March 30, 2007

To answer the question, I guess the easiest answer as to why the ERA should finally be enacted is symbolic: it would enable the Constitution to reflect the principle that men and women are equal before the law, in the same way the 14th Amendment recognizes the principle that there is no master race. The consensus in our society now is such that any policy which discriminates based on sex, or any policy which has a clearly adverse impact on women, is going to be legally questionable, if only under the Equal Protection Clause, so "heightening the scrutiny" such laws will face following the enactment of the ERA won't make much difference. I can't believe this would be such a difficult decision for the Democrats, now that they control Congress.
Psychotic to adapt ex-Veep's daughter's chick-lit novel for screen, here.
Good to Know:
As witnesses were trooping to the stand in the federal courthouse in Washington to testify in the case of United States v. I. Lewis Libby, and the Washington Post was publishing its series on the squalid conditions that wounded Iraq war veterans suffer at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center while thousands more soldiers were surging into Baghdad, President Bush held one of his private book club sessions that Karl Rove organizes for him at the White House. Rove picks the book, invites the author and a few neoconservative intellectual luminaries, and conducts the discussions. For this Bush book club meeting, the guest was Andrew Roberts, an English conservative historian and columnist and the author of "The Churchillians" and, most recently, "A History of the English-Speaking People Since 1900."

The subject of Winston Churchill inspired Bush's self-reflection. The president confided to Roberts that he believes he has an advantage over Churchill, a reliable source with access to the conversation told me. He has faith in God, Bush explained, but Churchill, an agnostic, did not. Because he believes in God, it is easier for him to make decisions and stick to them than it was for Churchill. Bush said he doesn't worry, or feel alone, or care if he is unpopular. He has God.
--Sidney Blumenthal, Salon
Hmmmm...John M. Dowd, the same lawyer who ran Pete Rose out of baseball on a rail in part for refusing to cooperate with his investigation into whether he bet on the Cincinnati Reds while he was their manager, is also the lawyer defending Monica Goodling, the DOJ hack who is now refusing to cooperate with Congress' investigation into the firing of several U.S. Attorneys:
Goodling, now on an indefinite leave, most recently served as senior counsel to Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales and as Justice's liaison to the White House. Her name appears on several e-mails about the firings of eight U.S. attorneys, and members of the Senate Judiciary Committee are eager to ask her about those dismissals.

Explaining why she invoked her right against self-incrimination, her lawyer, John M. Dowd, called the investigation "hostile" and said that some committee members "have already reached conclusions."
Funny, that was what Pete Rose said when he was summoned to appear before Bart Giamatti....

March 29, 2007

Needless to say, Retro is Cool.
Democracy: The surprise isn't that the Democrats were so quick to embrace K-Street after running against Republican corruption in the '06 election. After all, "corruption" is a recurring campaign issue for every political party and ideology; if a party holds onto power long enough, you're always going to find sufficient anecdotal evidence of corruption. What's surprising is how brazen the party has been in abandoning any pretense of reform.
We Can Call It "Drudgegate." Kudos to Media Matters, for breaking this huge story. What a breakthrough for internet journalism; I definitely see a Pulitzer in their future. At least they're not whining about how McCain never gets asked about his "flip-flops."

March 28, 2007

How vile is he?
Dobson prefers a “real Christian” like sociopathic monster Newt Gingrich, who is probably the vilest person to ever serve in Congress — and that’s saying a lot. Gingrich is such a repulsive amoral scumbag that when he heard Elizabeth Edwards and Tony Snow had cancer again, he immediately served them both with divorce papers.

March 27, 2007

Not surprisingly, Brownie wasn't the only massively underqualified Bushie holding an important position in this Administration. As Digby points out, there are over 150 graduates of "Regent Law School" staffing positions of importance, including Monica Goodling, the senior counsel to Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez, who now finds herself in hot water over her decision to take the Fifth when she appears before Congress to testify about the U.S. Attorney firings. Regent Law School, in case you didn't know, is a part of the empire of higher evangelical learning run by the Rev. Pat Robertson. Ms. Goodling prepared for the intensive graduate program at Regent by matriculating at Messiah College in Grantham, PA.
W.W.C.D? : An astute take on a very sad week, from one of her eulogists. Also, I saw this when browsing through the 'Tube, which I thought was very apt, considering her passion for pop bands from Oz:

UPDATE [3/28]: Toby Young pays eloquent tribute to Cathy Seipp, here.
Clichegate: Another day, another incredibly trite use of the "-gate" suffix. Oh, to live in a world where writers actually use "creativity" and "imagination" to express the point that a scandal may have occurred !!!

UPDATE [3/28]: As if those cliches weren't bad enough, the same writer has now come up with (swear to Kobe) "Gatesgate," referring, presumably, to Melinda Gates. You'd think that the repetitious and banal use of the suffix would grow tiresome to even the laziest of pundits or bloggers, but apparently not. Everytime you see "-gate" tossed at the end of a word, you're either seeing a writer who's too lazy to do any creative thinking, or someone who, consciously or subconsciously, wishes to minimize the scandal du jour by tying it in with a bunch of other long-forgotten media frenzies. Even worse, applying the word to minor scandals trivializes the original "gate", Watergate, an unpardonable sin at a time when the abuse of power by the current President has become a very real scandal.

UPDATE [3/29]: I give up. F*** it.

March 25, 2007

More fun on the set of I Heart Huckabees:

This doesn't seem to be quite as blameworthy as the other clip, even though it's being juxtoposed to director's David Russell's violent tantrum. The one thing I've always heard from actors is that shooting a movie isn't a very exciting experience, and can often be monumentally frustrating. Hour after hour of shooting take after take can get on anyone's nerve, and the sort of emotional risks that a good actor has to take aren't something that can be just summoned at will. Tomlin seems to be blowing off steam, an appropriate way of dealing with the inevitable frustration. Russell's tirade, on the other hand, was that of an insecure bully trying to intimidate a woman who had crossed him.

Oh, and one more thing: the reaction of actress Isabelle Huppert during Lily's f-bomb concerta is priceless. It's no wonder she survived Heaven's Gate; nothing can interfere with that woman's meticulous grooming habits !!!
Kevin Drum, a long-time 24 fan, has a counterintuitive take about the show's politics: it's a world where secretive, neo-fascist policing vindicates liberal, dovish political leaders.