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February 28, 2005

Feeling Crappier

Update: Sorry about no postings today. I really don't feel well. The backache is still there but it's not as bad as it was earlier today. My voice is worse. I'll do my best to have some postings up tomorrow. There are a lot of things I want to blog about, and I want to link to some great posts I read as well. Heading out to take Nyquil and pop some Vitamin C.

We're expecting another mountain of snow tomorrow, too. It'll be a great day to be snowed in.

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I just came back from picking my son up at the airport, and I think my cold is getting worse. It's in my chest now, and my voice is more hoarse than it's been for the past five days. Plus, I'm hot and my back hurts. I was going to take two of the cats to get their rabies shots, but I've decided to stay home instead and get rid of this thing. I'm hot, and my back hurts. I have a feeling this illness is going to stick with me for awhile.

I don't even feel like smoking. Imagine that.

I'll keep blogging as long as I feel like it, but I rented some movies that I intend to watch later. One of them is the remake of "Shall We Dance." I saw the Japanese original and it was delightful.

Posted on February 28, 2005 at 02:14 PM | Permalink | Comments (11)

February 27, 2005

Juan Cole Makes A Good Point About Women In Iraq And In The U. S.

From Juan Cole:

Amnesty International reports that the women of Iraq have suffered substantial setbacks in their rights since the US invasion, and live in a condition of dire insecurity.

The suggestion by some that the guarantee of 1/3 of seats in the Iraqi parliament to women might make up for the situation described by Amnesty is of course absurd. Iraq is not the first country to have such a quota. It was put into effect in Pakistan by Gen. Pervez Musharraf. The move was meant to weaken Muslim fundamentalists, on the theory that women members of parliament would object to extreme patriarchy on the Khomeini or Taliban model. In fact, the Jama'at-i Islami, the main fundamentalist party in Pakistan, was perfectly capable of finding women to represent it in parliament. (US readers should remember Phyllis Schlafly!) Moreover, the 1/3 of MPs who are women can fairly easily be outvoted by the men.

If the Republican Party in the US is so proud of putting in such a quota for Iraq, they should think seriously about applying it in the United States Congress.

' . . . there are larger disparities between the Congress and the general citizenry in term of sex and race. In the House, there are currently 372 men and 63 women. In the Senate, there are 14 women and 86 men. '

Might not the US be a better country if there were 33 women senators and more like 120 congresswomen? If your answer is that it wouldn't matter, then you cannot very well insist that it does matter in Iraq. If you think it would be important, then if you support it in Iraq you should support it in the United States.

Posted on February 27, 2005 at 01:49 PM | Permalink | Comments (9)

Make Your Head Spin

If you want to see a fun optical illusion, go to this page.

Posted on February 27, 2005 at 01:38 PM | Permalink | Comments (1)

Dolls In Japan Aimed At Elderly

I found this article at the Family Scholars Blog. With birth rates dropping and Japanese women shirking marriage, doll manufacturers are creating dolls aimed at elderly customers rather than children. The article states that, "[a]s Japan produces fewer children and more retirees, toymakers are designing new dolls designed not for the young but for the lonely elderly -- companions which can sleep next to them and offer caring words they may never hear otherwise."

Talking dolls called Yumel dolls look like baby boys and have vocabularies of 1,200 phrases. Yumel comes from the Japanese word "yume," which means "dream." They are "billed as a 'healing partner' for the elderly." They go on the market on Thursday. Bandai launced the Primopuel doll in 1999. It resembles a five year old boy, and it demands to be "hugged and entertained."

I think it's interesting that the two popular dolls profiled are boy dolls. According to the article, "traditionally, the eldest son was expected to live with their parents as they grew older and many young Japanese still stay at home for financial reasons as Japan has some of the world's highest rents. But the custom is fading out in the younger generation as more Japanese singles choose to live independently and favor careers and lifestyles over the pressures of having children and taking care of their parents."

Posted on February 27, 2005 at 12:51 PM | Permalink | Comments (5)

More Estrogen Blogging

Leslie at Plum Crazy has an excellent list of links to issues women are blogging about this week. She included my post about Wade Horn drumming up grants for abstinence-only education. Go read them all.

Posted on February 27, 2005 at 11:29 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sick Blogger

All sorts of illnesses are going around. I'm still battling laryngitis. Go to One Good Thing and wish Flea to get well soon. She has pneumonia. Send her a cyber-bowl of chicken soup.

Posted on February 27, 2005 at 11:26 AM | Permalink | Comments (4)

Morgaine's "How To Talk To A Christian" Series

Interesting reading. For some reason all four parts are available at this one link. The fourth is at the top, and the first is at the bottom.

Posted on February 27, 2005 at 11:15 AM | Permalink | Comments (2)

Right Wing Childish Lunacy

Mad Kane is amused. She made The Museum of Left Wing Lunacy for her Dubya's Dayly Diary. This site, which is full of the usual right-wing spleen-venting, called her blog a "retarded lib site of the day." I agree that The Museum of Left Wing Lunacy is childish. She gives it a good fisking.

Hey, did you really shovel snow into your refrigerator? Wow...

Posted on February 27, 2005 at 11:07 AM | Permalink | Comments (4)

Martha Stewart Getting Out Of Jail

Missouri Mule at BlondeSense has some insightful things to say about Martha Stewart, who is about to be released from jail.

The trial was a witch hunt. Prosecutors brought out testimony of Martha "yelling" at people on the phone, trying to make it seem that Martha wasn't a "nice" woman. What the hell does that have to do with the charges? Do you think for a Missouri moment they would have done this if she had a penis? Stewart is a powerful woman; she probably does yell from time to time.She's the boss Queen too. Donald Trump yells at somebody every damn week on national television and fires them too. Chit, we love it.

They sacred Martha to death. During that season entire companies come out of hibernation just to teach the public how to lie to the government. But do we prosecute them? Hell no. See, I think they went after Martha because they were pissed off about all the things she can make out of everyday items that they can't. I know Ann Coulter or Rush Limbaugh wouldn't have a clue what to do with a skein of maple weaver's yarn/ But should Martha have be reviled and punished because she can make a damn quilt, a hammock, and truss turkey out of the same skein? I think not. Maybe I'm just starting to identify with rich women more these days. I used to identify only with poor women. Thank Gawd money cured me of that sickness.

While everyone was dissing Martha Stewart, I wondered when the big whigs from Enron were going to fall. That sure hasn't made the news or the tabloid pages, not to the extent that pillorying Martha did.

Posted on February 27, 2005 at 10:46 AM | Permalink | Comments (3)

Hair, Hair, Long Beautiful Hair

Barry at Alas, A Blog has an interesting post up about how people wear their hair, and the kinds of perceptions their choices have led to. There are some people in the comments who discuss how people's treatment of them changed from when they wore their hair very short and then let it grow out as well as people (like me) who have long hair and how they are perceived. Coloring hair has also led to some interesting discussions regarding how people are treated. My hair is much longer now than it was when I first got out of college. I had shoulder-length hair that I was told by job recruiters to wear pulled back on job interviews because big hair was seen as unprofessional. My hair now is nearly to the small of my back. I usually wear it down, but if I'm in any kind of professional setting I wear it either in a ponytail or in a french braid. It's auburn, but sometimes I dye it to bring more of the red out. I always get lots of compliments when I dye it. I guess people just like red hair. It's interesting to see how people's first impressions are made based strictly on how someone wears his or her hair.

Posted on February 27, 2005 at 10:40 AM | Permalink | Comments (15)