I did not know Hilary Swank was making an Amelia Earheart biopic

But she is.


For Swedish readers

Via Dan Savage:

An AIDS-prevention organization in Stockholm is passing out 100,000 individually-numbered condoms. The group, LAFA, is inviting Swedes who use one of the numbered condoms to visit a website and share their condom’s story—just what and who was done—and inviting other Swedes to log on and read these stories. People will visit Kondom08 for the titillation factor, of course, but they’ll be reading stories about safe sex practices while they’re being titillated.

Sarkozy: Burqa “not welcome in France”

Been meaning to blog on this for a while. Via the AP via the Denver Post, of all places (Also, thanks to sometimes commentor Tania for prompting the discussion, in a different venue):
President Nicolas Sarkozy declared Monday that the Islamic burqa is not welcome in France, branding the face-covering, body-length gown as a symbol of subservience that suppresses women’s identities and turns them into “prisoners behind a screen.”But there was a mixed message in the tough words: an admission that the country’s long-held principle of ethnic assimilation—which insists that newcomers shed their traditions and adapt to French culture—is failing because it doesn’t give immigrants and their French-born children a fair chance.
In a high-profile speech to lawmakers in the historic chateau at Versailles, Sarkozy said the head-to-toe Muslim body coverings were in disaccord with French values—some of the strongest language against burqas from a European leader at a time when some Western officials have been seeking to ease tensions with the Muslim world.
For a secular nation, banning the veil is indefensibly arbitrary*. Moreover, it would likely affect the exact opposite of its intention by A.) further restricting the movement of devout Islamic women who refuse to leave the house uncovered, and B.) furher alienating all Muslim immigrants, making assimilation even less appealing and radicalism possibly moreso.
*Unless the oridnance is vaguely crafted enough to prohibit the wearing of all headgear in public buildings, building on the old custom of respect when people actually wore hats (beside baseball caps) in public. But in this day and age, I find it entirely unbelievable that such a law could be crafted without Muslim women and Sikh men in mind–probably specifically in mind.
That being said, I do side with the state in cases when women are denied documents like drivers liscences when refuse to uncover their faces for an ID photograph. It’s only fair–and, indeed, only makes sense–that everyone applying for an ID card submits to the process by which they can actually be identified by it.

Monday Morning Surrealism

Poseidon sat at his desk, doing figures. The administration of all the waters gave him endless work. He could have had assistants, as many as he wanted — and he did have very many — but since he took his job very seriously, he would in the end go over all the figures and calculations himself, and thus his assistants were of little help to him. It cannot be said that he enjoyed his work; he did it only because it had been assigned to him; in fact, he had already filed many petitions for — as he put it — more cheerful work, but every time the offer of something different was made to him it would turn out that nothing suited him quite as well as his present position. And anyhow it was quite difficult to find something different for him. After all, it was impossible to assign him to a particular sea; aside from the fact that even then the work with figures would not become less but only pettier, the great Poseidon could in any case occupy only an executive position. And when a job away from the water was offered to him he would get sick at the very prospect, his divine breathing would become troubled and his brazen chest began to tremble. Besides, his complaints were not really taken seriously; when one of the mighty is vexatious the appearance of an effort must be made to placate him, even when the case is most hopeless. In actuality a shift of posts was unthinkable for Poseidon — he had been appointed God of the Sea in the beginning, and that he had to remain.

What irritated him most — and it was this that was chiefly responsible for his dissatisfaction with his job — was to hear of the conceptions formed about him: how he was always riding about through the tides with his trident. When all the while he sat here in the depths of the world-ocean, doing figures uninterruptedly, with now and then a trip to Jupiter as the only break in the monotony — a trip, moreover, from which he usually returned in a rage. Thus he had hardly seen the sea — had seen it but fleetingly in the course of hurried ascents to Olympus, and he had never actually traveled around it. He was in the habit of saying that what he was waiting for was the fall of the world; then, probably, a quiet moment would be granted in which, just before the end and having checked the last row of figures, he would be able to make a quick little tour.

Poseidon became bored with the sea. He let fall his trident. Silently he sat on the rocky coast and a gull, dazed by his presence, described wavering circles around his head.

Franz Kafka (1883-1924), undated


The number of women affected by the horror of genital mutilation worldwide.

I feel oblidged to cover this topic whenever possible; that’s why I’m posting this video, which provides only a very hurried primer on the topic. Journalist  Thomas Von Der Osten-Sacken :

Michelle Bachmann: Interment camps a possible ramification of filling out your census

Ah, the living Gladys Leeman, that gift from Minnesota that keeps on giving. I just feel sorry for the poor bastards she represents:

Even Glenn Beck winces.

I used to think Bratz were the worst toys imaginable

Then, I saw a line of horses in stripper heels called–I wish I were kidding–Struts.

(above) I looked, and there before me was a pale horse! Its rider was named Death, and Hades was following close behind him. (Rev. 6:8)

I looked, and there before me was a pale horse! Its rider was named Death, and Hades was following close behind him. (Rev. 6:8)