Sunday, November 29, 2009

Brilliant...

We take a break from politics to bring you awesome FAMILY GUY news!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thankgiving Everyone!


Back in Wisconsin (yes it's cold!) for the holiday weekend to spend
Thanksgiving with my Folks. I hope where ever you are you have reasons to be thankful.

Dave

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Wow.... I mean seriously...Wow.

Dear Republican Party...

Meet your "base". THIS is who you have left.

Good luck with that...

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Texas may have outlawed all marriages...

via thinkprogress.org:
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Texas gay marriage ban may have outlawed all marriages in Texas.

In 2005, the state of Texas adopted an amendment to its Constitution that said marriage in the state could only be between one man and one woman. The amendment also declared: “This state or a political subdivision of this state may not create or recognize any legal status identical or similar to marriage.” Now, Barbara Ann Radnofsky, a Houston lawyer and Democratic candidate for attorney general, is saying that the second section effectively “eliminates marriage in Texas”:

She calls it a “massive mistake” and blames the current attorney general, Republican Greg Abbott, for allowing the language to become part of the Texas Constitution. Radnofsky called on Abbott to acknowledge the wording as an error and consider an apology. She also said that another constitutional amendment may be necessary to reverse the problem.

“You do not have to have a fancy law degree to read this and understand what it plainly says,” said Radnofsky, who will be at Texas Christian University today as part of a five-city tour to kick off her campaign.

Abbott’s spokesman Jerry Strickland replied to Radnofsky’s charge by saying, “The Texas Constitution and the marriage statute are entirely constitutional.” This isn’t the first time the reach of the second section has been questioned. Before the amendment passed, a group called Save Texas Marriage warned that a judge could potentially void all marriages in the state if the language became part of the Texas Constitution.
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The always brilliant Young Turks couldn't resist :)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Steven Colbert - The Word

Comedy Central's "The Colbert Report" takes on the Wingnutty-ness of the Catholic Church and the Governor of Rhode Island....

Brilliant.

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
The Word - Skeletons in the Closet
www.colbertnation.com
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Monday, November 09, 2009

Dear DNC: The gAyTM is closed...


From John A. over at americablog:
------------------------------------
Don't Ask, Don't Give
by John Aravosis Via AMERICABLOG.COM

http://www.americablog.com

Americablog.com is launching today a donor boycott of the DNC. The boycott is cosponsored by Daily Kos, Dan Savage, Michelangelo Signorile, Paul Sousa (Founder of Equal Rep in Boston), Pam Spaulding, Robin Tyler (ED of the Equality Campaign, Inc.), Bil Browning for the Bilerico Project and soon others.

It's really more of a "pause," than a boycott. Boycotts sounds so final, and angry. Whereas this campaign is temporary, and is only meant to help some friends - President Obama and the Democratic party - who have lost their way. We are hopeful that via this campaign, our friends will keep their promises.

You can find our Frequently Asked Questions, below, that explain the entire campaign.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is this?
We are asking voters to pledge to withhold contributions to the Democratic National Committee, Organizing for America, and the Obama campaign until the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) is passed, Don’t Ask Don’t Tell (DADT) is repealed, and the so-called Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is repealed -– all of which President Obama repeatedly promised to do if elected.

Why are you asking people to take this pledge?
Candidate Obama promised during the campaign to be the gay community’s “fierce advocate.” He and the Democratic party have not kept their promise.

Can you give examples of how the President and Democrats have not been fierce advocates for the civil rights of gay and lesbian Americans?
1. Asking a religious right activist who claims to have been “cured” of his homosexuality to headline campaign events in South Carolina. Then letting the anti-gay bigot spend half an hour, on stage, haranguing gays at the Obama event.
2. Refusing for months to interview with LGBT newspapers during the campaign,
3. Flubbing question on whether gays are immoral.
4. Inviting anti-gay activist Rick Warren, to give the invocation at the inaugural.
5. Inviting a gay bishop to the inaugural festivities, then not beginning the TV broadcast until the gay bishop has finished and left.
6. Refusing to appoint an openly gay Cabinet member.
7. Abolishing the LGBT outreach position at the DNC.
8. Refusing to re-establish the White House Office of LGBT Outreach.
9. Continuing to discharge two gay servicemembers a day, when he could stop it .
10. Asking for a study on “whether” repealing DADT would hurt national security.
11. Deleting his gay civil rights promise from the White House Web site.
12. Changing his commitment to “repeal” Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, to “changing DADT".
13. Repeatedly defending DOMA in court, when he didn’t have to.
14. Making jokes about marriage equality
15. Claiming he doesn't support, even though he once did.
16. Comparing gay relationships to incest and pedophilia in a DOJ brief.
17. Joking about gay protesters upset about the DOMA brief.
18. Refusing to provide health care benefits to the partners of gay employees
19. Claims that health benefits for partners of fed. employees were new. Not true.
20. Suggesting he won’t get to DADT, or ENDA until his second term, if ever.
21. Won't suspend implementation of anti-gay laws, while suspending others.
22. Working against amendment to defund Don't Ask, Don't Tell investigations 23. Saying won’t repeal DADT until wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have finished.
24. Senator Harry Reid had to beg President Obama to help on DADT repeal.
25. Calling LGBT marchers on Washington, “the Internet left fringe”
26. Saying he won’t touch DOMA in his first term.
27. Refusing to release list of gay attendees at hate crimes reception.
28. Refusing to mention Maine or Washington state, or anything of substance, in his speech to the Human Rights Campaign dinner.
29. Saying gays are “na├»ve” for wanting the president to keep his promise.
30. Refusing to issue a statement specifically opposing anti-gay ballot measures in Maine and Washington state.
31. Attorney General Eric Holders flubs question on Maine, twice -- once while in Maine.
32. DNC/OFA emailed supporters in Maine and Washington state, but didn't ask them to vote against anti-gay ballot measures, then lied about it.
33. Senator Durbin (D-IL), a very close ally of Obama, says Senate probably won’t repeal DADT in 2010, as promised.
34. Senior DNC official accuses gays and lesbians of “helping Republicans” by simply asking Democrats to keep their gay civil rights promise.
35. Refusing to publicly endorse marriage equality for gays.
36. Refusing to this day to interview with the gay press.
37. Refusing to apologize for any of these slights.

But won’t your pledge hurt Democrats?
It never hurts Democrats to keep their promises to the voters. The American people respect strong leaders who have the courage to stick to their beliefs. And it will only help Democrats in the next election to stand by their commitments to a core constituency. If Democratic voters aren't motivated, they won't vote. We are concerned that the President's failure to fulfill his promises may suppress voter participation not only from gay Democrats, but from our families, friends and allies. In a very real way, this is an effort to ensure that we get-out-the-vote in 2010, 2012 and beyond.

But if you don’t give money to the DNC, won’t that help elect Republicans who are even worse on gay issues, and other issues Democrats care about?
We are not calling for a boycott of donations to the DNC. We are simply calling for a pause until the party follows through on its campaign promise to repeal DADT and DOMA, and pass ENDA. The party will get the same donations it would have gotten, when the promises are kept. The Democrats could choose to make good on their promise today. And by doing so, they will only further motivate the Democratic base to again turn out for the next election, a decidedly good thing.

You have to admit, gay rights is controversial – wouldn’t it be political suicide for Democrats to push gay rights?
Democrats should not have promised to support gay civil rights rights in exchange for our votes if they never intended to keep the promise. If we're not controversial during the campaign, when politicians are happy to accept our votes and our money, we cannot accept being labeled controversial after our candidates win. We kept our part of the bargain, we voted for Barack Obama and a Democratic Congress. It’s entirely reasonable for us to ask our elected officials to keep their part of the bargain too.

What's more, gay rights are not controversial. Americans favor allowing openly gay men and lesbian women to serve in the military by a margin of 69% - 26%. By a margin of 57% - 37%, "A clear majority of Americans (57%) favors allowing gay and lesbian couples to enter into legal agreements with each other that would give them many of the same rights as married couples." That can't happen if DOMA is the law. And in fact, if these civil rights promises were controversial, they would have hurt candidate Obama at the polls. But, he proudly and loudly proclaimed his support for LGBT equality, and he won.

No matter how disappointed you are, aren’t Democrats still better than Republicans?
The Republican party is terrible on gay issues. That doesn’t excuse the Democratic party breaking specific promises to the gay community made in exchange for our votes. We didn’t break our promise at the ballot box, the Democrats shouldn’t break theirs after we helped put them into office.

President Obama has only been in office less than a year, why the rush?
In less than a year, serious damage has already been done to the President’s commitments to the gay community. The problem isn’t only that he hasn’t been quick enough to fulfill his promises, it’s that he has actually backtracked on his promises and hurt the cause of civil rights and our community, as detailed above.

But aren’t there bigger priorities than gay rights for the Democrats to deal with, like health care and the economy?
Would President Obama, the DNC and the Congress tell other minorities that their civil rights aren't important? The suggestion is that Democrats have more important things on the table. When won't Democrats have more important priorities than the civil rights of gays and lesbians? Will there ever be a day, a year, an administration, when the President and the Congress won't have serious crises to deal with? Suggesting that gay Americans and their friends and families wait until the President and Congress have nothing else to do is not only insulting, it's a recipe for never. And regardless, we trust that this President, unlike the previous, can walk and chew gum at the same time.

Who is behind this effort?

John Aravosis and Joe Sudbay, two longtime political operatives in Washington, DC, and the editors of AMERICAblog.com. Cosponsors of the campaign include DailyKos, Dan Savage, Michelangelo Signorile, Paul Sousa, and man others. You can contact us at: dncboycott@gmail.com

How can I help?
Sign the pledge, tell your friends about this campaign, read the blog, and stay tuned for updates and action alerts on how you help make sure that the President, the Congress and the Democratic party keep their promises to the LGBT community, our families, our friends and our allies.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Heath Care Reform Passes in the House

One small step for Congress... One giant leap for the American People

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Alan Grayson Reads Names Of Dead In Republican Districts (VIDEO)

(From the Huffington Post)

Rep. Alan Grayson (D-Fla.) took to the floor Wednesday night to read the names of those who had died from lack of health insurance in Republican districts.

Grayson also read stories from his website Namesofthedead.com, which collects health care tragedies from around the country.

"Is it really asking too much of us that we keep people alive?" he asked. Later he added,
"We can save these people, or we can let them die."

Read more at: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/11/05/alan-grayson-reads-names_n_346745.html&cp

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Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Post Election Musings....

I knew watching the television coverage of last night's election was a mistake...

Not so much for the results of the specific races. For the most part last night was not a bad night for the President or for the Democrats. For the GOP winning the Governors races in New Jersey and Virginia will undoubtedly be spun as a "referendum on the Obama Administration".

Yet back here in reality land, Governor's races are about State and Local issues. People don't vote for Governor thinking about what the President of the United States might do or not do. They think about roads, schools, State taxes, and even the environment. Funny how the Republicans don't want to talk about the races that actually had a direct impact on the "Obama Agenda".

For if, as Sean Inanity, Glen Teabagger Beck and Rush Oxycontin Limbaugh have been spewing all day today; last night was a vote on if the country agrees with the direction Barack Obama is taking it, then there is only one real question to ask post-election:

Is the Republican Party's minority in Congress bigger or smaller today as a result of last nights voting? Is the Democratic Party's majority in Congress bigger or smaller as a result of last nights voting?

In the both of the two Congressional seats up for grabs in NY and CA, the Republicans lost. In the case of the Seat in upstate New York they didn't just lose, their nut job teabagger candidate was sent packing embarrassingly early in the evening. So if last night was a referendum on the "Obama Agenda" (as Fox 'News' likes to call it), then Obama won. Fairly decisively.



GOP Minority = Smaller. Democratic Majority = Bigger. Poor Michael Steele, reality is a real bummer, huh? Also, it is worth mentioning again, the ONE candidate who was trying to run against President Obama, New York State Congressional candidate Doug Hoffman was, as I pointed out, sent scurrying with his teabag between his legs early in the evening.

Up in Washington State, voters approved "Marriage-lite" for it's Lesbian and Gay citizens with the passage of a Domestic Partnership Law,
and in New York City, Michael Bloomberg was able to buy a third term as Mayor. It only took one hundred million dollars of his own money, so his re-election victory comes in at the bargain price of $72.00 per vote cast.



Then we have the voting last night up in the State of Maine...



The good citizens of Maine had previously approved marriage for Same Sex couples. Apparently that was too much equality and justice for some, so a ballot initiative just like, (and brought to you by many of the same people behind) California's "Prop 8' was born. Just like Prop 8 in CA , Prop 1 in Maine was to take away an existing civil right from one minority group. When the dust settled early this Morning, the result was also very familiar to those of us here in CA who remember the Prop 8 battle of one year ago...
So apparently the equal protection clause of the United States Constitution only applies to SOME Americans.

So just to be clear; It is in the United States, in 2009 completely acceptable to put the civil rights of a minority group up to popular vote. It is perfectly OK in the USA in the 21rst Century to codify one set of religious sensibilities into civil law and force it on everyone else. On the one year anniversary of the election of the first African-American President, it is perfectly fine to regulate one group of Americans to second class citizenship. If last night's vote in Maine has shown LGBT Americans anything, it is that they are living in an Apartheid state.

The United States of America has become an idiot theocracy where Gays and Lesbians are the one group it is OK to still hate, discriminate against, and who's basic rights to Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness can be subjected to public vote.

To the Mormon Bigots and Catholic Child Molesters who led the fight to take away civil rights, to you I say; when you do finally meet your Lord on Judgement day, I will be praying for you. Because I am not sure that God will know who you are.

To colossal monument to stupidity and hate that is today's Republican Party, to you I say; your hatred of this nation's Constitution,values and its people is sickening. You are completely un-American and are a disgrace to our history, our founding principles and your actions mar the memory of all who have fought and died for our rights and freedoms.

To anyone and everyone who thinks that somehow giving two people of the same gender the same rights as you , not more rights, not "special rights" ONLY the exact SAME rights as you , somehow harms, 'attacks" or even has any impact at all on your life, marriage or family... To you I say, YOU have opened this Pandora's Box of the tyranny of the majority.

Be certain of this, there will come a day when the precedent you have set will turn on you. When it is YOUR rights that are at stake, I hope those you have harmed, are able to do unto you exactly what you have done.

In the meantime, you can take your distortion of Christianity, your disrespect for your fellow citizens, your hate, your bile and your sheer stupidity... and go to hell.

">

Monday, November 02, 2009

Thoughts on a warm California Night...

.


I went up on the roof a little bit ago and saw the brilliant full moon hanging over San Francisco, and I was reminded once again of just how far away London is. I posted that thought as a "status update" on Facebook. A few moments later a wonderful co-worker of mine posted a comment saying she knew the feeling writing about her husband; "Yeah. Afghanistan is pretty far too... I feel your pain, Dude."

(I then responded "Ok you win!")

But the one great inconvenient truth we both face remains the same. When the person you most would like to sitting next to you enjoying this brilliant warm breezy California night is thousands of miles away, well.. it sucks.

Big time...

They say "distance makes the heart grow fonder" and yes, there is some truth to that. But the people who tend to say that are not the ones in long distance relationships. Causing those of us who are to have to fight the urge to deck them for hauling out what cant help but sound like tired platitudes.

Distance doesn't just make the heart grow fonder, it makes the heart hurt.

So hello long distance lovers where ever you are. May your hearts grow not just fonder but stronger. So Hester, Let's both raise a glass and toast that someday when distance becomes an arms reach away.

The GOP's fight to protect Gang Rapists

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Sunday, November 01, 2009

The HRC's strategy of "Hurry Up and Wait"...


The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) recently emailed me asking for money. They do that a lot. Now they are "celebrating their success" with the passage of Federal Hate Crimes law that includes sexual orientation. Now I am thrilled the Matthew Shepherd Act passed. But in the grand scheme of advancing civil rights for LGBT Americans, it really isn't that big of a victory.

Far more LGBT Americans are affected by the two laws the HRC seems completely unable, and even unwilling to pressure the Obama Administration to address. The Federal Defense of Marriage Act, and the Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy of discharging Gay and Lesbian Americans from the U.S. Military. Both of which the HRC says are important but it's too soon and they will have to "work up" to it.

How many times will the HRC allow LGBT Americans to be Charlie Brown running at the Football that Barack "Lucy Van Pelt" Obama is holding. Oh THIS time Little Joey Solmonese is SURE the ball won't be pulled away... if you just pony up pink dollars for the midterm elections, THEN by golly we are gonna get to kick that football clear into next week!

I hate to say it but when it comes to the HRC it's time to "Speak truth to Stupid". The Democratic Party is NOT interested in LGBT rights. They may not be working against equality, but they sure as hell are NOT working for it either.

Am I saying Gays and Lesbians should vote Republican? Well to be honest I don't really know. The sad truth is, it seems like the DNC and the DCCC were far more committed to the LGBT Community when the Democrats were in the minority. Maybe putting them BACK there for two years might get it through their heads you can't keep yanking the ball away and smiling sweetly as you say "Now just isn't the time for your issues."

Part of me thinks it might be better to deal with honest enemies who you know are going to try to stab you in heart, than have dishonest friends who you have to constantly worry about them stabbing you in the back.

Sigh.. I really wish we had a viable third party.. (Sorry Libertarians and Greens keep dreaming . I said a "Viable" third party and neither of you are there yet.)

Now the most recent excuse for not being "able" to keep major campaign promises on LGBT rights comes to us from the White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel. John Aravosis over at AMERICABLOG reports that at the recent White House ceremony for the Matthew Shepherd Hate Crimes Prevention Act, Emanuel was confronted by a woman from Massachusetts about the Administration less than stellar record so far..

"I went over to Rahm Emmanuel, who was standing by himself. I shook his hand and said, So when are you going to stop with this one man one woman stuff? What do you mean? he said. I raised my eyebrows and said, You know what I mean, and it makes your candidate look like he's stuck in the 1990's. It' 2009. C'mon. Let's get healthcare first, he said. I said, I don't know if I can wait that long. And off he scurried...".

And now it is becoming clear we won't even "get Health Care". We will get a watered down opt-outable giveaway to Private Insurance companies that will put the problem down the road another decade where it will bankrupt us... nice.

President Obama is an excellent public speaker but to date has shown he is woefully ineffective as an actual leader. He speaks from the left but is terrified to govern from anywhere but the center and just right of center. When it comes to LGBT equality, they can't keep their promises because....

1. There is too much on the President's plate. Then it will be because...
2. Its too hot of an issue to touch during a Midterm Election year. Then it will be...
3. Sorry we lost too many seats in the Midterms we don't have the votes. THEN it will be...
4. Re-elect us THEN we will do everything we said we were going to do during the first term.

The Obama administration is paralyzed with fear of losing an election that is 3 years away. As a result they will lose what majority they have in Congress in 2010, and American People being relatively stupid and all too eager to vote against their own best interests, will boot him out of the White House in 2012 .