Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Carnival Of The Liberals #37 (UPDATED)

The Carnival of the Liberals has finally arrived at BogsBlog, and will be here for your reading pleasure for two weeks. Not to worry, all the carnies are fully licensed and qualified liberals. Beware of pickpockets and trolls, however.

It was certainly difficult to whittle the dozens of submissions I received down to just 10, but them’s the rules! The posts below range from the scholarly to the satirical to the sublime; all were chosen because they had what the French call a certain I don’t know what. Great job all around, folks. Sorry I couldn’t post more of these.

Let the carnival begin...

In a very Swiftian post indeed, Jon Swift over at his eponymous blog proffers that even mentioning the word "abstinence" might lead kids to impure thoughts and actions. You can decide for yourself whether he’s serious or not. Either way, his post called Is Abstinence-Only Education Too Explicit? is pretty damned entertaining (and includes visuals aids). Suggested snacking for this read: plump, rosy-cheeked Irish tots.

Over at hell's handmaiden, the eponymous blogger tells us that the war against God will not be televised, because He does not exist. The post also dispels the myth of the courteous rapist, i.e. the kind that provides Plan B contraceptives to his underage victims. HH gets some devil's advocate creds with Plan B - Make up something really silly, because you can.

Tobe38, a British blogger bloke over at A Load Of Bright, suggests in Positive Discrimination (wince!) that discrimination is discrimination is discrimination. I’d been considering a post like this myself for some time. Thanks, mate, for the saving me the work!

I couldn't help noticing the Onion-sounding-titled take on gun control,
Gun Lobby Wins, Says Gun Lobby, written by Doctor Biobrain over at And Doctor Biobrain's Response Is.... Incidentally, I've been thinking, though the Second Amendment ostensibly permits the bearing of arms, it doesn't say a G-darned thing about the right to have ammunition. So, make all guns legal everywhere and all the time, but good luck trying to shoot someone or something with them. Now that’s what I call gun control! Of course, there’s also Chris Rock’s suggestion of making bullets cost $5000 apiece.

In a persuasive post called Virginia Tech and Gun Control, Stephen Ward (btw, the phoniest sounding Web pseudonym ever... I mean, come on) over at Project Paradox
explains why even ardent gun opponents should support the Second Amendment, if not in the extreme and intractable fashion of some of our fellow citizens.

Next, a mother laments her teen son’s disinterest in the problems of the world in a post that proves saliva and activism aren’t completely incompatible. Wet your whistle with Spitfire, submitted by Lill Hawkins over at News From Hawkhill Acres.

Perhaps The Speeker over at Talk Lab has an explanation as to why Lill’s son isn’t more interested in activism. According to his post Structure of Activism: Corporate or State goverance? (sic), activism sold out and went corporate long ago. What's next, a non-profit IPO?

What do you want? Are you sure you know? David over at 360 Degree Success isn't so sure. He thinks you're being conditioned to want everything from cigarettes to war in the Middle East. Duct tape and plastic sheeting, anyone? They Live comes to life with Are You Sure You Know What You Really Want?

Dave (no relation) over at Daveawayfromhome suggests that the real cost of the war in Iraq may be a good education for a lot of Americans. No Child Left Behind indeed. Take a peek at his in tuition.

And finally, Diane Silver over at In This Moment gives her insight on what’s really going on with America’s most vile, tactless, misguided homophobes in Kansas' Westboro Baptist Church & the saddest family in America. Not that I'm biased or anything, but I think it'd be fair to say "God hates Phelps."

Have you enjoyed the carnival? Well, it moves on to That Is So Queer... on May 9, so be sure to check it out!

Sunday, April 22, 2007

The Carnival Is Coming To Town!!!

Roll up! Roll up! See the show! BogsBlog is the host for the next Carnival of the Liberals, beginning Wednesday, April 25.

No artificially colored cotton candy (aka candy floss), sickening rides or freak shows here. Well, maybe some of the latter. But,
basically, you write a killer post on your own blog, then I link all my visitors to your site to read that post (and possibly many other posts on your blog). This goes on for two weeks.

Looking to generate some traffic on your own blog? Play along! Submit a post for consideration here by 11:59 PM Eastern (GMT -5:00), Monday, April 23. I know it's a tight turnaround, but I also know you industrious bloggers can handle it!

Topic? Whatever's on your liberal mind. However, if you want suggestions, I have some...
  • Abstinence-based sex education: Is it helping or hurting kids?
  • Hate crime legislation: Is it needed?
  • What important issues are currently being ignored by our elected officials?
Get creative. Open your mind and pour it out on the page. Get to work! I and the rest of Blogland are looking forward to reading your post!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Just When You Thought It Was Safe To Be Alive

This post rambles a bit, and there's not a thing funny about it. In other words, it reflects my current state of mind.

As we watch horrific events like Columbine, the Oklahoma City bombing and 9/11 unfold, we wonder how any human being could do such a thing to another. It seems the madmen of this world are constantly trying to top themselves.

The sad story that is contemporary life has new chapters added all too frequently; on Monday a man walked onto the campus of Virginia Tech University with two handguns and shot 32 people to death before killing himself. The massacre took place over several hours, and over a wide area of the campus.

I’m beginning to think that Andy Warhol’s statement about everyone being famous for 15 minutes should be changed to: Every American will have his/her own "crazed gunman" encounter at one point in their life. That somehow seems more relevant now, though fame may well accompany the latter in the form of victimhood.

Just two weeks ago a man shot dead his ex-girlfriend in broad daylight at CNN Center. Remember that one?

Both sides of the gun control debate will naturally come out strong in response to this tragedy. Some will no doubt inexplicably cite this incident as an example of why we need prayer in public schools, and/or how violent video games and movies are sending us to hell in a Prada handbag.

Many of those same individuals will dismiss any responsibility for how their own NRA-card-carrying asses have contributed to making a culture of violence so easily sustainable. They will use the tragedy to bolster their position that people need to be able to have guns so they can defend themselves from such madmen.

Florida lawmakers are trying to make it a crime for employers to prohibit their employees from coming to work packing heat. It certainly would be nice to have a gun handy in case you go over the edge one day and decide to take your coworkers out, eh? I imagine some of the people who opposed the public smoking ban here because it "takes away business owners' rights" might even support this puppy, without irony.

In Virginia, where the latest shootings took place, guns and ammunition are extremely easy to acquire legally. This includes assault weapons, which serve only one purpose: to kill a lot of people, fast. The VTU shooter didn’t have an assault weapon, but imagine if he had! Who needs these weapons, no matter how cool they seem, or what some think the Constitution says?

President Bush must know, as he was uninterested in renewing their ban when it expired in 2004. In response to this week's tragedy, he issued the following statement through a spokesperson: “The president believes that there is a right for people to bear arms, but that all laws must be followed.”

That the president’s first instinct is to pander to his gun nut base is telling and troubling. It’s completely inappropriate for him to have even addressed that, especially so soon after the tragedy. That he felt the need to put that qualifying language at the beginning of the sentence shows where his loyalties lie. And he's not the only one.

By the way, the president doesn’t giving a flying fuck about any or "all laws" – they don't apply to him, it seems his overly obvious, simplistic statement notwithstanding.

The gun lobby in the United States is way too powerful, and I don’t see any sensible changes coming to our gun laws anytime soon. For the foreseeable future, I think we are screwed. We are stuck with this unacceptable situation.

From 9/11 we learned that we need to take terrorism seriously and put much stronger emphasis on national security; will we take a similar lesson here? If terrorist attacks lead to security reforms, will gun attacks lead to gun reforms? Will high-powered lobbyists allow that to happen? Will people who haven't properly read the Second Amendment allow that to happen?
Will lawmakers grow a pair and take on this issue, even though it may not be the popular thing to do, but it's the right thing to do, as they've told us in many a keynote speech? I'm not holding my breath, lest I end up with those poor souls at VTU.

It becomes clearer to me every day that our nation is run by gun nuts and God nuts who see no contradiction in being both. To coin a phrase, God help us.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Monday Mishmash

The world is full of weird and wonderful people who sometimes do unbelievable things. Here’s what some of them have been up to recently:

Another Bush nominee is in trouble. Go figure! Paul Wolfowitz, president of the World Bank, has drawn ire for using his position to arrange an exorbitant salary for his girlfriend, and may soon be in the unemployment line next to Don Imus. According to one source: Given his (Wolfie's) romantic involvement with her, he faced a "painful personal dilemma when (he) was new to the institution" but had made a "good-faith effort to promote (his) understanding of that advice" of the ethics committee. What was the “painful personal dilemma,” get his girlfriend more money or never get laid again?

A Tennessee woman on trial for murdering her preacher husband has said that the man was abusive and controlling, even requiring her to obtain his permission to get a haircut. What’s the problem? Doesn’t she know good Christian wives always “graciously submit to the will of their husbands?”

Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff/unrepentant homophobe Peter Pace have announced that all US troops currently serving in Iraq and Afghanistan will have their tours of duty extended from 12 to 15 months. This is in addition the stop-loss previously implemented. Like a fart, this is a back-door draft, but it stinks even worse.

And speaking of military madness, the so-called “D.C. Madam” has named one of the architects of the 2003 US invasion of Iraq as a regular client. He may be fucked, if indeed he was.

In other "sins of the flesh" news, former astronaut and dirty diaper-wearer Lisa Nowak had some bondage photos on a computer disc in her car when she attacked a romantic rival back in February. Some people call her the space dominatrix, yeah.

Congratulations, Mr. Corzine, you've just become a cautionary tale. New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine, a Democrat, has been seriously injured after a hit-and-run driver ran his vehicle off the road. Corzine was reportedly not wearing his seatbelt at the time of the collision, in contravention of New Jersey law. What kind of example does this set for the young people, sir??? (Is it just me, or does his name sound like a topical ointment?)

And finally: German scientists have been able to create something resembling human sperm from stem cells taken from mens' bones. Kinda gives the notion of "boning" someone an added dimension, don't it?

My work here is done.

Friday, April 13, 2007

A Farewell From The Monkey House (UPDATED)

Iconic American author Kurt Vonnegut has become unstuck in time, having just died aged 84.

Always a slow and lazy reader, I have managed to take in a few of his books over the years, including Slaughterhouse-Five, Bluebeard, Welcome To The Monkey House and possibly Player Piano, Breakfast Of Champions and Mother Night.

His work was imaginative, funny, tragic, enigmatic, sometimes confusing stuff that I found fascinating. It certainly played an important role in my own creative development.

So, to the late master I offer this:

Farewell, Mr. Vonnegut,
from this madhouse where creatures descended from monkeys are the dominant occupants. I hope you’ll get to enjoy eternity on Tralfamadore with your faithful dog and a bare-breasted Valerie Perrine. I pour a virtual 16 (ounce) out on the curb in your honor.

PS: Say hello to Hugh Jackman for me. I understand he's floating around on a tree out there somewhere.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Imus Be Mistaken

The scandal of this week is, of course, Don Imus’ racially charged comments about female basketball players from Rutgers University.

I’m not here to defend Imus’ comments. I don’t watch or listen to the guy; I don’t do talk shows at all. And I seriously don’t think a guy with freakish hair like that should really be commenting on anyone else’s. (No sour grapes here, honest.)

I can understand why the players were offended by his remarks. Their outrage over unwarranted personal comments is certainly justifiable. And activists such as Al Sharpton are correct when they say that, free speech aside, there have to be limits on “hate speech” on the airwaves.

But I’m not sure how to determine what is hate speech. I am reminded of Michael Richards’ racist outburst during a standup gig in California last year. At that time I stated that I felt comedians were given more leeway than others with their words, and that it should be that way.

For entertainers in general, actually. I’d never tell (the late) Richard Pryor that he shouldn’t use the “N” word; ultimately, he came to that realization on his own. Likewise, I’d never tell a rapper not to use that word, lest they pop a cap in my sorry ass. All kidding aside, maybe one day they too will come to the same realization Pryor did.

Imus has apologized, and insists his comments were “comedy.” Were they? I don’t know. He has a track record with questionable comments. And what’s funny to some is not funny to all.

But I have also written that “offensive” is subjective, and that the offended shouldn’t automatically be given victim status. Just look at those Middle Eastern nuts who threw a shit-fit over a cartoon. (News flash: Blogger Bogs Under Fire For Referring To Middle Eastern People As “Nuts,” Rejects Calls For His Resignation, Cites Alcohol For His Woes)

If someone read back through all my posts they certainly might find something to be offended by. I do consider myself a satirist (and somewhat of a “satyrist” - hehehe), and I don’t wish to change that.

I’m not certain firing is appropriate in the Imus case. I prefer to reserve the ultimate punishment for corrupt and/or inept public officials. Imus has been suspended, and maybe he should be fined and put on warning that further comments of a similar nature might end his career. I don’t think we should be too hasty in trying to end anyone’s career, unless they are, say, a career criminal or a habitual offender.

Not to flippantly toss anyone’s feelings aside, but I’m hoping this issue will soon die down so we can return our attention to issues like the ongoing catastrophe in Iraq.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Jesus H. Chocolate!

Just in time for Easter: Your own… choc-o-late… Je-sus.

A life-sized chocolate sculpture of Jesus Christ is giving some New York Christians a bellyache. The piece was set to be displayed during Holy Week, but complaints have forced the artist to put the Big Man In Chocolate (aka "My Sweet Lord") back into His wrapper.

Strange, a chocolate Jesus seems like such a natural thing for Easter. Catholics in particular don’t object to observing the holiday through idolatry, and they don’t seem to have any objection to chocolate, either. So why the fuss about the sculpture? It’s two great tastes that taste great together.

And, like a Communion wafer, He melts in your mouth, not in your hand.

Perhaps the protesters prefer hollow chocolate to solid?

Perhaps there would be less objection if dark chocolate, with all those healthy antioxidants, were used?

On the other hand, perhaps they are upset that Jesus is brown, rather than that Aryan "ideal" we see in typical depictions of Him? (“I don’t care what the white mon say, Jesus Christ is a black mon…”)

Perhaps some men, who know of women’s legendary weakness for chocolate, are afraid a naked man made of chocolate (complete with gender-appropriate appendage) will make them obsolete?

I can’t answer these questions. But I can proffer this thought: Perhaps New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin, when speaking of the return of “chocolate New Orleans” in the wake of apocalyptic Hurricane Katrina, was really alluding to this Second Coming of Christ in chocolate form(?)

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Traitors, Traitors Everywhere!

Many Americans consider it wrong, even traitorous, for their fellow countrymen to make “unofficial official" visits to nations non grata.

For example, Nancy Pelosi just met with Syrian President Bashar Assad, much to the displeasure of President Bush. Bush's response was oddly muted, though, when a prominent member of his own party and, later, a GOP delegation visited that country, which is high on the Presidential Shitlist. (There is some evidence that the latter group even had the president's approval to make the trip.)

The ostensible objection here is that Syria is one of those Middle Eastern countries closely associated with terrorism. (Honestly, that could be just about any of them.)

But Vice President Cheney recently visited Saudi Arabia, home to most of the 9/11 hijackers, and a country with little in the way of human rights. Indeed, Bush himself has been known to literally hold hands with that country’s dictator/monarch during visits. This is just a tad hypocritical.

For the reasonable among us, there’s a very good explanation for these unauthorized trips by statesmen. It’s called diplomacy. And what it means – and our president is not willing to do this – is swallowing your pride and sitting down at the table with some (other) real assholes, no matter how disagreeable you may find them.

The press often do that very thing. Dan Rather interviewed Saddam Hussein on the eve of the US invasion of Iraq, for example. 60 Minutes aired an interview with Iranian President Ahmadinejad. Liberal media terrorist sympathizers, right?

In these instances ratings were no doubt a big motivator. But I do think we should give even our adversaries their 15 minutes on the air, if only to let them show just how fucking nuts they are. Seriously.

Does anyone think that any American will be swayed by, for example, Ahmadinejad’s words? Often these people simply ramble along with homicidal delusions of grandeur. In essence, they provide their own undoing. Just look at the Osama bin Laden tapes that pop up every now and then; even consternatives readily broadcast those.

Of course, press initiatives are not as consequential as visits by government officials. It may hit some the wrong way, but when leaders are unwilling to exhibit the leadership their offices require, others have to step up and do so in their place.

PS: In case you hadn't noticed, I have failed to deliver the adult-oriented site previously promised. Well, we must all observe April Fools Day in our own way. I got a good laugh, and some serious hits to my site due to my use of terms like "upskirt" and "nipple slip." Oops, there I go again! Thanks to all y'all masta-baytaz for making that post a success.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

ANNOUNCEMENT: BogsBlog To Become BabesBlog

After months of consideration and planning, I am pleased to announce that BogsBlog will become an adult-oriented, subscription-only blog in the next few days. Membership rates will be announced shortly.

I certainly hope I will not alienate any of my regular readers with this move. I believe you are all open-minded enough to accept that human sexuality is a natural and fascinating thing, and that exploring it through (mostly) high-resolution jpegs and streaming video will be an exciting (and affordable) adventure.

Plus, it's some primo stuff that will really help you freak your shit.

Why the change? Well, money for one thing. I mean, let's face it: no one is going to pay me a cent just so they can read my unconventional opinions on everything from politics to traffic jams. So this blue state-minded boy is going to work blue.

Not expecting anyone to pay for something sigh-unseen, I've included a few sneaky-peeks to get the party going. Have a look, and then be sure to let me know what you think in the comments section. Thanks!

CELEBRITY PICS: The inimitable Dr. Laura.

"WIDE" WORLD OF SPORTS: Unnatural acts on ice, and more.

VINTAGE: Granny wasn't so innocent after all!

THE BEST OF BLOGLAND: Fellow blogger Vanille Bitch's
"nipple slip" caught on camera.

BabesBlog debuts on Wednesday, i.e. Hump Day. See you then!

Pete Bogs (aka "Long Bogs Silver")