Saturday, December 13, 2008


A word about the title...I've had some people ask me about it.

I ideally want to create a safe and intellectual place where people can discuss social and political issues in our world. I like the idea of agreeing and disagreeing, because it things interesting. More so, I like the idea of discussing and analyzing.

A lot of issues appear to be black and white because of the partisanship that permeates this country, but a sane person knows that our world is greyscale. Personally, I like the direction Obama is going so far because he disagrees with partisanship. I have read of many liberals who are already dissatisfied with the president elect's picks for Cabinet positions and the gripes that the Senate is not filibuster proof. I think this is how government should be: a reasonable balance of power.

But I digress.

I'd like this place to be one where we can be adversaries and friends in the most positive sense, no matter our stance or associations. Because like snowflakes...

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

One good turn...

Reaction to Newsweek.

Thanks to everyone who emailed me this!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

More marriage

I couldn't say it better.

Thanks, Newsweek.

Monday, December 8, 2008


This news is horrible.

I went to Kohl's the other day with my friend and fellow Student Council co-advisor to purchase the rest of the items for the annual adopt-a-family service project. Needless to say there were a lot more people this year who needed help. And it's worse than you think. We had families who were asking for towels, sheets, and blankets rather than books, hair products, and toys. Anyway, the guy who was checking us out was pretty cranky, making snarky comments about how homeless people were treated better than he was. I basically ignored him, but then he told us that he was working at Kohl's because he got laid-off. He kept asking how we got the information on the needy families (the district liaison) and what experience one needed (don't know). I basically sussed out that he had a college degree, got laid off, worked at Kohl's for the holiday rush, and pumped people for job leads as he worked.

I remember a year ago when the bad economy seemed like playground rumors. Why wouldn't it? I haven't lived through anything like this before--at least as an adult. I am constantly worried that my husband will lose his job, after all he works in cabinetry. I get frustrated because he was put on salary and is making less, and they haven't given him a raise (and probably won't for awhile), but then I feel VERY guilty because there are people who would love a job. I no longer read about people this economy is effecting, I KNOW people who can't find a job, who have foreclosed on their home, who stand in line for public assistance, who don't have gifts for Christmas, and...

It isn't going to get any better any time soon, is it?


I don't understand. If most Americans are opposed to the auto bailout, but politicians in DC are pushing to make it happen, then how are we living in a democracy?

Also, head colds make people really grumpy.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

See more Jack Black videos at Funny or Die

Thursday, November 20, 2008


If you aren't local, you are about to hear that name a lot, but not if I have my way about it. Janet Napolitano (yes, the one spoofed on SNL last weekend) is the Arizona governor and she was just offered the position of secretary of the Department of Homeland Security.

She is the governor of our reddish state and I like her a lot. A lot.

She is hugely controversial, mainly because she is a Democrat in a red state. Seriously, go here and here, and check out the reader comments. Eventually you will run in to comments about her being ineffective, a dyke, or some other irrelevant observation. This two-term governor kicks ass and I love it. In 2002, before the economy suffered a coronary she was able to create a surplus (attention Repubs: without raising taxes) and then used some of that to put into public programs, like education. You know, that pesky area of seemingly little concern nowadays, that Bush put federal mandates on and not only didn't give funds to support it, but cut the money for... She gave teachers a one-time bonus, provided funding for all day kindegarten, and created literacy programs too.

So here is the thing: she was just offered the secretary position with the Obama administration. I'm totally not okay with this for a variety of reasons. First of all, I don't want to lose my governor, who will be replaced by Jan Brewer--who I refuse to say anything about at this time because the only thing I know about her is that she is a Republican. Not fair to judge. Mainly, I think Homeland Security is a bunk job. Okokokok, I know it is important, but I don't think it necessarily highlights her abilities, no matter what those articles I referenced say. Here is a little something from Montini from The Arizona Republic, who I believe sums my feelings up quite well.
That would be tough to pass up, even if she is offered the WORST job,
which is Homeland Security.

The head of Homeland Security only
gets in the news when something really bad is happening. If things don't go
well, the Homeland Security secretary will take ALL the heat. If things do go
well, the president will get all the credit.

Then again, as the
Secretary of Homeland Security she'll probably have a lot more to say about
border issues than she did as governor.

She'd be a dummy to not leave, really. If she goes, she is able to avoid some major budget issues and come out relatively unscathed after we all lose our pants and (maybe, fingers crossed) enough so to run for a Senate seat.

She will be missed...

Monday, November 17, 2008

Getting Out From Under The Bus by Renee

"My two Moms can beat up your 14 wives."

"You have 55 Wives. I just want one."



Book of Mormon burnings outside churches. Protests outside temples. Ads depicting missionaries smugly robbing a couple of their rings and rights. Pictures of Prophets ripped in half.

Hm. Looks like we've found somewhere to project the hatred, frustration, and fear. Order up! Scapegoat, well-done!

It isn't that I don't understand why Mormons are a target. Many members of the Church, being conservative voters, financially backed the propositions that are stirring up a nation of people tired of discrimination. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints even encouraged its members to exercise their right to vote on this topic, as it would be an important one that pertained to principles taught in the Bible and doctrine of the Church.

Still, there's sort of a number problem here that I can't seem to overlook. The Mormon Church cannot possibly account for enough votes to make for a majority and pass a proposition through on their own. Mormons make up only 2% of the population of California. Considering Mormons only account for 5% of the Yes vote, I'm starting to wonder what's really going on here.

It's natural to seek out those who are contrary to your cause, and tear down their offense. That's how you win battles. And who are we kidding? It's kind of fun to hate on people who wear knee shorts and eat a lot of Jell-O, and have sordid pasts. But there's something wrong with placing the blame of the vote on Mormons, and even attacking the entire religion, especially when there are many Latter-Day Saints who voted No, and even donated their time, money, and efforts against it.

Steve Young on Prop 8

So, why is there a big, fat, red target on the LDS community as a whole? Why should a book, considered a piece of holy scripture, be burned in effigy, when it makes no reference to homosexuality within its pages? Why will there be bans on Christmas Temple Light displays this year?

I suppose that when you need someone to blame, it's easiest to go after another minority. I've heard political analysts call out black and latino voters, old voters, and poor voters to share the blame with the Mormons. It's everyone else's fault. If we can just single out the problem, WHO we should be angry with for taking away freedoms, we can wipe them out, and our problems will be solved. If a couple of annoying characters get thrown out of town while we're at it, all the better.

Guys. That's not how it's done. Isn't this vote, at its core, about equality and acceptance?

Instead of targeting a religion that had very little to do with the outcome, let's do our best to inform ourselves, so that when someone presents an opportunity, we can be there to say, "No, actually, this proposition says NOTHING about educating our children about gay marriage." Or "The constitution is meant to protect the minority, and if we work hard to offer an informative, intelligent response to this unfair propostiion, the supreme court will overturn these decision based on bigotry and misinformation." Or maybe we can find out who the other 95% are in the Yes vote, so that we can address those guys in our countermove.

When we defend one group by attacking another, the real issue gets lost, anyway. Instead of hearing a message of tolerance, Mormons are hearing, "We hated you all along, and will do everything we can do run you out of here, you polygamist scum." Which, you know, not quite as effective. I believe we are better off being an example of how to love, rather than how to oppress.

I thought that was what we were going for here.

Sunday, November 16, 2008


I'm totally hanging myself out here on this one because I don't feel like I have a firm grasp of the issue. Back in October when I first read about the bailout my first reaction was: WTF? Basically this is what I understand: motivated by greed and loose government standards, banks started providing funding to people who didn't deserve it in the form of mortgages and other loans. When people couldn't pay, banks started drowning. This is pretty much where things get fuzzy for me.

Backstory: When Jeff and I purchased our home four years ago
the builder's mortgage company nearly refused to give us the 30-year fixed we
requested, telling us we would be better off with an ARM because a) we wouldn't
be in the house for long, b) we could use the money we could save, c) we had
great credit and could get a better rate. I had to say no countless times
before they reluctantly (I'm not kidding, sighs and all) to do the 30-year
fixed. Could you imagine the crap hole we would be in if we didn't?

From the beginning I was against the bailout because I felt if companies made crap decisions and people fell for it then they should sink. A wash of sorts. I haven't changed my mind despite being told that if they hadn't given them the money the economy would be twice as bad today, etc.

Now, the car companies are starting to beg for money. I can't remember where, probably CNN, I read a commentary piece about if we bailout the banks, the automakers would be next, followed by the credit card companies and so forth. I wish I could find this article! While I see the social benefits of this bailout more clearly, I'm still not for it. Hybrid and other gas alternative vehicles have been available outside of the US for years, but American companies are dragging their feet on this (mainly because they are bedfellows with oil companies). There is a reason why Toyota and Honda have battled for number one: because they provide the options people are looking for. Furthermore, the idea of quality has been lacking in American made vehicles.

Is there something I am missing, guys? Please fill in the blanks for me...

Saturday, November 15, 2008


When a couple is married in the State of Arizona they are automatically granted some 300 rights. After they say "I do" they are provided 1,100 rights in the Unites States. Marriage is a big deal because the government says it is a big deal. There are people who say it is a big deal because God says it is, but I am not one of those people. At no point of time in my wedding ceremony was there mention of God. One person naively pointed out to me that we were not married because of that oversight. I still have my 1,400 rights...

I do not agree with putting God in my marriage for a variety of reasons. Mainly, because I believe there should be a separation of church and state. When I (proudly) say the pledge of allegiance I do not say "under God." When politicians request that "God bless America," I cringe. When President Bush says that he makes his choices according to what God tells him to do, the sounds of extreme Muslims praising Allah ring in my ear. I wish we could just separate our beliefs from our business, but we can't. That is evident when it comes to the issue of the right for homosexuals to marry.

When I discuss this issue with people who are against gay marriage I hear that it is against their morals or it isn't what God would want. So, let's do the whole separation of church and state thing. When you strip the religious argument away, what I hear is you want to take away a basic right that our state and federal government provide. What remains is a civil rights issue.

I have heard this is a dead issue since the people have voted, but I won't let this die. In my son's life time he will look back and say, "Were you guys all crazy?" I will say, "Yes, but some of us chose to do the right thing." It's the same way I feel when I look back at the picture from the 60's civil rights demonstrations and see the hate and anger in the eyes of the opposition. I wonder where those people are today and what it took for them to change their minds (if they did).

To start...

I have always been a pretty opinionated person, but that doesn't mean I don't like a well-rounded discussion. I have found myself over the last couple of months using my family blog to post my political ideology. While my husband and I share many of the same political opinions, I strayed from the original course of a family blog, which was to update friends and family on our coming and goings, etc. I realized I was turning some off to visiting the family blog because they didn't want to endure my political rants. The great thing about the blogosphere is the infinite possibility of rebranding yourself.

This blog will be political in nature and I encourage others to present their opinions. If you would be interested in joining in and writing a guest blog, I encourage you to do so, just email me a submission. I am not interested in making this a left-leaning place, though if I don't get a variety of opinions it will certainly seem so. I have a great deal of intelligent and well-spoken friends, so I hope to hear some good stuff!