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markpkessinger

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Member since: Sat May 15, 2010, 03:48 PM
Number of posts: 7,151

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"Should celebrities comment on politics" is the wrong question here . . .

Lots of discussion around the 'net today on the question of whether celebrities should comment on politics. But here's the thing: Meryl Streep's comments were NOT ABOUT POLITICS -- not a single word of what she said referenced politics in any way. Trump's behavior, when he attempted to silence a reporter (by mocking his disability and trying to publicly humiliate him) who had called him out on one of his outright lies -- that wasn't 'politics'. It was boorish bullying, behavior that was in violation of every adult norm of human decency our society knows. And that kind of behavior deserves to be called out in any and every forum!
Posted by markpkessinger | Tue Jan 10, 2017, 11:54 AM (17 replies)

Senator Bill Nelson on the Fort Lauderdale shooting -- WTF?

CBS is reporting that the Fort Lauderdale shooter had the gun in his checked baggage, that he retrieved his bags, removed the gun, and made his way to a restroom to load it. All the while, they are talking about how much wider the security perimeter needs to be at airports. But, if it is true that he retrieved it from his checked baggage, seems to me the solution is much simpler: ban weapons from ALL air travel, whether checked or not. This would be a simple, and nearly cost-free, solution.

Incredibly, when one of the talking heads raised that idea, Florida Senator Bill Nelson immediately dismissed it, saying, "What about hunters?" EXCUSE ME?? Whatever may be said of the right to own firearms, there is NO Constitutional right to hunt or to carry weapons on an airplane! The idea that the rest of us need to accommodate the convenience of hunters is simply outrageous! Apparently, Senator Nelson thinks the lives and safety of the traveling public should take a back seat to the convenience of the relative minority of people who hunt!
Posted by markpkessinger | Fri Jan 6, 2017, 05:38 PM (34 replies)

An important point that is getting lost amid the Russian Hacking scandal . . .

We can certainly all agree that any attempt by a foreign government to exert influence on American elections is unacceptable, and must be thoroughly (and independently) investigated. But there remains an important point that appears to be in serious danger of being obscured. That is, that had the leaked DNC emails not revealed what they did, in fact, reveal -- i.e., a very corrupt DNC that was improperly putting a thumb on the scales on behalf of a particular candidate during the primaries -- then the leaked emails would have had little impact. By all means, let's investigate Russia's involvement. But if the Democratic Party chooses to focus only on Russia's involvement while glossing over the corruption and duplicity of the DNC, we will have failed to learn the lessons of 2016.
Posted by markpkessinger | Wed Dec 14, 2016, 12:40 PM (18 replies)

Harry Reid was the ONLY Senate Democrat who did the right thing . . .

. . . in voting against the override of the President's veto. The rest were a bunch of gutless wonders!
Posted by markpkessinger | Thu Sep 29, 2016, 09:58 PM (4 replies)

Campaign Hillary needs to get its act together

A friend of mine who lives in Ohio -- a key battleground state in this race -- posted this today on Facebook:

OK... I'm voting for Clinton. There's no doubt about that and pretty much regardless of anything that happens 'twixt now and November 8, that's what will happen.

BUT! – 16 days ago I made a contribution to her campaign and ordered a yard sign for my home. I think it important to put that up and out there in a town where I've seen NO Clinton signs, but I have seen Trump signs (I pass four of them on my way to the office everyday and have seen others elsewhere in town and county).

After 14 days of not receiving the sign (for which the shipping charge was $12), I filled out a "contact" form on the Hillary website. Today I received a reply which included this: "Thank you for reaching out. If you have made a donation and are expecting a piece of merchandise in return, please allow approximately 6-8 weeks for delivery."

WHAT THE HELL?

8 WEEKS? The election will have happened before I get my sign. There will be no public display of support for a Clinton presidency in my neighborhood.

Is this any way to run a campaign? If you want your supporters to show their support, you'd sure as hell better get their public signs and bumper stickers and whatever else to them faster than "approximately 6-8 weeks"! Especially if you're charging them $12 for shipping a flimsy sheet of plastic and wire frame!

It's the little things that drive you crazy!


The "little things," indeed! Like me, my friend was a Sanders suporter during the primaries and now is supporting Clinton. This is a tight race, and a "little thing" like this, insofar ad it indicates the campaign's lack of responsiveness to supporters, is the kind of thing that could blow it in November.

One of the things that is critical to getting out the vote is making your supporters feel as if it is their campaign as much as it is yours. This is something Bernie's campaign did brilliantly (in some cases, almost too brilliantly). An aloof campaign will not win this election.

Get your shit together, Campaign Hillary!
Posted by markpkessinger | Wed Sep 14, 2016, 12:14 PM (191 replies)

So I hear Trump, that P.T. Barnum of American politics, has a new campaign theme song . . .

Posted by markpkessinger | Mon Sep 12, 2016, 02:52 PM (0 replies)

Calling out the extremely toxic effects of repressive hetero-normative culture is NOT homophobia...

. . . nor is it "victim blaming." I say this as a gay man who has been out and proud for 36 years (since age 19). Rather, it is about recognizing how truly toxic a virulently repressive, hetero-normative culture can be in some instances. In the case of the Orlando shooter, you can agree or disagree that his own, internal conflict over his sexual identity was at issue, but to say that any suggestion that it might have been so is "homophobic" or represents "victim blaming" is to profoundly misunderstand what is being said (and what isn't being said). This isn't blaming his outburst on the fact that he might have been gay himself, but rather is blaming the repressive culture in which he grew up that lay at the source of his internal conflict.

In fact, I would go so far as to say that by denying that this could possibly have been a factor, what you are actually doing is getting hetero-normative culture off the hook for its own toxicity!
Posted by markpkessinger | Tue Jun 21, 2016, 08:13 PM (15 replies)

Clinton Suprme Ct. appointee Stephen Breyer today helped the Court's four conservatives. . .

. . . to shred what was left of the 4th Amendment. And nobody is taking any notice. Appalling.
Posted by markpkessinger | Tue Jun 21, 2016, 06:14 PM (33 replies)

So Trump's mentor was . . . ROY COHN????!

Wow. From today's New York Times:

What Donald Trump Learned From Joseph McCarthy’s Right-Hand Man

< . . . . >

The year was 1977, and Mr. Cohn’s reputation was well established. He had been Senator Joseph McCarthy’s Red-baiting consigliere. He had helped send the Rosenbergs to the electric chair for spying and elect Richard M. Nixon president.

Then New York’s most feared lawyer, Mr. Cohn had a client list that ran the gamut from the disreputable to the quasi-reputable: Anthony (Fat Tony) Salerno, Claus von Bulow, George Steinbrenner.

But there was one client who occupied a special place in Roy Cohn’s famously cold heart: Donald J. Trump.

For Mr. Cohn, who died of AIDS in 1986, weeks after being disbarred for flagrant ethical violations, Mr. Trump was something of a final project. If Fred Trump got his son’s career started, bringing him into the family business of middle-class rentals in Brooklyn and Queens, Mr. Cohn ushered him across the river and into Manhattan, introducing him to the social and political elite while ferociously defending him against a growing list of enemies

<. . . . >


Posted by markpkessinger | Mon Jun 20, 2016, 02:37 PM (4 replies)

Can we just be honest about what was really going on with the Orlando shooter?

Look, as a gay man, I know the classic signs of a repressed closet case when I see them. The shooter's own father said his son had become angry a few weeks back after seeing two men kissing in public, the guy was apparently a regular at the club he shot up, and Gawker has reported he had a profile on a gay dating site. The whole ISIS bit was nothing than a covet for him. This was a disturbed individual who couldn't handle the feelings that were stirring inside himself, and acted out in a violent, murderous rage. It's a scenario all too familiar to those of us in the LGBT community. FFS, already, to turn this into some grand example of 'Jihad' against the U.S. is to glorify it far beyond what it deserves!
Posted by markpkessinger | Mon Jun 13, 2016, 10:51 PM (263 replies)
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