But I would be happy to consider differences of opinion on it. It was written several months ago:

As with most hot political topics from gender’d bathrooms to the conflict in the Middle East, I just wish people could discuss things in terms of reality and not their hopes and dreams, wishes and fantasies.  

It’s OK to be a fantasist, or believe in whatever you want in your private life for that matter, but the only way society is going to work is if our public lives are grounded in reality.  Like a few hundred years ago when we figured out it wasn’t a good idea to be pooping upstream in the rivers we get our drinking water, or why medical professionals have been wearing masks to protect themselves and others for generations.

(FB taught me this isn’t possible and/but here the usual caveats apply—futility aside we must continue to try, maybe ONE person will think hard on it and all that—apologies for all the “opinions”; it’s my largest microphone, sometimes I just have to scream, etc.; literally, yada yada)  

I have no real dog in the fight except for my intense dislike of stupid illogical magical thinking and beating up the weaker (read: poorer) among us, whose lives I personally feel no need to make tougher.

Practically speaking here’s what happens if/when Roe v. Wade is repealed (which is very possible now if not likely):

Almost everyone reading this, my personal audience, generally well educated and being people of relative means, as well as anyone with *real* money will, *as ever*, have access to safe and legal abortion.  Always.  Forever.  Full stop.  If you don’t think this is true there’s no reason to weigh in because there’s no point in engaging fantasy.

And make no mistake about it: the conservative politicians pushing this will always be part of this access, whether it be for their wives, daughters, and/or mistresses.  

Some number of States will declare it illegal even if the mother is conclusively proven to be carrying Satan’s spawn, or, more likely, the woman’s rapist’s kid, or a severely genetically damaged fetus that should it live (or when it dies pre- or postpartum) will forever haunt the mother’s life and in most cases cost the rest of us many monies.  As noted above, the folks who have the means in the red states who pass those restrictive laws will simply cough up the flight and/or hotel money to travel someplace they can obtain an abortion without using a coat hanger, some Jack Daniels and a shop-vac.

Those women on the poorer end will have to choose (ironically) between taking matters into their own hands or enduring the trauma and future problems (for all of us) inherent in having an undesired and/or extremely expensive child.

I don’t even understand how a person makes it into adulthood without some understanding that unwanted children are costly to everyone in all kinds of ways.

So a repeal of Roe v. Wade *unquestionably* leads to a systemic oppression and a different standard applied to poor pregnant women vs. rich pregnant women.  

How very Christian. 

There are no laws on a man’s body autonomy even remotely similar.  (“If men could get pregnant, abortions would be available at Jiffy Lube.” —  Betty White)

You *know* we’re not going to punish the fathers, but if you’re anti-choice you probably don’t want to discuss that part so you can go on pretending the fathers of these babies aren’t ~50% responsible for the pregnancy.

Then there is the “enforcement” part.  

Presumably, in states where abortion is restricted or outlawed, punishment will be in place, otherwise what’s the point.  So do we punish the mothers, the doctors, or both, because they happened to be living in a red state?  How, exactly?  What is the punishment?  Jail time?  Do you want to *fine* these mostly poor women?  Make their lives a bit more difficult financially?  Seems that would be a bit out of line with the oft-alleged Christian value of “charity” so many claim.  It also seems like kicking or piling on a person already on the ground.

Execution, you know, the intellectually consistent punishment on the “eye for an eye” principle?  These mothers (or is it the doctors, or both?) are murderers, after all, in the eyes of most forced-birthers.

Texas (“We Regulate Uteri, Not Guns!”) is going the lawsuit/narc-for-cash route:  “[The law]…also allows private citizens to sue abortion providers and anyone else who helps a woman obtain an abortion, including those who give a woman a ride to a clinic or provide financial assistance in obtaining an abortion.  Private citizens who bring these suits don’t need to show any connection to those they are suing[Emphasis mine]. If they prevail, the law entitles them to a minimum of $10,000 in damages plus attorney fees.” 

LOL  What could possibly go wrong with the Bounty Hunter Model?  (Also, “damages”?!!  To a stranger?)

How do we monitor and handle the approximately ⅓ of pregnancies that result in miscarriage, God’s abortions?  An aggrieved party with a pregnant woman could easily claim that the woman aborted the fetus when in fact it was a miscarriage, out of spite, the desire for revenge, money (see provision in TX law, above), or any of the other infinite circumstances routine to human existence.  Because they were mad about being broken up with.  How will we establish “guilt” and what is the cost?  How does all this inevitability work in the real world? 

Would a black market for Plan B immediately open in the states that banned abortion?

Would every OBGYN want to provide proper care to a high-risk (medical, legal, or both) pregnancy considering the risk to their legal/financial lives should the pregnancy fail?

Do we *jail* doctors?  They are, after all, clearly and indisputably complicit.  (This strikes me as a bad idea.)

Sure would be silly not to plan for all this stuff, no?

These are real questions about how enforcement is done in the absence of a police state, monitoring the details of every woman’s pregnancy looking (just in some States!) for reasons to prosecute.  In real life, that fact will inhibit some women from appropriate pre-natal care, which again costs the rest of us money, ultimately.  

Don’t even get me started on how one side of the abortion debate lets everyone in an allegedly “free” society do as they consider wise and in their own best interest, either way, and the other does not.  One side of this debate places demands on women, the other does not and that is a very important distinction, a distinction typically completely *ignored* by the folks trying to ram their Invisible Sky Wizard-based value system down the entire country’s throat. 

I’m sure I have a few forced-birthers left on my shrinking FB feed to explain how everything I’ve just written is not in keeping with what will actually happen in the event of a Roe v. Wade leap backwards. 

Perhaps the anti-choicers can tell me how the women they personally know who’ve had an abortion, and/or their Dr.’s should’ve been punished.  Or deny they know any of “those” women so we can all have a laugh.

(It is also true most forced-birthers generally identify themselves as members of the “smaller government” political party.  There is nothing more intrusive, more “big government” than the State doing pregnancy monitoring.)

Not interested in anyone’s opinion that abortion after the first 21 weeks (about 2%) is icky.  That we can stipulate.  I’ll even stipulate that it’s “murder” to skip THAT discussion, too.  

Before you make the murder case (as if) please consider how you choose to punish these murderers; that George W Bush recently executed a couple hundred thousand completely innocent Iraqis in Iraq 2 on a whim and a lie to the American public; your position on the death penalty; and whether or not health care is a “right” or a “privilege.”  Consider also that our 45th’s President’s life, among many others, was probably saved by an injection of antibodies developed with fetal tissue.

The list goes on.  Your right to not wear a mask in crowds, or your thoughts on open carry of assault rifles in grocery stores and polling places.  Whether or not police killing a wildly disproportionate number of the unarmed but melanin-heavy is justified.  Etc.  

The point is we as a society sanction a lot of “murder” and many of those murdered have been alive for a long time, which I believe is worse than never getting started. 

Related:  https://www.wonkette.com/iowa-defunded-planned-parenthood-and-guess-what-they-got-more-of

Thanks for attending my TED talk. 

(It should also be noted that virtually every problem the human race has to face right now is ultimately traceable to the fact that there are too many of us.  My own personal deity recognizes overpopulation as a far greater threat to HIs/Her/Its Children than abortion, because my deity—to the tiny degree He/She/It exists in my world—is the ultimate *rational* being or force. 

There will soon be 8 *billion* of us, and that’s unmanageable for even the basics like food and water, entirely discounting the immense amount of garbage we’re littering the planet and atmosphere with and which Mother Nature, God’s Operations Manager, will continue at a steadily increasing rate killing as many of us as necessary to restore balance.)  

A Trump presidency would be fabulous TV.  And though he would instantly, by virtue of simply getting elected, complete a milestone on the Decline of Empire travels by getting even our allies to believe we have collectively lost our shit and never trusting us again to the degree they do now, I don’t believe he would accomplish much more domestically than B. Sanders given the Congress with whom either will have to deal.  I’m not even sure Trump would nominate an ideologue to the Supreme Court, because of course I do not believe a word he says.

How much people are influenced by their love of the Great Screen is vastly underrated, and at this particular point in our history this will be a tight election even if Il Douche does win the GOP nod largely because of TV (though also because HRC is a weak candidate).  We are conditioned to Spectacle, and no one likes a blowout in Super Bowls,”reality” TV, or Politics.  We are conditioned to vote for our team, to be loyal to our team, our tribe, regardless of how silly (or futile) that may be.  TV does a lot of that conditioning.

Trump may horrify a lot of old-school establishment conservatives, but he’ll appeal to a lot of authoritarian simpleton racists that normally vote D and/or are one of the 25 people in this country that are actually I’s.

The Villagers and the TV (repeating myself to a great degree given the tube’s power over the culture) will see to an election within 5 points one way or another regardless of who the nominees are.  Politics has become a for-profit business on several levels post Citizen’s United.

Sure am glad I’m not brown, female, gay, young, dependent or depended on, or (too) poor, because being any one of those things is going to get dramatically worse under Republican control.  Bright sides!

My guts are screaming pretty loudly right about now that Rafael fits the current GOP electorate best.  Of course, I’ve also been saying Trump will flame out for about 6 months now, and maintain to this day it will still happen.  Predictions are hard and all.

Think about how good you have to be at what you do to get where Cruz has gotten in a people business where virtually everyone who knows him hates him.  He has Nixonian ruthlessness, cunning, ambition, and intellect.  He’s no moron, but certainly is such an awesome asshole the latter more than makes up for Ted’s Ivy League eduction and intellectual pedigree in the eye’s of Cruz’ Einsteinian base of hard core theocrats and general Haters, the ones that just love being “led.”  Need to be led.

HRC’s ceiling is, IMO, 53% of the vote if she runs a flawless campaign (she won’t).  There isn’t going to be much margin for error.  Ted will present a serious problem, since I assume all those Principled Establishment Republicans who are on record as hating Cruz will come ’round to the modern GOP’s barely unspoken motto of “Party before Country” soon enough.

The scariest words and perhaps the most raw expression of pure tribalism in politics are, “I will support our party’s nominee [no matter who it is].”

The only good I can see coming from a Cruz Presidency is that I think he’d be a one-termer and would ultimately prove to be another nail in the coffin of the modern Republican party.  The man clearly doesn’t wear well, and he wants to give more money to rich people than every single other Republican candidate, which is now a proven failure on both national and state levels, as Bush The Lesser and the fine Republicans in KS and LA have clearly demonstrated, so I assume it will fail again, but we won’t see the consequences for another several years and by then it will be too late for me to care.

If Cruz wins, once again being an oldish, spouseless, childless SWM loner with a laptop, a dog and a cat will come very much in handy.  I can ride Ted out.

I continue to believe I was born at just the right time and place in the history of the American Empire, because a Cruz Presidency would most certainly be another signpost to me that the best days are behind us.  Underestimating him is a fool’s game.

Update:  David Wasserman rains some reassuring data on my apocalyptic-grade fear of a Cruz Presidency.

I tend to come down on this side of what will happen in the process to replace Nino as opposed to this view, with the caveats that a lot of things can change in 10 months and even the modern GOP has not regressed to a point that renders them unable to read poll numbers.

Simply can’t see the Republicans folding on this one.  We are in the process of watching the last violent survival shudder in the life of a currently dying or at the very least transforming institution.  The Culture has moved on from much of the Right’s reactionary bullshit, particularly Kids These Days, and as much as I don’t think re-litigating abortion and gay marriage is a good political idea for the GOP these days, they’re all in with their base and are going to the dance with what brought them.

Strange times.


File under things I wish I would’ve written myself.

I like Heywood J a lot.  He sees the world through the same lens I do and doesn’t get enough blog-love if you ask me.

He was a big enough, tough enough, mean enough guy for this year’s GOP electorate, but he wasn’t stupid enough.

Christie is the kind of politician who would hire people who would in turn create a rush hour traffic jam purely out of political spite, which traffic jam no doubt seriously pissed off a number of their own voters.  Yeah, he was mean enough.  No room in the party right now for anyone who knows a thing or two about politics though.

It’s very distressing.  I didn’t like the guy because of his native NJ personality (and see above for a manifestation) but I wouldn’t have completely freaked out had he been my President.

We elected a black guy and a huge chunk of conservative America just collectively freaked out, and now Trump has let them out of the closet and given them voice.  Strange times indeed.  Ezra has it spot on here.



The press will continue to fawn on him because money and “electability” and because, apparently, Marco is cute or something (he’s actually a bit of a douche, albeit a smooth one), but his debate crash and burn will sting for a long time because of a simple fact: The American public has no interest in seeing their POTUS pantsed like that by anyone, under any circumstances.  A pantsing like the dorky nerd in the locker room with all the asshole jocks.  Coupled with total brain freeze.  It’s a tough image to shake, and it’s going to come up again and again.  Few voters will have missed it should he secure the nomination.

He’s a clever politician taking responsibility like he demonstrates in the first link, I think that sells, but he’s a couple of days late on it, since he’s spent the last (and only two days he had) saying he was going to keep repeating what he said.

But I don’t think his do-over is going to help.  That’s the second time he’s clearly choked on a national stage.

The Republicans want a big-swinging-dick type this year, that much is obvious.  This year a humiliation like Rubio suffered is going to be very hard to overcome.

Update:  This was a mistake, IMO.  He’s really under pressure now and there is a long road ahead.  Another sign of poor judgement and inexperience, if you ask me.

The only thing I would quibble over in this rundown of the state of play in the GOP primary is that to my jaded cynical eyes no matter who wins the Republican primary their odds of winning are at least 40%, a small quibble indeed.

Mitt Romney’s “47%” comments were widely reported, but at the time I couldn’t understand why nobody in the Democratic party pointed out that the GOP nominee has a floor, too, made up almost entirely of angry white guys, bigots, homophobes, racists, Christianists, and morons.

I put that floor at very near 45%, not too much different than the 47 Mittens so stupidly tossed about.  Odd that modern Presidential races now come down to about 10 states and 10% of the population.  A little disturbing, too.

Another in my new series, “Thoughts I wish I could share with an actual audience on FB but can’t because of FB culture and my relationship with FB culture.”

Regarding Paris it seems like if I was the POTUS I would consider this a good time to convene European and Middle Eastern leaders (the sane ones) and encourage them to band together WWII-style to wipe out the latest in a forever-line of Invisible Sky Wizard psychopaths and sociopaths in a massive and brutal way—for now the revenge gene is strong in me—except with a brand new twist. We’re not playing on the ground any more than we already are. Sure, we’ll help coordinate and cooperate in every way possible, but ISIS doesn’t threaten us, fuckers, they don’t have an air force or navy, only a fucked up idea, and this idea is a known toxin, check your fucking history books, and it needs to be eliminated from the ground up, and that requires yet another fucking bloody war over magical thinking, so welcome to the 21st Century. America is not your daddy to whom you can whine and beg every time a new bully shows up in the neighborhood.

“Let us usher in an unprecedented new era,” I would announce, “where Jews and Muslims, Catholics and Protestants, Russians and Germans, Turks and Kurds, Indians and Pakistanis, Japanese and Chinese, you get the idea, band together and bond together to open up a giant can of whoop-ass on these 7th Century pests and assholes.”

I guess I’m glad I’m not POTUS, because that isn’t going to happen. Obama just might know what I know, it’s another bankrupt ideology that will burn itself out in the end, represents no existential threat to America, and provides a perfect opportunity for at minimum the State Department at all those diplomatic cocktail parties the world’s diplomats attend a lot to start dropping the novel concept that this particular problem is a lot more yours than ours, we’ll talk more when the shit starts going down here, and if you all agreed to get it together militarily for about 5 years the problem could effectively be eliminated for everybody at least until the next band of ISW folks collect like so many malignant tumors on the buttholes of the world where they can thrive in a lack of education and poverty and, well, magical thinking. (Sorry, Christians, you pulled all this shit too once upon a time on the same scale and still do when you count abortion-clinic and church massacres. ISW people are all one in the same to me in that they lie on the same axis of, well, believing in fucking magic.)

Sure glad Obama is the one with his hands on the wheel. History is going to judge him very, very kindly overall. He’s a rational decent thoughtful man, which inexplicably makes conservatives bug-eyed stupid with rage.  They are invited to imagine if they can the things Donald Trump or Ben Carson or Ted Cruz, all people of obvious personality disorder and proud magical thinkers themselves might say or do.

Update:  Also, happy to let Pierce speak for me in terms of real-world approaches to a very complicated problem.

I wish I could put this kind of thing up on FB but it is too lamely dominated for anything like this.  If anyone wants to share it I hereby grant permission, just don’t say where you got it:

It’s Veteran’s Day and that means a whole bunch of FB posts thanking our deified military people. I object on propaganda grounds (Yay, military-industrial complex!) to these proud pointless public “look at my patriotism!” declarations and would strongly prefer people actually cast votes and applied pressure, whether it be through social media or more traditional political channels, to make the actual lives of our soldiers better instead of the ritual “thank you’s!” which don’t you know put food or medicine on the tables or roofs over heads. So voluntarily accepting the chance to die on my behalf includes (for me) a lifetime’s worth of economic security. Free school, free health care, free places to live, at least enough to keep them all fed, housed and if necessary treated, and last but not least, keeping them out of harm’s way in the fucking first place by trying to understand that it isn’t Team America World Police out there. It’s the only area of government the fucking GOP NEVER proposes we shrink, and that’s a common characteristic of every Empire ever in the Empire graveyard, which is all of them except us. Yet. The baddest military on the planet, the means with which the Empire was built in the first place. It has never lasted and won’t again, and military strength is fool’s gold in the first place once you have achieved the ability to wipe literally everyone off the map. The country would be much stronger and secure for the long haul if it was more comprehensively educated, fed, housed, healthy, self-powered, secure and infra-structurally the envy of the world and not such an international busy-body and bully. (Nobody is pissed off at Canada.)

Remaining a cool place to visit while the rest of the world passes us by on cool stuff for little people like Supertrains or at least cheap modern power and information grids and safe functioning schools, roads, sewers and bridges might be goals worthy of consideration. “Inner-strength” and “leading by example” and “couldn’t we choose butter over guns some of the time?” and all those old cliches imply. But no. Instead we have to act like we’re the greatest thing since sliced bread, another Empire characteristic that grates on the rest of the world over time. The modern GOP wants to let the place (the U.S. and on climate change on some level the rest of the world) devolve into a shoot-‘em-up (guns) dog-eat-dog (economics) overpopulated (abortion) ghetto (economics and education) with a big swinging military dick, largely because the modern GOP can afford its own private security, transportation, schools, safe clandestine abortions performed by one of their Dr. friends, you name it the list is endless and, like me, the modern GOP never ventures outside the bubble of its own wildly cozy existence behind metaphorical moats or from metaphorical towers and, unlike me, is filled with people that think swinging their dicks around is the natural order of things. (Also because right-wing Jesus, but don’t ask me to explain that.)