Shakesville’s Melissa McEwan is pissed. Really pissed. Rowsed from her starry-eyed stupor of early ’09,  she now has this to say:

And this mealy-mouthed bullshit—”I laid out a very simple principle, which is this is a health care bill, not an abortion bill”—is contemptibly craven. I’m absolutely fucking livid that a man who had the audacity to claim to be a champion of women’s right to choose would abandon women in this way. Not that I’m surprised. Of course I’m not surprised. I always knew this was bullshit. A lack of surprise makes me no less furious about the depth of his callous disregard for women.

And of course, I don’t disagree with her, though I find her claim that she “always knew this was bullshit” specious at best, considering that at least for awhile there Shakesville’s tone shifted from one that was unapologeticly feminist-centred to one that manipulated people into voting for Obama.

But I did find it funny (in a cosmic kind of way) that the timing of this particular little revelation so neatly coincides with the anniversary of the infamous Great Expectations thread of November 08, where regular Shakers were attacked and driven away from the community for harshing on Melissa’s hopium buzz. The timing simply too apropos, I was compelled to comment, eliciting a completely predictable response (squawks of inappropriate commenting, bitter behaviour, rewriting history, etc). Equally predictable was Melissa’s deletion of my follow-up comment – luckily, I grabbed a screencap of it just in case the two-dozen people who’ve clicked through from there are curious:


However, I feel I need to issue a retraction: I admit it, I was wrong. In the ensuing months of ridiculously manipulativeshakedowns” of the Shakesville community, Paul the Spud (a social worker) did not encourage a woman on disability to forward her money onto Melissa (a relatively well-off middle class woman with a house of her own and a husband who makes enough to support her writing on the blog full time).

No, he encouraged a single mother living off child support to do it:

Chryslin · 6 months ago

All I had on my child support card was $5.00, but that should change soon, so just keep the reminders coming and I promise to raise the amount next time. I would hate to lose this forum and I know far too well what it’s like to live on far too little.

PaultheSpud · 6 months ago

Chryslin, I don’t want to speak for Melissa, but I do know that “no amount is too small.” Like she said earlier, if everyone that read the blog donated a buck, that would take care of everything. I know any amount donated is appreciated. 🙂 And I thank you for donating.

Which, on a feminist blog, was one of the more memorable moments of blogging history I’ve ever seen. As a daughter of a single mother who subsisted on child support, I would like to advocate on record that Shakers in this situation please keep their money for themselves; they work far, far harder than Melissa does.

(Meanwhile, the person on disability I was thinking of simply pledged their funds to resounding silence here. No one exactly “encouraged “them, but no one really discouraged them either. )


A friend linked me to this oh-so-earnest open letter, by Umair Haque. This bit, in particular, happened to jump out at me:

Gen M is about passion, responsibility, authenticity, and challenging yesterday’s way of everything. Everywhere I look, I see an explosion of Gen M businesses, NGOs, open-source communities, local initiatives, government. Who’s Gen M? Obama, kind of. Larry and Sergey. The Threadless, Etsy, and Flickr guys. Ev, Biz and the Twitter crew. Tehran 2.0. The folks at Kiva, Talking Points Memo, and FindtheFarmer. Shigeru Miyamoto, Steve Jobs, Muhammad Yunus, and Jeff Sachs are like the grandpas of Gen M. There are tons where these innovators came from.

Aside from being perfectly exemplary of the generation that insists on conflating public service and politics with things like “marketing democracy” (which, I reiterate, as a civics wonk, irritates the goddamn hell out of me) … I wonder if it even registered with him that he didn’t list a single female. Not a one. Is it really possible to be truly transformative and revolutionary when you’re just as insular and exclusionary as those ever-so-earnest men of the 60s/70s, blindly marginalizing half the population in the same manner as those you’re so self-righteously lambasting?

(I suppose I should give him points for at least inserting the caveat “kind of” for Barack Obama, DINO-in-Chief. But I’m not feeling very generous.)

Afterward, when the demonstrators had left, one of the madrasa’s senior clerics came outside. Asked about the dispute, he said it was between professionals and nonprofessionals; that is, between the clerics, who understood the Koran and Islamic law, and the women calling for the law’s repeal who did not.

“It’s like if you are sick, you go to a doctor, not some amateur,” said the cleric, Mohammed Hussein Jafaari. “This law was approved by the scholars. It was passed by both houses of Parliament. It was signed by the president.”

The religious scholars, Mr. Jafaari conceded, were all men.

Meanwhile, the MSM airwaves are busy covering these “freedom movement” morons, who wouldn’t know real oppression if hit bit them on the ass.

I totally hate the world now (which is why I rarely post anymore, FYI).

search terms

The only theory I can come up with? Is that the New York Times is trying to single-handedly launch a recreation of the Russian Revolution on American soil.

Homegirl Zuzu, in November:

There’s been a great deal of excitement about Barack Obama’s plans to reverse or do away with a good number of Bush’s executive orders and signing statements.  This is a sign of his progressivism! some say.  This is hope for the future! others say.  Let’s just all move on and not question him anymore! still others say.

The idea, apparently, is that by signaling (not coming out and saying, mind, but signaling through surrogates) that he intends to reverse, say, the Global Gag Rule, Obama is showing his progressive bona fides, and that therefore any cynicism about him based on the way he conducted his campaign (you know, leveraging misogyny and homophobia and using a lot of right-wing anti-choice framing and god-talk) or on the way he’s conducting his transition (16 men and 4 women on his transition team, LARRY FREAKING SUMMERS as a serious choice for Treasury) is unwarranted. […]


Listen, if you think that reversing the Global Gag Rule is a sign of great progressivism, I have news for you:  It’s not.  It’s basically returning the country’s policy to where it was in 1984, 24 freakin’ years ago.  It’s the bare fucking minimum I would expect of any goddamned Democrat worth the name in the Oval Office.  Reversing it was Bill Clinton’s very first official act as President, and I don’t see too many people calling him a progressive.

Barack actually didn’t get around to doing it (yet). Of course, some people are so pathetically desperate for crumbs, some weak-ass, all-over-the-map statement with no actual action is considered “pretty damn good.” Pretty damn good. Are you fucking kidding me with this squeeing fangirl shit?

MeanwhileHarry Reid thinks that Republicans may be right in thinking that women are inherently inferior due to their possession of (*gasp*) vaginas, so they’re going to haul out some of that shiny new “post-partisanship” to mull over Lilly Ledbetter, thereby confirming earlier suspicions that “post-partisanship” was code for “Democrats and Republicans Working Together to Fuck Over Women” because, in 2009, we really, really have to have a “discussion” about basic equality.

Back to Zuzu:

Progressivism requires progress, and what Obama is proposing to do with the GGR and other executive orders and signing statements (though his position on the Gitmo trials and torture may not be as strong as originally reported) isn’t actually progress.  It’s restoration.  And not even full restoration, because he can’t, merely by reversing all of Bush’s executive orders, get us back to where we were in January 2001 because so much damage was done through Congress.

So while it’s great that Obama is reviewing all those orders, I remain skeptical.  And I remain skeptical not because my tiny lady-brain has been warped by eight years under Bush, but because I still have great, truly great, expectations for a progressive administration, and I’m not going to settle for some crumbs.

Of course, I’m still confused how anyone ever considered someone who worships fucking Reagan (i.e. “the dude who enacted the Global Gag Rule in the first place“) the next Great Progressive Hope, but wevs, it’s been just that kind of fucked-up year, innit it?

Reclusive Leftist had an excellent response to James Carville’s incredibly stupid comments on CNN in her It’s the System, Stupid post:

Sexism is a deeply learned behavior with a thousand manifestations. You can’t quarantine the big pieces of it — rape, legal discrimination — as if they exist in a vacuum apart from the rest of society’s values. From frat boy joke to date rape, from gangsta rap to domestic violence, from pink housework toys at Wal-Mart to the boss who won’t promote a woman into top management, from “Math is hard” Barbie to the physics lab where men harass their female colleagues relentlessly, from Girls Gone Wild videos to the jury that acquits a rapist because the victim was wearing a short skirt — it’s a system. A giant, all-encompassing, self-reinforcing system.

No one thinks that Jon Favreau is personally responsible for crimes against women. What we think — what we know — is that his frat-boy grope is one lurid thread in a larger pattern. It’s symptomatic of a culture in which women are routinely sexualized, diminished, and harassed; a culture in which violence against women is normalized as mainstream fun; a culture in which powerful, accomplished women are ridiculed as b**ches and c**ts who just need a good f***ing.

In comments, Lucy had this to say:

I am so angry about this, I just can’t stop shaking. I’ve been groped hundreds of times, date-raped, and I worked for years in a hostile corporate environment long before the term “sexual harrasment” had any legal meaning — for a boss who used to take us gals to lingerie shows and pick out something for the best of us.

As for Carville suggesting women who are upset by this need shrinks: well, I spent years in therapy specifically because of the trauma visited on me by men. How dare he. How goddamn dare he.

This frat-boy mentality is just disgusting and I’m beginning to think the only way to combat it is to get militant. A commenter over at Heart’s place said that one reason men don’t get it is that women don’t assault men, don’t rape them.

Maybe it’s time we do.

Why, after all, can girls not have the same “fun” that boys do?

While I’m generally not a fan of violence, I couldn’t help but sympathize with that sentiment. After 8 years of trench warfare against the aggressive attacks on women’s rights by the Republican Party, watching women being so egregiously betrayed by the so-called “progressive” party this year, their traditional “allies“, disheartened by the capitulation of increasingly toothless feminist establishments such as NARAL and NOW, and the general overall atmosphere of seething male resentment has clearly accelerated my path towards rad-fem status.

Which is why, after reading this, I was not quite as horrified and sickened as I once would have been, but rather… coldly pleased.

Ameneh Bahrami refused to accept “blood money.” She insisted instead that her attacker suffer a fate similar to her own “so people like him would realize they do not have the right to throw acid in girls’ faces,” she told the Tehran Provincial Court.

If that’s what it takes, that’s what it fucking takes.

… But, of course, he won’t.

Douchemonkey Extraordinaire

Jon Favreau: Douchemonkey Extraordinaire


As always, I love how the mens quickly jump in to tell us what is, and what is not, sexist and/or offensive, while continuing to be egregiously sexist and offensive in the process. Because intimating sexual assault on a cutout of one of the most famous, powerful women in the world, and your political rival, is not demeaning or degrading at all.

I’ve lost track of the number of times I’ve seen a dude act in this exact manner towards any woman higher than him in seniority (professor, supervisor, boss, etc.) – any woman who makes him feel a little insecure about his Total Dudely Awesomeness, that Total Dudely Awesomeness that comes with his possession of the correct genitalia and automatically places him as superior to half the population through no effort of his own. This behaviour is depressingly common, and epic in proportion. It needs to be nipped in the bud immediately, and severely. Otherwise, how else will they learn?

Parallel situation: Hillary staffers, one wearing an “CLINTON STAFF” t-shirt, mugging for the camera, “jokingly” holding a noose around the neck of a cutout of Obama. Would immediate dismissal be an inappropriate reaction then? Would Clinton be condemned as condoning gross racism if she didn’t fire them immediately? (Answer: Betcherass.)

And no: this is not an extreme, hyperbolic theoretical. Threats of rape and sexual assault are weapons used against women in exactly the same manner as threats of lynching are used against black people: the implication of violence if they dare step out of line and get “uppity.” It is exactly the same thing.

In no way did Favreau ever feel insecure about himself in the presence of Hillary Clinton, I’m sure: a woman ten times stronger, sharper and smarter than him. There is absolutely no way that this little photo op represented, to him, a way to bring her down a peg to his level, so he could feel reassured about his position in the world. She’s just a woman, after all, like every other woman – she starts getting uppity, just grab her boob and remind her that no matter what she does, she’ll always be a cunt, existing solely for the sexual gratification of men. That bitch. And she needs to be reminded of that, as do all women, that they should never, ever, make men feel insecure about their Total Dudely Awesomeness.

It’s Monday, and the fact that Favreau has not been dismissed immediately speaks volumes about the frat culture of the Democratic Party, and the Obama Administration’s judgement. Bitches ain’t worth shit, so why don’t you lighten up, and get a sense of humour? Now, go get me my coffee, woman, I have a wicked hangover, and I’m late for my three hour lunch with the dudes from State.

I know those south of the border have been preoccupied with their own history-making elections, and hell, so have I, so don’t blame you, but man, have things took a turn towards the exciting up here right quick:

Yesterday, the Liberals and the NDP signed a formal, unprecedented pact to replace the minority Conservatives, who were re-elected just seven weeks ago, with a coalition government.

With guaranteed support from the separatist Bloc Québécois for at least 18 months, the Liberal-led coalition wrote to Jean to offer a governing alternative, claiming the Conservatives have lost the confidence of the majority of the House of Commons.

“We are ready to form a new government that will address the best interests of the people,” said Liberal leader Stéphane Dion, who would lead the coalition government as Prime Minister. “It’s all about the economy . . . it’s why we are together, to fight this economic crisis.”

Layton, Dion, Duceppe

Team Awesome: Layton, Dion, Duceppe

The Liberals and NDP, with the help of the Bloc, together fighting a totally shitty, regressive budget? Growing balls, fighting back, uniting the left majority of this country? AMAZING.

Since I recently have entered some Bizarroverse world, I haven’t been posting as much, but here’s some fun – via Anglachel (and Historiann), a some fun blog tools:

Via Typeanalyzer – my blog is diagnosed as INTP (which, FYI, I’ve scored borderline INTJ/INTP the last few times I’ve taken the Meyers-Briggs, so thumbs up,

The analysis indicates that the author of http://RKTOTHEMK.WORDPRESS.COM is of the type:

INTP – The Thinkers

The logical and analytical type. They are especialy attuned to difficult creative and intellectual challenges and always look for something more complex to dig into. They are great at finding subtle connections between things and imagine far-reaching implications.

They enjoy working with complex things using a lot of concepts and imaginative models of reality. Since they are not very good at seeing and understanding the needs of other people, they might come across as arrogant, impatient and insensitive to people that need some time to understand what they are talking about.


Silhouette of a manWe think is written by a man (74%).

… O RLY?

Point of interest: according to the poll at the right hand side there? Gender Analyzer gets it wrong nearly half the time.

Did GenderAnalyzer give the correct result for your blog?

Yes 54 % 5536
No 46 % 4736

Repeat after me: Gender = Useless Construct. Especially clear if you read through to the end of Anglachel’s post.