giandujakiss: (Default)
I have no idea if he's a good DA or a bad DA, but if he loses his position, I hope it's because of his performance as a DA, and not because of his performances for a little while as a 1970s porn actor. I mean, wasn't everyone a porn actor for a little while in the 70s?

And now, I await the J2 version.
giandujakiss: (Default)
Because ... why, exactly, would I care?

Except now the whole thing has just gotten too bizarre for me to not pay attention anymore. Wonkette, actually, has the best - and I daresay, most accurate - summing up of the current state of ... ahem ... affairs.
giandujakiss: (Default)
Maybe it's just that the story is still unfolding, but I'm reading the blog posts about Weiner's presser and I can't find answers to what I consider to be the only relevant questions. Which actually just, for me, highlights the distinction between a press that has some conception of a feminist viewpoint and ... what we have now.

Here's the liveblog. Summary: Weiner admits to inappropriate sexting that was "consensual," and says he sent the crucial tweet in question.

My reaction: If what we're talking about is Weiner engaging in a form of cyber cheating with women who are entirely consenting, and above legal age, my reaction is still - meh. I don't need news stories about every elected official who has had an affair, and I really don't need them about every elected official who has had a cyber affair.

But the thing is, the college student who got the tweet in question - how did she consent, exactly? I mean, sure, it's possible she's been lying to the press, but it sure sounded sincere when she said she'd never had any personal contact with Weiner and wasn't expecting anything like that tweet.

Which means either (a) the tweet was misdirected (speculation the NY Post floated; her name is similar to someone else that Weiner had had private contact with), or (b) Weiner's definition of "consensual" is in no way my definition of consensual.

But the press's focus - and even the blog focus - seems to be "sex! cheating!" and not, you know, "harassment!" I don't even see these questions being asked.

Random pictures of your penis at unsuspecting women? Unacceptable. Characterizing that as "consensual"? Sort of horrifying.
giandujakiss: (gay batman)
But then CJR posted the best Weiner headlines, which includes this headline from Gawker:



And I caved. Because I may never stop laughing.

My view of this is: I wouldn't believe anything Breitbart promoted if he told me water was wet. The only person who saw the tweet is a known conservative activist who has been obsessed with Weiner for months, who has been harassing the recipient of the tweet since before it was sent, and who was tweeting about a potential sex scandal involving Weiner for weeks. And now, there's this whole thing, in which the guy indicates "we" have more pictures. And there's Weiner's bizarre media performance, in which he says he didn't send the tweet but can't deny that it's a picture of him. Put it all together, and it spells that the photo is legit, but Weiner didn't send it - his own stash of personal lewd photos was hacked by someone else. And frankly, if he's not sending them unsolicited to random twitter followers, I don't give a damn what he keeps on his phone for his own enjoyment.

And now I really will stop posting about this, at least until there's some sort of definitive conclusion.
giandujakiss: (Default)
Deficit Reduction From the Left
Suddenly, it seems, the conversation inside the Beltway has shifted from whether to attack the deficit to how to conquer it.

This [alternative from the left] comes from Demos, the Economic Policy Institute and The Century Foundation, which have banded together in a project they call “Our Fiscal Security.”

“Our number one priority is job creation, which is the first step towards long-term budget sustainability,” the groups say, outlining proposals they say would achieve primary budget balance — that is, everything besides interest — by 2018. “We strongly oppose the idea that America’s fiscal challenges should be solved by cutting long-standing social insurance programs that have brought security and prosperity to millions.”
My favorite bits:
Health care: Contain government health-care spending by relying on mechanisms built into Obamacare and enacting a “public option,” a government-sponsored competitor to private insurance.

Public investment: Spent more on pre-k education and child care, infrastructure, pubic transit [sic], research and development, rural broadband.

Taxes: Set same tax rate for ordinary income and capital gains, convert some popular individual-income tax deductions to tax credits, including mortgage-interest deduction and limiting it to $500,000 in mortgage debt. Limit tax deductibility of corporate interest. Let Bush tax cuts on upper-income earners expire, and impose surcharge on those with incomes above $1 million. Reinstate estate tax at $2 million threshold and 50% rate. Boost the gasoline tax and impose a carbon tax or cap-and-trade bill that refunds 50% of the proceeds to consumers, uses the rest to reduce deficit. Impose a financial-speculation tax.
And now, I will sleep with dreams of sugarplums dancing in my head.

(Yes, all of these tax proposals would cause the tax burden to be shifted upward - not downward, as Obama's bipartisan commission is proposing (pdf). Which is why these proposals will never, ever, ever happen)

Edit: Paul Krugman says that under this plan, "the US would have lower overall taxation than almost any other advanced country."
giandujakiss: (Default)
News of the White House seder never fails to make me a little verklempt, but this anecdote was a real gem:
Then came what is now remembered as the Macaroon Security Standoff. At 6:30, with the Seder about to start, Neil Cohen, the husband of Michelle Obama’s friend and adviser Susan Sher, was stuck at the gate bearing flourless cookies he had brought from Chicago. They were kosher for Passover, but not kosher with the Secret Service, which does not allow food into the building.

Offering to help, the president walked to the North Portico and peered out the door, startling tourists. He volunteered to go all the way to the gates, but advisers stopped him, fearing that would cause a ruckus. Everyone seemed momentarily befuddled. Could the commander in chief not summon a plate of cookies to his table? Finally, Mr. Love ran outside to clear them.
Also, I cannot tell you how much joy I get from the image of Malia and Sasha stealing the afikoman.

You can find a useful summary of the contents of new health care law here. One benefit they left out - the new law prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender. Formerly, it was common practice in many states for insurers to charge higher prices to women (pdf) - even for plans that did not cover aspects of women-only care, such as pregnancy.

Finally, this had me laughing for a full five minutes:

giandujakiss: (gay batman)
They should have changed it to read "Securities and XXXChange Commission":
Over the past two years, more than a dozen Securities and Exchange employees and contractors have tried to view pornography on government computers at least 8,273 times. Here's what they were looking at while the global financial system cratered.

The Washington Times broke the story of the SEC's porn problem, which became the subject of numerous inspector general investigations, last month. And Dealbreaker subsequently published one report of an inspector general investigation into an SEC regional supervisor who viewed transvestite porn at work as stress relief.

Now we've obtained reports of 16 investigations into porn-surfing by SEC employees and contractors (one of them is a woman!), including one man who said his daily porn viewing at work was limited to "no longer than an hour and a half a day."
A woman! Heavens to Betsy! And yes, if you click the link, you'll get a full list of the porn sites of choice for the SEC. So you can thoroughly investigate current events.

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