The Widdershins

Posts Tagged ‘Patriarchy

Keep Calm Kick Ass-2

Good Saturday and weekend to you Widdershins!

So this weekend we won’t be able to relax so much and take it easy.  Nah, that’s not gonna happen so much this weekend because sometimes the attacks never end or rest.

Mrs. Alan Greenspan was interviewing the crusty old bastard the other day.  Bernie wanted to take a victory lap or two after his wins (?) in West Virginia and Indiana.  I question the word “wins” because they essentially got about the same number of delegates.  But Mrs. Greenspan was more interested in asking Sanders whether it was unfair to make Hillary have to fight on two fronts – one against him and one against Trump.  Well this set off the c.o.b. to no end:

In every state that we have won, in 19 states, we have had to take on the entire Democratic establishment. We’ve had to take on senators and governors and mayors and members of Congress. That’s what we have taken on, so please do not moan to me about Hillary Clinton’s problems.

Uh no Bernie, you’re confused.  You haven’t had to “take on” anyone.  It’s just the fact that senators and governors and mayors and members of Congress have endorsed your primary opponent, not you,  and that pisses you off.  Welp…too bad and so sad.  Deal with it.

Next, Charles Pierce of Esquire recently opined that maybe Clinton “isn’t the right candidate” to take on Drumpf.  Pierce acknowledges that the W.Va win was a bunch of hoo ha.

I realize that the results last night in West Virginia will not mean very much down the road. They are products of skewed demographics and the playfulness of a number of voters who would not vote Democratic in the fall if you paid them in gold to do so.

Pierce calls Hillary a “plodder” in horsey terms.  He feels she just doesn’t have the stuff to go up against a “rodeo clown”.

At the moment, I don’t see the Clinton campaign as being quick enough on its feet to do what it needs to do. (“Dangerous Donald”? Really?) Right now, it can’t put away Bernie Sanders, who is the most predictable candidate ever to stand in two shoes. Running as a serious candidate against a rodeo clown is always going to be a struggle.

I disagree with Pierce of course.  He’s been a Bernie guy since the beginning. Hillary has tried to place nice as much as possible with Sanders because “we can’t alienate his supporters”…wah wah.  She’ll have no such restrictions in the general against the rodeo clown.

So with that, let’s take a look at some songs of revenge by women.  The songs may reflect revenge from a romantic breakup but they’ll suit our purposes just fine.

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(1) Me and Mr. Jones – Amy Winehouse

(2) You’re So Vain – Carly Simon

(3) A Broken Wing – Martina McBride

 (4) No Doubt – Sunday Morning

(5) Adele – Rolling in the Deep (Prolix’s favorite)

(6)Beyoncé – Irreplacable

Okay, so that’s some of my choices for songs concerning women who were scorned, not considered worthy or capable.  What are some that come to mind for you? Please add them in the comments below.

0f75a-music_alcohol_1Good Saturday and weekend to you Widdershins!

Well this has certainly been an interesting week hasn’t it dear readers?  We’ve had Donald Trump say in a town hall that if abortion was illegal in the United States that yes, the woman would have to be punished.  Now, he did not say this just once.  Chris Matthews gave him the opportunity to say it several times, allowing Trump to not only put his foot into his mouth but to swallow the entire leg.

Next we had Bernie Sanders and his minion Tad the Devine harping on momentum just because they have now won a few additional caucuses.

Well whoop de doo!  Caucuses – one of the least voter-friendly processes an individual can go through.  Don’t have the time to spend hours at some location just to express your candidate preference?  Well that’s just too bad.  And then because Hillary or some of her folks dared to make a comment about some of the tone coming from Sanders and his crew, they had to bring that up as some type of issue.  Really???

And don’t even get me started on that little turd Chris Hayes.  Arrrgh!


Let’s face it:  (some) Men have been behaving badly this week (at  the least…this week).  So with that in mind, let’s come up with some songs that reflect on men behaving badly.  Now I realize that I’m a member of the gender that has dangly parts below the waist but what’s happened this week does not reflect on me personally.

(1) Nick Lowe – All Men Are Liars

(2) Christina Aguilera – I Hate Boys

(3) Dixie Chicks – Goodbye Earl

(note: adult language here and it’s a bit bizarre)
(4) Kate Nash – Dickhead

And finally:
(5) Kiss Me Kate – I Hate Men

Okay ladies and germs this is a completely open thread.  Feel free to contribute a song below or just add a comment.  It’s completely your choice.

2014-05-05_7-24-30Good morning all. Last week was an especially thought-provoking one, with posts about the death penalty and the oligarchy. I see both as symptoms of a larger illness – the patriarchy.

As far as we know, in recorded history, the post-agrarian world has always been run by men. As we grew from a society where people stayed in the Fertile Crescent and (possibly) worshiped Mother Earth, into one where territorial expansion through conquering of native populations became the norm, we began our embrace of the way of life dubbed “the Blade” by Riane Eisler in The Chalice and the Blade. Here at TW, we often call it the oligarchy, the patriarchy, the plutocracy, or some combination of these.

According to Eisler, the Blade way of life is overbalanced towards aggression. Blade societies do not respect nature and the earth, are concerned mainly with dominance and control, and embrace survival as the prime moral value. Women are blocked from any significant power other than sex and reproduction, and even that power is diminished by lack of protection against unwanted intercourse or pregnancy.

Does this sound familiar to anyone?

If we really think about it from a larger perspective, the small advances we have made towards gender equality and balance, have not made much of a dent in the quality of women’s (and men’s) lives. Sure, we have some women in positions of power throughout the world, but the main story of the day is always war. War in Ukraine, war in Egypt, war in Syria, war in Israel, war in Afghanistan, etc. etc. etc. As a general rule, you won’t see female presidents making these decisions; you won’t see female generals leading soldiers into war; you won’t see female CEOs embracing policies like Walmart’s, where female employees were paid less than men as a matter of course; and you won’t see women committing acts of sexual violence against other women and girls. Thanks to the lack of balance between the values of the Chalice (nurturing, preserving, protecting and empowering the weak), and the Blade, as described above, we have a society that is sick, and doesn’t seem to be getting better.

This is why, in my opinion, we have things like the death penalty, “stand your ground,” “our oil and minerals under their sand,” “women are objects,” and “give to the rich, steal from the poor.” There is a “might makes right” attitude that permeates throughout our government and corporate culture, which as Fredster rightly pointed out, is basically one entity at this point.

Throughout history, when we have wanted to make a change in our culture and government, we have had a revolution. In America, we haven’t done this in a while, and we usually vote to make a change. It has become clear that our ability to vote in change by switching parties has become diluted almost to the point of uselessness. So what do we do to break the patriarchal cycle?

I don’t have much faith in revolution, as what normally happens is you replace one patriarchy with another, and eventually they corrupt into just what they were trying to overthrow. (This was the message of Orwell’s Animal Farm – in order to truly change our government and culture, we must change ourselves.) I truly believe, still, that the best thing we can do is to empower women and create balance between the Chalice and the Blade in our world. With the prevalence of corporations in our daily lives, we have to attack this both on the business and governmental fronts. Hence, my support for Sheryl Sandberg’s organizationas well as Kirsten Gillibrand’s

What am I personally going to do about breaking the cycle of patriarchy? I am formulating a long-term plan, first focused on changing my small corner of the corporate culture, then potentially moving into non-profit and/or the political sector. Rest assured that I am as passionate about this as I ever have been, and I haven’t given up the hope that our sons and daughters will inherit a better, more balanced world than the one we’re living in now.

This is an open thread.

Two nuns at cocktail time


The vow of obedience leads the nun to imitate the obedience of Jesus Christ. By seeking God’s will for her and obeying her lawful superiors according to the constitutions of her particular group. As a member of her religious community, she searches for the will of God, not in arbitrary commands, but in prayerful reflection and dialogue with others.

Except it seems that our American nuns are being a bit too naughty and un-nunlike according to the Widow Ratzinger and the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.  Now before this rather innocuous sounding name, this organization was known by another name:

Founded in 1542 by Pope Paul III with the Constitution “Licet ab initio,” the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith was originally called the Sacred Congregation of the Universal Inquisition as its duty was to defend the Church from heresy. It is the oldest of the Curia’s nine congregations.

Yeah.  Well we know how that turned out don’t we?

Yes, the Pope is pissed at this group of uppity American Catholic religious women.  It seems the Leadership Conference of Women Religious is just not religious enough in the “right” way.  Good ole Benny has had his spies watching this group of nefarious women for a couple of years and it seems the good sisters have just not been toeing the line in some regards.  Benny even had a report prepared so he could document the nuns’ terrible ways. Because the nuns cannot address these issues by themselves, Benny has appointed a Rome-named panel of three male bishops headed by Seattle Archbishop J. Peter Sartain to oversee the gals and to hopefully correct their errant ways.  In his report, Benny sets up the nuns first with the niceties and then slams them with the bad stuff.

The Holy See acknowledges with gratitude the great contribution of women Religious
to the Church in the United States as seen particularly in the many schools, hospitals, and
institutions of support for the poor which have been founded and staffed by Religious over the

Now wasn’t that nice of him?  I bet his little Prada-clad feet just tingled at that.  Now for the bad news.

So what exactly have the bad nuns been doing or not doing?  It seems to boil down to not speaking loudly enough against gay marriage, abortion and womens’ ordination.  It’s probably no big surprise that Benny has decided to punish the nuns since he was formerly the Vatican’s “doctrinal czar” before his elevation to the Papacy.  Among  the things the group was  cited for in the CDF:

Rome also chided the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) for sponsoring conferences that featured “a prevalence of certain radical feminist themes incompatible with the Catholic faith.”

Oh my, does that ring a bell?

The report also states that: “while there has been a great deal of work on the part of LCWR promoting issues of social justice in harmony with the church’s social doctrine, it is silent on the right to life from conception to natural death.”  Oh boy, there’s that abortion thing again.  Could it possibly be that the nuns are out there in hospitals, jails, street centers, etc. and see the results of unplanned pregnancies on poor women and other such bad things and they realize there’s an *ideal* world as envisioned by the men of the Church and then the real, gritty world these women work in?

Further, the report said that:

“crucial” issues like “the church’s biblical view of family life and human sexuality, are not part of the LCWR agenda in a way that promotes church teaching. Moreover, occasional public statements by the LCWR that disagree with or challenge positions taken by the bishops, who are the church’s authentic teachers of faith and morals, are not compatible with its purpose.”  [bold/italics mine]

Hmmm…that must be that ole gay thing again.  Well you know what Benny?  Until you can get your boyz in the Roman collars to behave and keep it in their pants, leave the rest of us alone, mkay?

Another thing that seems to have pissed off the American bishops with the nuns was that they endorsed Obama’s health care reform over the objection of the bishops.  “LCWR and Network recently endorsed Obama’s compromise with the bishop over a mandate to provide insurance coverage for birth control for employees at religious institutions, even as the bishops continue to fight it.”  That must go back to that obedience thing again.  🙄

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Sympathy for the Devil

Sympathy for the Devil

Picture this, my friends: It’s Bizarro World, and instead of a corporate and religious patriarchy that’s hostile to women, we’ve got a corporate and religious matriarchy that’s hostile to men. (Yeah, I know that has never happened in the history of the universe, but go with it.) What would a day in the life of the oppressed American Male be like?

Well, Joe America gets up in the morning to go to work. He wants to work out – he has to look good for his wife (Emily), or she might divorce him for a younger man – but he and Emily share the duties of taking the kids to school, and it’s his turn today. He anxiously examines his growing middle-aged paunch and his receding hairline as he drops little Jane and John off (kisses, children!) and drives to the train station to begin his daily commute.

It’s payday today, and it really burns his britches that his co-worker, Meredith, gets a bigger paycheck than he does for doing the same job. (He has a friend in HR who told him about the salary disparity. The guy could be fired for it, but men have to stick together, you know.)  Joe knows there is a new law that will let him sue the company for their unfair pay practices, but realistically speaking, how would he pay for the lawsuit? The company is much richer than he is and can hire better lawyers; not to mention that he really needs the job, if not for the money (his wife makes a lot more than he does), then for the independence. He swallows his rage and gets to work.

Soon, Joe’s boss, Frannie, calls him into the office. Frannie tells him that he won’t be getting a Christmas bonus this year; the economy, you know. Joe is speechless. “But my review was excellent,” he says. Frannie tells him that only managers are getting bonuses or raises this year. “Just be happy you have a job,” she says smugly. “Yes, ma’am,” Joe says through clenched teeth, and exits the office in humiliation.

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