Wednesday Reads: Of the Little Poodle and the Honky Cat

From Designer Will Bradley, click image for link.

Good morning!

It is so nice to be back, albeit in limited capacity, I will be writing my Wednesday and Sunday morning post…eventually, in a week or so, I will also be posting the daily evening reads.  Getting back into the swing of things is a bit daunting, it has been a week since my surgery and there is still more healing to be done.

I don’t know about you, but there are a few books that I always read over and over again. Gone With The Wind, is one…ever since I first read the entire book when I was in third grade. Another is A Confederacy of Dunces, which is where I get my blog handle, Minkoff Minx, from…I love that damn book.

So as I have been recovering from surgery, I have read a lot. I’ve started a book The River of Lost Footsteps: Histories of Burma, written by Thant Myint-U, which is actually quite an interesting read. I also have worked through a few Letters from Burma, written by Aung San Suu Kyi. But when the Lortab 10 starts to kick in, and I am just too out of it to actually digest what I am reading, I have turned once again to the magnificent Ignatius J. Reilly.

John Kennedy Toole was such an amazing writer. I wanted to share a bit with you. The following quotes from the book actually say a lot about why I chose the name Minkoff Minx, check it out…from a page out of Ignatius’ “Journal of a Working Boy” where he describes Myrna Minkoff…the Minkoff Minx:

(Myrna was decidedly masochistic. She was only happy when a police dog was sinking its fangs into her black leotards or when she was being dragged feet first down stone steps from a Senate hearing.)
Myrna is very sincere; unfortunately, she is also offensive.
At the moment that little musky Minkoff minx is probably in some tunnel far beneath the streets of the Bronx speeding in a subway train from a meeting on social protest to an orgy of folksinging or worse. Someday the authorities of our society will no doubt apprehend her for simply being herself. Incarceration will finally make her life meaningful and end her frustration.

Gotta love it!

You may be asking yourself why I am even mentioning this…well I have decided to step away from the anonymity of my alias, Minkoff Minx, and embrace writing under my maiden name, JJ Lopez.  It is something I have thought about for a while now…I have a lot of opinions, and it is about time I own them.

So, just like Myrna, I am very sincere, however…there are times I will be offensive to some…my response is this: I am just being who I am, and I have to express how I feel. Simple as that.

Alrighty then…let’s get to the morning headlines!

Big news in the GOP race, Frothy Dick aka Rick Santorum pulls out…finally!

(Okay, I know…it is a cheesy remark, but damn…we are losing our punchline “Santorum” Dick of the GOP…so might as well end it with a frothy comment. Okay, now get me that “santorum” towel and we’ll just clean this up…)

Santorum Suspends Presidential Campaign –

Rick Santorum suspended his presidential campaign on Tuesday, bowing to the inevitability of Mitt Romney’s nomination and ending his improbable, come-from-behind quest to become the party’s conservative standard-bearer in the fall.

“We made a decision over the weekend, that while this presidential race for us is over, for me, and we will suspend our campaign today, we are not done fighting,” Mr. Santorum said.

In other big news, George Zimmerman is no longer receiving “legal advice” from his lawyers…yup, Georgie Boy’s attorneys have withdrawn from counsel:

Exclusive: Trayvon Martin’s Family’s Attorney Responds as Zimmerman’s Lawyers Withdraw Counsel

Craig Sonner and Hal Uhrig, the lawyers who have been speaking for and providing legal representation for George Zimmerman withdrew as his counsel Tuesday after citing poor communication with him and other factors in their decision. “We are withdrawing as counsel for Mr. Zimmerman,” said Sonner. “We have lost contact with him.”

They do not know where he is, but they know he is no longer in the State of Florida.

Trayvon Martin George Zimmerman press conference: Trayvon Martin: Attorneys say Zimmerman contacted prosecutor, Sean Hannity

The lawyers had been publicly representing Zimmerman, the Neighborhood Watch volunteer who fatally shot 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, in the media as calls for his arrest continue to grow.

But they said Tuesday that Zimmerman — who, they say, has left the state — has stopped answering their phone calls, and has made a series of decisions that the two lawyers would not have advised.

The lawyers said Zimmerman called Sean Hannity of Fox News without consulting them. He also called the special prosecutor in the case, something the attorneys said they’d never have told him to do.

“We were a bit astonished,” Uhrig said. He praised Special Prosecutor Angela Corey’s office for declining to speak with Zimmerman without legal counsel.

Asked about Hannity’s interactions with Zimmerman, a Fox News Channel spokeswoman said the issue “will be addressed on Hannity’s show tonight.” The show, “Hannity,” airs at 9 p.m.

Here is the Hannity video from last night…Sean Hannity Confirms He Spoke To George Zimmerman, Agreed Not To Report On Conversation | Mediaite

Boston Boomer thinks it is all over for George now that he has had this contact with Hannity. I hope so, I mean, you would think that website of his was enough to put the shooting into perspective…as far as whether Zimmerman’s killing of Martin was a hate crime. As Karoli writes at C&L:

Most defense attorneys tell their clients to be quiet and let them do the talking. But George Zimmerman’s lawyers are an odd lot, and don’t seem to really be managing the public relations aspect of their client’s legal affairs very well.

After weeks of silence and weird surrogates appearing on his behalf, George Zimmerman has made himself a website asking for donations. He has done this because he’s upset about other people collecting donations in his name.

I am the real George Zimmerman,
On Sunday February 26th, I was involved in a life altering event which led me to become the subject of intense media coverage. As a result of the incident and subsequent media coverage, I have been forced to leave my home, my school, my employer, my family and ultimately, my entire life. This website’s sole purpose is to ensure my supporters they are receiving my full attention without any intermediaries.

It has come to my attention that some persons and/or entities have been collecting funds, thinly veiled as my “Defense Fund” or “Legal Fund”. I cannot attest to the validity of these other websites as I have not received any funds collected, intended to support my family and I through this trying, tragic time.
I have created a Paypal account solely linked on this website as I would like to provide an avenue to thank my supporters personally and ensure that any funds provided are used only for living expenses and legal defense, in lieu of my forced inability to maintain employment. I will also personally, maintain accountability of all funds received. I reassure you, every donation is appreciated.
George Zimmerman

I love this tag line at the bottom of the page, don’t you? Also the big American flag sends a message. Of sorts.

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil, is that good men do nothing. – Edmund Burke.

It seems ill-advised to me to put up a website that looks like a patriot or militia site with a quote they’re fond of asking for donations, one day after Fox News reports that white supremacists are now ‘patrolling’ Sanford, to say nothing of the bad taste it displays. But there it is, waiting for the donations to pour in.

You can read what she thinks of the family’s “letter to Holder” at the link.

Speaking of all this Zimmerman news, you know that law that he is hiding behind, “Stand your ground” which, btw, was supported into legislation by the group ALEC.

It appears that McDonald’s has flipped or flopped on their participation with ALEC…Exclusive: McDonald’s Says It Has Dumped ALEC | Mother Jones

McDonald’s sought to clarify its relationship with ALEC after a coalition of progressive groups with members in all 50 states, including Common Cause and Color of Change, announced plans on Tuesday to target McDonald’s for its ongoing membership in ALEC. Rashad Robinson, Color of Change’s executive director, said groups in the coalition were “flooding” McDonald’s, Johnson and Johnson, and State Farm with phone calls demanding they stop backing ALEC. “Major corporations like Pepsi, Coca-Cola, and Kraft understand that supporting voter suppression efforts and dangerous ‘Stand Your Ground’ legislation puts their brands at great risk in the black community,” Robinson said. “We hope that McDonald’s, Johnson and Johnson, and State Farm also get that message. Today, our members are flooding these companies with phone calls to demand that they stop supporting ALEC.”

“Clearly, some of these companies—Coke, Pepsi, McDonald’s—realize that it doesn’t make good business sense to be part of ALEC when ALEC has come under increased scrutiny,” said Mary Boyle, Common Cause’s vice president of communications, when told of the company’s departure from the group.

The news of McDonald’s leaving ALEC comes amidst several other high-profile departures by big-name corporations. Last week, Coca-Cola said it had decided to leave ALEC after taking heat from Color of Change and other progressive groups. Soon after, Kraft, Pepsi, and Intuit (which makes Quicken personal finance software) followed suit by ending their memberships with ALEC.

However as an update to the story states:

UPDATE: The Huffington Post reports that, in a Feburary 29 letter to Color of Change, a McDonald’s official said the company remained a member of ALEC. The letter, which raises questions about McDonald’s claim to have left ALEC, appears to be written by Pat Harris, whose title is global chief diversity officer. We’ve updated the headline of our story to make it clear that it was a McDonald’s spokeswoman who says the company has left ALEC.

After reading about all these companies and corporations that sponsor ALEC, it makes me think who isn’t a member of this “organization.”

Here is something you may have missed:Chinese politician Bo Xilai’s wife suspected of murdering Neil Heywood

The wife of high-flying Chinese politician Bo Xilai is suspected of murdering British businessman Neil Heywood, state media has reported, the latest twist in the biggest scandal to rock China‘s political class for decades.

Bo was suspended on Tuesday from powerful positions within the ruling party. His wife, the lawyer Gu Kailai, is being held in custody in connection with Heywood’s death, as is Zhang Xiaojun, who worked at the family’s home, the official news agency Xinhua reported.

Give that a read, here is a little summary of the characters at the bottom of the article.

Bo Xilai

The flamboyance and obvious ambition of the 62-year-old made him a divisive figure: admirers lauded him as a bold politician who could get things done, while detractors condemned his ruthlessness. Bo has accused critics of “pouring filth” over his family.

Gu Kailai

Bo’s second wife, now 51. The daughter of a Communist general, she became a high-profile lawyer known for an early success in helping Chinese firms win a court battle in the US.

Wang Lijun

Bo picked the 52-year-old police chief to lead the anti-gang campaign in Chongqing. Wang – renowned as a triad-busting supercop – became vice-mayor and was said to be a family friend. But strains between the men surfaced when he was reshuffled; days later, he fled to the US consulate.

Neil Heywood

The 41-year-old British businessman was a board member for an Aston Martin dealership in Beijing and a consultant for Hakluyt, the business intelligence firm. He told friends he got to know Bo’s family when both were based in the northern city of Dalian.

I’ve got a few more links for you…and since I am getting tired, these will be quick!

How Nebraska’s 20-Week Abortion Ban Became One Family’s Nightmare and Why We Need to Ban The Bans

Arizona House Passes 20-Week Gestational Abortion Ban

Ugh…is all I can say about that.

Up next, this political cartoon is on the mark:  Cagle Post » President Strangelove

Almost makes you want to see the film Dr. Strangelove doesn’t it?

Many of you may have heard about the Hillary Text site? This is funny: Hillary Clinton Thanks ‘Texts From Hillary’ Guys For The ‘LOLZ’

On Thursday, Hillary Clinton took a few minutes away from her texting (and all her other duties as secretary of state) and met with the two guys who have turned her into the latest Internet meme.

In less than a week, the blog “Texts from Hillary” has become an online sensation, boosting Clinton’s public image in the process. As Benjy Sarlin of TPM wrote, “When she was running for the Democratic presidential nomination, Hillary Clinton was parodied as drab and calculated, especially compared with young and vigorous Barack Obama and winking and fresh-faced Sarah Palin. Now, she’s fueling Internet jokes based on her own brand of badass cool.”

Stacy Lambe and Adam Smith, the two guys behind the site, said they received an email from a member of Clinton’s staff on Monday afternoon, out of the blue.

“We didn’t even believe it at first,” said Smith. “Stacy and I IMed each other at the same time, basically saying, ‘Oh my god, this email!'”

The staffer invited them over to the State Department, saying the secretary loved the site and wanted to meet them. Her staff also submitted Clinton’s own idea for a post to the site, which went up on Tuesday. In it, Clinton calls out Smith and Lambe for their creation (and makes a scrunchie joke).

Smith said that the submission was from the Clinton herself — although she may have had some help on it — and that they talked about it with her at the meeting. She told them that her favorite post was the one with Ryan Gosling.

Here is more…

In fact, Clinton suggested that the three of them pose in the photos with their blackberries, checking their text messages. She even whipped out her famous sunglasses.

“I would just say that her meeting with us proves the point that we were trying to make with the site,” said Smith.

Clinton also gave each of them signed copies of her “Texts from Hillary” submission.

Smith’s signed copy, on which Clinton signed her name “Hillz”:

I had to share this light-hearted story about Hillary, isn’t it great! Hillary is fantastic…

Before I end this post, I just wanted to say a few words about my little poodle, Pippin. (No not named for the Lord of the Rings character, he was actually named after the Pepin the Short, the first King of the Franks.) He died in his sleep early Easter morning. It was not a shock…he had been sick for some time…I sure do miss him. So here are a couple of tunes to my Pip…they don’t really have any significance. I just was listening to them the night before he died, so now they will always be associated with that little rag-a-muffin.

First song is You Take Me Up, from the Thompson Twins, a band I loved back in highschool…yes, cry in my sleep…that is what I’ve been doing.
And then Honky Cat, by Elton John…
Pippin was not fond of the outdoors, he would have been happy staying inside all the time, following me around the house…did I say that I miss him?
Whoa, what a week…so what sort of things are you reading about today, please share your links and hopefully I will catch y’all later in the comments below!

Pippin, from a couple years ago, could not find another picture of him...

49 Comments on “Wednesday Reads: Of the Little Poodle and the Honky Cat”

  1. Wow, another big earthquake: Powerful 8.7 Magnitude Earthquake Strikes Off Coast of Indonesia; Tsunami Watch Issued – ABC News

    A powerful earthquake struck off the coast of Indonesia, triggering a tsunami watch for countries across the Indian Ocean. The magnitude 8.7 quake was centered 20 miles beneath the ocean floor around 269 miles from Aceh’s provincial capital.

    The tremor was so powerful it was felt in Singapore, Thailand, Bangladesh, India and Malaysia, where tall office buildings shook for over a minute, according to The Associated Press.

    Workers at the Hermes Palace Hotel in Banda Aceh described a scene of panic, near the coast, as people fled to higher ground. Employee Cut Arlista said the shaking was so strong, water from the hotel pool spilled out, though the 70 guests at the hotel were not evacuated.

  2. ecocatwoman says:

    I’d say you have your mojo back, JJ the Minx.

    On the ALEC front, NPR reported this AM that the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will not be giving ALEC any further grants. The most recent one was $350,000. For what, I wonder. It’s not like the Koch Bros & all those energy companies don’t have enough tax payer subsidies to fund legislation against working people who actually pay taxes.

    RIP little Pip. He will remain forever in your heart – he is a part of you.

  3. Pat Johnson says:

    It matters not what “name” Minx posts under.

    Her writing and observations are “spot on” each and every time!

  4. bostonboomer says:

    Welcome back, JJ!

  5. Woman Voter says:

    J.J. Lopez (Minkoff Minx),

    FYI: I saw a tweet about ALEC donor McDonals being in 22 hospitals in the US. 😯

  6. bostonboomer says:

    I think Darren Hutchinson’s analysis of the Zimmerman “family member’s” letter to Eric Holder is the best I’ve read.

  7. bostonboomer says:

    Good news for Kindle owners! The Justice Department is filing suit against Apple over their deal with publishers that raised the price on e-books everywhere.

  8. Beata says:

    Thank you for the excellent morning reads, J.J. It’s great to have you back!

    If you are looking for something good to read while you are healing, I recommend the “Sister Fidelma” mysteries by Peter Tremayne. They are set in seventh century Ireland. The protagonist, Sister Fidelma, is a “dalaigh” ( Irish legal advocate ) as well as a nun. She is definitely a feminist. The Sister Fidelma series provides a fascinating history of medieval Ireland along with some terrific mysteries. Start with the first book in the series, “Absolution By Murder” if you can, and follow Sister Fidelma as she brilliantly solves crimes and has a very stimulating romantic relationship, too. Oh, those medieval Irish nuns!

  9. ANonOMouse says:

    Glad you’re on the mend Minx, but so sorry to hear about the passing of your beloved companion.

    Thanks for the great read this morning.

  10. ANonOMouse says:

    Chris Christie opens his mouth and once again demonstrates his stupidity

    “NEW YORK — Gov. Chris Christie today warned an audience of national Republicans that the country is in danger of becoming a “paternalistic entitlement society” where people sit on the couch, “waiting for the next government check.”

    I don’t know how this guy, whose sheer mass indicates that he spends an inordinate amount of time sitting on his ass somewhere and who is collecting a big fat Government check from the State of NJ, has the nerve to push the hate the poor, hate the disabled, hate the unemployed, hate the SS recipients, BS. Maybe he’s self grooming to be Romney’s running mate?

  11. janicen says:

    Welcome back JJ! You have been missed!

    • janicen says:

      I forgot to add, I’m very sorry about the loss of your doggie. It’s not “like” losing a family member, it is losing a family member. Deepest sympathy. 😦

  12. Pat Johnson says:

    This is the same Fruit Loop that Sarah Palin would love to see as Romney’s v.p.

    Takes one to know one.

  13. This is wonderful news: DOJ Sues Apple, Publishers Over E-Book Price-Fixing –

    The U.S. hit Apple Inc. and five of the nation’s largest publishers with an antitrust lawsuit, alleging they conspired to raise prices in the fast-growing e-book market.

    Three of the publishers agreed to settle the suit, which could upend the model that has led the price of many best-selling e-books to rise to $12.99 or $14.99 from $9.99 several years ago.

    “Defendants’ ongoing conspiracy and agreement have caused e-book consumers to pay tens of millions of dollars more for e-books than they otherwise would have paid,” the lawsuit said, describing CEO-only meetings of publishers at Manhattan restaurants at which the alleged conspiracy was hashed out.

    The lawsuit, filed by the Justice Department in Manhattan federal court, alleges Apple and the publishers reached an agreement where retail price competition would cease, retail e-books prices would increase significantly and Apple would be guaranteed a 30% commission on each e-book sold.

  14. JJ MM YAYAY! love you and can’t wait to read this veritable buffet properly tonight.

  15. peggysue22 says:

    Great to see you back on the boards, Minx! And I just loved the Texts from Hillary! I stumbled across them last night. Made me laugh out loud. Loved the one where Obama [stretched out on a sofa] asks Hillary: ‘Whatcha do’in?’ She replies: Running the World.

    Too funny.

    The Zimmerman case just gets more and more bizarre. He’s taking advice from Sean Hannity??? And then complains he’s ‘been through a life-changing event.’ Someone should tell him that’s better than a life-ending event. The whole thing is turning into some sick reality show. Throw in Allen West’s comments and you realize the insanity is everywhere.

    Good to read you again! Take it slow and easy.

    • I got a chance to see the full “presser” from yesterday, it was the craziest thing. The lawyers were laughing and sneering about their former client. I mean, working at law firms we would talk like that about our own clients, about frustrations when they do not listen to your advice and such… but not in public before TV cameras.

  16. Geez, have you all seen this: Will Video of Teen Being Shocked 31 Times Shut Down Rotenberg School? | Mother Jones

    In 2007, we ran a devastating exposé of the Judge Rotenberg Center, a “school” that took mentally and psychologically troubled kids from across the country and treated them by hooking them up to electrodes and shocking them whenever they misbehaved or displayed symptoms of their disorders, like autism. Reports from former students and staff were horrific, and Jennifer Gonnerman’s extensive reporting helped launch or fortify state and local investigations in the school, and its founder Matthew Israel. Yet despite the investigations and ongoing lawsuits, the school managed to stay open open.

    Last month the school was targeted by Anonymous, which released a video condemning the “torture” of its students. But the video that may truly take down Rotenberg for good is below. Just yesterday this footage of a Rotenberg student being restrained and shocked for hours was played in a Massachusetts courtroom

    The kid was shocked 31 times for refusing to take off his coat…

  17. check it out: George Zimmerman to be charged in Trayvon Martin shooting, official says – The Washington Post

    Florida special prosecutor Angela Corey plans to announce as early as Wednesday afternoon that she is charging neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman in the shooting of Trayvon Martin, according to a law enforcement official close to the investigation.

    It was not immediately clear what charge Zimmerman will face.


  18. quixote says:

    Great to see you back, JJ!

    If you’ve never watched Dr. Strangelove, there’s no “almost” about it. Send one of your minions (“Minx’s Minions” … has a nice ring to it) to get it off Netflix. You’ll laugh. You’ll cry. You’ll wonder why we’ve learned less than nothing in fifty years….

    • The call back code is POE or OPE, our precious bodily fluids…loss of essence. All that trouble just because Gen. Ripper couldn’t get it up…yup, we have learned nothing in the last 50 years.

  19. Sleepless in NJ says:

    I normally lurk since I’m usually way behind, but wanted to welcome you back. I’m glad you’re on the mend, but sorry to hear about Pippin. Really enjoy your posts. I went right to Tumblr to follow the Texts from Hillary. Had to share this one with everyone:

    (I suspect I’m missing the HTML tags but can’t find the instructions–sorry!)