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Archives for 11/13/2005 - 11/19/2005

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Issaquah! Update

posted by on November 19 at 11:54 AM

Liveslogger’s aunt is now 27 votes ahead of her (unworthy) opponent in her race for Issaquah city council. It’s one of the tightest races of the election—or, as Liveslogger likes to say, it’s this year’s Gregoire/Rossi. The Seattle Times has the story, complete with details about Liveslogger’s aunt’s BlackBerry. Liveslogger wants a BlackBerry.

Friday, November 18, 2005

Sunday, Sunday, Sunday

posted by on November 18 at 4:37 PM

Got any plans for Sunday night?

“This is not a freak show”

posted by on November 18 at 4:05 PM

A new exhibit at South Street Seaport in NYC features cadavers in various educational, unfreak-like poses.

Have you ever wanted to see a fat woman quartered? Then this is the exhibit for you!

“People go away fascinated by what they’ve seen, and they’re better educated about their bodies,” says Dr. Glover, an anatomy professor who penned the exhibits’ explanatory pieces, which warn audiences of the dangers of obesity, steroid use, inactivity, and maybe being a Chinese prisoner on death row.

You will also get an idea of what you’d look like if you were a deboned Chinese cadaver (and/or executed prisoner, as the anti-cadaver-as-art “human rights” mutterings go) forced to lock hands with your own skeleton and dance a jig.

Or if you were a “sprinter whose flayed muscles fly around him like slices of prosciutto.” (a tragically common problem with Chinese athletes)

A charming array of photos can be browsed through via the full NY Times article here.

Re: House on Fire

posted by on November 18 at 3:45 PM

You should be able to watch it all live, if you have RealPlayer, here.

Schmidt Head Says: “We’re Not Islamic”

posted by on November 18 at 3:26 PM

Gee I wonder if George W. Bush and Karen Hughes think these comments from Ohio’s Rep. Jean Schmidt are going to help or hurt their efforts to win “hearts and minds” in the Islamic world? Or votes from American Muslims, Islamic-born and converts, here at home?

You know, you all are not getting the big picture. The big picture is that these Islamic insurgents want to destroy us. They don’t like us. They don’t like us because we’re black, we’re white, we’re Christian, we’re Jew, we’re educated, we’re free, we’re not Islamic. We can never be Islamic because we were not born Islamic.

Rep. Schmidt Head made these comments during a press conference held yesterday so that Republican Reps could respond to Dem Rep. Murtha’s speech calling for U.S. troops to leave Iraq. Without a doubt Al-Jazeera is beaming Schmidt’s comments into homes all over the Islamic world.


posted by on November 18 at 3:25 PM

In Jack Murtha’s Nov. 17 press statement on the Iraq War, he said:

I believe with a U.S. troop redeployment, the Iraq security forces will be incentivized to take control.

Murtha said many fine things in this speech, but someone should’ve prevented his use of the word “incentivized”; surely motivated serves the purpose much better? I’m all for neologisms, but this was a linguistic felony.

Here’s what Dick Falkenbury Thinks

posted by on November 18 at 3:23 PM

Dick Falkenbury, the taxi driver who dreamed up the original monorail idea that voters approved back in 1997, dropped off this essay at the Stranger offices:

So who fucked up my monorail?

The monorail is an idea so pure and simple that it makes your heart ache to see it so screwed up.

Of course, one’s first thoughts turn to conspiracy like when a lover leaves or the power goes out or your team looses. It was the Power Mad Politicians and the Pro Light Rail Folks with maybe Paul Allen holding their coats. The Media and the Bond Sellers from Wall Street got together n the men’s room of the Bank of America and killed the beloved monorail.

I’ve met a lot of these people and they aren’t smart enough to pull off shoplifting a cigar from a blind storekeeper.

No, I’m afraid that this was an inside job. The staff, with the deaf and dumb board of the Seattle Monorail Project (SMP) cheering them on, killed the monorailunintentionallybut dead nonetheless.

Continue reading "Here's what Dick Falkenbury Thinks" »

Re: House on Fire

posted by on November 18 at 3:10 PM

The GOP’s ploy got off to a rough start when, as Talking Points Memo reports,

During the debate, Rep. Jean Schmidt (R-OH) came on the floor and read a letter purporting to be from a United States Marine which said something to the effect of “Please tell Murtha, cowards cut and run, Marines never do.” The clear ‘feel’ of her statement was that she was calling him a coward. The House burst into yells and pandemonium. Schmidt was forced to come back to the House floor and ask that her remarks be stricken from the record.

Americablog reports Rep. Schmidt is wearing an American flag sweater, solidifying her as little more than a bullshit patriot, especially when the man she attacked on the floor has, according to an emailer to Andrew Sullivan,

“…been visiting our wounded troops weekly at Walter Reed Army Medical Center since the war began.”

House on Fire

posted by on November 18 at 2:38 PM

There’s a war on in the House of Representatives, with the Rs pushing for a vote a resolution calling for the troops to be pulled out of Iraq immediately. They’re going to vote against it, and so are most Dems, and they’ll point to this as “support” for the President’s “stay-the-course” position on Iraq. It’s also a way for the Rs to humiliate the Democratic hawk, Rep. Murtha, who gave a speech yesterday in which he called for the troops to be withdrawn in six months.

GOP leaders decided to act little more than 24 hours after Rep. John Murtha, a hawkish Democrat with close ties to the military, said the time had come to pull out the troops.

By forcing the issue to a vote, Republicans placed many Democrats in a politically unappealing position - whether to side with Murtha and expose themselves to attacks from the White House and congressional Republicans, or whether to oppose him and risk angering the voters that polls show want an end to the conflict.

Murtha offered a resolution that would force the president to withdraw the nearly 160,000 troops in Iraq “at the earliest practicable date.” It would establish a quick-reaction force and a nearby presence of Marines in the region.

What the Rs are doing is ugly, it’s grandstanding, and it’s bullshit, but it’s a perfect example of the GOP’s willingness and ability to go on the offensive. So what should the Dems do? GO ON THE FUCKING OFFENSIVE THEMSELVES! In an op-ed in the New York Times this week, I called on the Dems to go on the offensive concerning the right to privacy. Reacting to what’s going down in the House right now, John Aravosis at Americablog is calling on the Dems to go on the offensive with some resolutions of their ownhere’s his entire blog post, because it’s so FUCKING BRILLIANT. I hope to God the Dems in the House are reading Americablog and that they TAKE JOHN’S FUCKING ADVICE!

The Democratic House members should propose a resolution saying “President Bush is doing a great job executing the war in Iraq”

I’m serious. The Republicans are now pushing a resolution in the House, forcing a vote on whether we should immediately withdraw our troops from Iraq. The Republicans of course don’t want to remove the troops, they think the war is going fine, so they’re trying to embarrass the Dems into voting against withdrawing the troops, and thus voting against Congressman Murtha, who so bravely yesterday called for the US to withdraw.

But that’s fine. Let’s join the Republicans at their same game.

The Dems should try to offer a resolution, and have the Repubs block it, proclaiming the sense of the Congress that President Bush is doing a great job - a heck of a job, one might say - executing the war in Iraq. If the Republicans kill the resolution, they look like they’re afraid to endorse Bush, and if they vote for the resolution, they’ll look like idiots calling this a great job when the majority of the public doesn’t agree.

Other possible resolutions to offer:

- We are winning the Iraq war.
- Invading Iraq was a great idea.
- Knowing what they know now they’d vote to invade Iraq again.

You get the picture.

Mayor Gridlock T-Shirts Have Been Ordered!

posted by on November 18 at 2:15 PM

We’ve gotten more than 200 requests for “Mayor Gridlock” t-shirts, so we’re having ‘em printed up this weekend. Details about the exact price (looks like they’ll be right around $10), and how to order your very own “Mayor Gridlock” t-shirt coming shortly. If you want to jump to the head of the line, send an email to NOW, and you’ll be the first on your traffic-clogged block to own one!


What is Seattle saying about “Mayor Gridlock” t-shirts?

funnily enough, i was going to drop you a line of praise today regarding the cover. i wanted to humbly suggest that you make t-shirts or something. so i was pleased to read the slog and see that you’ve beat me to the punch. i would love to buy one. i often see ol’ greg at my neighborhood grocery (metropolitan market, admiral district) and can only hope that i will be wearing it next time i see him in the aisles.
Let me be the first on my block to sport one of the new “Mayor Gridlock” t-shirts. I’m not nearly as big as Hizzoner Haystack, but an XL will suit me nonetheless.
Yes I want one! Or two or three (great christmas presents). It’s fabulous just the way it is, but one small suggestion - any way to squeeze in “Seattle is Fawked” on the back?
Sign me up for one of those t-shirts! I was so bummed to see the monorail go down like that… and I don’t even live in Seattle anymore. I don’t know how much good I’ll do wearing it around DC, but I just can’t look at that image without snickering incessantly. You guys are great. Keep up the good work!
I live in West Seattle and I am pissed! Also, a little scared about how fucked life might become for me. Please let me wear your t-shirt in the neighborhood I share with Mayor Gridlock.

Let Mayor Gridlock know you’re pissed about his more-roads, more-traffic, more-greenhouse-gas spewing agenda. Get your “Mayor Gridlock” t-shirt now! That email address again: Order now! (Or let us know you wanna order and as soon as we know how you can we’ll send you an email with all the info.) That email address again:

If the Flu Don’t Kill You…

posted by on November 18 at 2:12 PM

…the antidote might. According to the International Herald Tribune, the FDA is looking into the deaths of 12 Japanese children who had been taking Tamiflu, touted as our best hope against an avian flu pandemic.

FDA reviewers are also checking out alleged “neuropsychiatric events” associated with Tamiflu - like the 8-year-old who had a terrifying hallucination and ran out of his house and the two Japanese boys (one 12, one 13) who jumped out of second story windows, all after taking their medicine.

Ugly Gynie Doctor

posted by on November 18 at 2:01 PM

It’s time we bring it out into the open. It’s time to say what we are all thinking. You know and I know that Dr. Charles Momah, the gynecologist who was convicted of two counts of rape, is one ugly motherfucker. The dailies aren’t saying it; they just show his picture ‘cause the picture says it all. The question reporters really want to ask is this: How could any woman allow a man as ugly as that to get all up in her stuff?

This Is a Very Sensitive Moment

posted by on November 18 at 1:58 PM

There’s a great article in the New Yorker this week about young journalists, bloggers, and the state of the reform movement in Iran. It isn’t available online, but you can read a Q&A with reporter Laura Secor here.

My favorite quote from the article:

I asked Belashadi [a young “Basiji,” or member of the state-run conservative militia assigned to university campuses] what he thought should be done about the satellite channels on which Iranians watch illicit fare such as music videos, Western movies, and political commentary from Iranian exiles abroad. “The majority of the population is young,” he said. “Young people by nature are horny. Because they are horny, they like to watch satellite channels where there are films or programs they can jerk off to.” [ … ] He concluded, “We have to do something about satellite television to keep society free from this horny jerk-off situation.”

My translator implored me, in a jaw-clenched monotone, “Please do not laugh right now. This is a very sensitive moment.”

What a syllogism, eh? The rest of the article is more somber. Also in the New Yorker this week: a godawful story by Haruki Murakami about spaghetti and loneliness and the loneliness of eating spaghetti. Will somebody tell me what’s so great about Murakami?

I Just Can’t Help It….

posted by on November 18 at 1:56 PM

Out of all the challengers in the three competitive city council races this year, Casey Corr fared the worst, getting just 54,000 votes, or 36%, in his race against incumbent Jan Drago.

Corr didn’t even get as many votes as bush-league Nickels challenger Al Runte. Runte got nearly 58,000 votes.

Judging from the latest campaign finance reports, Runte spent $12,000 on his campaignor 20 cents per vote while Casey Corr spent $215,000 or $4 a vote.

Bach to Hegel

posted by on November 18 at 1:30 PM

Dave Segal, ignore that crank and check out this passage from the preface of Phenomenology of Mind. It’s like listening to a fugue by Bach:

A self having knowledge purely of itself in the absolute antithesis of itself, this pure ether as such, is the very soil where science flourishes, is knowledge in universal form. The beginning of philosophy presupposes or demands from consciousness that it should feel at home in this element. But this element only attains its perfect meaning and acquires transparency through the process of gradually developing it. It is pure spirituality as the universal which assumes the shape of simple immediacy; and this simple element, existing as such, is the field of science, is thinking, which can be only in mind.

Strangercrombie 2005!

posted by on November 18 at 1:25 PM

Dear everybody: We’re getting deep into November, which means one thing: The 2005 Strangercrombie Gift Auction will soon be upon uswith the whopping catalog of this year’s knockout gift packages hitting the streets in our December 8 issue.

For those unfamiliar with Strangercrombie: It started in 2002, when we were obsessed with the soft-porn allure of Abercrombie & Fitch catalogs. Anxious for a reason to photograph hot folks in their underpants, we invented the first Strangercrombie Gift Catalog, featuring the aforementioned hot folks posing with a bevy of thrown-together gift packages, which we decided to auction over eBay and give the profits to local hunger-fighting do-gooders Northwest Harvest. To our great surprise, we raised $6000, and Strangercrombie’s been a growing institution ever since, netting $15K in 2003, and $30K in 2004.

And now we come to 2005, which is sure to bring the biggest Strangercrombie yet. As the stature of the event has grown, so has the quality of the auctioned giftswhere we once auctioned off a videotape of Brad Steinbacher eating a sandwich, we were soon offering such ass-kicking treats as a listening party for your band’s demo with Sub Pop executives and shopping sprees at Butch Blum, not to mention all the ridiculous and hilarious shit without which Strangercrombie wouldn’t be Strangercrombie.

Like I said, this year will bring a feast of amazing auction items (among the already-present highlights: SIFF passes, X Boxes, and chartered rock-star bus trip to the Northwest’s “Sin City”Portland.) For a full run-down of items, check the Dec. 8 issue, and get ready to start your bidding….

Kristina Hill Interview, Extended Version

posted by on November 18 at 1:00 PM

For those who just can’t get enough post-mortem monorail analysis, here’s the full transcript of my interview with Kristina Hill, in which the Seattle Monorail Board Project chair speaks eloquently and expansively about what went wrong, who’s to blame, and what’s next.

The Monorail: What Next?

posted by on November 18 at 12:54 PM

Earlier this week, I participated in a forum sponsored by the Sierra Club. At issue: What will happen to the monorail’s taxing authority now that the Seattle Monorail Project is dead? (The forum airs on the Seattle Channel tonight at 9, right after a show on natural disasters.) State Sen. Ken Jacobsen wants to put the money toward road projects like the viaduct and SR 520; City Council member Richard Conlin and Deputy Mayor Tim Ceis want the tax to be part of the soon-to-be-resurrected Regional Transportation Investment District, which would help pay for “megaprojects” like the viaduct.

The fact that these government officials are already salivating over the monorail’s taxing authority shows that monorail agency officials were right all along: the battle over the monorail was never really about the cost or the route or even the technology. It was about the monorail’s 1.4-percent motor-vehicle excise tax (MVET), which other transportation agencies like RTID wanted for themselves. Now that the monorail is dead, the agencies that spent the last three years eyeing its rich tax base - a phenomenon former SMP director Joel Horn called “MVET envy” - are figuring out how to split it up.

I don’t think a lack of support from Seattle’s political establishment is the only reason the monorail died. But I do think that if Greg Nickels and the City Council had ever really supported the project, they would have done everything in their power to get it built. Sound Transit got nine months to sort out its financial snafus (cutting their initial line by seven miles without a public vote); the monorail got four weeks. The real loser here may be the initiative process itself, which Seattle’s political leadership has done everything in its power to undermine.

Sound Transit Gets Creative

posted by on November 18 at 12:41 PM

Here’s an interesting PI story about Sound Transit’s finance plan.

Today in Speculation

posted by on November 18 at 12:20 PM

There is only one thing truly worth speculating about today, and that is this…


* Fitzgerald, in court filings, has indicated that he may be preparing for more indictments. See here and here, for starters.

Who says smokers have tiny dicks?

posted by on November 18 at 11:47 AM

Not this guy.

re: Kwazy Kwistians

posted by on November 18 at 10:47 AM

I’ve embarrassed that I’ve watched an entire episode of that Trading Spouses trash, and it’s one of the few reality shows I can swear is scripted. The one I saw had a family of like ten who lived in a trailer next to their house because they wanted to all sleep together. Come on. It seemed like the kind of show where everyone always learns a special lesson, thanks to some cloying screenwriters (that job and a “reporter” job at the Weekly World News probably rank similarly on the “come up with new crazy fake shit” scale). I wish I had two more hands to give that show four thumbs down.

Kwazy Kwistians

posted by on November 18 at 10:29 AM

As reality television has evolved, producers have got much cannier about “what works,” and the choreographed collisions between contestants have only gotten more and more garish.

Case in point: Last week’s Trading Spouses: Meet Your New Mommy. Such life-swapping shows have long dabbled in cartoonish pairings of contestants (vegan activist mom gets sent to live in a house filled with taxidermy!) with occasionally rich results (if there’s anything funnier than a vegan activist mom offering a sobbing apology to a mounted deer head, please tell me what it is).

But things might’ve crossed over to the dark side with last week’s Trading Spouses, in which a professional hypnotherapist swapped lives with a die-hard born-again Christian. Unsurprisingly, the Christian provided the majority of the dramahearing Satan in the family’s dryer, demanding to be taken to a church after accidentally speaking to a psychic on the phoneall culminating in a fire-breathing freak-out available for your viewing pleasure here.

FYI: the envelope you see the woman tearing up contains the reward money her family was due to receive for participating in the show. Key twist: the spending of each family’s $50,000 prize money is decided by the opposite mother. In this case, the hypnotherapist mom earmarked various funds for the Christian mom’s kids to fulfill their dreams plus $20,000 for the Christian mom to receive the gastric-bypass surgery she wanted. Meanwhile the Christian mom gave the hypnotherapist’s family engraved King James bibles, funds for various family projects, and $400 to get rid of their possessed dryer.

I know it’s not fair to judge a people by their reality-TV counterparts, but damn, this is an entertaining bit of Christian psychosis.

I love this band

posted by on November 18 at 10:16 AM

Tokyo Elektron are better than coffee, better than whiskey, better than anything else that can pump your adrenaline. They’re good old fashioned garage punk, like the Reatards, the Cheater Slicks, and the like. If you’re in the mood for massive distortion distraction, they’re your band. New self-titled record out on Empty. I can’t stop listening to it.

Spotted in the “personal care” aisle…

posted by on November 18 at 10:16 AM

at the Harvard Market QFC yesterday:


Sucks to be Paul

posted by on November 18 at 9:02 AM

As I’ve slogged already, I’m not crazy about Paul McCartney.

Still, I’m starting to feel bad for the bastard. One month after being insulted in public by a widow, he’ll soon be dissed in an even more public venue by a corpse.

Can’t a motherfucker get a fair fight?

A note to Messrs. Mudede and Segal

posted by on November 18 at 8:25 AM

Greetings. If I wanted to read about 18th and 19th (and hell, 20th) century philosophers, I’d read the goddamn Stranger, which I have to do already, and I’d prefer not to be reminded. So this is the “blog-o-sphere”? I have two words for it: zzz.

I’m reminded of a canard made famous by my old business partner Sam Goldwyn (whom I knew when he was still Shmuel Geldfish, peddling ice from the back of a donkey-drawn cart): “If you have a message, call Western Union.”

Never forget: I am watching you.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Pleasant Thoughts from Denis Diderot

posted by on November 17 at 5:21 PM

Whenever despair overtakes me and all seems futile, I can count on 18th-century philosopher and author of Encyclopédie Denis Diderot to elevate my spirits. Take it away, Monsieur!

LIFE: “To be born in imbecility, in the midst of pain and crisis to be the plaything of ignorance, error, need, sickness, wickedness, and passions; to return step by step to imbecility, from the time of lisping to that of doting; to live among knaves and charlatans of all kinds; to die between one man who takes your pulse and another who troubles your head; never to know where you come from, why you come and where you are going! That is what is called the most important gift of our parents and nature. Life.”

Now that you’re fully rejuvenated, enjoy this heart-warming aphorism: “Men will never be free until the last king [feel free to substitute president or dictator here] is strangled with the entrails of the last priest.”

Deja Poo

posted by on November 17 at 3:47 PM

What was so recently a delightful joke has become a horrible I, Anonymous reality.

Today in Speculation

posted by on November 17 at 3:39 PM

I am so mad at Bob Woodward. Here I was, enjoying a nice lull in speculation that I thought might last all the way until Scooter Libby’s trial, and Woodward has to go and throw me back into the darkest depths of blogosphere conjecture, where I have been toiling away all day in an effort to answer the question I’m now getting from coworkers and friends: “What does this Woodward thing mean?” I don’t know, but a lot of people today think they do…


* Let’s start with the major dailies. If you haven’t read them by now, you’re woefully far behind, but: The NYT plays the process of elimination game trying to figure out who leaked Plame info to Woodward long before Libby even began his leaky stroll through D.C., and notes: “Mr. Cheney did not join the parade of denials.” The Washington Post says Woodward apologizes for not telling anyone he had received a leak about Plame even as he was playing down the seriousness of the leak on national TV. It also says the revelation could take some of the heat off Libby. (Bloomberg News, however, begs to differ.)

* Now, to the blogs: Raw Story fingers National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley as Woodward’s source. Talking Points Memo corrects a flawed meme. Arianna, sensing an opportunity to hang another heavy-weight journalist head over her mantle, poses 15 questions for Bob Woodward. Americablog has Joseph Wilson joining in the Woodward-rapping. And Atrios has the “Booby Files.”

* Somewhere between a blog and a daily, Jack Schafer in Slate asks “What kind of journalist…”

* And now I will throw a semi-related bone to conspiracy theorists.

And the Durandy Goes On…

posted by on November 17 at 2:47 PM

Durandy is kicking off a public campaign to put his next big Duran Duran memoribilia exhibit in the Northwest. Check out his plea below if you’re a big DD fan.

Well, I have really done it this time. Yesterday on the latest Wild Boy Wednesday on 107.7, I officially kicked off the first step in a big campaign to put on my next public Duran Duran poster exhibition in the Northwest. You can hear it on the mp3 recording of the broadcast if you’d like- almost all the mp3s are up on my site now.

Continue reading "And the Durandy Goes On..." »

Breathing will be less deadly after Dec 8

posted by on November 17 at 2:02 PM

“Heart attack rates in Pueblo, Colo., dropped by 27 percent in the 18 months after a smoking ban was imposed in bars, restaurants, and other public places.” Read the P-I’s story from Monday.

Discretionary Trips

posted by on November 17 at 1:44 PM

In this week’s Mayor Gridlock cover story, I wrote, “[People’s Waterfront Coalition leader] Moon points out that when the viaduct was closed temporarily for months after the February 2001 earthquake, traffic in the area fell by 27 percentdown to 80,000 trips a day. Out of necessity, commuters changed their habits and the sky didn’t fall.”

Obviously, the Viaduct wasn’t closed for months. It was closed for days. Moon actually said that when the Viaduct reopened, the number of trips on it fell to 80,000 per day from 110,000 prior to the earthquake. That means roughly 30,000 trips were discretionary, probably not really necessary, and stopped happening. This trend continued for a few months after the Viaduct was closed and reopened.

Mayor Gridlock T-Shirt Design

posted by on November 17 at 1:41 PM


So this is what our “Mayor Gridlock” t-shirts will look like. Please note that there’s no Stranger logo. This isn’t a marketing/branding opportunity for us. This is about the mayor and the mayor only. Let me know if you wanna get a t-shirt by sending an email to

Lambert House Benefit

posted by on November 17 at 1:05 PM

Looking for something fun to do tonight? Why not go watch some men in drag raise some dough for GLBT kids who go to Lambert House?


Freak Dancing Is Not All That

posted by on November 17 at 1:00 PM

What I miss from my high school years is slow dancing; you got a lot more out of that than the panicked moves of freak dancing. What a young erection adores are slow, pressed rubs to slow music, not all of that crunky, frantic pumping.

Sexy, Sexy Fitzgerald

posted by on November 17 at 12:40 PM

I have been arguing for months that there is something sexy about Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald, and as I’ve been doing so, most people have looked at me like I’m crazy. I don’t know if this should make me feel less crazy, but People Magazine apparently agrees with me.


All the President’s Patsies

posted by on November 17 at 11:42 AM

The Washington Post should have fired Bob Woodward after his last two books came out. Certainly they can’t avoid firing him now.

Mayor Gridlock T-Shirts?

posted by on November 17 at 11:20 AM

I don’t think Seattle’s mayor likes this week’s cover…


…but a lot of our readers in Seattle do. The print edition of the paper hasn’t been out for 24 hours yet and we’ve already gotten a bunch of requests for Mayor Gridlock t-shirts. If we get a few more, we’ll be able to have ‘em printed up and sell ‘em at cost. Let us know if you want one too.

First Christmas, now the Holocaust

posted by on November 17 at 11:02 AM

The Raw Story reports that David Irving, a British historian/professional doubting Thomas, has been arrested for denying the Holocaust.

Apparently, clever Austria made Holocaust denial a crime in 1989.

Re: This Man is a Very, Very Bad Man

posted by on November 17 at 10:49 AM

Yesterday John Avarosis at Americablog posted this about Cheney’s lies. Congressman Henry Waxman of California released a report that documents 51 instances in which Cheney lied to the American people about Iraq. Read it and weep.

This Man is a Very, Very Bad Man

posted by on November 17 at 10:40 AM

“In Washington you can ordinarily rely on some basic measure of truthfulness and good faith in the conduct of political debate.

But in the last several weeks we have seen a wild departure from that tradition.

And the suggestion that’s been made by some US senators that the president of the United States or any member of this administration purposely misled the American people on pre-war intelligence is one of the most dishonest and reprehensible charges ever aired in this city.”

Speech Transcript

God, what a bastard.

It is increasingly clear to a majority of Americans—and has been clear to some of us for years—that the Bush administration absolutely “misled the American people on pre-war intelligence.” Whether it was purposeful or not is still up for debate, primarily because they won’t let anyone investigate it. If it wasn’t purposeful, then it was the result of massive incompetence. Either way, it’s not the fault of the people who are pointing it out.

Evil. Pure and simple. If you’re religious, here’s your devil, in action.

Dick Cheney himself was a primary misleader. He repeatedly made public assertions that he absolutely knew to be false. He has never been made to answer for any of it. We have met the enemy, and he is a Dick.

Godamn Kids

posted by on November 17 at 10:34 AM

Comedian Aziz Ansari may be bored (according to his web site moniker, at least) but his skits with comedian Rob Huebel are fucking hilarious. They play Hollywood agents for child stars, and you can watch them slime their way through the world of pint size actors for their Shutterbug shorts, available here, here, and here. Swearing at kids is really funny.

And speaking of Emily Hall…

posted by on November 17 at 10:26 AM

The Stranger’s former arts editor and visual art critic (who single-handedly invented visual art criticism at The Stranger and remains the best art critic this city has ever had) just got a fancy job as an associate editor for exhibition catalogues at MOMA, in New York City. Woo-hoo!

But she’s shy, Emily, and I have no more details for you. For more on MOMA, here’s John Updike writing in The New Yorker last year just before the opening of the new MOMA, and here’s Jerry Saltz hating on the new MOMA in the Village Voice last week.

re: Freak Out

posted by on November 17 at 10:26 AM

That story reminds me of getting a talking to in sixth grade because a bunch of us were caught “playing grab fanny” (or, in the girls’ cases, getting our fannies grabbed, which was very exciting back then) during square dancing lessons. The one reason I can see outlawing dance moves where “‘one dancer bends all the way down’ and the other thrusts themselves toward the buttocks of the person bending down” is because when you hit your twenties, that’s not a good look for the dance floor at all. Especially when you’re an Elimidate contestant.

Go Joan

posted by on November 17 at 10:15 AM

I don’t know how I missed this, but two days ago Joan Didion won the National Book Award. The judges called The Year of Magical Thinking “a masterpiece in two genres: memoir and investigative journalism.” Their full statement (and an ectoplasmic picture of Didion) can be found here.

In case you missed it, a couple writers (Charles D’Ambrosio, David Rakoff, Emilys Hall and White, and others) weighed in on the books page a couple weeks ago about what of their own writing they’ve stolen from Didion, whom I would argue is greatest American essayist of the last half-century.

Freak Out

posted by on November 17 at 10:15 AM

Seattle’s ban on fun continues. Now, the school district is banning “Freak” Dancing.

The Seattle Times is Right!

posted by on November 17 at 9:47 AM

The lead editorial in this morning’s The Seattle Times is spot on. They call for Mayor Gridlock to put up or shut up on his Viaduct tunnel plan.

Nickels, who infamously pulled the plug on the monorail because of a $400,000 or 40% budgeting shortfall in its construction plan (according to the mayor’s math anyway), is himself currently operating at a 92%or $2.2 billion (!!)shortfall when it comes to his highway plan.

The Seattle Times says he’s got 4 months (by March) to come up with a workable plan. I’d give the Mayor 4 weeks (seems pretty fair), but Team Gridlock doesn’t seem to be listening to the Stranger these days.

Photo of the Day

posted by on November 17 at 9:29 AM


Any volunteers?

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Looking for Something to Do Tomorrow Night?

posted by on November 16 at 5:22 PM

Drag queenshomegrown and importsare hosting a benefit for Lambert House, the drop-in center for BLT youth…


Re: 83,000 and Counting

posted by on November 16 at 4:50 PM

Andrew Sullivan, who has turned his website into a crusade against the Bush administrations fondness for torture, had this to say about that jaw-dropping 83,000 figure:

83,000???? Just when you think you have heard the worst about this administration’s chaotic, ad hoc, incompetent and intermittently criminal detention policies in the war on terror, a trap-door opens and you fall down another story. It is important to recognize that this administration reserves the right to detain anyone, include American citizens, anywhere, for any amount of time, without charge, sometimes without even documentation, and reserves the right to torture them as well. There are now close to 4,000 held without charge for a year. It is past time for the legislature and the courts to fight back and restrain - or at least bring some kind of order and legality - to this astonishing record. If the administration will not grant these prisoners POW status, it must agree to new rules that allow the innocent to be distinguished from the guilty, and to bar torture, cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment for ever. Pass the McCain Amendment now.

If you haven’t been reading Sullivan on the torture scandal, Dick Cheney, and John McCain, you should.

83,000 and Counting

posted by on November 16 at 4:49 PM

This, today, from the AP:

WASHINGTON — The United States has detained more than 83,000 foreigners in the four years of the war on terror, enough to nearly fill the NFL’s largest stadium.

Genders Studies

posted by on November 16 at 4:47 PM

If you’re planning to see Adult. and/or Numbers tonight at Chop Suey, try to get there early enough to catch Detroit duo Genders. They put a uniquely alienating spin on dubwise post-punk, and I wouldn’t be surprised if they stole the show from the other more experienced acts on the bill.


posted by on November 16 at 4:27 PM

A beguiling new post arrived today in the I, Anonymous forum.

At first I assumed the title“No to Movember”was a typo. But it seems “Movember” is some sort of international mustache holiday.

According to this site, Movember is a “fundraising event held during November each year that raises awareness about male health issues and money for the Prostate Cancer Foundation” through the growing of mustaches.

According to this site, it’s just a reason to grow and celebrate mustaches.

Either way, hurrah…

any Cuba fans out there?

posted by on November 16 at 4:19 PM

Last Tuesday, the UN General Assembly voted 182 to 4 (with one abstention) to lift its four-decade old economic embargo against Cuba.

This was the 14th consecutive year that the Assembly has voted on a resolution calling to lift the U.S. trade, financial and travel embargo—particularly its provisions on penalizing foreign firms.

Today, word on the street is Castro has Parkinson’s.

re: Smoke-free pub crawl

posted by on November 16 at 2:45 PM

The nice thing about the smoking ban going into place is that you should be able to hit any show, any bar, and not have to deal with cigarette smoke indoors. Although how that plays out remains to be seen—but I imagine the most prominent venues will at least make attempts to follow the new law.

No Good Solution

posted by on November 16 at 2:45 PM

I just returned from a very depressing lecture at the UW. It was part of The New Yorker’s “college tour,” in which writers from the magazine speak on different college campuses, and today’s subject was “The Future of Iraq.”

Two New Yorker writers, Mark Danner and George Packer, who have both spent much time reporting in Iraq and writing about what they have found there, spoke for almost two hours. Their most oft-repeated phrase was: “The insurgency is not going to end any time soon.” (Their prediction for when it might end: 10 years from now.)

The good solutions they see for this problem: None.

We’re all gonna die…

posted by on November 16 at 2:41 PM

Oral sex linked to mouth cancer. “You should avoid having oral sex,” says the researcher.

I wonder if this means you can’t give someone head within 25 feet of a door to a bar or a club?

Seattle’s Smaller Weekly WatchDouble Feature

posted by on November 16 at 2:29 PM

I neglected to post a “Seattle’s Smaller Weekly Watch” last week. Forgive me. I was distracted by the election and my then-impending trip to Peoria.

For the week of November 10-16, 2005:

The Stranger: 112 pages.
Seattle Weekly: 104 pages.

For the week of November 17-23, 2005:

The Stranger: 116 pages.
Seattle Weekly: 92 pages.

Smoke-free Pub Crawl

posted by on November 16 at 2:24 PM

Segal et al.: Nominations for where we should go to celebrate our lungs’ fortune on Thursday, Dec 8? Any hot shows that night?

Only thing I see so far that interests me is Charlie Hunter at Triple Door (a non-smoking venue, as it turns out). If anything else arises, I’ll let you know.

But a Slog reader is organizing a smoke-free pub crawl in Capitol Hill for December 9. Here’s the evite link.

Delightful Local Blog

posted by on November 16 at 1:15 PM

Apostrophe Abuse made my day. Thanks, Scarequotes.

Not all mothers are physically abusive, Dan

posted by on November 16 at 12:14 PM

Some rely on psychological warfare.

The AP reports that Tasha Henderson put her daughter out on a busy street corner last week in Oklahoma City, holding a cardboard sign that read: “I don’t do my homework and I act up in school, so my parents are preparing me for my future. Will work for food.”

Coretha’s grades were bad, her mother says. Now her school attendance is perfect.

Nothing like a street corner to teach a young girl to take pride in her work.

re: …Chop Suey burned the hell out of my eyes and lungs

posted by on November 16 at 11:45 AM

Segal et al.: Nominations for where we should go to celebrate our lungs’ fortune on Thursday, Dec 8? Any hot shows that night?

RE: Sweet Jesus.

posted by on November 16 at 11:32 AM

That “Bush Was Right” song sounds like a terrible Weird Al take on Billy Joel’s “We Didn’t Start the Fire” with a crappy Simple Plan sing-a-long chorus.


The Perils of Mediocrity

posted by on November 16 at 11:05 AM

Last night at Chop Suey, I endured a set by the Radar Bros., who were opening for the Clientele. So irredeemably mediocre was the Radar Bros.’ music, it made me both homicidal and suicidal. To make matters worse, they seemed like really nice guys. There are things worse than a band stinking up the joint, and that’s being terminally bland and innocuous. Note to bands: Either suck hard or shine like supernovas, all right?

In a freakish turn of events, a woman next to me at the club asked if I minded if she smoked. Stunned by her civility, I hesitantly said, “Uh… actually, yes.” And she refrained until I moved. What made the encounter even stranger is, she writes for Seattle Weekly. Despite her consideration, the cumulative efforts of other tobacco addicts in the surprisingly well-attended Chop Suey burned the hell out of my eyes and lungs. December 8 can’t arrive quickly enough.

Turning Sub Pop Into Gold Day 2

posted by on November 16 at 10:56 AM

So former Sub Pop publicist Jed Maheu’s publicity stunt involving selling a gold Sub Pop Postal Service record on eBay (to earn cash for his new PR company, Dudes PR) looks like it may make him a little cash. Last check, the bid was in the $500 range, and his cheeky rant on the industry earned him letters from other publicists fed up with their corporate gigs.

Sweet Jesus

posted by on November 16 at 10:54 AM

Think Progress has a post up about a conservative organization’s campaign to get a song by the Nashville rock group The Right Brothers in rotation on MTV. The song’s title: “Bush Was Right.”

Here’s what the organization, called Right March, has to say on its website:

The youth in America are being LIED to by liberal politicians and the mainstream media… but we’ve come up with a GREAT way to get the TRUTH to them: MUSIC. The Right Brothers, a conservative music duo out of Nashville, has released a new song that does what needed to be done: it tells the TRUTH. Titled Bush Was Right, the song hits the listener with fact after fact after fact - but the tune is so catchy, and the music is so driving, you can’t help but sing along (especially on the chorus)! Will YOU help us to get this song in front of American youth?

And here are some sample lyrics from “Bush Was Right”:

Freedom in Afghanistan, say goodbye Taliban, Free elections in Iraq, Saddam Hussein locked up, Osama’s staying underground, Al Qaida now is finding out, America won’t turn and run, Once the fighting has begun, Don’t you know that all this means… Bush was right! Bush was right!

I highly recommend you give the song sample a listen. Who says conservatives can’t be cool?

3 Problems w/ Our Local Political Leaders

posted by on November 16 at 10:49 AM

1) They don’t tell the truth. At a transportation forum last night, Deputy Mayor Tim Ceis told the crowd that Sound Transit’s light rail was “on time and on budget.” On time? Light rail’s Phase One was supposed to be completed in 2006. Well, the new Phase One (Phase One Part A?), which is about one-third short of what we voted for in 1996, is set to open in 2009. That’s three years late and incomplete. I don’t know when the remaining seven miles is supposed to be built. On budget? By the most conservative estimates (which, for starters, don’t include debt service like the estimates that killed the monorail), Sound Transit’s light rail line from the airport to the U-District is 53 percent over budget at $1.34 billion over what voters approved. I’m all for building light rail, but let’s not fib about it.

(I applaud Council Member Nick Licata, who, at the same forum, told the truth about Sound Transit’s light rail project, saying Sound Transit has the right to tax voters as long as it must to build and pay off the airport to U-District Line. I guess under that equation, Ceis is right because Sound Transit doesn’t have to worry about a budget.)

2) Their priorities are backward. At the same transportation forum last night, North Seattle Sen. Ken Jacobsen (46 District, D) characterized the debate between spending the Motor Vehicle Excise Tax (MVET) on roads or mass transit as a choice between maintaining the roof of your house (roads) or spending money on a skylight (mass transit). Skylight? Leaders like Jacobsen need to understand that times have changed and mass transit is a basicthe roof, if you willnot a frill.

3) They’re hypocrites. At the same forum, Ceis said the mayor pulled the plug on the monorail because the line the SMP ultimately proposed was 60 percent over the agency’s financial means. (That’s actually not true, but let’s pretend that Ceis is telling the truth about that one.) Well, the mayor’s viaduct proposal (a tunnel) costs 92 percent more than Team Nickels has at its disposal. (Let’s give Team Nickels four weeks to come up with a new finance plan.)

This is what I learned at last night’s transportation forum.

A Stupid Mess O’ God

posted by on November 16 at 10:48 AM

Earlier this year, I wrote a Last Days item (scroll down to Sunday) about the great experience I had at Pasadena’s All Saints Episcopal Church, whose services I’d attended while becoming godfather to my best friend’s baby.

Turns out I’m not the only one fascinated with All Saints—the Los Angeles Times reports the church recently received a warning from the IRS, threatening to revoke All Saints tax-exempt status over an anti-war sermon delivered two days before the 2004 presidential election.

At issue is the federal tax code prohibiting tax-exempt organizations from intervening in elections. In 1992, a Binghamton, NY church lost its tax-exempt status for running ads denouncing Clinton. But creating and disseminating anti-candidate ads is a far cry from what All Saints is being investigated for.

As the LA Times reports, the sermon in question—delivered by the church’s former rector Rev. George F.Regas—“imagined how Jesus would admonish Bush and Kerry if he debated them. Regas never urged parishioners to vote for one candidate over the other, but he did say that he believes Jesus would oppose the war in Iraq….In the sermon, Regas said, ‘President Bush has led us into war with Iraq as a response to terrorism. Yet I believe Jesus would say to Bush and Kerry: “War is itself the most extreme form of terrorism.’”

All Saints reps are taking the high road, expressing hope that the IRS will see the error of its ways and rejecting a plea deal that would’ve given then church a “get out of an IRS investigation free” card if the church admitted to interfering in an election.

And so the investigation continues. Here’s hoping someone somewhere along the line points out the hideous hilarity of a government agency that takes “anti-war” as a direct translation of “anti-Bush.”

Sotelo Update: Accusations of Fraud

posted by on November 16 at 10:23 AM

Horsesass has a fat update on the Republican voter challenge story.

Savage in the New York Times

posted by on November 16 at 9:45 AM

Our Dear Leader Dan Savage has a great op-ed piece in today’s New York Times concerning privacy, Planned Parenthood, and constitutional penumbras. Check it out.

What Doesn’t Play in Peoria?

posted by on November 16 at 6:30 AM

I played, and pretty well I think. Nice crowd, and thanks to Common Gound, “Bradley University’s GLBTISA, the gay/lesbian/bi/trans/intersexed/straight alliance group that brought me in.

Now I’m at Peoria’s airport, waiting for my flight, and it’s snowing. The airport has free wi-fi, which is awesome, and I’ve been crusing through my usual websitesKos, Andrew Sullivan, Americablog, NR’s The Corner. But when I tried to surf into, a male escort review website that’s updated daily, I was blocked!

I loves my gay hooker reviews! How dare Peoria deny me my fix! The reviews at M4ME are freaking addictive, frequently well-written, but what I really love is when an escort gets a bad review and then responds. There’s nothing quite so… raw… as a conflict between a disappointed client and a defensive escort. The conflicts are usually about looksthe escort doesn’t look like his pics; sometimes an escort’s pics are old and outdated, sometimes an escort uses someone else’s pics entirelybut sometimes it’s much more interesting. The escort wouldn’t kiss, and he said he would. The escort talked the whole time about his violin lessons. The escort said he was 10” but he couldn’t have been more than 6”.

The escorts give as good as they getgasp in horror as an escorts details just why he didn’t kiss an angry client (green loose teeth), why another didn’t get up to their full 10” (the client’s ass was dirty), and why that one with the violin wouldn’t shut up about it (he’s a concert-level violinist, that’s why!).

Anyway, it’s good reading. I’d like to read some now, but Peoria won’t let me. Bastards!

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Still More Mysteries of Peoria

posted by on November 15 at 8:27 PM


Why are there ashtrays with ashes in them on my non-smoking floor?


Why does the hotel display baseball caps in a locked curio cabinet in the lobby?


Why is David is off-center in his employee of the month picture?


Why does this message on the notice board in the lobby depress me so much?

Seattle’s Matriarchy? The Stranger!

posted by on November 15 at 6:22 PM

The Sierra Club is hosting a postmortem panel on the monorail tonight at 7:30 p.m. at REI (222 Yale Ave N.)

I was asked to be on the panel, but notice anything about this list:

• Tim Ceis- Seattle Deputy Mayor
• Nick Licata - Seattle City Council Member
• Richard Conlin - Seattle City Council Member
• Josh Feit - Columnist at The Stranger
• Ken Jacobsen - State Senator from the 46th District
• Ed Murray - State Representative from the 43rd District

Here’s a couple of hints: Why not Council President Jan Drago instead of Council Member Nick Licata?
Why not State Senator Jeanne Kohl-Wellesa monorail board member, instead of Murray or Jacobsen? And why not SMP board chair Kristina Hill or board member Cindi Laws?

Six white guys sitting around talking about trains seemed unbearable, so Stranger reporter Erica C. Barnettour transportation reporterwill be representing The Stranger.

Up with the matriarchy, dudes.

And another thing about the panel: Why is it overloaded with famously anti-monorail voices? Richard Conlin? Tim Ceis? Ken Jacobsen? Ed Murray?

More Mysteries of Peoria

posted by on November 15 at 4:12 PM



Why is there an indian rowing a canoe through the lobby of my hotel?


Why is there a porthole in the hall outside my room?


Whyand exactly howdoes the elevator in my hotel go up or up-and-to-the-left?

I’m In

posted by on November 15 at 3:54 PM

After a year of heavy reading (and drinking), I’ve come to conclude that Hegel is the greatest thinker in the history of the West. It’s not that I agree with with his ideas (which are almost always wrong) or what he thinks about but with how (the way) he thinks about things. His thoughts are filled with magic, invention, and twisted humor. It takes forever to understand what he is saying, but once you’ve cracked the code—the gates open to a grey palace in the grey clouds. Hegel died a long time ago.

3 Things You Should Never Do

posted by on November 15 at 3:50 PM

Ever ready with the sweeping statements, Charles Mudede just proclaimed that there are three things you should never do:

01 Listen to hiphop in the morning. 02 Smoke in the morning. 03 Have sex to techno.

The first dictum is highly debatable; I know a lot of hiphop albums that sound just great at 11 AM.

The second edict is sound, though I would extend it to the PM, too.

The third point is misguided, although techno is mainly conducive to high-energy, athletic sex. Admittedly, techno’s not something you want to play if you’re planning a night of slow, romantic lovemaking. But it does have its carnal uses. Ask Zeigenbock Kopf.

re: The Mysteries of Peoria

posted by on November 15 at 3:47 PM

Dan, kindly let the reception desk at your hotel know that “check in” needs to have a hyphen added to it (the noun and adjective forms are both written “check-in,” “check in” is a verb).

It’s a good idea to carry a Sharpie around for these types of repairs.

Challenge-Gate: The Hearings

posted by on November 15 at 3:30 PM

Remember Lori D. Sotelo?

She’s the Republican Party official who seems to have erroneously challenged the voting rights of more than 140 King County residents just before the Nov. 8 election.

Well, the same law that allowed Sotelo to issue all those challenges at the last minute now requires her to prove that she was correct when she signed a huge stack of affidavits, “under penalty of perjury,” attesting to the supposedly illegal registrations of almost 1,900 of voters. (At least 140 of whose registrations now appear to be perfectly legal.)

Should make for an interesting afternoon on Thursday when the accused illegal voters get to confront their accuser at a four-hour public hearing:

Temporary Elections Annex
9010 E. Marginal Way S.
4:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
For map click here.

UPDATE: A P-I article on the Democrats’ plan to challenge the challenges is here.

And whips out its magnifying glass and claims to have discovered Republican tampering with boxes on the challenge forms here.

The Mysteries of Peoria

posted by on November 15 at 2:17 PM

Tonight we’ll find out if Dan Savage will play in Peoria.

I’m in Peoria, Illinois, to speak at Bradley University. This is the second time Bradley’s brought me in to speak, so I must play pretty well. I got to the hotela huge, old hotel called Pere Marquettein downtown Peoria, desperate to get up to my room so I could email off a couple of pieces. (One for the Stranger, one for a paper to be named later.) When I told the receptionist I wanted to check in, she pointed at this sign on the counter:


I found it hard to believe that a huge hotel in PeoriaPeoria!didn’t have even one room that I could check into at 3 PM. The lobby was deserted, the hotel bar was empty, there wasn’t a soul on the sidewalk in front of the hotel. “Are you telling me that a single room in this hotel is empty and clean?” I asked. “I have to check with housekeeping,” the receptionist said. She disappeared for a while, and eventually she discovered one roomRoom 538that was empty and clean.

When I got in the elevator, I noticed that about a third of the buttons didn’t list floor numbers. They just said “CATERPILLER.”


This place is giving me the creeps.

Re: Urban Archipelago

posted by on November 15 at 2:00 PM

John Wyble, of Moxie Media, fires off an email in response to my earlier post, which itself was in response to Annie’s earlier post:

The “western strategy” has been used for years in this state. It used to be known as “you can see every vote you need from the space needle”. The problem is you start ceding major parts of the state and the other side has an easier time fighting you off (think John Kerry trying to win Ohio).

The No on 912 folks didn’t use a “western strategy”. They actually ran a decent amount of cable in eastern washington. As you know, they targeted the mail and cable so that people realized which projects in their area would be cancelled. They did a great eastern washington ad (you should still be able to see it at

In other words, if the other side is struggling to hold their base, you know we are doing something right.

Martha’s macaroons

posted by on November 15 at 12:11 PM

These cookies are the best I’ve ever tasted,” enthused tough critic Annie Wagner. We’re fighting over the last one. Gasp! Annie dropped it on the filthy carpet!

Megan, seriously, to hell with the other 98 recipes.

Re: Open a can of…

posted by on November 15 at 12:06 PM

“bumppo” posted this on the forums:

The OED has “whup” as a US colloquialism of “whip”, but all of its verb definitions for “whoop” have to do with hooting sounds. I’d put “whoop-ass” in the same category of misheard malapropisms as “jive with” and “taken for granite”.

Shop local, shop fresh

posted by on November 15 at 11:45 AM

Sad: This Sunday’s Capitol Hill Farmers’ Market (11 am-3 pm at Broadway and E Thomas) will be the last until next spring. Look for the amazing mini kiwis, fresh goat milk and cheese, oyster-flavored wild mushrooms, and a rainbow of potatoes. West Seattle’s Sunday market and the U-District’s Saturday version are open for another month.

Human Picnic

posted by on November 15 at 11:45 AM

The AP reports that “a woman died in a Calcutta hospital after ants ate one of her eyes as she was recovering from a cornea operation.”

Her son-in-law said, “We don’t even know the reason of her death.”

I’m no detective, but it might be the ants chewing on her fucking eye balls.

Re: Urban Archipelago

posted by on November 15 at 11:40 AM

What Annie notices in today’s NYT story can also be read as validation of a strategy I proposed in The Stranger back in July. Back then, I said I-912, the measure to repeal this state’s gas tax, could be defeated through a “Western Strategy” that gave up on the anti-tax goons in Eastern Washington and instead focused on driving up turnout in Western Washington. Here’s what the NYT says today:

[1-912] was voted down by 53 percent to 47 percent, but a look at a map of how Washington residents voted is revealing.

Twenty-nine of Washington’s 39 counties voted [against I-912], many of them by margins of 20 or even 30 percentage points. The measure failed because the heavily populated, more liberal counties around Seattle and two college towns in eastern Washington voted against it.

Now, look at this map. Click on the counties, check out the vote totals by county. What it shows you is that even without those “two college towns in eastern Washington,” I-912 would have gone down, with the western half of the state beating the eastern half on this tax issue by about 130,000 votes.

So why are politicians in this state still so scared of the fabled “Eastern Washington vote”? The vote on I-912 proves that if you just get nine of the more urban Western Washington counties to vote their self-interest (i.e., liberal interests) you can beat back any bad ideas the eastern part of the state might have. The Western Strategy works.

Turning Sub Pop Into Gold

posted by on November 15 at 11:18 AM

Former Sub Pop employee Jed Maheu parted ways with the label over the summer and is starting his own PR company, Dudes PR. Nothing new in the music industry….what is a little, well, different, is one source of funding for his new venturea Postal Service gold record he’s now selling on eBay. More than a cleaning out the closet type offer, the precious vinyl comes with a humorous rant about the music industry and Jed’s new place in it.

Open a can of…

posted by on November 15 at 10:51 AM

This is the second day of heated discussion here in the copy shop regarding “whup ass” vs. “whoop ass.” We can’t find a definitive source. “Whup” seems, to me, much more logical based on the definition derived from “whip. To “whoop” is to make a sound, not attack someone. Brad agrees with me. Annie is sure that it’s “whoop ass” after the brand name of a some canned beverage (and I don’t think she’s kidding). Gillian saw it yesterday in Molly Ivins’s column as “whip-ass.”

Steven Humphrey’s TV column goes to press in a few hours and we’ve got to decide which version of the term to use. Please, if you have any insight on the matter, post it here.

The Emperor Has No Codes

posted by on November 15 at 10:40 AM

Today, three days after The Washington Post did the same on its front page, The New York Times on its editorial page dismantles Bush’s brand new talking points on Iraq.

The call it “Decoding Mr. Bush’s Denials,” and it’s a must-read for anyone who is following the rhetorical evolution of Bush’s misleading statements on Iraq, and the media’s quickening response time in debunking them.

Urban Archipelago

posted by on November 15 at 10:30 AM

Be sure to check out this must-read article in the New York Times, the highlights of which are as follows:

a) Our down vote on I-912 is being understood as a nationwide trend toward rejection of dumb tax cuts.

b) Christine Gregoire cedes responsibility for this vote to a couple of rock slides (yeah, no thanks to you, Ms. Governor).

and c) The article ends by noting that the urban archipelago did it. Not in so many words, but still.

Resident Rock

posted by on November 15 at 10:21 AM

I was just talking with friends last week about how band residencies in big cities like LA and NY seem to work well for rock acts. The Strokes gigged at the Mercury Lounge (I believe that was the club) regularly before hitting the national tour circuit, and LA’s lovely Silversun Pickups (about whom I slogged last week—they cracked the Crocodile wide open with their euphoric indie rock) hit the Silverlake Lounge hard before embarking on a West Coast tour. Now the High Dive is trying out the residency concept. Shawn Smith (Brad, Satchel) has a new band called Diamond Hand with Kent Halverson, Kimo (Nu Sol Tribe/Marmalade), Thaddeus (Maktub) and Kevin Sawka(Siamese..KJ Sawka) that will play the High Dive every Sunday….I’m not sure what the group sounds like, but they may be a good test of how a residency works here.

Something nice to do on Thanksgiving

posted by on November 15 at 9:57 AM

Jai Thai in Belltown (2132 First Ave) is trying to get the word out that they’ll be handing out care packages for the homeless and disadvantaged on Thanksgiving Day from 11 to 2. And they could use some help. Email if you want to lend a hand.

GAO Report: FDA Rejection of Plan B Fucked Up

posted by on November 15 at 8:45 AM

The Government Accountability Office has issued a report saying that the FDA acted unusually in its decision to reject over-the-counter status for the emergency contraceptive Plan B. According to an article in the Washington Post, the report claims that

Senior Food and Drug Administration officials were told that the application to sell the “morning-after pill” without prescription was going to be rejected before the staff completed its scientific review and months before the decision was made public.

Background: The FDA’s scientific advisory committee recommended that Plan B be approved for over-the-counter use; in an almost unprecedented move, the FDA refused to follow its own advisory panel’s advice (out of 23 similar recommendations over the past ten years, only Plan B was rejected).

Senators Patty Murray and Hillary Rodham Clinton are saying, “This long-awaited report leaves no question that science was compromised in the FDA’s decision making process on Plan B. The GAO has confirmed what we have always suspected, that this was a politically motivated decision that came down from the highest levels at the F.D.A.” Full statement here.

The Bush administration has exactly the respect for women that it has for science: none.

Good Morning! May I Make Your Skin Crawl?

posted by on November 15 at 8:03 AM

Sharing is nice, but this internet personal ad is far too much of an allegedly nice thing.

How about sharing a SHEMALE?

Yeah, that’s right. Have you seen how much those girls are charging?
Let us split the cost right down the middle. Not intersted in you. Just want to taste one of those delicious morsels and save some money.
Be sincere, please.

God loves a bargain hunter. (And who doesn’t doesn’t love a delicious shemale morsel?)

Republicans Betray Our Troops

posted by on November 15 at 5:17 AM

PUSAthat’s “President of the United States”gave a speech on Veterans Day in which he attacked Dems who’re angry about the way Bush, Cheney, Rice, et all, manipulated pre-war intelligence. He also all but accused Dems who don’t want to stay the course in IraqPUSA’s course in Iraqof being near-treasonous non-supporters of Our Troops. And PUSA, which should be pronounced “pussy” if it isn’t already, has long insisted that to set or even call for a timetable for withdrawal is to betray Our Troops. A timetable for withdrawal would only aide and abet the enemyor the “terrists,” as PUSA calls `emsince it would let them know they only have to hold on/lay low until that arbitrary withdrawal date arrives. Once the Americans leave, then they can blow up the last three cars in Iraq and take over the country.

But what’s this? Senate Republicans are pushing PUSA to lay out his strategy for ending the war. PUSA’s own party, none too happy with his performance, and worried about saving their own skins come 2006, will consider a proposal today:

…that calls for Iraqi forces to take the lead next year in securing the nation and for the Bush administration to lay out its strategy for ending the war.

So it must be time for another speech, Mr. President, one in which you accuse your own party’s leadershipall those rats jumping off your rapidly sinking shipof betraying our troops. Unlike almost every other aspect of governance, your can actually speak on this subject with some authority. Because when it comes to betraying the troopsno body armor, no plan to win the peace, to few troops on the ground, slashing veterans benefits, tossing a few low-level grunts into jail for carrying out your order to torture and abuse prisonersyou’re something of an expert.

Major Breakthrough!

posted by on November 15 at 12:40 AM

In case you haven’t been paying attention—and I clearly haven’t—there have been some major advances in crazy men’s lycra underwear technology. Major advances.

For example, what the crap is this??!?

And, what’s this guy up to? He looks surprised, yet diving. Why?

This model is clearly intended for a friendly game of volleyball at Aunt May’s backyard bar-b-que, but what are these for, and more importantly, why do they cost $45?

I’ll leave you to explore the rest on your own.

You’ve come along way, banana hammock.

(via Boing Boing)

Monday, November 14, 2005

Re: Fuming About Smoking

posted by on November 14 at 6:06 PM

Regarding this post to the Forums:

You want to talk about rights? How about your right to vote? Ever thought of getting off the barstool long enough to exorcise that right?

I agree with the sentiment, but that’s one of the funniest malapropisms I’ve seen in a while.

Looking forward to Tuesday

posted by on November 14 at 5:23 PM

Megan says:
“For tomorrow: Coconut bars, hazelnut thumbprints, and black and white cookies!”
DAMN my wheat allergy.

Megan Silly

posted by on November 14 at 5:20 PM

Megan has lost her mind: She’s going to try to bake all 114 of the cookies in Martha Stewart’s Holiday Cookies magazine by New Year’s Day. Today she’s on number 14, chocolate waffles. (You can follow Megan’s progress on her MySpace page.) The office doesn’t seem able to keep up with her baking; cookies are accumulating on our coffee table. Anyone have any genius uses for delicious homemade treats?


posted by on November 14 at 4:27 PM

Check out David Corn’s dismantling of Bush’s Veteran’s Day speech. It’s definitely worth your time.

Here’s a taste:

By the way, while accusing his critics of falsifying history, Bush never conceded that he launched the war on a false premisethat Saddam Hussein was up to his neck in WMDsand, thus, as he paid tribute to veterans of this war and others, he did not accept responsibility for sending American troops into battle for a cause that did not exist.

Overheard at a Florida KFC

posted by on November 14 at 3:45 PM

So I’m on the phone, doing an interview with a Florida lawyer who defends people who operate super-raunchy porn web sites, when the lawyer, who is talking to me on his cell phone, says:

“Hold on a minute.”

So I say: “OK.”

I hear the distant mechanical garble of a fast-food drive up intercom. And then I hear the porn lawyer say:

“I need three breasts, two legs, and an order of chicken tenders. And a large side of mashed potatoes with extra gravy on the side. And four biscuits, with honey and jelly. And a Pepsi, please, small.”

His total was $19.81. And then we continued discussing the definition of “obscene.”

Fuming about Smoking

posted by on November 14 at 2:59 PM

This pro-smoking ban post in the forums was too funny to pass up mentioning here.

Drugs are for Old People

posted by on November 14 at 2:51 PM

A nursing home in Dublin has found a genius way to combat residents’ loneliness and boredomthey installed a pub. God bless the Irish.

But why stop at a bar? Why not an opium den? Or a Dutch-style cannabis/coffee shop? Or a “chill out room” with mild psychedelics and pretty wall projections? Drugs are wasted on the young—such pleasures belong to the twilight years.

Every Child Needs A Mother, Part 3…

posted by on November 14 at 2:19 PM

Okay, this is getting monotonousand depressing. The headline from the Chicago Sun-Times: Mom Guilty in Daughter’s Chili Powder Death.”

A woman accused of suffocating her 5-month-old daughter by using chili powder as a thumb-sucking remedy was convicted of manslaughter Sunday. Angela DiSabella, 21, of Irving, was sentenced to seven years in prison for the 2004 death of her daughter, Kira. According to an affidavit, Di-Sabella told police she put chili powder on Kira’s thumb after getting the idea on the Internet. Police said the child was malnourished and had chili powder in her throat and on her body.

More Alito trivia

posted by on November 14 at 1:32 PM

The NYtimes reports that while working for the Reagan administration, Alito supported an “employer’s right to fire someone who has AIDS.”

He also gave the judicial thumbs up to having a suspected drug dealer’s female companion and her 10-year-old daughter strip searched.

Family First, I suppose.

Roe: Going, Going…

posted by on November 14 at 1:16 PM

Alito wrote in 1985 that he “personally believe[s] very strongly” that “the Constitution does not protect a right to an abortion.” The Washington Timeseveryone’s favorite Moonie-owned, right-wing hackfesthas the story.

Speaking of Rubber Soul…

posted by on November 14 at 1:12 PM

Needless to say, this:

Some background on Annie: She’s obsessed by dying in a way connected to historical events — death by earthquake, death by al Queda, death by bird flu. Her exact quote, uttered two minutes ago: “I want to die of the bird flu. But I want people to call it the avian flu.”

reminds me of that cherished Beatles chestnut “Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flu).”

Harmon Leon Tonight!

posted by on November 14 at 12:41 PM

Harmon Leon is reading from his new novel Republican Like Me: Infiltrating Red-State, White-Ass and Blue-Suit America tonight at Elliot Bay Book Co. at 5:30.

I’ve not read his books (he also wrote The Harmon Chronicles), but he contributes pretty regularly to the San Francisco Weekly. His schtick seems to be anectodal humor essays. Here’s an excerpt from a recent piece he did for the SFweekly, about applying for jobs with fake resumes as Willis Drummond-Willis (from Diff’rent Strokes).

There’s a line saying “Have You Ever Been Convicted of a Felony?” In parentheses it says “(This Will Not Affect Your Application).” I check the box marked “Yes.” The phone rings. It’s Virginia. She apologizes profusely. “I’m sorry. I forgot we had an interview.” What?! I need to be interviewed NOW! Right now, for one of the shittiest jobs known to humanity. “We just hired a guy yesterday, but why don’t you put your résumé and application in my box, I’ll take a look at it, and give you a call next week if the guy doesn’t work out.” Disgruntled by having the interviewer not show up for the interview, I scribble in the line asking to explain my felony charge: “Violent murder. Fucker was eyeballing my bitch!” I could have been a little more subtle. I hand my résumé and application to the receptionist and leave. Epilogue: A few days later, I get a message on my answering machine. “Willis, this is Veronica from the Save Energy Company. Could you give me a call? I wanted to talk to you to see if you still need work or if you found a job yet.”

Just Fabulous

posted by on November 14 at 12:34 PM

Last weekend was a case of too-much-to-see/too-little-time-to-see-it, but I am glad I was able to catch a bit of the Fucking Fabulous Film Festival. On Friday night, we got to witness some truly hilarious shit: a “music video” by Bob Log III called Clap Your Tits; a white rapper riding bikes with an indie rock Santa Claus; and the new black comedy from talented (twisted) local filmmaker Calvin Lee Reeder (Polterchrist, Jerkbeast) called Piledriver about a budding romance gone horribly wrong. While I sadly missed more than I’d have liked to, I was still very impressed with the films F4 curated, and I have to once again recommend the shorts packages for those new to the fest. I also really liked the new RUNG Theater housing the films, an office space-turned 100-seat theater that’s colorful and cozy.

Every Child Needs A Mother…

posted by on November 14 at 12:14 PM

Every child deserves a motherso says the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. But wouldn’t a fit gay parent be better than a mother like this?

A mother injected her three young sons with her own infected blood so she could get more attention from hospital staff, authorities said…. Diaz told investigators that she used a syringe to inject each of her sons with infected blood from her right arm, the affidavit said. The sheriff’s office did not identify Diaz’s blood infection.

Brings that quip about glass houses to mindoh, and that thing that Jewish dude said about great planks.

will His Glory never fade?

posted by on November 14 at 11:09 AM

As reports:

Michael Jackson has written a thank-you song to all the fans that stuck by him through his sex abuse trial, and plans to release it with his next album. Talking to the president of fan site, Jackson said, “I can’t wait to record it. I wrote it during the trial.”

Hurricane Katrina Song, Thank-you-for-believing-I-don’t-fondle-little-boys’-wangs song… he certainly knows how to turn shit into roses.

Annie Wagner wants to die of bird flu

posted by on November 14 at 11:09 AM

Not that you care, but there are a lot of people in the city who, when Annie was writing her poison-penned theater reviews (she’s since moved on to steering the film section), wanted her to die. Well, she’s just announced that she wants to die of the bird flu.

Some background on Annie: She’s obsessed by dying in a way connected to historical events — death by earthquake, death by al Queda, death by bird flu. Her exact quote, uttered two minutes ago: “I want to die of the bird flu. But I want people to call it the avian flu.”

If you have avian flu, please give it to her.

Upon returning

posted by on November 14 at 11:02 AM

After being in the storybook tidy Netherlands for a week, I am startled by how litter-strewn Seattle is and by how many people spent a cold night in the hard nooks and doorways of my street last night. Perhaps Seattle could hire the destitute to sweep the streets.

In Amsterdam the street sweepers use twig-bunch fairy-tale witch-style brooms. I also saw an awesome little vacuum truck with a protruding suction hose that the garbage men use to suck the contents out of public trash bins.


posted by on November 14 at 11:00 AM

There’s a new gay bar on Capitol Hillwhich for the gays is big news, since this city’s worthwhile homo watering holes can be counted on one hand. I ended up there twice this weekend, and it was totally packed both times. It’s not yet clear whether Purr, on 11th between Pike and Pine, will be a boy bar or a lesbian bar, which is kind of exciting. (Currently the boys seem to be occupying more territory.) And while the interior is only OK, here is what Purr definitively has over its competitors: the best unobstructed sight-lines in the city.

Also, its drink glasses are nicely weighted.

Seattle: International Embarrassment

posted by on November 14 at 10:52 AM

Another slam on Seattle from a brainiac trade magazine out of London:

Infrastructure Journal London
11 November 2005

You can’t have your American pie and eat it

The death knell for Seattle monorail sent a chill down the spine of the international community looking to invest in US projects. Following as it does the equally unpleasant experiences of Florida High Speed Rail and Georgia 319, it cannot help but shake the confidence of players in the US market writes Angus Leslie Melville

While it is not fair to look at the US as one homogenous market - an issue that was raised with some force at Infrastructure Journal’s Transport Investment Forum 2005 earlier this week - its impact cannot be ignored.
Seattle Monorail was unceremoniously dumped - five years since its first inception and more than US$100 million down the line - after giving the world one of the most impressive examples of a volte-face from municipal authorities where political will wilted on the vine - money that the agency plans to recoup partly through the sale of land.

Because of its size, the US can never be viewed as one single market - more a series of markets - however the rough passage of the financing (and in this case its demise) of a major infrastructure project in one of a state’s major cities can impact negatively on future projects.
In the case of the Seattle monorail, it should be noted that every reason that the urban transport project should have made it off the drawing board was in place - apart from the vital element of political will, which has already been dealt with by this journal.
In a chat last night with Seattle Monorail Project boss John Haley, the sense of loss was palpable.
In answer to the question, where did it all go wrong? Haley says: ‘I have been told I can answer any question you ask, but I’m not sure that I have the answer for that.’
Hale was brought in to carry out an independent assessment of the project in the summer and it all stacked up apart from the political will - which had already left by the emergency exit.
The mass transport system has a dedicated alignment, a dedicated funding source, environmentally cleared plan, and an almost completed DBOM contract to deliver it at a fixed price.
Now there have been many projects in the US that have been scrapped for wanting any one of these issues, but Seattle monorail had them all in shovelfuls.

Add to all that upside a dedicated revenue source removing financial risk from the equation; the City of Seattle not having to dip into its coffers; the state not being called upon to fork out any green-backs; and not so much as a begging letter sent to the federal government. As for the bond issue, no-one was on the hook to back it and with current liquidity, they would have sold with ease.
It was an eminently finance-able project using modern technology, offering Seattleites a six-minute service on elevated system that would provide a critical transport link that could boast both environmental and economic benefits.
But it’s dead in the water.
At no time did anyone in the city council consider the new finance option. The council trashed the project and led the voter by the nose to turn it down.

In truth, the first nails were hammered into the project’s coffin back in June when the politicians who wanted to kill off the project stopped referring to its construction costs - which is the norm - and started referring to its value over the duration of the contract. The negative media was instantaneous.

In the UK market you have a relationship with the government or one of the major procuring agencies like the Highways Agency or department of health or education. Hence you pretty much know what’s important to them, the rules and how to play.
It is hard to draw the same parallels in the US where you have to invest in building relationships with local state and city authorities that each have different legislation and rules.
But they don’t have to take the piss.
Once it was all done and dusted, Seattle City Council had plunged the knife in the back of Seattle Monorail Project, sacrificing it on the pyre of misunderstood financing it penned a letter to the agency requesting it not sell the land.
Why? Well, it might be good for a transport project at some time in the future. The council now wants private parties to step forward for an exciting transport project in the city.
Any takers?

Angus Leslie Melville
Infrastructure Journal

Ringtones as art

posted by on November 14 at 10:46 AM

Susan Robb — visual artist and 2003 Stranger Genius — has made a bunch of cell phone ringtones with audio she recorded during guided tours at the Whitney Biennial in 2004. She also mixed in New York City street noise. Also, here are some full-length songs (“mobile works”).

My favorite of her ringtones are “We Are the Spectators” and “What Color Underwear You Got On?” and I’d put one of them on my cell phone except that my cell phone is retarded. If you have a newish cell phone, it should work just fine.

Southern Writers/Sucky Simpsons

posted by on November 14 at 10:12 AM

This weekend I had the good fortune to collide with a pair of great art-and-entertainment spectacles, both involving (displaced) southern writers of note.

The first came on Friday, when I caught the ROCKRGRL showcase of Nashville-by-way-of-New-York singer/songwriter Amy Rigby upstairs at Cafe Vita. Since the release of her 1996 debut Diary of a Mod Housewife, Rigby’s been one of my favorite living writers, and her too-short-but-that’s-the-name-of-the-game RKRGRL set showcased what I’ve long loved about the lady (her wit, lyrical economy, and emotional fearlessless) as well as some impressive new traits (left alone with only an acoustic guitar, she can still rock the fuck out).

Saturday brought displaced Southern writer #2: Capote, whom I found flickering on the screen at the Egyptian. As press everywhere has attested, Philip Seymour Hoffman does a creepily good job bringing Capote’s simpering genius to life, and for anyone interested in how books get written, the movie is a must-see.

Then, on Sunday, all my good art karma came crashing down, with the broadcast of a new episode of The Simpsons. The show has been dabbling in suckiness for yearsgoopy learning-and-growing, sickly-sweet (for the Simpsons) happy endings. But last night’s episode made it official: The Simpsons have jumped the shark. Unprecedented goop (lesson of the night: moms get lonely, too), wince-worthy plot points (Marge and Bart get a bicycle built for two! And visit an English tea house! Then wrap it all up with a karaoke duet!), all “sustained” by a parade of self-cannibalized jokes from seasons pastit’s like they’re not even trying anymore. This sense of a barely subconscious Simpsons death wish was brutally underscored by the final scene: Marge singing “Sweet Home Alabama” into a remote control. We get it. You’re done. Now die, and let us forever cherish the unparalleled brilliance of the Simpsons’s glory years. (If there have every been five funnier words placed in a row than “the Blunchblack of Blotre Blame,” I am not aware of it.)

On Fucking Bullshit

posted by on November 14 at 9:10 AM

An item of note in today’s Seattle Times: the word “shit” appears on the op-ed pages. In her syndicated column, Molly Ivins condemns the use of torture by the United States…

“Sometimes you gotta play rough,” said Dick Cheney. No shit, Dick? Now why don’t you tell that John McCain?

For those of you who haven’t been paying attention to the torture debate: the U.S. is torturing prisoners in secret prisons, our own lil’ gulag archipelago. While supporters of torture - the Bush administration (particularly Dick Cheney), various conservative bloggers and media outlets (up to and including The Wall Street Journal) like to point out that the folks who land in the gulags aren’t nice guys, Ivans points out that we didn’t torture members of the SS or the Gestapo during WWII, and they weren’t exactly nice people either.

But I don’t come to condemn torture. I’ll leave that Ivins and Andrew Sullivan and John McCain and Eli Sanders, who has a piece on one aspect of the torture debate in the upcoming issue of The Stranger. I came to praise The Seattle Times for printing the word “shit” in their op-ed pages.

Daily papers are losing readers by the thousands, and one of the reasons is their idiotic refusal to let go of the “family newspaper” anvil they insist on holding onto as they tread water. Shit, fuck, bullshit, asshole these are words that adults actually use for emphasis when they discuss politics, sex, religion, sports, dinner, spouses, pop stars, Pop Tarts, Wal-Marts, etc. Daily papers, and daily paper websites, are for adults, and adults don’t like being condescended to or treated like children or protected from language they use every damn day.

So when the New York Times lists the best-selling essay/book On Bullshit as On Bull——, it alienates adult readers. When the Vice President tells a U.S. Senator on the floor of the Senate to “go fuck himself,” and daily papers don’t quote him, it alienates adult readers. When they substitute “barnyard epithet” for bullshit, it alienates adult readers.

I know, I know: The Stranger uses profanity constantly. Are we being juvenile? At times, yes. Certainly. But I challenge you to find curse words in The Stranger that you can’t also find in, say, The New Yorker. Or in mainstream films, or on successful cable programs. Or in the fuckin’ Financial Times, where I recently encountered the word “shitburgers,” a fresh piece of profanity that I intend to work into Savage Love at the earliest opportunity. We’re not being glib or attempting to shock when we alt-weeklies, high-brow magazines, daily papers in the UK use profanity. We’re being grown-ups.

When daily papers editors ask me what they can do to attract young readersand they do, they doI tell `em to put fuck in a headline. There’s no law against it, and doing so would signal to adult readers that they’re not going to be patronized or protected from adult speech if they pick up this paper. The word “fuck” in headline screams, “This is not a publication that is written and edited under the bizarre, erroneous, suicidal assumption that adults sit around reading daily papers aloud to their children at bedtime.”

Daily papers are for adults, and adults don’t trust papers that are timid and condescending. By design or by accident, today’s Seattle Times allowed Molly Ivins to speak to adults using the kind of language that adults use when discussing important subjects. As a fan of daily newspapers, I want them to survive. So I was pleased to see a daily paper let go of “family newspaper,” because it’s an anvil, not a floatation device.

Every Child Needs A Mother

posted by on November 14 at 9:00 AM

From the great state of Wisconsin

A 4-month-old girl died when her drunk mother fell asleep on top of her while breast-feeding…

Please note: I am not hostile to mothers or motherhood. I love my mother, and I love mothers in theory and in (platonic) practice. My “Every Child Needs A Mother” posts are a response to the American Taliban’s dubious assertion that every child needs a mother, and that a child with a mother, any mother at all, is better off than a child with, say, two gay male parents. Like other things that you’re liable to read in the Biable, it ain’t necessarily so.

Be Afraid…

posted by on November 14 at 8:50 AM

Jeb Bush “leaves open” the possibility that he might run for president. His kids are drunk drivers, drug addicts, and can’t take “no” for an answer, and his wife lies to customs agents. Do we really want a man who can’t run a family running the country?

Ask Jeb or a Jeb fan about his peculiar family’s values, and they’ll insist it’s private. Other people’s families? Not so private.

I loved this quote in the Washington Post story:

Bush, 52, said he spoke frequently with his brother and visited the White House whenever he was in Washington but he said the two mainly discussed family matters or sport.

Family mattersfor Jeb, at least, there’s so much to discuss. And discussing family matters is a good way to avoid the subject of just how thoroughly your brother has fucked up the country.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Backsliding on Evolution, Take 2

posted by on November 13 at 11:21 AM

Pope Benedict XVI took another wobbly step into the evolution debatean event presaged by Cardinal Schnborn’s infamous op-ed in July (to read my slog post summing up the problems that article presented, click here). Claiming that the world must be understood as an “intelligent project,” the pope just escaped endorsing the pseudoscience of “intelligent design” and repudiating the cautious but smart acknowledgment of evolution by his predecessor, Pope John Paul II.

The Catholic News Service has the (partisan but revealing) story, parses the languge, offers a summary of the passionate intra-Church debate, and dishes out some hot gossip (e.g., the smarmy smile on Cardinal Schnborn’s face after the pope wrapped up his speech).

Another pathetic weekend for the Catholic Church.

Is Bush Drinking?

posted by on November 13 at 10:42 AM

Via Americablog

George W. Bush slurs, stumbles, and slings an arm around Laura like they’re getting back to the White House after a long night on the town. Is he smashed? Check out this video at Crooks and Liars and come to your own conclusion…