can't take it any more. This whole tea party thing is nothing more than an outlet for anti-government wackos to get in the paper and on tv. Fox News has clearly blurred the lines between journalism and advocacy. Never seen anything so "fair and balanced" in my life. Wasn't the original Boston tea party in essence a rebellion against tax breaks for big corporations!! Isn't that the Republican mantra? Their battle cry against the government? Because that's what these protests are: anti-government and anti-taxes. Truly America at its finest. What a proud moment for Republicans. It's nothing more than political posturing. And like Peter said, these people are protesting in public parks paid for with tax dollars. Wonderful. Give me a break!!

My sentiments exactly...

This commercial is from Canada, but I believe it mirrors the belief of many of us poor folk here in the US of A.

Happy tax day. May we all recover with our parts intact.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter!!

This is a great contest if you like these as much as I do! See here for some funny pictures.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

A disturbing trend in wildlife (courtesy of my mother-in-law, who loves me even if I am a Democrat)

The photo below captures a disturbing trend beginning to affect wildlife in the U.S.
Animals, formerly self-sufficient are now showing signs of belonging to the Democratic party. They have apparently learned to just sit and wait for the government to step in and provide for their care and sustenance.
This photo is of a Democrat black bear in Montana nicknamed 'Bearack.'

Hmm, are you sure that's what he's doing? Looks more like he's just trying to find a place to live, and food to eat. His former home is now a parking lot next to an oil field. But still, isn't he cute??

A Child's Version of the Constitution

Each member of my daughter's fifth grade class held a practice version today, which I attended, of their oral reports on the Constitution. Next week each panel of five will read their reports in front of three judges for a final grade. These projects are completely done at school with no parent help whatsoever, other than their practice time at home. They work very hard on these and performing in front of groups can be stressful for some. I was immensely proud of all the ones I saw read theirs today.

Upon completion of each panel's reports, the teacher allowed for a question or two to be asked by the parents. One father inparticular (an annoying father I might add), took issue with one boy's comments on who the signers of the Constitution were, and who they weren't. Specifically, the boy said in his report, that many groups of people were excluded from contributing to this document. American Indians, for one, women, poor people, etc. The father asked, weren't these men that signed this important piece of paper the best and brightest that we had to offer at the time? The boy didn't know what to say, and the teacher had to butt in and offer an explanation, like the one I just said, Indians, women, etc, were originally left out, but gained more rights under it later.

If my thermostat wasn't so out of whack of late, I might've said something, but we were in a child's classroom and it was not the time or place for debate. But still, I whispered to my friend sitting next to me. I was under the impression, while they were smart, intelligent men, they were mainly white, rich land owners. They were hardly a composite slice of what was America at the time. Just because you're rich are you always considered the best and the brightest? I'm sure there were plenty of extremely intelligent people who would've contributed nicely to this famous document, but because they were poor, female or of a different race they were excluded. That's just a fact. Let's not sugar coat it.

Oh, but wait, if women would've been allowed to participate it would've injected too much unnecessary emotion into the whole process. There might've even been tears shed, instead of blood. Or at least that's what these ya-hoos are saying here. But beware before you read it, actual brain cells may die because of it.

I needed to vent. My Bp's well below stroke level now, so I feel better. Sort of.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Get What You Deserve

I was watching TV the other day and I saw a Rent-a-Center commercial that said, "Come in and get the furnishings you deserve!" I was a little shocked by this because I had thought (mistakently, obviously) that we had learned our lesson with this whole economic meltdown: If you can't afford it, you don't "deserve" it. Isn't that what got us into this mess in the first place?

The more I thought about this, the more I am realizing that this idea of spending more then we earn, that we are entitled to flat screen TV's and large cars, is somehow ingrained in our culture. Perhaps I am the last person in America to realize this shocking cultural phenomenon, but I- like I know all of you- was raised to believe that if you can't pay for it, you can't get it (hence, we went without a lot).

Is it just me, or does it seem strange that advertisers are still using the sneaky lines today that they used 5 years ago- that even in the midst of an economic crisis, we are entitled to nice furniture? I do not believe this is a political issue, but rather a societal issue- and one that needs to be changed! We have talked about the economy on a political level, but I guess in this post I am thinking more in terms of or society as a whole, and I have two questions:

1. How did we get to thinking we deserve things we can't afford?
2. How do we teach our children that spending more then you earn is an incorrect principle when so many around them are doing just that?

I am tempted to write Rent-a-Center a letter.

Friday, March 27, 2009

What can you do with a glossy blue pamphlet?

Instead of an actual budget, the Party of NO, er, the Republicans in Congress offered nothing but a Glossy Blue Pamphlet to the American people. Must've been tough to come up with that number. Oh, wait it didn't include any numbers. Hmm...

I'm Seeing Double...

Is anyone else having a hard time telling the difference between this:

And this:

In my head, I'm having a hard time telling the difference. These two men sound exactly alike, and the long drawn out pauses...they're driving me nuts!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Not Impressed With This Season

I have to admit, I am HATING this season of Amazing Race (sorry, Lula- I couldn't wait for your update!). It is only my second season watching, and every time I watch it I get angry.

First and foremost, I absolutely can not stand Victor and Tammy. I just want to slap Victor's rediculous grin off his face. He is so amazingly cocky- how many times can he mention per episode that he is a lawyer?? News flash, Victor- nobody cares or is impressed that you are a lawyer! There are plenty of lawyers- get off your high horse. Then, I loved how Tammy said Sunday, "our dad thinks we're so privledged"- gee, I wonder if it's because last week you said the biggest car you ever drove is a Mercedes Benz, or because while others were crying about the poverty the Indians lived in, they were laughing and thought it was cute that the children were naked eating elephant dung. Ughhh- they make me sick! Now, granted, part of the reason I hate them is because of Nick and Starr from last season, and perhaps that is not fair. But, honestly, they just annoy me to no end! If they win, I have vowed to never watch the show again- and I mean it, I dislike them that much!
Another thing I hate about this season: the U-Turn. When the U-Turn was given, it was rediculous because you had to go straight from the U-Turn to the pit stop, meaning there was no time to make up the time lost from the u-turn- whoever got u-turned was going to be kicked off! It's like they purposely want to take out any suspense that could have been generated. Also, I'm mad they kicked off the strongest team. What I hate about most reality shows is that they always kick off the best team/person so the best person never wins- which I hate. With this u-turn, they were able to kick off one of the strongest teams- which annoyed me.
Also, why do they cast beekeepers and hillbillies? Just so we can get a good laugh at their ignorance? They obviously don't have a chance to win, they just put them on so we can make fun of them. They might as well only have 9 teams.
Then, with this particular season, everything has been perfectly predictable. This happened last season as well, and it's just boring. For instance, I can pretty much guarantee that barring some miracle, the stuntmen will be kicked off next week. We all knew it would either be the stuntmen or the blondes kicked off on Sunday, but it didn't really matter because whoever wasn't kicked off would be kicked off next week.
Sunday's episode, of course, was the most predictable. Victor and Tammy started in front and stayed in front the entire time. Then there was a large cluster of people who stayed a large cluster of people the entire time. In last were the blondes who stayed in last the entire time. The only reason they came close to catching up is because the stuntmen stupidly chose the road block that was 100,000 times harder and more time consuming then the other (another annoyance- road blocks should be equal, and those two were definitely not).
I am sure some of you are loving this season, but I am definitely not!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

The Separation of Church and State

A few months ago I did a post on an Iranian woman who'd been horribly disfigured by acid because she'd refused a marriage proposal. Her attacker had been sentenced to the same fate, and so it seemed justice had finally taken a more fair right turn in that particular case in the Arab world. Or so I thought. Was that sentence a separation of church and state? I know little of the Muslim faith, but if I were wool gathering I would bet that judge's ruling had more to do with public opinion and their religious dogma than the government of Iran enforcing the laws of the land. Because the two are intertwined in many Arab countries.

In Saudi Arabia, a top cleric refused to annul a forced marriage between an 8 year old and a 47 year old man, as long as the man agreed not to have sexual relations with the girl until she'd reached puberty - whatever that means.

"It is incorrect to say that it's not permitted to marry off girls who are 15 and younger," Sheikh Abdul Aziz Al-Sheikh, the kingdom's grand mufti, said in remarks quoted Wednesday in the regional Al-Hayat newspaper. "A girl aged 10 or 12 can be married. Those who think she's too young are wrong and they are being unfair to her."

Christoph Wilcke, a Saudi researcher for Human Rights Watch said, "We've been hearing about these types of cases once every four or five months because the Saudi public is now able to express this kind of anger -- especially so when girls are traded off to older men," Wilcke said.
Wilcke explained that while Saudi ministries may make decisions designed to protect children, "It is still the religious establishment that holds sway in the courts, and in many realms beyond the court."

In another case in Saudi Arabia, a 75 year old woman was sentenced to forty lashes for having her nephew and a friend of his bring her a loaf of bread. Forty lashes!! For having a non-immediate relative visit her of the opposite sex. What about those men I wonder, were they also convicted? Of course not, it's always the woman's fault, no matter her age.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, in Brazil a 9 year old girl who'd become pregnant with twins after being abused by her step-father was allowed to have an abortion - it's legal in Brazil in the case of rape or medical emergency - and what did the Catholic Church do? They excommunicated her mother for allowing it and the doctor for performing the procedure! Even though the child and the twins would've most likely died if allowed to continue to term. What of the vagabond who impregnated her? The church is still mulling over his case because being a rapist isn't as bad apparently.

With the Bernie Madoff's, the Governor Blagojevich's, and more than one case of corrupt judges, I am more than grateful we live in a country where church and state are supposed to be separate. But we must be vigilant. One must only take a brief look around us in other parts of the world to know what can happen if our rights are challenged, or taken away by corrupt people right here at home.