Caturday: Let’s get liturgical…

…or let’s say we did, and look at lolcats instead!

Here’s your late morning-ish meow, news junkies:

  • Did you know it is National Train Day? I enjoyed USA Today’s feature about 10 great places to celebrate. Here’s my favorite entry, though I went to school in St. Louis and I have to say there is a huge gaping editorial omission by not mentioning that the station has been converted into a shopping mall:

St. Louis Union Station
While train traffic has waned, this station still bustles with a museum, food court and attached hotel. Breslin says the site was a transfer point for millions of immigrants heading to the country’s interior. “It was a massive station at the height of train travel in this country. It was the Ellis Island of the Midwest.” 800-916-0092; explorestlouis.com

  • …and Hillary 2016! (Public Policy Polling shows Hillary with a “commanding early lead” in Iowa. The LA Times sez our badass advocate-in-chief Hillary “blows the speculative Democratic competition out of the water.” Well, ain’t that somethin’.)
  • Hillary honors Dorothy during keynote at the 25th annual “Celerating Women” breakfast. That is MY Madame President… Happy Mother’s Day:

“My mother had a resilience and a commitment to her family that she worked hard on every day. And I often wondered, How did that happen?” Clinton said. “When I got old enough to understand, I remember asking my mother … she said, At critical points in my life somebody showed me kindness, somebody gave me help.”

  • Joyce has an excellent Queer Talk post up at TM.com right now on this week’s developments. She speaks for me–best commentary I’ve seen yet on the subject anywhere, which is no surprise as Joyce has so diligently highlighted time and again the true everyday ordinary heroes and heroines of our American story as it unfolds, with her signature focus on the grassroots work of LGBT & other human rights advocates. Read it now:

“Obama & Marriage Equality – The “Personal is Political,” but It Isn’t Necessarily Policy.

  • Meanwhile, Mittens addresses Falwell U. Great way to shift to general election mode and not alienate more Independents. A sample of his nauseating speech, via the CNN link:

People of different faiths, like yours and mine, sometimes wonder where we can meet in common purpose, when there are so many differences in creed and theology,” Romney said. “Surely the answer is that we can meet in service, in shared moral convictions about our nation stemming from a common worldview. The best case for this is always the example of Christian men and women working and witnessing to carry God’s love into every life.”

Yes, the best case for this is always a big white evangelical cross. Also best case? Hoisting oneself with their own petard, Mr. Romney. We’re all morons with millions of campaign dollars to burn on idiotic campaign strategies, just like you. Seriously, you’re not going to win over the fundies who aren’t already willing to vote for you–they think you have everlasting celestial Mormon cooties, get it? The new Age fundies who don’t hate you because you are Mormon are already voting for Obama. You need to carve out YOUR own base of constituencies to reach out to–greedy and/or ill-informed “fiscal conservatives” who could not care less about social issues + people disaffected by Obama in this economy. You’re competing against Voldemort Axelrove et al. now, not the Sanctimonium “proletariat”–get it together, already. If it’s going to be a crappy election, the least you could do is not bore us to death. Occupy Politics 101, okay?

And, with that Sky Dancers, I’m off! You know what to do in the comments.

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58 Comments on “Caturday: Let’s get liturgical…”

    • dakinikat says:

      So many interesting items! I have always been a train junkie. I live near railroad tracks. I love to hear the sound of metal wheels on tracks at night. Reminds me that some one is always going somewhere. I think those old movies–like the Orient Express –always made train travel so exotic and glamorous.

      • Yes, and Bollywood STILL glamorizes train travel as I’m sure you know :)

      • ANonOMouse says:

        I love trains too and have always wanted to travel across country by train. When I was a child I had 2 great Aunts who traveled a couple of times a year from CA to TN to visit my grandmother. The stories of their trips, the food, the sights, the stops, sounded like a great adventure.

        And I know what you mean about the allure of train rides in the movies. One of my favorite Movie train plots is the Cary Grant, Eva Maria Saint Train ride in North by Northwest.

      • Yup, I love trains too, and like you said Dak about the sound reminding you that someone is going somewhere…that is so true. We took the train from Manhattan to Banjoville, it was great, however we had a cabin. I don’t know about those who travel long distances without one though. That could be a very long exhausting trip.

      • bostonboomer says:

        I’ve always loved trains. We rode the train from Kansas to North Dakota several times when I was a kid. I still remember the relaxing sound and swaying of the passenger car. My dad couldn’t afford for all of us to ride, so he hitchhiked.

        One of our common inexpensive outings when I was a kid in Lawrence, KS, was to get ice cream cones and go down to the Rock Island station and count boxcars as the trains went by.

        As an adult I took the train a few times from Boston to Indiana, riding in a private sleeper car. It was so much fun.

        Thanks for the lovely post, Mona, and especially for that gorgeous satellite picture of Earth.

      • All the wonderful train stories have put me in the mood!

        “Here’s some new escape music for ya…”

        “Just a small town girl, living in a lonely world.. she took the midnight train going anywhere…”

      • My personal experience, and favorite mode of transit besides bike–which train enthusiast purists (that was fun to type…) might not approve of–is the New Orleans streetcars. Love love love. *Escape* is definitely the right word. There is a romance to it, a bridge between the centuries. Being on a train or streetcar here feels a little like being in Europe–there’s a historical feel to it that you just can’t manufacture.

  1. Woman Voter says:

    Mitt Romney’s comments about ‘Someone didn’t accomplish much in four years…’ was met with silence. Commencement speeches are about inspiration, goals, tributes, acclamations, and joy, they are not places to make negative comments about other people…leave that for your campaign stumps.

    If people decide they want to attend your campaign speeches then fine, but don’t do it to people that are essentially there to experience a joyous day of what they have achieved at their commencement, with their friends and family present.

    Candidates, commencements are not about YOU!

    • dakinikat says:

      Mitt’s warped idea of humor always has a person who must be humiliated. He can’t tell a joke without a victim.

      • Mitt’s idea of humor is its own parody already… if he managed to win, Jon Stewart would have to find new work.

      • Pat Johnson says:

        The man is clueless, hateful, shallow, disengenuous, two faced, bigoted, smarmy, and lame.

        His tribute to that all time Champion of Discrimination, Jerry “may he burn in hell” Falwell was excrutiating to behold.

        A man who despised gays, women, liberals, minorities, Catholics, Mormons, Muslims, and Jews, had Mittens genuflecting at his altar of hate.

        What an insufferable man is Romney. Unimaginable that anyone would be supporting this two faced Fruit Fly under any circumstances since he has just undeniably attached himself to all things wrong with this country by way of Liberty University that preens itself over its discrimination toward gay students and faculty.

        Shameless panderer that he is, I hope he sinks under the weight of his own duplicitness.

      • But, tell us how you really feel Pat… :)

      • ANonOMouse says:

        “The man is clueless, hateful, shallow, disengenuous, two faced, bigoted, smarmy, and lame.”

        LOL!!!! You crack me up, Pat. Don’t forget he’s also boring, haughty and a money hoarder.

      • “and lame.”

        That’s an insult to the lame.
        ;)

      • @Dak 11:39

        You know, that is a sure sign of a bully to me!

    • “Mitt Romney’s comments about ‘Someone didn’t accomplish much in four years…’ was met with silence.”

      LMAO… Even at Falwell U… Priceless.

      Maybe the students and family thought he was talking about the graduating class.

      • dakinikat says:

        He manages to say things in a way that makes you do that … it’s like he says things that are so senseless and clueless that they could go either way and because he’s so disingenuous you consider the possibility that he meant it both ways.

      • Woman Voter says:

        CNN was covering it during their news hour and the silence was very noticeable. I think commencements should be free of attacks of anyone and all about the graduates and their future, future contributions they will make and the good that their education will bring the country and the world.

    • Candidates, commencements are not about YOU!

      Yes, completely agree WV.

  2. RalphB says:

    “Progressives” should really stop the Gush-Borism bullshit this election cycle. I don’t think that’s much to ask considering that it fucked up and was a big help putting Dubya in the White House in 2000.

    Lawyers, Guns and Money: Misunderstanding Mittens

    I wanted to elaborate on what I think is the biggest error being made by Greenwald and Taibbi — namely, the idea that Mitt Romney is a “centrist.”

    It’s worth noting here that the original Gush-Bore argument was made by a variety of people across the ideological spectrum, with a presumably wide variety of evaluations of the Clinton/Gore record. Not just Naderites but prominent centrists and Manhattan liberals advanced the argument that the 2000 election was a boring affair with nothing much at stake, helping lead us on the road to Iraq, Sam Alito, massive upper-class tax cuts, and many other terrible and highly consequential things that wouldn’t have happened with Al Gore in the White House. That people are making the same transparently foolish error with a Democratic candidate who has governed to the left of Clinton/Gore and a Republican running to the right of George W. Bush is mind-boggling. But the key error, like last time, seems being inexplicably suckered by the fake “moderation” of the Republican candidate.
    [...]
    …By the way, I should mention Rob found a Matt Stoller classic where he pledges his life savings and house to Bernie Maddoff: “Trying to figure out whether I think [Romney winning] would be modestly good or modestly bad. Romney’s more liberal than ppl think.” Jeez, at least Bush had to make some vague gestures towards moderation to convince the rubes. Anyway, if you think that 1896 was a huge win for progressive politics, you will indeed love the Romney administration

    Honeybadger or Nader, WTF?

    • dakinikat says:

      Matt Stoller is an certifiable idiot. I think there’s a lot at stake. Just think of all those pocket holds David Vitter has put on Judges and appointees to the BOG at the FED.

      • RalphB says:

        Stoller is what he is and based on his previous posts – went to boarding school, worked on Capitol Hill and now has a fellowship at the Roosevelt Institute, but is deeply upset about all of the “elites”. One doesn’t know where to begin with that.

      • Between Bowers and Stoller, I have to wonder… they really think the “creatives” are the most oppressed.

      • bostonboomer says:

        But Greenwald isn’t an idiot. Does he really think Mitt is a “centrist?” If so, I guess I’ve misjudged his intelligence. I started to wonder after he praised Ron Paul, but if he really thinks there’s no difference between Obama and Romney, what is he smoking?

      • RalphB says:

        BB, I don’t think Greenwald really believes Willard is a “centrist” but he seems to have bought into the “they’re too similar to matter much so the election is boring” stuff. To me that’s nuts but whatever.

        • dakinikat says:

          What I want to know is WHERE THE F were these comments when we said the guy was just a middle of the road politician back during 2008? Wasn’t he supposed to be the progressive messiah?

      • “Wasn’t he supposed to be the progressive messiah?” –dakinikat

        That’s the problem with Obama. He had a huge Democratic political mandate–which was unlike the circumstances under which Bill Clinton came into office–and he squandered it all, normalized Bush/Heritage foundation policy as Obama/Democratic.

        Where does the idea that Obama and Romney are the same come from? Look no further than Obama-Romney care. Obama wanted it this way. He wanted to be confused with Romney. He fears the right, not the left. As Joyce said in her Queer Talk post, it is noteworthy that Obama’s rhetorical support for gay marriage comes now.

        On the day he was inaugurated, what did he do? He asked Rick Warren to do his invocation…

    • I don’t think Obama has governed to the left of Clinton/Gore.

      As for Stoller’s comment that Romney is more liberal than most people think — Truly, wtf?

      • RalphB says:

        Obama/Biden has been pretty close to Clinton/Gore on the issues in general. More liberal on some, more conservative on others but overall not a lot different leaving out the rhetoric.

    • I’m still a proponent of holding out rather than giving the milk away for free and getting sold out. I don’t think there is more at stake now than there was in 2000 or 2008–certainly not less at stake, but not more either. I don’t rule out voting for Obama if necessary, but he hasn’t earned my vote yet. Romney will never earn it.

      Credit where it’s due, but one ‘personal’ statement of affirmation of marriage equality is ALL O has given me to vote for so far…BOTH Obama and Romney have given me a plethora of things to vote against. Obama finally drawing a line in the sand, nicely timed with George Clooney fundraiser, was a good start, and symbolically the value of it cannot be understated, but nor could the symbolic value of his election in 2008, and I didn’t vote for him then either even though I consider it a damn important trail he blazed. Policy still matters.

      Frankly, the election itself while important is not nearly as important as putting political pressure on both candidates right now through grassroots activism. Also, all politics is always local politics. I think more is at stake in things like making sure the Liz Warrens out there in every state get elected… just my two.

      • RalphB says:

        I disagree that there isn’t more at stake this time for two reasons. 1) We’re starting in a lot worse position than in 2000 and 2) the GOP is a lot more batshit insane than they were then.

        Frankly, I’d vote Obama this time just to keep another Roberts or Alito off the Supreme Court. But there are a lot more reasons than that.

      • bostonboomer says:

        I don’t think grass roots pressure on Romney from the left side would have any effect whatsoever. Any “centrism” that Romney ever pretended as Gov. of MA is gone now. Remember, he had permission from the Mormon elders to lie about his beliefs in his campaign against Kennedy and again for Governor. Now he’s got to live out the White Horse Prophecy.

        http://skydancingblog.com/2012/01/26/are-mitt-romneys-lies-supported-by-mormon-church-leaders/

      • Romney’s fundie Mormon shit is weird, but then I think most candidates’ (organized) religious background is either disturbing and/or hard to relate to and freaky. McCain’s pastor was/is batshit, too, and McCain did jackshit to “refudiate.” Obama put on a show with crazy Uncle Jeremiah, or maybe it was the other way around, who knows. Oh, and even Hillary wrote some obligatory and hard to stomach praise in her autobio about C-Street/The Family’s Doug Coe, which Jeff Sharlet, Jeremy Scahill, Barbara Ehrenreich, et al. used as fodder for a conspiracy theory of epic proportions in 2008. I’m NOT making equivalencies. I just find a candidate’s religious background a very useless angle to judge from in general. Actions/records speak louder than stated beliefs/words, associations, etc. Plus C-Street is basically evil and K-Street uses it as an easy tool to control the masses… I’m really not sure Obama is much more politically freer from its evil Darth Vaderesque force than Mitt, even if Mitt may be more personally religiously invested in it than O.

        Wasn’t saying it has to be pressure from “the left” per se–just a mass consensus, or at least enough consensus at a grassroots level within the base of the candidates party.

        Obama having to personally affirm is an example of that kind of critical mass tipping point–it became more politically advantageous to support marriage equality, at least for a Democrat–and at least in spirit and rhetoric if not yet in policy (upholding the states rights’ argument, i.e.)

        All is JMHO. I respect where you and Ralph and others are coming from, BB! I’m just not a Bush-Gore pepsi whore and am giving this lots of careful consideration and re-evaluating daily as I go, much moreso than I think most peers in my demographic do.

    • NW Luna says:

      That crap was easily contradicted by looking at the candidate’s past records. Oh, sure, Gore wasn’t as liberal as I or many others wanted, but he was distinct from Shrub.

  3. Mona, this is fabulous:

    Yes, the best case for this is always a big white evangelical cross. Also best case? Hoisting oneself with their own petard, Mr. Romney. We’re all morons with millions of campaign dollars to burn on idiotic campaign strategies, just like you. Seriously, you’re not going to win over the fundies who aren’t already willing to vote for you–they think you have everlasting celestial Mormon cooties, get it? The new Age fundies who don’t hate you because you are Mormon are already voting for Obama. You need to carve out YOUR own base of constituencies to reach out to–greedy and/or ill-informed “fiscal conservatives” who could not care less about social issues + people disaffected by Obama in this economy. You’re competing against Voldemort Axelrove et al. now, not the Sanctimonium “proletariat”–get it together, already. If it’s going to be a crappy election, the least you could do is not bore us to death. Occupy Politics 101, okay?

    • NW Luna says:

      Mittens is so friggin’ clueless!

      “wonder where we can meet in common purpose”

      He could have blathered on about love for the country or something vague and impossible to pin down. Instead he heads right for the Xian example. Either you’re Xian or he can’t see that you exist.

  4. ecocatwoman says:

    Hindsight is 20/20, Did anyone predict 9/11? Who would have thought our prez would wage an unprovoked war against another country (Iraq)? I also think that many on the Left (myself included) never dreamed that America would elect the dumbest guy on the planet POTUS. And, I did & do believe Nader, that the 2 parties aren’t far apart on the politics of politics – we live in a Corporatocracy. Our elected officials are bought & paid for. However, I agree with everyone here that Romney is everything Pat called him. The people with whom he will surround himself are much worse than those Obama selected (and many of them suck – like Summers & Geithner). And, just like Dumbya, Mittens will garner LOTS of votes & cannot & should not be written off as a transparent loser. All we need is more fanatical dipshits to vote than informed, reasonable, socially conscious people. It’s happened before – and history certainly repeats itself.

    Clinton/Gore did nothing for the environment until about a month before leaving office. Obama hasn’t been massively better, but we have CAFE standards, finally. He’s at least talking about renewables. Romney will gut the EPA, Dept of the Interior, Clean Air & Clean Water Acts & the Endangered Species Act. There will be drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Keystone XL is a given with Romney & a probably with Obama. Then there are appointments – more Alitos & Roberts & Scalias & Thomases – you betcha with Romney.

    Call it whatever, my vote is going to Obama reluctantly but definitely voting NOT for Romney.

    • , Did anyone predict 9/11?

      FWIW (salt grains and all that), pilot episode of The Lost Gunmen (X-Files spinoff)…

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Lone_Gunmen_%28TV_series%29#September_11th_parallel

    • RalphB says:

      Ralph Nader became a blight on our democracy. Screw him and the horse he rode on!

      • dakinikat says:

        I know some one who used to work for him back in the day. He really screwed them over when they tried to unionize. His ego is outweighs any principles he may purport to have.

      • I think some of the Naderites from 2000 are just antiestablishment-for-the-sake-of-it types. So if they don’t properly identify the establishment…well that’s why they were easily fed false narrative by Huffpo and company that Hillary was the establishment candidate and voting Anyone But Hillary was imperative.

      • in other words, Take Nader out of the equation, and there is still some other ego to fill that role. Hell these rebels-without-a-cause type were even salivating at the possibility of The Donald running… and all the Donald did was just oppose everything Obama was for… until Obama finally punk’d his stupid birther ass.

        I mean, come on now… how clueless do you have to be?

      • ecocatwoman says:

        Ouch, I had no idea there was so much animosity toward Nader.

      • Connie/Ecocatwoman: I supported Gore, but I do not hate Nader. He does have an ego on him though!

        It’s the Bill Maher demo that I’m wary of (supported McCain in 2000 primaries, Nader over Gore in 2000, then said we couldn’t afford McCain in 2008.)

    • NW Luna says:

      “Hindsight is 20/20, Did anyone predict 9/11? ”

      There were warnings in many presidential briefings on high risk of terrorist attacks, including one that Bush was famously supposed to read in the summer of 2011. And in briefings when Bill Clinton was prez. Must hunt for links.

      • ecocatwoman says:

        To clarify, I’m referring to the electorate. Whatever the Clinton Administration knew or suspected wasn’t even hinted at to the general public. Had America known that in less than a year the events of 9/11 would happen, it’s possible the outcome of the 2000 election would have been different. But, maybe I’m just naive and/or stupid.

      • Thanks for that, Connie. that makes sense.

  5. bostonboomer says:

    Hilarious recounting of Mitt Romney’s many “pranks” and “hijinks” during the Republican debates. Just one example:

    November 22nd, CNN Debate: Romney remarked to Herman Cain that, as former C.E.O. of a company purveying pizza, Cain must be quite familiar with the process of “cutting the cheese.” An argument ensued, until, in an apparent prank, several of Romney’s associates tackled Cain and held him to the ground while Romney proceeded to buy Cain’s companies and lay off all his employees.

  6. Mittens’ brand of humor… the irony, it screams and wants to kill itself!

  7. Joyce L. Arnold says:

    Hey Mona, sorry I’m so slow in getting here.

    As usual, great post. I appreciate your highlighting the work of LGBT equality grassroots activists. One of the most rewarding things in my life has been working and talkiing with such people, and writing about their advocacy. There’s nothing quite like watching a tiny local organization form and work within a local community. Such activism certainly isn’t exclusive to LGBTs and allies, and Electeds from local to state to federal levels getting and/or taking credit for the successes isn’t unusual, either.

    • Joyce, thanks and you’re most welcome :)

      “One of the most rewarding things in my life has been working and talkiing with such people, and writing about their advocacy. ” –Joyce

      This is where We-The-People always resides…moreso than in the pages of Alexis de Tocqueville’s Demcoracy in America ;)