The Widdershins

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2017 (which is almost over) will be remembered for many things. I can’t think of any good things. I’d be willing to take all the celebrity deaths in 2016 over what we’re living with now. But time travel is not an option.

One part of this year that has sent shockwaves through all of our collective lives is the slew of allegations (and confessions) about sexual assault and harassment done by powerful men in professional settings over decades. The first brick to fall was Harvey Weinstein’s long history of abusing Hollywood actresses. He is now joined in infamy by Kevin Spacey, Louis C.K., New Republic president Hamilton Fish, journalist Mark Halperin, New York Times’ Glenn Thrush, Charlie Rose, film producer and director Brett Ratner, director James Toback, actor Casey Affleck, and his brother Ben too. This list is not at all up to date and it will grow longer. (I didn’t even mention Trump or Roy Moore…)

In some ways the most interesting names on that list, to me anyway, are the reporters. People like Fish, Halperin, Thrush and Rose (I’m sure that list will expand.) It is important to remember that these men, in their positions of extraordinary power and influence, helped set the narrative for the 2016 election. They helped paint Hillary Clinton as unlikable and untrustworthy. Not just in 2016, but long before that. How does one process the revelations about them with the filter of misogyny turned on? Because certainly their misogyny – which is no longer an abstract accusation, but now something very concrete and definitive – helped drive their coverage of the first female nominee for a major party. We had complaints about the coverage of Clinton and the election before. But now our complaints have something very tangible attached to them. These men, who do not respect women (at best, hate women at worst) helped paint Clinton as an untrustworthy, lazy, unlikable shill.

There is another aspect of this topic that I think is worth discussing. The wave of accusations was long-coming. But – there are risks involved. The tag “Believe women” carries a risk with it. Because not all accusations are true. This isn’t to bring up the irrelevant statistics about false accusations (which have historically been statistically insignificant.) It’s just to point out that we now live in highly polarized and divisive times. And some people will take a positive – believe women – and weaponize it. We may have seen some of that in the accusations against Al Franken. As a liberal Senator he has been the number one enemy of Attorney General Jeff Sessions. That marked him. A day before accusations against him were publicly made, Roger Stone said that Franken’s time was coming soon. How did Stone know this? We know Franken’s accuser is a Trump supporter and some of her accusations about Franken harassing her on a 2006 USO tour have come under question. Is it fair to question her when liberals have said “believe women” until now? Does it reveal a bias? Or is it a necessary realization that “believe women” can and maybe has already been weaponized by the unscrupulous Right? Franken – if he survives the allegations – is damaged. (Another accusation was made against Franken by the NY Post on behalf of Arianna Huffington, claiming Franken grabbed her inappropriately in 2000 during the taping of the Bill Maher show. Huffington eventually responded defending Franken, saying she was not assaulted by Franken and the accusations printed by the Post were false. “I think I’m a better judge of how I felt in that satirical photo shoot with Al Franken than the recollections of an anonymous bystander,” she wrote. But that’s too late. I’m now seeing references to Franken as having multiple accusations made against him.) Perhaps we need to revise “believe women” to “take women seriously.” Accept the accusations and investigate. See where the investigation takes you.

Another – slightly different – example on Tuesday was The Hollywood Reporter story about the Pixar/Disney executive John Lasseter. Lasseter has been responsible to a very large degree for the animated masterpieces that have come out of Pixar over the years and he directed “Toy Story.” Lasseter has stepped away from Pixar after the allegations were made public. But in their article THR said the actress and writer Rashida Jones left “Toy Story 4” project (which she was helping write) because of Lasseter’s unwanted advances. By attaching a famous woman’s name to the story they made it travel so much further. The problem is that Rashida Jones’ statement (written with her writing partner) about why she left the project say THR was wrong. Nothing sexual in nature drove her away.

The break neck speed at which journalists have been naming the next perpetrator renders some reporting irresponsible and, in fact, counterproductive for the people who do want to tell their stories. In this instance, The Hollywood Reporter does not speak for us. We did not leave Pixar because of unwanted advances. That is untrue.

They go on to say they left over creative and philosophical differences with Pixar. So whatever Lasseter’s behavior with other women, by throwing Jones into the mix, THR has also weaponized the sexual assault accusations and done a disservice to the actual victims. As reporters rush to find out more dirt, more and more mistakes (malicious or not) will be made. And there is a trip-wire to the whole cause, because once mistakes start happening the entire movement is at risk of crashing down.

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Not sure exactly what’s going on for Monday posts this week.  Didn’t get an email or other notice from anyone but also did not want to disappoint our great Widdershins readers.  So even though I’m not in the “working” category I’ve got a busy few days ahead before Thanksgiving.  Need to see what’s going on with my medical doctor.  He was ill last week and I need to contact his office to see if he’ll be in at all this week.  My vehicle is asking me for attention so that must be dealt with along with a handful of other things.

So amuse yourselves with these turkey gifs while you are slicing, dicing, chopping and baking in preparation for your Thanksgiving dinners.  Hope everyone has a great turkey day.

This one looks fattened up enough for dinner.

I believe the dog says he’s ready for drumstick now.

 

And last, if your turkey starts doing this…RUN!

 

 

Open thread of course.  Take it wherever you wish.

 

 

Good Weekend Widdershins!

My goodness, what a week this has been.  We have had the continuing revelations of more young women that Roy Moore either stalked at the Gadsden Mall (until he was banned), or called up during their trig. class; the first one that he picked up on while sitting outside the Etowah County Courthouse, plus the one whose yearbook he “autographed” at the Old Hickory House Barbecue restaurant.  Adding to the sordid mess were the descriptions of what he wanted to do to several of the young girls in his car.  But, he’s got that (R) behind his name and besides he’s a Christian* so yeah it’s okay for the voters of Alabama to send him up to the world’s greatest deliberative body, one of 100 who are members of that body.

Then…sigh…Mr. Franken.  Damnit Al, you’re better than this.  You were better than this in 2006 and I’m glad you are not making any excuses. You admitted what you did and you made a sincere apology (on the second try) to Ms. Tweeden.  Still Al for you, you must do five hundred Daily Affirmation sessions with Mr. Smalley along with the Senate Ethics Investigation.

And then there’s the uh, titular (ahem) head of the United States government.  Sadly we already know what he’s done and what he said he grabbed – we have the tape.  We have the stories…we’ve had enough.

Following along the lines of what these jerks did with their feeling and grabbing and what have you, let’s take a look at songs about feelings.  There are a ton of them out there but I don’t believe they specifically cover the uh “feelings” these clowns did.

(1) Feelings ~ Morris Albert

(2) Hooked on a feeling ~ B.J. Thomas

(3) The 59th Street Bridge Song ~ Simon and Garfunklel

(4) Can’t Fight This Feeling ~ REO Speedwagon

(5) No Hard Feelings ~ The Avett Brothers

(6) I Get The Sweetest Feeling ~ Jackie Wilson

(7) How Would You Feel ~ Ed Sheeran

Okay Widdershins, there ya go – seven nice songs about feeling/feelings and no actual assaults on women occur in these songs.  There are still lots of songs about feelings out there so I hope to see a few in the comments.

Open thread of course.

 

 

Haven’t we been here before?

Good day to you Widdershins

I’m sort of repaying DYB for taking the weekend post for me and I have just a few things to share today.

Let’s rehash old news

The Rude Pundit tells us that we are going again into the Clinton Circle of Hell which I take to mean that whenever the Republicans find themselves in hot water of any sort, it’s always a good idea to bring out the Clintons to either rehash old shit or find a new twist on something that’s already been resolved – think Uranium One on that.

Mr Pundit is of course referring to the newly-hatched idea of “let’s investigate when Bill Clinton was a horn dog”, and specifically the case of Juanita Broaddrick.  And it’s not just the Republicans who are doing this.  No, it’s some progressives like Michelle Goldberg of the NYT and on the tube, Chris Hayes.

Hayes’s tweet inspired stories on Glenn Beck’s The Blaze, Breitbart and The Daily Caller, all apparently eager to use the Clinton scandals to derail discussions about Roy Moore, the Republican nominee for the United States Senate in Alabama who is accused of sexually assaulting minors.  (See Divert and deflect) < By me

These fine members of the progressive left either don’t know or fail to remember that as Rude says:

In the Atlantic, Caitlin Flanagan brings up Gloria Steinem’s 1998 New York Times editorial defending Clinton and excoriating the women, declaring it “shameful.” Of course, Flanagan doesn’t mention the 1999 Times editorial calling on Clinton to publicly answer for Broaddrick’s allegations.

Mr. Pundit has to sit down and s’plain to these younguns that it has been beaten to death and it was the Republicans who, like a dog with a chew toy, wouldn’t let go until everyone got to the point of “Oh puhleeze, not another Clinton investigation”.  He even says “Go read the Starr Report.  Rude actually says “Fer fuck’s sake, read the fucking Starr Report. And let me add that if you go to the twitter machine and look up some of Broaddrick’s old tweets, she’s not a sympathetic person.

He goes on to explain that after Ronnie Raygun and the Iran-Contra flap came Bush 41’s mess with the bank that was involved in the funding for the Contra mess.

As he explains in his post, 41 just one term and Ronnie had his scandal and couldn’t the Repubs have just one President since Nixon without any need for damage control due to things they did themselves?  So once Mr. William Jefferson Clinton came in they were going to fix that smug bastard.  Republicans were on the hunt for anything to take those young asshole Clintons down.

You know the rest:  Whitewater, Travelgate, Hillary’s work at the Rose Law Firm, and then…the women.  It’s a good read so please go check it out.

We’ve all made a mistake about the Trump boys

From Charles Pierce at Esquire and from Julia Ioffe of the Atlantic, we can all now agree that hey, we made some big mistakes about just who was the dumb one between the Trump brothers. Let’s put it this way:  that picture of Junior sitting on a stump may have given away far more than we thought at the time.

This refers of course to the deal with Junior and Wikileaks/Julian Assange.

Assange sized this hungry fish up with a master’s eye. At which point, he pretty much shot the moon.

WikiLeaks made a series of increasingly bold requests, including asking for Trump’s tax returns, urging the Trump campaign on Election Day to reject the results of the election as rigged, and requesting that the president-elect tell Australia to appoint Julian Assange ambassador to the United States. (might as well ask for it all – right?)

Pierce goes on to ask:

To get back to Junior, however, how stupid do you have to be to get involved even marginally in something like this? Assange believes in nothing but himself. He’d sell Junior to the Somali pirates if he thought that would advantage him in some way.

Let’s not go into the how stupid part, but as he says, we all should give Eric an apology. Go check out both articles they are worth the read.

That’s all I have today.

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What’s on your minds Widdershins?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Via Elle Magazine: Women who won on November 8, 2017

Good Monday, all. It’s been a while since you’ve heard from me, and I cannot thank Fredster, DYB and GAGal enough for stepping up so wonderfully in my absence. Everything is fine, just working an average of 60-70 hours a week, including Sundays (which, at the moment, means packing for Monday travel again).

Back in the Old PUMA days, many of us struggled with our sense of betrayal by the DNC as we saw them put thumbs, hands and feet on the scale to make it seem like Obama was the favorite of the primary electorate. Even after massively over-weighting caucuses, and making huge states like California and Florida count as “half votes” (a decision much like Bush v. Gore, in that it only applied to Hillary Clinton and was never seen again), the DNC still failed to convincingly eliminate Our Girl the way she would crush Bernie Sanders in 2017 (by 4 million votes). The super delegates switched to Obama, however, making her nomination impossible. This cemented our perception that the DNC had driven the bus over the clear female favorite in order to install their guy. (Remember my radio show with Sheri Tag and other PUMAs, “Not Under the Bus?” Blast from the past!)

One of the reasons I had a bit of a reputation in those days was my advocacy for the 30% solution; in other words, work up to 30% women in government, and the balance will start tilting towards equality. I stated time and again that women needed to take matters into their own hands, wake up and realize that the DNC was not going to do enough to court and promote women for office. I stated also, in pre-Tea Party and Trump days, that Republican women were better than Republican men, and made it clear that I was only going to vote for women until the DNC heard me.

Some of what I said in the original 30% solution post hasn’t aged well. Palin turned out to be a disappointment (to say the least), and McMaverick ended up following his party off the extremist cliff as they became more and more out of touch with reality. And Barack Obama was not unelectable.

This part, unfortunately, was dead on.

If 30% of the Senate and House were women, you can bet your increasingly-less-valuable paycheck that both parties would be feeling a lot more responsible to that constituency. But as it is now, the Democrats have gotten fat and lazy, assuming that we will hand them our votes no matter what they do, resting on their decades-old laurels and doing little or nothing to stop [the] horrendous attack on our reproductive freedoms.

[snip]

[The Democrats]…will continue to be a Party divided on racial and sexual lines; a Party that thinks nothing of an African-American candidate who gains the support of 93% of AA’s by race-baiting, but is fauxraged at women who self-identified with Hillary and now Sarah Palin; a Party destroyed from within by the most divisive and destructive candidate in recent memory.

It’s up to you, Democrats. You can re-commit yourselves to social justice and gender equality, or you can continue on your path towards becoming the New Plutocratic Party. But be prepared to reap what you sow. Remember, pissing off your constituents, then blaming them for not voting for you, is never a good electoral strategy. Giving your constituents what they want, however, works every time.

Flash forward to 2015. The majority President Obama briefly enjoyed was quickly swept away in 2010 by the overwhelming Tea Party reaction to his election, and the Republicans have only gained ground since then. The Democrats have shrugged at the concerns of women and minorities, focusing solely on health care, fixing “the economy” (translation – improving the stock market and creating jobs for highly educated people) and litigating LGBT rights (which I’m happy about of course, but couldn’t they have walked and chewed gum at the same time?). The number of women in Congress has actually decreased, so the ERA remains DOA. And, equal pay for equal work was stripped out of the Lily Ledbetter Act in the Senate, even though Democrats controlled it at the time. This made the Act toothless and once again, left women out of the economic recovery Obama has presided over. And predictably, the number of health care options available for women has deteriorated astonishingly: for so many women in rural America, there’s no place to either get an abortion, or give birth.

Yet still, we failed to learn the lessons of 2008. Still, we put our faith in a Democratic Party hollowed out by the self-centered “leadership” of Barack Obama, tens of millions in debt and without a clear transition plan, electoral strategy or modern infrastructure. Still, we hoped against hope that this time, the Party would support the obvious, clear favorite, that they would empower her candidacy against a Republican Party suffering from its own identity crisis. Still, feminists of all genders, thrilled beyond words by the thought of the first female President, felt that finally, our time had arrived. The Party couldn’t, wouldn’t screw this up again, would it?

Of course it could, and of course it did, by letting a bitter, disingenuous and unelectable candidate exploit the cracks in the Party that Obama had exposed in 2008. Obamabots became BernieBros, and took to Twitter and Facebook to bully and silence Hillary’s supporters, aided and abetted by wingnuts and Russian bots. As before, policy and facts didn’t matter; sexist rants, death threats and abuse became routine for those who dared not bow to the Cult of Sanders. And even now, his toxic effects are being felt. Bernie’s “Unity Commission” recommendations are about to be shared, and they’re the worst ideas ever: more caucuses and open primaries, guaranteed to break the Party even more and expose it to epic Republican ratf*cking.

Yes, the Democratic Party was one of the factors that gave us Drumpf. And finally, ever since the day after Drumpf’s nightmare inauguration, we have been showing that now, we get it. Hat tip to Socalannie for sharing this article: The Glorious Anger of Female Voters, One Year Later.

As recently as the morning of November 8, 2016, I believed, as I think many American women did, that if we only played by the rules, we could rise to the highest positions of power.

[snip]

On November 9, we woke up, and Donald Trump had been elected.

It became clear that you can be the most qualified woman and still lose to the least qualified man.

That was like a spell being broken. All across the land, women woke up and realized we were never going to get where we wanted to go by playing by the rules. Even if you walked the tightrope of acceptable feminine behavior perfectly, even if you managed to sidestep every trap laid for women, you would still never to get to the top. The bar for men was so low they could slither right over it.

And I think something inside us broke. Some dam within so many women that kept them quiet, that kept their anger tucked away, pent up all the times women smile politely when we feel like screaming. That dam burst.

And every furious moment we’d tried not to think about came flooding forth. We were awake, and we were righteously angry.

Being women, and people of all genders who support us, what did we do with that anger? We turned it into action. #TheResistance was born. If the Democratic Party wasn’t going to support the most qualified, admired, exceptional woman in the world, then we weren’t going to waste any more time waiting for it to support us. Instead, we would run for office. We would form our own groups and support outside organizations that trained and supported female candidates. We would support Hillary’s new PAC, Onward Together, and donate to organizations like the ACLU and Planned Parenthood instead of the DNC. We would speak out on Twitter and Facebook. We would stand up to rape culture by demonstrating the scope of the problem through the #MeToo campaign. And most of all, we realized that no one is going to listen if we don’t take control of the conversation.

So in 2017, we gave the Rulez a polite and definite middle finger. Women are running for office and winning at 4 times the usual rate for first-time candidates. Transgender candidates are running and winning. Suburban women are supporting their sisters. And men, more and more, are standing up proudly for equality, sharing their own stories about rape culture, and pledging to stand up to misogyny whenever they see or hear it. What’s happening now is the silver lining starting to shine through the dark clouds storming over our democracy.

I’m going to close this hopeful post with some words from Our Girl on November 8, always and forever our inspiration. We’re finally woke, and we won’t stop until we have the equality we deserve.

Last night, we were reminded what is possible when we come together and fight for what we believe in.

With the support of Onward Together, 40% of the candidates that Run for Something endorsed and supported won their races in Virginia, Pennsylvania, Georgia, and more — compared to the 10% rate at which first-time candidates usually win. 86 women trained by Emerge America won last night, including nine of the seats flipped in Virginia. Color of Change PAC was instrumental in winning the district attorney race in Philadelphia. And Indivisible groups made more than 600,000 calls into Virginia to help pull out a win for Ralph Northam, Justin Fairfax, and Mark Herring.

This year hasn’t been what any of us had hoped it would be. In fact, it’s been frustrating and, at times, painful. But we never lost faith in our vision of an America where our children and grandchildren can grow up safe and loved, and with every opportunity they deserve.

To those of you who worked your hearts out for these victories, including our friends on the ground in Virginia, New Jersey, and more: thank you. I am so proud to be on your team.

This is an open thread.

Weekend!

Posted on: November 11, 2017

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Happy weekend Widdershins!

Our Fredster is not feeling super fabulous because of the toothache. So I’m filling in for the weekend post.

Let’s face it, we have all been living through the worst toothache imaginable for more than a year now. This past week we commemorated the 1 year anniversary since Puty-poop installed his protege Don Dump into the White House. Even though Hillary Clinton and her campaign tried to ring the alarm about Russian interference during the election, the press – and a huge chunk of the electorate – yawned. Only now are we learning the details that curious journalists (like David Corn) should have learned a year ago and saved America from the biggest catastrophe that has happened to it in its history. I’m really not sure the US can ever recover from Trump. That’s the best case scenario…

But enough of that for the weekend. Let’s get back to more pleasant topics like pain and hurt. That’s our musical theme. Pain! Bring on the pain!!!!!!!!!

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Well, it happened again. The comments have mysteriously closed on the previous post. Here’s a place holder for today.

I hope people in VA and NJ are voting! Those have the big races.

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Blog Archive

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Kellyanne Conway’s new job

So similar

Take the kids to work? NO!

3 turds control fate of healthcare for millions

That moment when *your* pussy gets grabbed

You go gurl! h/t Adam Joseph

***Disaster Donations***

Quick links for donations.

Donations for our furry, and other critter friends:

Texas SPCA Donate Page

Houston TX SPCA Donation Page

Red Rover Group

For the Virgin Islands (Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands)
CFVI.net

All Hands Disaster Relief:
https://www.hands.org/

Puerto Rico’s First Lady’s organization:
http://unidosporpuertorico.com/en/

Americares (provides medical/health support)
http://www.americares.org/en/

“The” Book

Nice picture of our gal

Time till the Grifter in Chief is Gone

Hopefully soonerJanuary 21st, 2021
3.2 years to go.

Mueller Time!

Wise Words from Paul Ryan

Heroine of the Resistance

B-I-N-G-O!

PHONE CONTACT INFO FOR THE DNC:

202-863-8000

TELL PEREZ AND ELLISON HOW YOU FEEL ABOUT BRAZILE NUT!

Storify version of E. Rogers HVF explanation

Reason(s) to vote for Doug Jones