Feb 02 2006

Unsupervised Blaming

Ordinarily I eschew the linky post, but today there are so many blamable things in my inbox, and so little time, that I have no choice but to just throw’em up here and let you guys blame on without me.

René Spencer Saller sends this story on the odd phenomenon of porn-cheerleading in alt-weeklies. Writing in the New Haven Advocate, Carole Bass calls bullshit on her paper’s apparent inability to distinguish between sex and porn. But her editors quickly tack on two male porn-is-my-birthright opinions so she doesn’t get the last word. Christ, what assholes.

About a zillion of you have sent me links to the AlterNet story about the US soldiers in Iraq who died of dehydration rather than risk getting raped by their countrymen on midnight trips to the latrine, with General Sanchez’s charming pronouncement “the women asked to be here, so now let them take what comes with the territory” pretty much summing up the repellent assholery of male entitlement.

Reader Carin notes that Naomi Wolf appears to have gone batty and has accepted Jesus as her personal savior.

Reader Frumious B is startled to learn that having a cute ass is as legitimate a criterion as any for the INS not to deport hot Argentinian porn stars.

And there are more, so many more, but I gotta go. This morning I hie for the Texas Hill Country to take a little air and play cow-pie frisbee. Catch you on the flip-flop.


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  1. Ascending

    “There are some alternative women in porn and they look happy and make money so therefore porn doesn’t exploit women” is the most ridiculous argument I’ve ever heard. It’s on par with “There’s this one guy who was gay but then went to church a lot and is now straight so therefore gay people need to go to re-education camps stat.”

    And I’m not sure how the one guy’s argument of “every dude watches porn, it’s mainstream!” counters Bass’s “c’mon, liking porn isn’t alternative and cool; stfu.”

  2. Sharoni

    Porn is exploitive of the human condition. Straight porn, gay porn, lesbian porn, death porn, kiddie port, stripping, male or female, all these things are simply degrading of the human who maybe forced by circumstances or actually physically forced, to perform it. Any time any one can prevent the spread of, sale of, promotion of porn, that is a good thing. I am not against sex, mind you, in any of its forms, everyone has to be somewhere. But the exploitation of any human being is something that all human beings should rise up against, no matter what. The patriarchy is obviously to blame, here, and there’s no wiggling out of it.

    And Naomi Wolf was only ever a boutique feminist, anyway, absorbed in her own personal experience and mindless of the general condition of anyone else. She was trained to be that way by the patriarchy, it’s obvious to anyone who’s read her stuff.

    Twisty, I hope you are doing well, and will come back to full blaming force soon.

  3. LMYC

    I remember when Naomi Wolf started in on her “I’m pro-choice but I think that any woman who has an abortion after the first trimester and doesn’t not immediately wallow in life-ruining guilt has a mental problem” junk.

    One of the anti-choice godbags got it right — he smirked and said, “She’ll be one of us soon.”

    She blew off his statement, but he was right.

  4. Steph

    I am very proud to say I’ve never read anything by Naomi Wolf, and I sure won’t start now.

  5. belledame222

    I was just going to say: yeah, she had the anti-abortion trip running log before this.

    I’m pleased she’s on a spiritual path and all; it’s just too bad that her spiritual journey is going to look so much like another ego trip.

  6. Hattie

    It’s fatal to get a lot of attention for the wrong reasons, the way Naomi Wolf has. She makes me feel glad to be a nobody.

  7. Ms Kate

    I read the Wolf link and I do think she is a bit self-indulgently neurotic – I mean, Woody Allen can’t even write a character like that!

    That said, I personally don’t think that the variety of Christian experience that she is chasing after – Jesus as Rabbi and not Jesus as Christ on a Crutch – is necessarily antithetical to feminism. From what is known of the guy in live, he was a Class A patriarchy blamerand had a heck of a lot of women from less than “pure” backgrounds tagging along to spread the ministry of how one didn’t need to be rich and male to join the party.

  8. Dim Undercellar

    No, he just used Mary Magdeline’s money (rich dad: Joseph of Aramathea, the guy who got him a tomb to begin with) to finance his trips across the country. She wasn’t necessarily some empowered archetype, no matter how many Lilith-really-was-a-real-honest-to-goodness-Jewish-legend theologians want to believe otherwise. AFAICT, she was history’s first enabling girlfriend/groupie, at least in the way she’s portrayed in Patriarchal religio-history.

    At least we know she was NOT a prostitute; none of the gospels refer to the woman who washed Jesus’s feet as (a) a prostitute or (b) Mary Magdeline in any version that’s not post-KJV so far as I know. We can blame a Catholic Pope for enlightening us as to her alleged occupation (which Pope, I can’t remember off the top of my head).

  9. LMYC

    Wolf’s work is not bad — “Beauty Myth” and “Fire with Fire” both have a lot of good stuff in them, even if they do have the seeds of a real lack of awareness of certain other aspects of women’s lives. She wrote the books she felt, and as an upperclass white woman, that’s what she’s going to feel — which isn’t shocking.

    The only real problem I had with her attitudes on abortion and childbirth, which I think are related to her current weirdness on it, is a TOTAL lack of awareness that there are women out there, me being one of them, who just cannot fathom the idea of being pregnant and are repulsed by the idea of that and motherhood. She really seemed to think that every woman who had an abortion would just LURVE to have that baby if only she had the money to raise it.

    Honey, if I made $100k/yr, I’d still have an abortion. If I made $12k/yr, I’d have an abortion. I DO NOT WANT TO HAVE A KID. But she really seemed totally clueless that there were women out there who just didn’t turn into a gloppy puddle of hormonal goo when we beheld the wonder of a darling christening gown with hand-sewn smocking.

    I still remember shaking my head when reading her complaint that a lot of women who have abortions were making *gasp!* over $40,000/yr! *shocked face* Gosh, with money like that, why would women WANT to abort! Aren’t we all just DYING to have shitloads of babiesbabiesbabies? No, we’re not. And she seemed completely unaware of how her words could be twisted to support the racist tragedy of upperclass white women aborting their babies, isn’t that awful. I don’t care if she didn’t MEEEEEEAN it that way, she seemed totally unaware that her words could even be misinterpreted that way. When I write, I try to anticipate misinterpretations like that, and she was clueless on that one. It’s amazing. In some ways, she just REALLY does not “get” abortion, the whole idea that the major horror for many women is not that we have to abort our darling little precious bundle from Heaven, sob-sob-sob, but that our bodies can ruin our lives with little to no agreement on our part.

  10. LMYC

    More thinking on Naomi Wolf …

    I don’t think there is any reason not to read her stuff, especially her early work. Like I said, there’s a LOT of good stuff there.

    I think that, stepping back, the main problem I have with her work in general is that she never seemed to go past a certain point. ALL of her books are highly personal and related to her specific experiences. We all start out like that, and for most of us, our feminism still has that in it. I mean, Wolf can’t write someone else’s book.

    But not every damned book has to be a personal confessional, damn it. And she never moved past that; she never seemed to grow past writing books that started out with, “and another thing about my life … ” even as good as many of those books were and are.

    In many isntances, she recognized this and knew that she was writing highly first-person books and talking to other women very much like her. But … then what? When was she going to open the door and go out and try talking to women who were vastly different? The personal is political is a feminist mantra, but she never wrote anything that treated anyone else’s “personal” as political. Oddly, it never seemed to strike her that she could or should. To some extent, I can see that — you can’t write someone else’s book for them. But that’s not a blanket excuse for never getting the hell outside of your own skull and trying to really connect with the broader world. Instead of writing books that run, “XYZ happened to me and that reminds me of something I read about Africa one time, and then PDQ happened to me, and that reminds me of Bosnia, and let me tell you about another thing that happened to ME … ” Her work is good for what it is, highly personal and first-person. It just doesn’t grow past that.

  11. Matthew

    René’s link is missing, innit?

  12. Sharoni

    Do we get to blame the Catholics, too? We know they demonized women so that they could retain their (male, patriarchal) power in the political world, turning innocent mid-wives into witches and heretics and killing them out of fear that they might take something away from the power the church held over the poor peasants. So that makes them even MORE patriarchal than your just ordinary godbag asshats (I love that phrase) doesn’t it?

  13. Nancymc

    Sorry but I have some doubts about the article on Wolf. The author describes Camille Paglia as an “uberfeminist” so I question his/her judgment. Camille Paglia is an anti-feminist asshole who hates Gloria Steinem and Katha Pollitt even more than she hates Wolf.

    Only an idiot considers Paglia a feminist. She’s a self-aggrandizing crackpot.

  14. Jeanne

    When “The Beauty Myth” was published, I wanted to run out and get it. But then I saw Wolf’s picture, either on the book jacket or on an article pimping the book. Her hair was oh-so-carefully-styled, and she was wearing fairly heavy makeup.

    A Barbie has something to say about the beauty myth? I don’t think so. I’ve never read anything by her. Maybe, as some commenters have claimed, there’s good stuff in the book. But if so, physician heal thyself, no?

    And yes, all humans suffer from some degree of hypocrisy. But I think it’s especially important to root out hypocrisy in your life’s work. So Naomi Wolf has always made me cringe. Jesus can have her.

  15. Cass

    I think LMYC’s comments on Wolf are spot-on. As for her vision of Jesus, well, my best friend once saw that same gentleman (I kid you not) strolling across Lake Travis. There were no drugs involved- she was just going through a difficult time, and she soon got a hold of herself. I wish the same for Ms. Wolf.

  16. Dim Undercellar

    LMYC: Quick aside, BB would like you to drop her an e-mail, she has a question for you. She’s laid up with the flu right now, so no hurry, but I figured I’d mention it now so I wouldn’t forget. :)

  17. Kat

    Not related to the links above, but guess what? I was out for my daily constitutional today and passed by a department store with a display for Valentine’s Day in the window. There were a bunch of female mannequins in wedding dresses standing behind one male and one female mannequin similarly dressed. The two in the front had sashes bearing the words “Miss Right” and “Mr Right”. The females in the background were “Miss Heavy-Smoker”, “Miss Career Woman”, “Miss Abstinence” and so on. On the glass of the shop window was a little ditty about how you should humour your silly little woman and let her think she’s in charge. Cute, huh? It gets better! In the next window was 8 bright red female mannequin torsos wearing skimpy black lingerie with weird, kind of satanic necklaces. So on the left we have our submissive virgin wife and on the right we see the whore we bang after a late night at work.

    I’m just gobsmacked that this was so fucking BLATANT. Was it trying to be ironic? No doubt I’ll be told to get a sense of humour for not finding it side-splittingly funny.

  18. lunadyke

    Nancymc, you took the words right out of my mouth. How disturbing to see Paglia represented as the feminist of all feminists.

  19. LMYC

    Jeanne, it never occurred to me to dislike Wolf’s work because of the fact that she combed her hair and wore what to me did not look like terribly heavy makeup — and I wear none. Her words can quite safely be taken at face value, both the good ones and the bad ones.

    And all women have something to say about the beauty myth, no matter their appearance. If they’re wrong, then their words can be disproved, not their faces. In some places, Wolf is dead-center. In some places, she’s off. Trust me, you can find these places without needing to see what she looks like.

    I guess part of me is annoyed about that because of the assumption I’ve run into that I also have “nothing to say” abnout the beauty myth, poisonous body images, or objectification because through no fault or credit of my own I look a certain way. I’ve had antifeminist brainwashed Barbies dislike me because of what I look like, and I’ve had feminists dislike me for the same reason. From this end, trust me — they have a lot in common.

    Wolf’s hair and face looked like a dozen women I pass on the street every day. And again, her words are definitive enough that you can take them as themselves without having to attach anything else to them. Where she’s on, she’s on. Where she’s off, she’s way off.

    I agree that we’re not all perfect, but to follow that up with a complete disregard for several hundred pages of fairly good research is … I just don’t see it.

  20. NancyMc

    Well said, LMYC. Do you have a blog? If not I wish you would get one.

    The problem isn’t make-up and hair coiffing. The problem is that it’s considered a female obligation to wear make-up and coiffed hair, but an abomination if a male does it.

    There isn’t anything innately evil about personal aesthetics – only when the rules about personal aesthetics are dictated by the Patriarchy in order to force sexbottery on females.

    Of course we live right in the middle of Patriarchy and aren’t likely to beat it down sufficiently in our own lifetimes, so it does make makeup-wearing or not a political statement to a certain extent.

    But then if you focus on a woman’s appearance more than on her words, are you really opposing Patriarchy in any useful way?

  21. NancyMc

    Lunadyke – right?

    Also, I am enjoying your blog.

  22. LMYC

    I actually do resent makeup and haif coiffing, personally. But the problem for me is that this attitude can verge very easily into dislike of any woman who has the random luck to look a certain way. We need to be careful that we don’t verge into that.

    It’s a bit like what I said when I went off about the Subject That Shall Not Be Named: maybe in a perfect world, we can say, “I don’t like her book because she was too heavily made up and perfectly coiffed and thus is contradicting her message,” but we do not live in this world, and as women who are ourselves recovering from that most blameworthy of institutions, it can be REAL EASY to find ourselves tumbling into catty dislike of someone because she’s pretty. Here, where as I said, several hundred pages of good research got roundfiled because Wolf combed her hair, that’s a real danger.

    (In general though, I don’t see any particular redeeming quality to makeup. I mean, the fundamental message is that you suck the way you are.)

    But be that as it may, Wolf in all photographs I’ve ever seen of her has never been whored up. She’s simply pretty and young — neither of which are her doing or her fault.

    And from a personal point of view, catty antifeminist sexbots have historically hated me unless I uglify myself. I’ve had supposed “friends” conveniently forget to invite me places and “accidentally” spill things on me to get me to go away when a Mayun they’re interested in is hanging around. I don’t feel like listening to supposed feminists doing the same fucking thing. At this point, I’m sensitive enough to it that I can smell it a mile off. I got no time for a “feminist” message that I’d better buzz my head and gain 300# before my (hypothetical at this point) books are worth reading.

  23. Ms Kate

    Kat, please, NAME NAMES! Take some pics too if you can.

    Most department stores are no longer locally owned – they belong to big conglomerates. We may be able to do something!

    You notice Ms. Too Fat and Ms. Terectomy were not in the running?

  24. Ms Kate

    Oh, and Dim, I never said anything about Magdelen for the very reason. She’s a post-patriarchal construct.

    So is the Bible, the Nicene Creed, etc.

    I was talking about some mortal guy who wandered around being such a major pain in the ass of the dual patriarchy of his time at a time when people were really starting to get pissed off. In fact this dude made such a point of intentional and in your face flaunting all of the “you won’t be pure if you do that” rules of his day that the power structure killed him off.

    After that, it goes into fantasyland, the metaphorical becomes literal, and then the literal gets edited for the purposes of a Brave New Patriarchy we know of as “modern” Christianity. Our buddy Josh was up front about the absolute literal acceptance of scripture for a reason – it serves his patriarchy, even if it is contradictory and isn’t historically accurate!

  25. Jeanne

    You say:
    “I actually do resent makeup and haif coiffing, personally. But the problem for me is that this attitude can verge very easily into dislike of any woman who has the random luck to look a certain way. We need to be careful that we don’t verge into that.”

    Well, we’re in agreement. I wasn’t criticizing Wolf for her facial structure and hair. I was criticizing the decision to write a book on the beauty myth, and also buy into the patriarchy-approved “made-up” appearance. That’s contradictory, and IMO she shot herself in the foot.

    So, please don’t assume my motivations. I criticized a behavior I found obnoxious.

  26. apophenia

    How is that those two dingleberries attached to the Carole Bass article get to simultaneously defend porn as mainstream and also celebrate it as transgressive?

    My response to the patriarchy, in one sentence: you don’t get to have it both ways.

  27. Ron Sullivan

    Sharoni and LMYC nailed it on Wolf. Remember when her givin’ birth book came out and some of us older hags were scratching our heads and saying Gee, this is familiar, but why is she writing as if it’s all news? (Some of us were even asking that about Jeffrey M Masson’s Big Insight: maybe Freud’ patients weren’t making up that child-molester stuff! stuff too.) Cripes, she didn’t even have to go talk to a hundred women like a real researcher; she could’ve just done her homework reading.

    Part of me asks where her editor was. Another part says it’s about sales, and no editor can stop a book from being published if the house thinks it’s going to sell. But cripes, Wolf could’ve been sent back to the library for enough reading to keep her from embarrassing herself.

    Speaking of — OK, to old hags: Remember when we used to bitch about CR groups that never got past the pissing and moaning stage? Well, there it is again.

    As for finding Jesus, maybe she’s just trying to edge into Anne Lamott’s market. Watch out if she gets her hair done in whitegirl dreads.

  28. Aussie Liz

    Ron Sullivan, I can’t believe I disagree with you! I usually scan responses to see if you’ve had something to say!

    But I remember old male “intellectuals” like my father criticizing Greer as doing poor research because she’s “only writing about herself” – like being a woman, and the time of life she was going through etc. Apparently she should have been writing from a great intellectual detachment, like men do when men write about women. (My father used to then doff his hat to her intelligence enough to say that The Female Eunach was a “seminal” work, but using non-gendered terms like “chairperson” was “an abortion of the english language”. Oh yeah, he was quite the expert on non-gendered terms.)

    It also reminds me of that other Woolf, spinning a tale about an aunt who left her enough money to rent a room of her own, into a feminist work no less worthy and well reasoned because she was writing entirely about herself, illustrating it with things she’s read in the library, and no other research whatsoever.

    You’re right that Naomi Wolf’s ideas had all been said before. But The Beauty Myth resonated and brought them to life. I read it when it came out, but still think of some of the lines, from time to time, like “surgery isn’t a cosmetic, and skin isn’t plastic”. Most of the ideas on this very website are not new, but we like to re-innoculate ourselves with them each day, and see them written about from a new perspective, and with new illustrations (like the valentine’s window display!)

    By the way, you should all be grateful you didn’t have to buy the Australian edition of The Beauty Myth, which had a naked woman with a bandaged head and mouth cowering prettily under a table holding, I think, an apple! Cheezus!

    Also by the way, it is possible Wolf lost the plot somewhere between The Beauty Myth, via “rich women have no reason not to become breeders” to “I was a 13-year-old boy sitting next to him [Jesus] and feeling feelings I’d never felt in my lifetime, of a 13-year-old boy being with an older male who he really loves and admires and loves to be in the presence of …” Uh huh.

  29. Christopher

    “Porn is exploitive of the human condition.”

    Really, though, isn’t this true of all fiction, and even most fact reporting? I mean, all stories attempt to arouse our emotions by allowing us to vicariously view the experiences of others. Why, in the abstract, sex should be more objectionable then violence, or death, or anything else is something I have yet to grasp.

    Of course, what’s simple in the abstract is often different in practice, and in practice, the porn industry is mostly about selling a certain degrading image of women for the consumption of men.

    You know, I have to say that the responses to Ms. Bass’ article are reactionary nonsense, even though I think it’s legitimate to include the second one, because it comes from somebody who was involved in the events Ms. Bass is describing, soemone who makes a couple of good points, but who mainly I want to hit.

    Most annoying is that there’s no real facts included about either the Church or the Porn store; both Bass and Mr. Gogola rely on cheap stereotypes about churches and porn shops to decide whether the eviction was justified, rather then actually including teastimony about what this church, this porn shop are like. Maybe they’re in Ms. Bass’ original article.

    I kind of wonder whether the definition of porn in many articles in many of these kinds of things is tautological; If porn is defined as only degrading exploitative sex, then of course porn is bad.

    Are all scenes of sex degrading? What about stories or drawings that don’t involve real humans? What makes something “porn” as opposed to “art”?

  30. Ron Sullivan

    Here’s the thing, Liz: We start with the personal — our own experiences — but the idea is to notice that they’re not exactly unique, that we have things in common, which is what makes them political. That was (is? Do people still do this offline? No, really, I’m asking.) the point of CR groups — to talk about our lives and notice what they have in common. The commonality is a clue that it’s not just our own neuroses that screw us up.

    I’ve found this an interesting sort of hinge with something I’ve (not uniquely) noticed about art, especially storytelling — that we reach the universal only through the particular.

    The trick is to cop to what we’re talking about purely from our own experiences, and — if we’re going so far as to, say, publish them — what parts of them are universal and what parts others have spoken about before us. Honest, I’m not just being a cranky old fart. We chuckle and coo…* OK, some of us chuckle and coo over a two-year-old who discovers that, oh, grass is green and the sun is warm and gravity works in one direction locally and I have a bellybutton, but we expect the kid to shut up about it already at some point and start to calm down and generalize a bit.

    I read The Beauty Myth and Fire With Fire — I think I even have them around here somewhere — and got a bit excited, that the torch was being carried or something, hooray hooray, the kids are getting it. And then it all seemed to get claustrophobic.

    “…lost the plot…” You know, maybe we aren’t disagreeing all that much. Things that are visible only in hindsight might nevertheless be true.

    And she does come up with some quotable phrases, you bet.

    *When Twisty’s away, the ellipses will play!

  31. NancyMc

    Well LMYC, I promise I won’t hate you because you’re beautiful.

    I think many people like makeup because they feel it enhances their appearance, rather than as an admission they’re all wrong.

    And it is well-documented that the more attractive you (female OR male) are, the more advantages you have and the nicer people (male OR female) will generally behave towards you.

    There was even a study indicating that parents are nicer to their more attractive children.

    Wearing makeup, not to mention getting plastic surgery, is a response to that nasty, unfair reality – a reality that may even be beyond the remedies of patriarchy-blaming, or even patriarchy’s defeat.

  32. Kat

    Ms Kate–it was Elys (a UK department store, I live in London) and my partner is going to take a pic on the way to work today.

    Oh yeah, I said, “where’s Miss Big-Boned?” but of course they wouldn’t let her within 50 miles of the list of possible Miss Rights!

  33. Twisty

    “Ms Kate–it was Elys (a UK department store, I live in London) and my partner is going to take a pic on the way to work today.”

    PLEASE send it in!

  34. zak

    Wow, check out the graphic under “I have been sexually assaulted. What should I do?” on the Army’s new website: http://www.sexualassault.army.mil/ (top right corner). I’m sure most victims of sexual in the army (or anywhere else, for that matter) were wearing heels and a party dress.

  35. Snappy

    Regarding the article about US soldiers in Iraq who died of dehydration. . .I’m sorry, don’t these women in the military have weapons?? Why aren’t they taking their weapons to the dark latrines at night? It would only take one attempted rape on an armed woman to put a quick stop to the problem.

  36. Sharoni

    Porn is degrading, art is uplifting. There is a difference, but Twisty (as always, praise the fact) is right, the patriarchy has so commodified the female that images of females evoke the wrong feelings in men – porn, or art, all they see is sex. Women, I do believe, distinguish between the two. And now I’m generalizing, but there you are. Show me a man who can look at a nude female in any guise and not think of sex, I’ll show you a gay man and embrace him.

  37. BitingBeaver


    There actually *are* facts regarding porn outlets etc. Here’s a compilation of them Here but, to quote a few that are immediately applicable we have.

    1. Austin, TX — 1986 – In four study areas with SOBs (sex orientated businesses), sexually related crimes were 177% to 482% higher than the city’s average.

    2. Indianapolis, IN — 1984-1986 – Between 1978-1982, crime in study areas was 46% higher than for the city as a whole. Sex related crimes were four times greater when SOBs were located near residential areas vs. commercial areas.

    3. Garden Grove, CA – 1981-1990 – On Garden Grove Blvd., seven adult businesses accounted for 36% of all crime in the area. In one case, a bar opened within 500 feet of an SOB and serious crime within 1000 feet of that business rose 300% during the next year

    4. Phoenix, AZ — 1978 – Sex offenses, including indecent exposure, were 506% greater in neighborhoods with SOBs. Even excluding indecent exposure, the sex offenses were still 132% greater in those neighborhoods.

    5. Whittier, CA — In comparison studies of two residential areas conducted between 1970-1973 before SOBs, and 1974-1977 after SOBs, malicious mischief increased 700%, assault increased 387%, prostitution increased 300%,and all theft increased 120%.

    That’s just for starters, I can pull more if you’d like?

  38. tigtog

    Regarding the article about US soldiers in Iraq who died of dehydration. . .I’m sorry, don’t these women in the military have weapons?? Why aren’t they taking their weapons to the dark latrines at night? It would only take one attempted rape on an armed woman to put a quick stop to the problem.

    Unless one’s unit is actually encamped on maneuvres, aren’t firearms kept in the armory?

    As women in the armed forces are trained for support roles rather then combat, I imagine their expertise in hand to hand/knife combat is necessarily less than their male peers. I wouldn’t like to be a woman relying on a knife knowing that the males around her have all been trained to a much higher level as well as being stronger anyway.

    Besides, who wants to be attacked and have to kill someone, then having to prove through the trial process that killing one’s fellow soldier was a justified homicide? I can understand why it might seem simpler to just not pee when it’s dark.

  39. Sibyl

    People, we’re missing the most important part of this post, to wit: when the hell did Tucker Carlson start making fools of people other than himself?

  40. Twisty

    Sibyl raises a question that has plagued me unto sleeplessness lo these past 2 hours.

  41. Christopher

    No, that’s fine, BitingBeaver.

    My point was that it would’ve strengthened Ms. Bass’ article to actually include some of that data in her article.

    I also wonder if there’s a difference between different kinds of SOBs, like, say, do strip clubs have a worse effect then porn shops? Hell, do the audiences catered to by the pron shops matter? Do straight porn shops make things worse then gay ones?

    I mean, really, ideally, there would be some specific data about this particular porn shop.

    It’s really the same with the guy who was against the church; Just because there are godbag idiots out there, doesn’t mean this particular church is a right-wing nightmare.

  42. Grace

    Having read the New Haven Advocate since about age 14, I have to point out that the “alt-weekly/porn alliance” is not just ideological, but financial. The Advocate’s personals columns are extremely raunchy and the entire back page of the paper is ads for hard-core 900 numbers, sex shops, etc. Criticizing porn hits them in the wallet.

    The rest of the paper is still great (including Ask Isadora, the freakish sex advice columnist) but the back page is pretty disturbing.

  43. Kat

    Check your email, Twisty–the pics are inside.

  44. ginmar

    Tigtag, etc., etc., I was in Iraq and women do not just get trained for support roles. I was in combat, as was just about every other soldier, male or female, that I know. We used to talk about it. “My first IED….My first dead body…..My first firefight…..My first RPG…..My first mortar…..” The issue is not the weapon it’s whether or not anyone would believe you. Soldiers carry at least one and sometimes two weapons at all times, plus at least a couple mags of ammo. However, if you shoot someone because they were going to try and rape you, how do you prove that that’s what they were going to do? It’s the same thing here in the States. Most rapists are not the guys in the dark alleys: they’re the guys you work alongside with, the guys who not only have the weapons, but also the credibility that your gender takes away from you.

  45. kathy a

    ginmar, i am so sorry. you train and work at least as hard, and then this.

  46. ginmar

    Kathy, don’t worry about it. You know the real reason people want to keep women out of combat? So women like me can’t come back home and scare the shit out of the chickenhawks. Nothing’s more scary than a feminist with combat experience and the new found realization that your peacetime opponents don’t have bombs. *

    *Unless they’re wingnuts.

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