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Jul 18 2010

Sunday Morning Hurl: Mama Grizzlies


What the Mama Grizzly is wearing this season. From SarahPAC video.

Whenever a right-wing woman — any right-wing woman — claims to be a feminist, she doesn’t do it in a vacuum. She isn’t just hurting herself. Her antifeminist feminism has violent repercussions and broad implications. It spreads like a contagion from patriotically-attired partisan church lady to Fox news to housewife to housedaughter, cutting a swath of intellectual death in its wake. Research conducted here at the Spinstitute for the Intellectual Lifespan of Female Children shows that for each right-wing woman who performs in the capacity of an empowerful flag-waving heterosexual, 107.6 little girls can kiss their future human agency goodbye as it flutters off into the aether. Like their mothers before them, these little girls will have to pay for their own rape kits, be denied access to abortions, shop for pink lipstick at Wal-Mart, and be judged on their compliance with male desire until they ultimately become wife-slaves in nuclear families of their own, dedicated to consumerism and the replication of patriarchy.

Because the right-wing woman’s real agenda is compulsory compliance with megatheocorporatocratic mandates governing fair use of women, it’s bad enough when specimens from the rank and file pretend to give a fuck about other women. But when celebrity airhead Sarah Palin, with cameras running, gets all feisty and empowerful, the number of doomed girls vomitosially increases to 2,320,917, rising exponentially each time somebody watches her “Mama Grizzlies” SarahPAC vid on YouTube.

Mama Grizzlies! It’s a “mom awakening.” They’re gonna “get things done!” What things? Who the hell knows? Who the hell cares? Sarah Palin loves America, and that’s good enough for moms!

“Moms kinda just know when somethin’s wrong,” asserts Palin, addressing her back-to-basics, anti-intellectual female fan base, all of whom “just know” that ‘women’s intuition’ is a sound basis for vague social policy. Palin’s video blames “these policies comin’ out of DC right now,” this “fundamental transformation of America” for the existence of all this stuff that moms just kinda know is wrong.

But what wrong stuff, exactly, do the moms kinda just know? What, precisely, is the Mama Grizzly banding together against? To what — if it isn’t too much to ask — is she saying “no”?

Apparently, Mama Grizzlies are against whatever they kinda just want to be against, because Palin doesn’t mention a single issue in her video. It features a few quick cuts to protesters waving issue-ish but ultimately vacuous posters (“ANNOY LIBERAL WORK HARD & PAY YOUR OWN BILLS”), but what this charming little fillip of issue-less propaganda actually does is give uninformed right-wing women an anti-Obama political identity, a white ladies’ tribe to join. It’s the Mama Grizzlies Tribe, where you can be against stuff without even knowing what it is, where you all you have to grasp about politics is that something’s kinda just wrong, and that Sarah Palin’s gonna get it fixed because, even though she doesn’t hold public office and isn’t running for one, she loves America, so vote for her candidates in November.

Mama Grizzlies may not have a specific cause, but they are just as tough and fighty as Sarah! To wit:

The Mama Grizzlies are “gonna turn this thing around” and “get our country back on the right track.” They’re “banding together, rising up, and saying ‘no this isn’t right’. For our kids and for our grandkids. [...] Lookout Washington! Cuz there’s a whole stampede of pink elephants crossin’ the line and the ETA is November 2nd 2010!”

Lookout Washington! A pack of Mama Grizzlies have just morphed into a herd of pink elephants! Either way, you’re gonna have a sanitation problem on your hands.

410 comments

3 pings

  1. janicen

    This blamer is reminded of an NCIS episode.

    McGee to Ziva, “You know about mama bears and their cubs?”

    Ziva, “Yes, I know, they eat them when the food supply is low.”

  2. yttik

    ” These optimistic women who think the antifeminism of the Left or center is somehow more humane than the antifeminism of the Right will ally themselves as persons with whatever groups or ideologies best reflect their own social or human ideals. They will find without exception that the antifeminism they ignore is a trenchant political defense of the woman hating they are victimized by. Right- wing women, who are less queasy in facing the absolute nature of male power over women, will not be swayed by the politics of women who practice selective blindness with regard to male power. Right-wing women are sure that the selective blindness of liberals and leftists especially contributes to more violence, more humiliation, more exploitation for women often in the name of humanism and freedom.”- Andrea Dworkin, Right-Wing Women

  3. nails

    This is just the kind of “feminism” that their husbands can get behind. I bet it will go far.

  4. kaje

    Classic doublethink. War is peace, freedom is slavery, Stepford Wives are feminists.

  5. delphyne

    Didn’t Sarah Palin take out David Letterman over his misogynistic remarks about her 14 year old daughter? Go Sarah.

    This was the same Palin who left-wing woman hater Sandra Bernhard wanted to see gang-raped by black men in New York. Yeah.

    Sneering at right wing women doesn’t really work any longer, when the women of the left came out so strongly in favour of misogyny and misogynists during the last US election. Or I guess, what Andrea Dworkin said.

  6. delphyne

    I omitted racist in that description of Bernhard there:

    “left wing racist woman hater Sandra Bernhard”

  7. Mujery Legs

    What is Right anyway? Belief in (rationally structured) markets AND caring for the weak are both classic concerns of women on the right in the U.S. — but they are also concerns of the left. (Left doesn’t get capitalized, because there is no American Left.)

    George Carlin broke it down into prioritizing property (Right) over people (left), but then “culture war” issues like gay marriage and abortion don’t make sense. (Whose property is a queer, or the contents of a uterus?)

    This post seems to suggest Right is rhetoric, and oppressed people’s ignorant embrace of fresh iterations of familiar insults and injuries. Which would make the libertarian, hawk, and Tea Partying strands of the current Dumbo coalition more obviously compatible.

    But this still doesn’t distinguish left from Right, or justify the grouping together of disparate ideologies under either banner.

  8. Jill

    What does Sandra Bernhardt have to do with anything? I was unaware that she was a great radical feminist thinker.

    Regarding property vs people and gay marriage and abortion: marriage is the property of heterosexuals, and uteruses are the property of the state.

  9. Comrade PhysioProf

    Shooting fish in a barrel.

  10. SelinaK

    No wonder Dworkin is vilified by practically everyone. She really hits the nail on the head everytime.
    Now that she’s gone, I’m so glad this blog exists. I swear if it wasn’t for Jill and nails and all the women here I would just bash my skull against the wall and be done with it. Thank you to everyone for helping me keep some of my sanity.

  11. nails

    Delphyne- she only calls out people who aren’t on her side of the spectrum. For instance, her son has down syndrome, and she has called out all kinds of people for using the word “retarded” in an insulting fashion. Rush Limbaugh used the term in an insulting way like 20 times in one show, and she said it was okay when he did it. She has the exact same record when it comes to sexism. It is a tool for her to further her popularity with grizzly mamas, nothing more.

  12. delphyne

    Not sure what radical feminism has to do with any of this Twisty. Having a go at Palin is partisan politics not radical feminism. Neither the left nor the right have anything to offer women, so why single out Palin? She’s had more to say about sexism than a lot of women on the left.

  13. Heo

    Oh, fantastic! I already have to walk past several sanctioned reserves for the protection of navy-blazered, khaki-pantsed republicans to get to my favorite DC watering hole. (This becomes even more unpleasant than usual when Joe the plumber visits.) Now I’ll have to see pink elephanzies milling about demanding a rapid intensification of their own and my oppression. Before drinking!

    These women are reminiscent of the Catholics who were very happy to get all heretical and rebellious following Vatican II and demand Latin masses and far-diminished roles for all laity and especially women in the church. They get the thrill of disobedience and the feeling of ‘safety’ from being completely stripped of agency all at once.

  14. Alibi

    I agree that this kind of feminism (the antifeminism kind of feminism) hurts the brand(?!). Look what happened to “green” when Big Oil claimed it for its own. Ruined a perfectly good color and a not half-bad Gulf of Mexico.

  15. Ayla

    We’ve all smelled this shit before, but that doesn’t mean we don’t still have to wipe it off our shoes this time around.

    It’s not about Palin. It’s about the headlong rush towards complete and total ignorance and sublimation of female will to male dictatorship, brought to you by 20 second sound bytes and lowest common denominator zingy one-liners. All under the guise of “sisterhood.”

    Tighten up those chains, gals, we’re in this slave ship together!

  16. minervaK

    Oh honey. I KNOW you’ve read Kate Harding’s take on this:

    http://jezebel.com/5548464/5-ways-of-looking-at-sarah-palin-feminism

    The Truth is Out There.

    p.s. a warning, Jezebel is not IBTP-approved reading. Caveat emptor, etc.

  17. Phledge

    My Nigel dryly noted that Palin is clearly gearing for a run in 2012. Is this what all that Mayan calendar shit is about?

  18. Dr. Sarah Tonin

    Whenever a right-wing woman — any right-wing woman — claims to be a feminist, she doesn’t do it in a vacuum. She isn’t just hurting herself. Her antifeminist feminism has violent repercussions and broad implications.

    Left-wing empowerful feminism has the same effect, though.

    but what this charming little fillip of issue-less propaganda actually does is give uninformed right-wing women an anti-Obama political identity, a white ladies’ tribe to join.

    They should totes join the patriarchy-blaming tribe instead. We have better snacks.

    If 21st century U.S. politics is all “identity politics”, then how can Twistolutionaries work with that desire for a sense of belonging?

    Put another way, how can radfems help redirect the inchoate fury of these right-wing women? Lard knows there is plenty to be pissed about.

  19. Barbara P

    Take care not to paint right-wing women with such a broad brush. They’re not all Palin, after all. Some are worse. But no, my point was that some are really better! They might be Republican because they grew up that way, or some incidental cause that doesn’t make them bad people exactly. There’s much potential there.

    There’s a proto-feminism that Palin has awakened, which shakes things up a bit if nothing else. The right-wingers have to learn to shut up about (and maybe even defend!) an ambitious mom with 5 kids, one of whom is an infant and another an unwed teen mother. And the left-wingers get a spotlight on their misogynist underbelly. One doesn’t need to defend Palin’s views to defend her existence.

    (anecdote warning)
    I can’t help but to cast a jaundiced eye upon the idea of “feminism = left-wing politics”. In my family there was much talk of nuclear disarmament, etc. along with physical abuse. Now I have a Republican-leaning Nigel who is actually a fairly decent human being. So no, I don’t judge character based on political views.

  20. ew_nc

    “Shooting fish in a barrel.”

    Comrade, shouldn’t that be “shooting MOOSE in a barrel?”

  21. Dr. Sarah Tonin

    It’s a target-rich environment.

  22. janicen

    The Mama Grizzlies are “gonna turn this thing around” and “get our country back on the right track.” They’re “banding together, rising up, and saying ‘no this isn’t right’. For our kids and for our grandkids.

    That women are secondary and therefore subservient is implied. IBTP

  23. Tigs

    This is the same thing that people whose critiques come more directly from a race perspective have been battling for a long time. Charges of “Reverse racism,” the battle against affirmative action, busing, and any actual attempt to rectify historical inequalities that isn’t somehow about blaming black mothers for not raising up their kids right are classic examples.

    It comes about due to the left’s inability to make absolute statements (reasonably so–absolute statements are how we got to Stalin), and the (Blob-like) neo-liberal tendency to subsume anything that might be instrumental in achieving further dominance of patriarchal/white supremacist/capitalist hegemonies.

    The best (and frankly only) response I’ve found is to be radically materialist and immanent. If *your* freedom is economic, how are women more economically free through success of policy agenda A–because when you take this movement down to its core it is self-evidently anti-liberation and the facts will reveal this every single time.
    How you get from *right* to effective, I’m not really sure.

  24. Hedgepig

    Nobody could seriously accuse Twisty of espousing the view that antifeminism of the left and centre is more humane than antifeminism of the right. Why should she pull her punches for right wing pseudo-feminism?

  25. Shelby

    Amazing piece of propaganda. All the grizzly moms appear all empowerfuelled up with their groovy outfits and strong smirks and there aint a hint of cleavage or bum crack in sight. However Palin espouses no actual ideas or policy.

    Only one placard appeared to give an actual opinion re current policy: “No government run healthcare!” Are these people crazy in the coconuts? Who wouldn’t want government run healthcare?

  26. yttik

    I welcome our new conservative female overlords.

    Good bye to the incessant begging liberal women are forced to engage in with their progressive male overlords. Good bye to, “he’s so dreamy! He’s going to let me have an abortion if I’m raped!” Good bye to fainting at political rallies. Good bye to dressing him up in tee shirt that says, “this is what a feminist looks like.” Good bye to empowerful porn. Good bye to setting Polanskis free. Good bye to voting for a party that abuses you because they know you have nowhere else to go. Good bye to half a century of being dangled on the end of a rope over Roe v Wade. Goodbye to patiently waiting for them to get around to ratifying the Equal Rights Amendment or passing the Freedom of Choice Act. Good bye to all that.

  27. nails

    All the cheers for right wing women being in charge disagree strongly with available records on how right wing women being in charge affects the rest of us. There are right wing women in the government, and they don’t provide anything different than the dudes. They try to take away reproductive rights. They push for war. It is the same old story, and they dress it up in a skirt to make it seem like its friendly. It is a trick. PR firms that write commercials and campaigns know this stuff, and advise accodringly.

    There are women like Michele Bachmann. Hell, when the ERA was a big deal a lady named Phillis Schlafly was against it (and later said, and stood by, the idea that it is impossible to rape a spouse because marriage IS consent). There were anti suffragist women in the first wave. Women can be really useful helpers to patriarchy, though they will never gain the same benefit as men under a patriarchy. They surely should not be praised for assisting in oppressing others. This reminds me of an onion article, something like “first female dictator proves she can be just as violent as men”. We should not cheer female advancement through a system that has woman hatred as its inherent product.

    In Sarah Palin we have a woman who was fine with making victims pay for their own rape kits, in a state with one of the worst rape rates in the US. She was willing to play on racist fears from the republican base during election. People as far right as her really do border on facism (the actual definition, not some vaguely bad accusation).

    Why would people go with right wing women when there are left wing ones available? The Green Party’s ticket was made up of women of color.

    All the left vs right talk about US politics is usually pretty hollow anyway, the left shifted right consistently for many years, so that now there is very little difference between the two main parties. Clinton’s economic policies are perfect proof of that. There aren’t even places in the mainstream where you can read socialist, communist, or anarchist opinions. They are major schools of thought that are on the left that are completely neglected. Even the left wing women in the mainstream are way WAY to the right.

  28. Carpenter

    This Mama Grizzly biz is especially tragic. Palin is playing to some subset(white tea partying) of women’s justifiable feeling of dislocation from political power. No doubt these women feel like political action is going down without them, but instead of encouraging any kind of introspection about the systems of power, she offers something totally vague.

    The women I know who like Palin are usually this tough lower-middle class midwesten type who also work thankless jobs and joke about their husbands being babies. They almost admit the system id fucked but then there is Tea Bagging bullshit where meaningful analysis should be. Damn the GOP and their rhetoric manipulating ability.

  29. Jill

    I can’t help but to cast a jaundiced eye upon the idea of “feminism = left-wing politics”.

    Spinster aunts are compelled to cast this same jaundiced eye. In a happier world, feminism would kill left-wing politics.

  30. XtinaS

    ytikk:

    And what, exactly, are you saying hello to?

  31. Unree

    yttik is right again. How is this artful, cynical Palin blather any worse than what comes out of the mouth of any other wannabe president–including the current occupant of the White House, planning for 2012–on the subject of women? Re: the ex-governor herself: Though not my own cup of tea, she does at least expose both the left and right in a good way as noted above by Barbara P.

  32. Unree

    As has been noted here before, the rape kit story about Palin is false.

  33. Unree

    Link failed. It was http://www.slate.com/blogs/blogs/xxfactor/archive/2008/09/24/one-nasty-palin-rumor-debunked.aspx

    And now it’s time for this non-fan of hers to bugger off.

  34. nails

    That isn’t debunked at ALL. It says that they tried to bill patient’s insurance for the rape kits.

    I have years of healthcare experience, so I know that billing a patient’s insurance first as a matter of policy means jack shit as far as who pays the bills.

    You see, if an insurance company finds that a rape kit is not an adequate MD order for the diagnosis of being raped, then it is up to the rape victim to call the insurance company and argue with them until they *perhaps* decide to pay. How likely is a rape victim to do this? Not very. Insurance companies, like every other large corporation, is legally obligated to increase the return for shareholders and their own short term profit, so they pcik of people unlikely to fight back on purpose. They can usually pick them out by the codified diagnosis that they receive. Very few people know that they can actually argue about the claim in the first place, much less get it reversed. This is the situation for privileged people who actually have health insurance.

    For poorer people who do happen to be on federal benefits (because they are beyond broke in order to qualify) don’t have the luxury of arguing with the company. There are these big books of ICD-9 (or is it 10 now?) codes and what treatments/tests/whatever are covered once a patient is diagnosed are spelled out clearly with virtually no appeal process. People on fixed incomes or who are severely poor get stuck with the bills if they happen to get a test that isn’t covered by the plan. Often things like screenings (where no actual symptoms have appeared but the demographic of a patient presents a risk) are completely rejected by those plans. That means you can end up in an ER with a heart attack without getting a clue that you were at risk to begin with under these plans.

    Then there are a shitload of people who don’t even HAVE insurance, because it lapsed or they got too sick or they lost their jobs or they never had the option in the first place. What are they left with, exactly? Oh yeah, they are left with paying for their rape kits when they are raped.

    From what I understand native american women have more of a risk of rape than others, and they fall into the government plan section of this explanation. It isn’t a pretty place to be.

    All of this is for the roughly 1/4 of victims who try to report the assault within the timeframe that evidence can be collected.

    Failing to make a safety net for rape victims=making them pay, even if some class privileged folks happen to have insurance pricey enough to overlook that whole getting raped thing in order to pay for a kit. She did make victims pay for their kits, I don’t give a damn if charging the patient *first* is against the law.

  35. nails

    God, sorry about the awful grammar in the last post. I should have revised it.

  36. Carpenter

    “yttik is right again. How is this artful, cynical Palin blather any worse than what comes out of the mouth of any other wannabe president–including the current occupant of the White House, planning for 2012–on the subject of women”

    There really are palpable differences between candidates. Either you think abortion should be legal or you don’t. Either you think people should all have affordable health care or you don’t, Either you believe in unregulated Chicago style economics or you don’t. Either you take dump all over the NAACP, Thurgood Marshall, and the struggle against racism or you don’t. All these things disproportionally effect women. Palin is an apologist for the Tea Party, hence for racism, class warfare, the and the control if women’s sexual autonomy full stop. Leftist liberals are no Mary Daly, but to quote some dead English dude there is a difference between half a loaf and no bread. Probably Tea Bagging women want access to true political power, tea bagging politics pretends to give them that, but actually gives them the same old shit, while left liberal politics gives something flawed but practically and philosophically better.

  37. sonia

    Agreed, feminism isn’t left wing politics. However, it definitely is not channeling the generalized sense of futility that right wing nuclear-family slaves, I mean, wives, have about “America,” probably meaning the dipshit dudes they report to. It’s just more mischanneled revolutionary spirit as far as that goes. It reminds me of Daly’s references to Potted and Plastic Passions. It makes them feel as if they’re doing something while they chase their tails.

  38. sonia

    Additionally and off topic, Schafly was correct about marriage- that is the historical definition of it. Marriage has never represented a choice about anything for women- it very literally is male ownership of women’s bodies and has only been marketed as something different very-very recently, and imho only then in order to suck women back into something they were no longer mandated to do at the risk of social ostracism (and kind of still are). Not saying she was cool in any way because she wasn’t, but her understanding of marriage is actually correct. Until about 50 years ago women were actively and almost universally taught that anything other than complete submission to their husband’s sexual will was against marriage, nature, and god. This is still taught in many, many churches who call it “submissiveness training.” I don’t know how much people know about that stuff so I hope I’m not sounding condescending.

    Don’t get married.

  39. Carpenter

    I read the Katha Pollitt article about this last week. It expressed similar anger at the GOP for trying to call this bullshit feminism and for putting Palin at the head of it. It also kind of addressed conservative women and the desire for a power grab though I sort of wish it was more strongly worded along lines of false-consciousness.

    http://www.thenation.com/article/37477/grisly-mamas

  40. delphyne

    “However Palin espouses no actual ideas or policy.”

    Well it worked for Obama in his campaign. Hope and change wasn’t it? Hillary was the only one in the last election to come out with specific policy details and it got her a sum total of nowhere (well in fact over half the democratic primary votes, but we’ll try to forget about that).

    The interesting thing about this is that Palin is reaching out to women as a political constituency, treating them as a political group to be addressed and courted. Self hating female leftists aren’t going to notice an interesting phenomenon like that though – they’re too much on the misogyny bandwagon, spreading lies about how “OMG! Palin got women to pay for their own rape kits!”

  41. PandanCat

    Wow! It’s like girl power for grownups! Empty empowerful slogans that are, like, totally cool!

  42. allhellsloose

    It’s a fad that will soon blow over. Come the first chilly winds of winter, they’ll all retreat indoors to hibernate.

    Sarah Palin is engaging in reactive, not proactive politics and whilst Mama Grizzlies may look cute there’s an awful lot of power behind those punches. However, I think Ms Palin and her furry troupe are preaching to the converted. No-one, not even those on the right whose idea of high brow intellect is to stand on two feet, are ever going to be convinced that Palin is a feminist.

  43. speedbudget

    Mention Sarah Palin and the apologists come out of the woodwork. It’s like the opposite of turning the light on in a roach-infested kitchen.

    Defend her as you will, she lost credibility and feminist points for me the minute she used the “My daughter made the right choice” argument to defend her assertion that no woman should have any choice, ever.

    Nice to be in a place of privilege, isn’t it, Sarah?

  44. delphyne

    Mention Sarah Palin and the misogynists come crawling into the light. She’s definitely a litmus test for feminist consistency.

    There is plenty to criticise her about, but complaining about how she’s treating women as a political constituency to be courted or repeating the lie that she made rape victims pay for rape kits (and if you have to lie about a woman to fit in with your stereotyped view of her, you need to be examining yourself not her) is standard misogyny and definitely not progressive.

  45. Heo

    It is perfectly consistent to say that policies that exist in whole or in part to harm women’s social and political standing are anti-feminist, and those who support those policies are emphatically not feminists, regardless of what they claim. This is true even if they have vaginas, and break with ‘traditional femininity’ to speak in public. Beverly LaHaye would have you believe she’s a feminist, because she has been working for decades in the public sector to further her political goals. However, those goals are remarkably anti-feminist, and therefore she is also anti-feminist.

    Sarah Palin, by her deeds and words and stated beliefs, is an enemy to women’s social, political and economic equality in America, and therefore she is anti-feminist.

  46. Mujery Legs

    If marriage is the property of heterosexuals, it’s a collective good. Similarly with uteruses being the property of the state. That makes right-wingers socialists.

    Somebody call Glenn Beck. (An ass.)

  47. speedbudget

    delphyne, nails already addressed the rape-kit controversy, and Heo makes a succinct point that I was unable to make.

    If a person supports and encourages policies and procedures that are anti-feminist, they are not a feminist, even if they do have the physical parts that in our binary culture make you a woman. And note I carefully did not mention rape kits there. If the rape kit controversy is all you have to hang your hat on about how a person is feminist, then there needs to be more introspection on what makes a person a feminist.

  48. tinfoil hattie

    Sarah Palin, by her deeds and words and stated beliefs, is an enemy to women’s social, political and economic equality in America, and therefore she is anti-feminist.

    In this, she differs not one whit from so-called “left wing” men. That believes as they do makes but is a woman does not make her a feminist.

    That she was not alone in approving a jurisdictions decision to bill victims for their rape kits does not make the story a lie. Women in the jurisdiction under her governmental purview were billed for their rape kits.

    Are mugging victims billed for their medical treatment?

  49. tinfoil hattie

    What in the name of Maude did I write?

    What I meant was, “That she believes as they do but is a woman does not make her a feminist.”

    Yeesh. Sorry!

  50. yttik

    “She’s definitely a litmus test for feminist consistency.”

    She’s certainly a catalyst, isn’t she? She triggers reactions you didn’t even see coming. But the biggest lesson of Palin is that this country, including feminists, are terrified of female power. The urge to knock her down, to declare her the enemy, to label her the anti-feminist is strong. This isn’t apathy we’re seeing and it isn’t politics, it’s flat out fear of a woman exercising power. Anybody spend a Sunday afternoon hurling over Mitt Romney? How about our current leader who just banned abortion in the high risk pool, even if you pay for it yourself? Anybody vomiting over HHS deciding to redefine abortion to include several kinds of birth control?

    What makes Palin an emetic? She’s a rogue, she’s a woman with some power and nobody to monitor and control it and keep her in line, so who knows what she’ll do? Obviously when a woman is left to her own devices what she’ll do is EVIL. There is sheer panic in the air.

  51. Kathleen

    What Palin is doing doesn’t have anything at all to do with feminism: it’s just the standard contemporary conservative tactic of flagging a basically repressive agenda with “rights” rhetoric. She’s on the same pirate ship they all sail on.

    The vague feeling of “something is not right” is in fact completely specifiable: “a black person is occupying the WHITE HOUSE aggghhhhaiieeeeeee”

    But not too many people are willing to join movement with that flag nailed openly to its masthead. So they disguise it not as about wanting to kneecap non-white people, but instead about wanting to champion the value of women, and ta-da! Any actual follow-up commitment to women’s issues is irrelevant, as in, totally otiose. The mere invocation of women has already done its work.

    (Repeat, btw, for flying Trig high while, below decks, kicking anyone who needs help in the teeth. Though here I suspect that as Trig stops being a cute baby and starts becoming a real person in the world we may see Palin’s politics change: I am pretty convinced that 25 years from now, as the mother of a developmentally disabled adult, she’s going to see the world very differently than she does now. But it probably will be too late to matter: our collective handbasket may have already reached hades by then.)

  52. phio gistic

    Traveling through the Carolinas this weekend, I spotted a campaign sign for some local politician. It included the slogan “Take back America” which made me wonder who exactly it needs taking back from. Ideally, the people pictured at the bottom of this page (but I am not holding out much hope): http://action.naacp.org/AgainstRacism

  53. Jane Q Public

    ‘“Moms kinda just know when somethin’s wrong,” asserts Palin’

    This. Yeah, I’m a “mom” (God, how I hate that word. I can’t stand that complete strangers address me as “mom’ when I have my kid in tow. As in “Mom, can you tell Junior to stop climbing on the office furniture?”) and I’ve got to say that I know something is wrong, indeed. That something is Sarah Palin’s rhetoric.

    Sarah P. sure is a smart lady though! She is appealing directly to women and appealing to them directly through their status as mothers. For all that motherhood is celebrated in our culture, mothers themselves are ignored. Sarah Palin gives them a voice. It’s just too bad that voice isn’t saying anything discernible.

    Seriously, what is this “somethin” that is wrong? What policies comin out of DC? What is the right track for America? If, as a “mom”, I don’t agree with the “somethin’s wrong” bit the way Mama Grizzlies do, does that mean my mother’s intuition has failed me? Does that in turn make me a “bad mom”?

  54. iGuest

    “Regarding property vs people and gay marriage and abortion: marriage is the property of heterosexuals, and uteruses are the property of the state.”

    It be more accurate to say that marriage is the property of male heterosexuals. The women-are-chattel concept is alive and well in America. That’s why they can own our uteri.

  55. iGuest

    Call me easy, but I’d take Sarah Palin over any of the asshat men the Republicrats are pushing.

  56. iGuest

    Too funny! My comment at 10:11, I should have typed “It is” not “It be.”

  57. nails

    “In this, she differs not one whit from so-called “left wing” men. ”

    Which ones? A recent example of a lefty dude helping out rape victims is the bill that Al Franken put through. The record doesn’t reflect the sameness that you assert it does.

  58. nails

    “Well it worked for Obama in his campaign. Hope and change wasn’t it? Hillary was the only one in the last election to come out with specific policy details and it got her a sum total of nowhere (well in fact over half the democratic primary votes, but we’ll try to forget about that).”

    That isn’t true at all. He made a lot of very specific claims about what he would do. He had a comprehensive list of promises on his campaign website and repeatedly used figures from it during the presidential debates.

    I really dislike a lot of things about this administration (like the business with Honduras, for example), but there is no need to attack him for things that aren’t true.

  59. Kelsey B.

    delphyne
    July 19, 2010 at 4:54 am

    “Mention Sarah Palin and the misogynists come crawling into the light. She’s definitely a litmus test for feminist consistency.”

    Hey, holdonnasecond! How does disliking an anti-choice, anti-intellectual social conservative make me a misogynist? I don’t really care what her gender is, her shtick is empty, trite, and manipulative.

    Have there been gender-based attacks on Palin since she rose to a position of national political prominence? Yeah. Does it suck the bag? Fuck yeah. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to figure out that no silver fox-y male politician is ever going to be called a “cougar.” However, just because I don’t like some of the things that have been said about her doesn’t mean I need to be pumping my fist in the air over her crackpot ideas and cheezy down-home persona. Not unless being pro-woman means turning in your critical thinking skills at the door.

  60. Kelsey B.

    Nails, you’re on fire! (In a positive sense.)

  61. Barbara P

    Everyone commenting here can agree that:

    1) Palin is not a feminist.
    2) Disagreeing with or disliking Palin is not inherently misogynist.
    3) No misogynist attacks on Palin have actually occurred here, in this post.

    Whoever disagrees with either of these premises, please speak up!

    But there are still things to discuss. Like what impact she has, even if she’s not someone with whom we’d want to share a margarita? I would not vote for her in a million skillion years (assuming she retains her current socio/political views). Still, there’s something about her that makes me happy because I like seeing everyone scramble. A little cognitive dissonance never hurt anyone!

  62. Barbara P

    Hm. “any” of these premises

  63. iGuest

    I first began googling complementarianism in response to a post over on RL. After a little bit of reading, I came away with the sense that Palin is making a positive difference for women, particularly evangelical and conservative Christian women.

    Among her own, Palin is considered a radical:

    “I pray that our semi-complementarian brothers will recover their biblical moorings before it is too late. Otherwise, the standard for their daughters and the next generation of Christian women may very well be the feminist Sarah Palin, not the biblical Sarah (1 Pet. 3:5-6), not the virtuous woman of Proverbs 31:10-31, not the woman of Titus 2:4-5.”

    http://www.visionforumministries.org/issues/ballot_box/sarah_palin_and_the_complement.aspx

    “Trust me, as a progressive feminist evangelical, I don’t want Sarah Palin to win. … May I suggest that my complementarian friends stay home on November 4, or vote for a third party?”

    http://hugoschwyzer.net/2008/08/31/shattering-the-glass-ceiling-of-complementarianism-some-thoughts-on-sarah-palin-john-knox-and-the-difficult-position-of-the-christian-social-conservative/

    It’s understandable that Palin is not the darling of the left, but among her own she is shaking things up and making strides for women. Palin is fighting the battle in a way that liberals and atheists can’t. And I thank Chaos for giving us a woman leader in an environment that teaches women to only follow.

    (Not sure which html tags work here so I just pasted the links.)

  64. Rox

    Hot jeez, Twisty. I come ’round every so often for a little nip ‘o yer invective now and then, and I have to say, since 2004, I have NEVER, EVER been disappointed. This Palin stuff gets the ol’ rile up. It HURTS my brain, makes it so I can’t think well enough to do my cataloging homework. But a little Twisty, and it’s all better. Thanks again!

  65. speedbudget

    On further reflection, I have to wonder what us non-moms are supposed to do. Are we meaningless? Why isn’t Palin including us in her “feminist” rhetoric?

    Right.

  66. Carpenter

    Far right philosophy is about a half an inch away from straight social Darwinism. It is exactly antithethical to any kind of liberation movement. That entire paradigm and feminism- a critique of the arbitrary systems of existing power- just can’t coexist, yet Palin is succeeding at co-opting the rhetoric. This is just infuriating.

    If I have to defend left wing politics, I can at least say that at its base the left-liberal philosophy encourages critiques of the power structure, so some seed of revolution might grow out of it now matter how flawed politicians are.

  67. Jezebella

    Well, see, us female non-moms are non-humans, having not fulfilled our biological destiny, therefore what we “just kinda know” is fucking irrelevant, yo.

    And, iGuest, there is not one whit of ideological difference between Palin’s politics and the asshat Republicans of which you speak.

  68. iGuest

    That’s Republicrats. The One Party. There is a huge difference between Palin and the men. As per my comment awaiting moderation, she scares the evangelical gatekeepers of patriarchy as much as she scares the d00d nation gatekeepers of patriarchy. And that’s not half bad.

  69. Q Grrl

    How can anyone be afraid of a token? She doesn’t exist to ruffle feathers – she is the veritable preen gland of US politics.

  70. Jezebella

    Palin serves at the whim of the dudes in charge. They will eat her alive the minute she starts questioning her conservative overlords, you wait and see. They already blamed her for McCain’s loss in 2008. They are using her for as long as she is useful to the machine.

    If you really can’t see any difference between Palin and, say, Dennis Kucinich or Al Franken or Hillary Clinton, in terms of ideology, voting record, and political action, you need to start looking harder.

  71. iGuest

    This is what I said: “Call me easy, but I’d take Sarah Palin over any of the asshat men the Republicrats are pushing.”

    Jezebella, now are you really going to claim that the Democrats are pushing Kucinich, Franken or Clinton? No. They are going to try to ram Obama down our throats again. The candidates you mention haven’t a snowball’s chance in hell of reaching the top of the Democratic ticket.

    And if someone can’t see the similarities between Obama’s actions and Bush’s ideology then they need to take a better look. (I didn’t use Palin as an example because she’s not a resident, or previous resident, of the WH.)

  72. Q Grrl

    Er, I guess I should clarify: She doesn’t exist to ruffle the feathers of the established Boys Club. If our feathers get ruffled, all the more power to the boys.

  73. iGuest

    Q Grrl, she is ruffling feathers in evangelical circles. I’ve posted links but, unfortunately, the spam filter likes me today.

  74. K.A.

    I remember Violet at Reclusive Leftist taking down this gatekeeping of the feminist label. She asserts that feminism is not fragile, and it will not break if right-wing women describe themselves as feminists.

    Just putting that out there.

    And to play devil’s advocate: If every woman who calls herself feminist has to pass my standards for whether she gets to have the label or not, based on how many feminist policies she herself believes and adheres to, I wouldn’t even be able to call many 3rd wavers “feminists” because I disagree with them so vehemently on so many urgent feminist issues that they whitewash. But I don’t tell them they don’t get to call themselves feminists. They are feminists who have certain perspectives I personally perceive as anti-woman. But there is a lot of overlap there. And right-wing feminist women have some overlap with me and some anti-woman beliefs too.

    If we are going to hang Palin out to dry here, why not attack Amanda Marcotte too as a faux-feminist?

    I don’t think right-wing women are attempting to co-opt the movement to secretly subvert its progress or something. Is that what people think?

  75. iGuest

    Q Grrl, they call her a “progressive feminist.” For real. What a laugh!

  76. Kathleen

    K. A. — of course there is no central licensing agency for use of the word “feminism”. But why on earth should we NOT call people on totally bad faith uses of the term? Especially when it is a go-to move of conservative politics? Do I really have to have a polite look on my face when the Tea Party claims the mantle of Martin Luther King? Or when Sarah Palin says she’s the real standard-bearer for previous generations of feminist struggle?

    I no yink so.

  77. Unree

    Could someone please state what exactly the rape kit story– which the Obama campaign pumped and repeated so hard in 2008–accuses Palin of having done? Different versions of the accusation are online. Be interesting to know which one some blamers here are nodding along to.

    Also, what did all these outraged people do to stop the practice of billing victims (or was it their insurance companies? not clear which, nails) for rape kits when it was so widespread around the country just a few years ago? Did they care? The hypocrisy is hurl-inducing.

  78. lawbitch

    Speaking of crazed Republican women:
    http://juanitajean.com/2010/07/18/some-congresscritters-are-just-more-fun-than-others/

  79. Betsy

    Never confuse a liberal man with a feminist.

  80. tinfoil hattie

    Which ones?

    Barack Obama, Joseph Biden, Rahm Emmanuel, John Edwards, Tim Kaine, Howard Dean, every man who voted for the health “care” bill, every woman who voted for the health care, almost all male “lefty” bloggers, my next door neighbor, the man at Safeway, my local representatives, etc., etc., etc.

    Yes, there is one non-misogynist. Al Franken. You are right.

  81. tinfoil hattie

    BTW, this Mama Grizzly KNOWS when somethin’s wrong. She knows when the kitchen is still full of dirty dishes and the offspring are sittin’ on thier asses playing hand-held games! She knows when there is no sound of musical instrument practice goin’ on! She can tell when the shower ain’t runnin’ after the fourth time the kids have been hollered at to GET IN THE SHOWER GODDAMNIT.

    I’m proud of my grizzly-mama instincts, gosh darnit.

  82. Saphire

    Hey you know, feminism is FEMINISM. Men like to take shits on women – feminism is about saying stop that. It’s not about being left wing. Especially since left wing groups take special efforts not to give a shit about us.

    We’re on our own, ladies. Shout on the rooftops – ‘we’re oppressed. We’re shouting about the oppression of US!’

  83. Emily NAW

    Before the McCain, Obama election (or should I say the Palin, Obama election?) a friend of mine who once explained to me that women couldn’t be presidents because of their menstruations, was shocked that I didn’t like Palin. My friend said, “But she talked about feminism. I thought you’d like her.”

    While it’s unfair and unproductive to be overly prescriptive about who does and doesn’t get into the feminist camp, there should at least be a sincere desire to promote women’s rights. And what’s particularly galling about Palin’s approach is the way she claims her group is comprised of the “real” feminists. She claims that the liberal feminists disempower women by telling them they should get an abortion instead of being a single mom. But when was the last time a prominent feminist said “You should get an abortion”?

    And when was the last time a conservative woman said “You should be a single mom. Don’t give your kid up for adoption so that it’ll have two parents.”

  84. yttik

    “Yes, there is one non-misogynist.”

    I doubt it.

  85. humanbein

    What if Palin using the word feminist opens up the possibility that more young girls might not be afraid of being magically transformed into hairy-legged man haters if they take out a book on feminism from the library?

    Later, when they realize that being a hairy legged man hater is the only sane response to the unfortunate fact that men hate them, they will thank her, even though they’ll know what a delusional tool she is.

    I find the stripper feminists more anti-feminist than Palin. I could be wrong, but one approach has the vague nature of no real message and the other has a specific message about how cool it is to enjoy being raped and degraded.

  86. ivyleaves

    All of these vague comments about what could possibly be the actual feminist policies advocated by Sarah Palin are quite telling.

    She scares the evangelical right? The president of the Southern Baptist Convention supported her as the VP candidate publicly before McCain picked her. Sure, there are plenty of folks who will pick at her, or any woman, for being out there with a job other than being chained to her 5 kids, but they are not a force to be reckoned with in any serious way.

    “What if Palin using the word feminist opens up the possibility that more young girls might not be afraid of being magically transformed into hairy-legged man haters if they take out a book on feminism from the library?” It could take paragraphs to unwrap this comment, but the idea that such a positive view of feminism would come from Sarah Palin’s conformity to patriarchal beauty standards to the point that they would read books by actual feminists is really reaching as well.

    Not buying any of this.

    I also cannot buy into either camp of the Clinton’s use of racism was worse than Obama’s use of misogyny – they both sucked.

    What enraged me in the presidential campaign was the left’s use of horrible misogyny against Sarah Palin, the entire world’s use of horrible misogyny against Hilary Clinton, and the entire world’s use of racism against Barack Obama. Right now, in national politics, I am enraged by the continuing occult racism against Obama and any visible brown people anywhere. I am not enraged by Obama’s failure to be a progressive political force, because his entire stay in the Senate made the inevitability of that outcome as plain as day.

    Anyway, end of political rant, and back to actual feminism. There are no political personages that any true feminist should be hitching their wagons to, viva la revoluccion!

  87. iGuest

    ivyleaves, my links are still in the spam filter. Here’s one quote I provided:

    “I pray that our semi-complementarian brothers will recover their biblical moorings before it is too late. Otherwise, the standard for their daughters and the next generation of Christian women may very well be the feminist Sarah Palin, not the biblical Sarah (1 Pet. 3:5-6), not the virtuous woman of Proverbs 31:10-31, not the woman of Titus 2:4-5.”

    At the very least, Palin is making conservative evangelicals think about, and question, their belief that women should not be in leadership roles.

    As far as Obama goes, enacting gender apartheid, as he did with his Executive Order, is a pretty big fail in my book. Of course one’s level of rage may vary.

  88. yttik

    Palin is really rocking the boat now, she’s endorsed Karen Hendel, who, according to the outraged, can’t even seem to do heterosexuality properly: “We were surprised to see Governor Palin’s endorsement of the most liberal Republican candidate in this race. Karen is the one Republican candidate not endorsed by Georgia Right to Life. She has been caught in a lie about her past support for taxpayer funded benefits for same sex partners and her membership in a gay rights group.”

  89. Heo

    Or, Sarah Palin is defined for the masses as The Scary Lefty Feminist and therefore the word and idea of feminist slides very far right, and everything else follows. Suddenly the ‘reasonable middle’ for feminist thought is on CBS demanding a limit of suffrage for non-married women, and the right gets to argue for full-revocation of suffrage. This is seriously the same semantic degeneration that the right has used to redefine ‘liberal’ as a) bad and b) anybody to the left of General Schwarzkopf.

    This is a real threat, because we know from bitter experience that the politicians of the left will chase belonging in the club of ‘the middle’ as far right as the Evangelicals care to place it. We who actually are on the left must put up a clear and persistent resistance to subversion of our terms.

    And that’s my piehole quota for the thread.

  90. Violet Socks

    Whenever a right-wing woman — any right-wing woman — claims to be a feminist, she doesn’t do it in a vacuum. She isn’t just hurting herself. Her antifeminist feminism has violent repercussions and broad implications.

    Jill, I wonder if you could give me an example of feminism today that isn’t “antifeminist”? Because looking around, I don’t see much. Maybe the lesbian separatists at Mary Daly’s memorial service, but who else?

    Third-wave feminism has given us feminists announcing that hijab is empowering and that a modified form of FGM should be approved by doctors. We have feminists not only defending the most degrading and misogynistic pornography, but also attacking the feminist critique of pornography (and the anti-porn feminists themseves) as prudish. We have feminists arguing in favor of prostitution — and again, dismissing the feminist critique of prostitution as prudery at best, authoritarian misogyny at worst. We have third-wave feminists publicly arguing that sexism itself is perfectly acceptable and should not be opposed as long as it’s directed at women they don’t like (such as Sarah Palin). We have third-wave feminists engaging in sexism themselves, ridiculing and sexualizing any women they don’t like.

    If you see a different landscape, I would be very interested to know. Under the circumstances, I find it hard to believe that anyone’s public adoption of the feminist mantle could possibly do any more damage.

  91. agasaya

    Sarah is very useful for the ignorant right constituency since they won’t be challenged or feel ignorant by chanting her slogans and smart Republican men can stop trying to court them. OTOH, Christine Whitman was very useful for the educated Right – up until she finally realizes how badly she’d vied for the right to be their tool if she mouthed their lies about environmental integrity as head of the EPA. She proved her integrity by resigning, knowing she would never be one of the guys but merely a fall ‘guy’.

    Intelligence matters more than genitalia when it comes to governing.

  92. blondie

    Soulless sloganism, packed with extra populism.

    All those folks who are sorta dissatisfied with their lives — they aren’t rich, they may be unemployed, their house is not like what they see on the tv, their husband and kids take them for granted — well, they just “know” that somethin’s wrong, and Sarah knows it too. See! It’s not their fault. It’s not their husbands’ fault. It’s not their local communities’ fault. Not their churches’ fault.

    No! It’s the gov’mint. Over there in Washington, D.C. And they just need a Mama grizzly to “set things right.” They don’t know know what that means. Or what they need. They are just tired of being the shat-upon.

    And Palin’s gender does not give her a pass for her empty, cynical populism. Nor is her malfeasance excused because “everybody else is doin’ it.” If you wouldn’t take it from “W,” why would you accept it from Palin?

  93. Jezebella

    It is patently absurd to suggest that there is no difference between the Republican Party and the Democratic Party in the U.S. The world is not made up of radfems and Glenn Beck-alikes, after all.

    I invite any woman who believes there’s no difference between a blue state and a red state to come visit me, here in the heart of deepest red dumbfuckistan, for a year or two. Spend some time in, say, Jackson, Mississippi, and you will find that your daily life, your quality of life, your status as a human being, is tangibly different than if you were living in, say, Seattle, Berkeley, or the state of Vermont. You will find these differences notable almost immediately if you are a woman, a person of color, queer, poor, veg*an, and/or pregnant and in need of an abortion. The difference in actual women’s lives between rule by Democrats and rule by Republicans is not insignificant.

    Of course the liberal dudes are not up to radfem snuff, but christ on a crutch, those of you who are lucky enough to live in a blue state need to NOT take for granted the advantages of doing so.

    *And, in advance of the inevitable question of why I continue to live here, the answer is a combination of the crap job market, the mid-career glass ceiling, proximity to my aging parents and disabled sibling, and an utter inability to tolerate cold weather.

  94. yttik

    “Intelligence matters more than genitalia when it comes to governing.”

    No it doesn’t, because if you have the correct genitalia, you aren’t required to be intelligent at all.

  95. iGuest

    “No it doesn’t, because if you have the correct genitalia, you aren’t required to be intelligent at all.”

    Amen to that! If intelligence actually mattered we’d have a woman president, or two, or three by now.

  96. Kathleen

    Violet Socks — are you kidding? The feminist blogosphere is amazing, young feminists are in fine, highly intelligent fettle — sure, there are lots of reasons for despair but honestly so many reasons for not-total-despair. I don’t know if I should recommend anyone spend *more* time on the internet, given that I struggle daily with spending less, but if you are truly longing for connection to vibrant, critical-minded contemporary feminism it is there like never before. What Jill has brilliantly called “empowerful” feminism had its heyday in the Faludi-backlash, pre-internet era and has been subject to sustained, incisive, and hilarious critique since by lots and lots and lots of real, living feminists (Jill is part of that exact internet universe, in fact).

    There is a new and different backlash now — Palin is part of it — but as someone (almost 40) old enough to remember the days when you got to read Katha Pollitt when the Nation came out and maybe a few other columnists from time to time, versus now when you can get your shot of patriarchy-blaming from a half-dozen sources daily, WOW. WOW. WOW.

  97. Comrade Svilova

    Thanks for the reminder, Jezebella. I sometimes forget how good things are in Vermont, even though they’re not perfect (of course). I’ll keep blaming, but yes, no reason not to vote for the occasional imperfect Democrat. The difference — even if small — is worth it.

  98. nails

    “Yes, there is one non-misogynist. Al Franken. You are right.”

    It isn’t like franken got the bill passed all on his own, he had to get votes for it. He introduced the bill. Things like this passed because of men. We don’t have very much female representation in the senate at all. If it was true that liberal dudes accomplished nothing for us then things like this wouldn’t pass at all. It screws over business to have to deal with this bill so it is kind of a big deal.

    It isn’t like this is the only legislation that is pro woman that liberal men in the house/senate have voted for. I am not down with pulling a million examples out just for you to say that some other vote (like the clusterfuck around the healthcare bill) means that none of it mattered. It does matter. If you pay attention to how people vote you can better understand how to vote for your own interests.

    As a last example, there is the Paycheck Fairness Act. It was the much needed addition to the lilly ledbetter fair pay act. Many democrat dudes voted for it, republican women voted against it. The President endorsed it and signed the portion that did get passed. SO there is one example of something where democrat men far exceed right wing women, and it is something that has a very real effect on women who are trying to sue for equal pay.

    Trying to fit the world into a box like “women are always going to treat us better than men” is impossible when the facts are examined. The world is much more complicated than that.

    Is anyone ignoring Sarah Palin’s extreme pro life stance either? If mccain had kicked the bucket after being elected she would have been in charge of picking supreme court justices and such. That is how Roe would get overturned. She thinks that no one should have abortions and has said so. She even defended this in cases of rape and incest.

    Do the same people who think Sarah Palin is good news think that Ann Coulter would make a better politician than a man who votes for women’s rights legislation?

  99. agasaya

    Jezebella,

    Don’t be too sure about the blue states. Women’s shelters there are filled to bursting to because the cops there, and in many places, are feudal and refuse to investigate stalking and even assaults. My own case ‘belonged’ to the first officer to respond to my 911 call when first threatened – who closed it without ever investigating the perps. When I began winding up in ERs with chemical burns and chemical inhalation bronchitis (I’m battling the pesticide industry) they refused to accept jurisdiction because my injuries would force me to move out of various towns.

    The cops won’t consider anything done to a woman in one place as related to what happens to her in another. Women ‘belong’ to a place if we don’t belong to a man. Who said serfdom was dead? So much for not needing a constitutional amendment for women’s rights.

  100. agasaya

    “There” as in Vermont (sorry)

  101. Jane

    Hillary was the only one in the last election to come out with specific policy details and it got her a sum total of nowhere

    You said it.

  102. pheenobarbidoll

    If Sarah Palin is throwing me under the bus,or aligned with a group that routinely throws me under the bus then it really doesn’t matter if she’s feminist or not. Nor does her sex matter. I’m being squished, regardless.

  103. allhellsloose

    What is scary is that maybe Ms Palin is putting herself forward as the 4th wave of feminism. So excuse me, but who in this patriarchial society we live in decided that there were waves of feminisim?

  104. sargassosea

    That’s a damn good question, allhellsloose.

  105. ItTakesAVillage__People

    allhellsloose – The nausea fellas.

  106. Vinia Bright

    How have we gone 89 comments without anyone’s pointing out the obvious? Sarah Palin is just as good for women as Clarence Thomas is for blacks, and anyone who thinks she’s shaking up anything doesn’t understand the Republican Party.

    It’s not possible for white men to thoroughly crusade against race and gender equality; they can get the ball most of the way to the finish line, but to cross it, they need Phyllis Schlaflys and Ward Connerlys– members of oppressed groups who, in exchange for rewards from the oppressor, legitimate oppression by showing that it’s good, right, and the natural order of things. Would anyone here defend a man who says what Palin says? Dick Cheney doesn’t “do heterosexuality right,” either– does he deserve a second look?

    Palin does have much more power than the Republican powers intended (bear in mind that McCain wanted Lieberman– party bosses chose Palin) and I do believe they underestimated her, but she’s only going to be around as long as she’s useful in extending the ideology of the Southern planter class. Sadly, that might put her on a ticket with future California Gov. Meg Whitman in 2012.

    No one plays the race or the gender card as well as Republicans. Whitman/Palin 2012 sounds like a winner to me.

  107. chicago dyke

    jumping in unread (which is always so fun, here!) i have to respond that gender analysis is less important to me than a Straussian one. these are brownshirts, but the knitting kind. they provide the cover to the men and younger women (tho not many) who are the shock troops for our modern corportheocratic state. specific ideology? historical context? *please.* these are people who are told what to do by programs on teevee like Beck’s. they can hardly tell the difference between an ad and a “news” bulletin. anyway, the only point i’m making is that i’m not sure gender is really the important angle. racism, hatred of progress, fear, sure. and i’m not saying we shouldn’t explore the gender angle, either. i just don’t know as it is such a driving force in this case, ymmv. now, to see what you all have to say! :-)

  108. iGuest

    chicago dyke, are you talking about Palin’s followers or Obama’s followers? Or both?

  109. Embee

    This is fatuous propaganda: they have dressed Palin up as a female prototype (so as not to offend the fellas!), coached her to tap into precognitive feminine awareness (“Mom’s kinda know” etc.), and then utlized some sort of evil ventriloquism to get her to say that we need to turn BACK?!?!!

    What kind of freaking agenda is “turning this around” and get the country “back on the tright track?” Because things were oh-so-much better under the Bush administration? My mind is so blown by this crapfest that I cannot think straight, but I wonder if one of my less befuddled sisters can proffer an example of a society moving BACKWARDS successfully?

    The habit/tactic of romanticising the past (Garden of Eden anyone? Mayberry?) is an insidious method used by those in power to keep it. And people lap it up like affable dogs. IBTP.

  110. blondie

    So why (according to the Pollitt article) do women make up the majority of the Tea Partiers? Why do so many women give such whole-hearted support to a group/party/-ism that keeps them in second-class status. It reminds me of What’s Wrong With Kansas?, and I still don’t understand why people refuse to honestly look at what is best for not only them, but a lot of other people, as well.

  111. chicago dyke

    i just don’t get it. really, i feel like i’m part of a tiny, insignificant minority in this country, perhaps the world.

    why do people have such passionate feelings about Palin?

    really, she’s just a common grifter. we can spend a lot of time analyzing why and how and what her role is, as a member of her party and ‘activist’ or whatever she’s calling herself these days. but you know, “follow the money.” she’s out there for pay, and she’s used by people who realized long ago, “our hits/views/click thrus will go up violently every time we use her name!” it’s a win-win for everyone but the people who distract themselves with Where Is Sarah Today?

    she’s not a feminist, imho. she’s a tool, an idiot, and a grifter. and the Perfect Storm of media creations. good krist, it’s worse than the teabaggers, another wholly created fiction of the SCLM.

    the bottom line is that the powers that be will never allow her to have real power. that may or may not mean she will run for the presidency and win, but real power? heh, we’re all feminists here, right? then i think we can all agree that even if she’s “elected” to highest office, *she* won’t be making the decisions. to me, she and obama both are evidence of the destruction of intelligent political discourse in this country, substituted by celebrity worship and shiny shiny on the teevee. who here can honestly say anything Palin has done in the last 18 mos has actually affect your life, in a tangible way? bill kristol is an ass, but he’s had more of an effect on my life than she has. i don’t watch tv or listen to radio, however, so i guess i’m weird in that way.

    someone elsewhere was comparing the tea “party” “movement” to the Christian Coalition. you remember them, don’t you? they were presented as a significant populist force in american politics. until that brand got stale, and now we have the tea “party” “movement” with its “leadership” including Palin. i guess i missed her really making a difference in any particular election recently. i know she’s been at some rallies and conferences, but then again, so have i.

    i am so glad i don’t watch tv. it gives me a perspective that i’m very pleased to have. ask yourself: why, exactly, do you care about Palin so much? she’ll be replaced by another pro-patriarchy talking barbie doll very soon. because it’s the Patriarchy, and no woman is allowed to play the role she is playing for too long. she’ll get old soon, yo, and not up for even the soft focus camera.

  112. smmo

    It’s not possible for white men to thoroughly crusade against race and gender equality; they can get the ball most of the way to the finish line, but to cross it, they need Phyllis Schlaflys and Ward Connerlys– members of oppressed groups who, in exchange for rewards from the oppressor, legitimate oppression by showing that it’s good, right, and the natural order of things.

    This is brilliant. As was Jill’s takedown of Palin’s “turn this thing around” there is no there there shtick. I swear I never thought I’d see a less substantial politician than Reagan in my lifetime, but Palin does him one better.

  113. chicago dyke

    eek, i’ve been moderated. i hope this goes thru:

    chicago dyke, are you talking about Palin’s followers or Obama’s followers? Or both?

    both. i have a looooooooooooooooong record of being unafraid to call obama what he is. i’m gay, he doesn’t like my kind. he has made that very clear since before anyone outside of the UC campus (and i was there at the time and had friends on the exploratory comm.) knew he was chose- i mean going to run for office. no, he’s not my friend. not as a woman, a feminist, or a dyke. the sad part is, i know more about what it’s like to be him than 99% of the population. long story, but i hope you will trust me. our paths are very similar in life, for all our outcomes are wholly different. thus, knowing his choices as i think i do, i despise him.

  114. Rachel

    Jill, I wonder if you could give me an example of feminism today that isn’t “antifeminist”? Because looking around, I don’t see much. Maybe the lesbian separatists at Mary Daly’s memorial service, but who else?

    Violet Socks, I love that you just made reference to me and my friends. Small world.

  115. Carpenter

    Tea Party rhetoric makes the entire political landscape worse, they tried to completely stop health care, they completely oppose the stimulus, they tried to kill financial reform, they race bait, they threaten to shoot people, that entire mindset changed the law in Arizona so that pretty much anyone and esp Hispanics can be arbitrarily arrested and the list goes on.

    Those are the tangible effects of Sarah Palin and Tea Party. She isn’t just some hack that doesn’t matter. It is probably that without them some of the legislation that past might have been significantly better for everyone. This is the radical wing of the party that tried to dismantle social security a few years ago. These effects are measurable, especially the crazy ass Arizona shit.

    The revolution ain’t coming tomorrow, and until such time as it is accomplished it is wise to use an and all political tools to protect oneself, that means voting for some political tools in blue donkey suits.

  116. iGuest

    chicago dyke, that’s what I thought you meant but didn’t want to assume.

  117. tinfoil hattie

    If you pay attention to how people vote you can better understand how to vote for your own interests.

    nails, I don’t need your patronizing admonishment to “pay attention.” I’ve been paying attention for 50 years, and it’s why I completely disagree with you about how much the awesome liberal Democratic men have done for me in Congress. Yippee.

  118. yttik

    “Here, in blaming and shaming the oppressed, the powerless, the left colludes with the right. There’s no reason to look to the left for justice, so people look to the right for order. It’s pretty simple.” -Andrea Dworkin

    Somebody above declared there was no sexism about Palin in this thread. Well, these words indicate something different: “barbie doll, ignorant, enemy, crackpot, cheezy down homey, racist, tool, genitalia, idiot, grifter, lowest common denominator.”

    Feminism of the left will not be bringing about revolution because it is intent on creating and ever smaller and smaller elite club at a time when it should be trying to build an army. Never mind Palin, when liberal women rise up, they are always shot down for not being perfect enough, either too far left like McKinney or not left enough like Hillary. Too hot, too cold, too frigid, too radical. The problem on the left is that we have never been able to deliver justice, as Dworkin said, nor have we ever been able to deliver integrity and sisterhood. We will not unite with women on the right, hell we won’t even unite with our own who don’t spell properly.

    Palin has risen up to fill a need. We can moan and groan about it or hurl every Sunday for the next decade. Or you can celebrate a woman who has found her voice and power and who is going to bring about some unexpected shifts in the way we look at women in this country. Palin is no threat to me, I lived through a Reagan and a couple of Bush’s. Bring it on.

  119. Carpenter

    Uniting with women on the right would be better done by convincing them their feeling that ‘something is wrong’ is really about the sexual class system and their systematic disempowerment by bosses, husband, the education system and cultural mores and not about the socialist boogy man. Uniting with women on the right can’t be about supporting candidates and their rhetoric which is absolutely counter to all principles of liberation.

  120. Kelsey B.

    Yeah, I’ll sure be celebrating when I’m forced to give birth to a kid I don’t want! Sisterhood will make up for the fact that said kid will be taught creationism and abstinence-only education in school! I mean, if you lived through Reagan, I can totally find the strength to make it through government-mandated religion! Gee whiz, I hope Bachmann is her running mate! Now that’ll really have the patriarchs quaking in their boots!

  121. Laurie

    Why celebrate a woman who wants to eliminate our right to own our own uteruses? And considering Palin racist, ignorant or a tool of the patriarchy is not necessarily sexist; it’s just a logical conclusion based on her public record, positions and pronouncements.

    My town is rural, poor, fundamentalist Tea Party Central, home of that “proud right-wing terrorist” you may have heard our Congressman praising on the news a few months back. These folks may seem like a joke to urban people who see them acting nutty on the news, but they and their leaders — Sarah Palin notable among them — are fielding and funding candidates who are pushing agendas more extreme than even the Bush-era sack & pillage.

    Heo and Carpenter are right about tangible effects. Ask my daughter, who manages a feminist women’s abortion clinic here, if there’s no difference between right and left when it comes to funding for services for poor women. She’s disgusted with the Democrats, but she’d also tell you that under Republican rule, real women suffer far more.

    Palin is furthering that extreme anti-woman agenda with all her might.

  122. Ma'Whis'Ki

    The whole Palin/Mama Bear (and Papa Bear and Baby Bear, the fatherland’s pseudo-ursine version of the sacred cockocratic nuclear family) thing is cognitive dissonance in the service of Big P(atriarchy). Any woman who wraps herself in clothing embellished with penis-flags is showing clearly that her first allegiance is to the ‘big-dick-reality Winamp (fore) skin’. While she gets a fun label-of-the-week (mama grizzlie/girlzzie) she still gives licensed-and-approved red, white and blue patriotic head (her own, on a platter, to Palin’s patriarch-backers).

    Sarah Palin is *female*, but she is not a *feminist*. A feminist is, first and foremost, *for women*. Being in favor of no abortion option for rape-victims and a return to illegal, coat-hanger back-alley abortions is not in any sense being *for women*, it is rather being *for patriarchal religious enslavement of women*, which pretty much self-debunks her as any kind of (wavy) feminist one cares to name.

    For anybody who missed out (lucky you!) on Phyllis Schlafly the first time around, Ms. S. was *not* helpfully pointing out the inherent one-down-position of women in marriage, she was instead arguing that all women ought to put out all the time without complaint if they are married, *because marriage rightly requires this usage of women by their lord-and-master husbands*, and therefore, there can be no rape in marriage. A snool-tool if ever there was one, and Ms. P is cut from the same cloth.

  123. HeroesGetMade

    The consternation that ensues as a result of bringing up whatever Sarah Palin’s been up to lately is truly educational, especially to anyone who identifies as a feminist. Trouble is, most often it isn’t educational enough in a reality-based, factually supported way. Sure enough, as Twisty alludes, we don’t know what exactly Sarah would have the Mama Grizzlies do in practical terms, other than vote for her approved candidates, which reminds me in a bad way of getting suckered into Oprah-approved gambits like Skippy the Wonder Orator. OTOH, there’s people making much of her extreme anti-woman agenda, but this usually also comes without any meaningful details. Yes, I know she’s full-out pro-life, but so far as I know, she’s never used elective office to impound any other woman’s uterus on behalf of the state, unlike Skippy the Wonder Orator. I see some transference of blame for what Obama has actually done onto Palin, who so far, has only talked about her personal beliefs instead of signing executive orders to deliver unto the personal uterus impoundment squad their own public wet dream.

    Then there’s the question of whether she’s a feminist. There’s an unfortunate trend on the schools of thought whereby those claiming that she couldn’t possibly be a feminist also tended to fall for either or both Obama/Edwards and we all know how that turned out on the feminism front – massive fail (waves to Katha Pollitt). OTOH, such leading feminist lights as Camille Paglia and Rush Limbaugh love Sarah Palin’s brand of feminism. (Usually the conversation’s already off in the weeds once people start decrying someone else’s brand of feminism, so I’ll leave off on this.)

    Here’s the deal as someone who doesn’t think socialism is a bad word, and would vote for a social democrat if one could be found – nothing will change on the feminism front as long as we keep voting for men to be in charge of every last little thing, from the grizzly bear habitat of the last frontier to the newly muckified Gulf of Mexico. I know that in theory men can represent women, but in actual practice for over 5000 years, it aint ever happened in what could be called a successful fashion. The only chance women stand to get represented is by voting for other women, no matter what letter is next to their name. It’s the only thing that hasn’t been tried that I know of, and being fond of erring on the side of sanity, I’d like to try something other than voting for men and hoping just this once, they’ll show that they understand that women are people, and most people are women.

  124. delphyne

    Is there any evidence that Palin wants to legislate on abortion?

    “Palin has risen up to fill a need.”

    Agreed Yttik. That’s what we need to be looking at, not wasting time calling Palin an airhead or whatever other kneejerk sexism comes into mind. She doesn’t look that much of an airhead to me, identifying a new political constituency and then capitalising on it. Why is Palin able to directly and unashamedly ask for support for women, when Hillary the real women’s politician, was unable to do it?

    That isn’t a criticism of Hillary, that’s a criticism of the left, particularly the educated left both male and female, who were disgusted by Clinton, disgusted at the thought of a woman leader, and would have been even more disgusted if Hillary had directly said that she wanted women’s votes. Remember “vagina voters” as if the penis vote isn’t what has been deciding elections across the world for as long as anyone can remember.

  125. delphyne

    That should say “support from women”

  126. Jezebella

    Yttik, the only gendered insult in that list is “barbie doll”. The rest are non-gendered and therefore do not qualify as evidence of misogyny. They are evidence of enmity towards Sarah Palin.

    Disliking and insulting a single woman on account of her political agenda (such as it is) does not equal misogyny. I don’t loathe Sarah Palin because she’s a woman. I loathe her because she is an ignorant racist classist sexist anti-feminist idiot.

  127. yttik

    Misogyny is about loathing women. The fact that we are so quick to loath women means the patriarchy has been quite effective training us to be their handmaidens.

  128. arlene

    Misogyny is about loathing women because they are women, not loathing a single woman for her policies.

  129. Jezebella

    @Yttik, you have no idea how “quick” I might have been to form an opinion on Sarah Palin, nor do you have any right to assume that you do. I’ve had a solid two years to listen to her word-salad and watch her hypocrisy, her anti-feminism, her bullshit, and her stupidity get more and more air-time. She makes me sick because she’s a patriarchal asshat.

    Feminists do not have to agree with every other woman on the planet, and certainly not with right-wing women. I am appalled that you’re accusing people who don’t like Palin of being handmaidens when it’s quite the reverse: Palin, Schlafly, Coulter, and their ilk are the handmaidens. Those of us who are sickened by women who collaborate with the patriarchy are NOT the handmaidens. You’ve got it all ass-backwards, just like your name, Kitty.

  130. XtinaS

    Misogyny is about loathing women for being women.  I am quite capable of loathing Sarah Palin for her general on-going foggy idiocy.

    Unless, naturellemente, you are trying to recommend that people never criticise women as that’s misogynistic.  In which case, huh.  Are those here who disagree with you misogynistic because you’re a woman and we’re arguing with you?

    Lastly, given that this is an advanced blaming blog, how on earth did you come by the thought that misogyny is about loathing women and therefore loathing any individual woman is misogynistic?

  131. yttik

    Nearly all women are patriarchal handmaidens to varying degrees. When the depth of woman loathing, whether it be towards me or towards Palin or towards some other woman, is so thick you could cut it with a knife, it’s patriarchy.

  132. nails

    I don’t hate Sarah Palin. I hate that people fall for it and that there really are people who will vote for a female candidate based on sex alone. I brought up specific cases where that would backfire, and apparently alerting you to the reality of voting effectively is misogynist because the candidates that may oppress women less may or may not be women?

    Yttik, when you call people out on misogyny/handmaidenism and are asked why you generally just say ‘everyone is’. What is the point of calling everyone names for disagreeing with you if that is the case? If all of us non palin supporting radical feminists are so misogynist then why are you advocating for voting for women only in the first place? Clearly you think we are all just as capable as men of being oppressors, so how could you possibly find the two positions to be in agreement with each other?

  133. iGuest

    “I loathe her because she is an ignorant racist classist sexist anti-feminist idiot.”

    Interesting. That’s the same reason I loathe Obama.

    Palin didn’t write gender apartheid into an executive order. And I seriously doubt she’ll get the chance to. So why all the hurling? Aren’t there men in power, right now as opposed to maybe in a few years, who should be the focus of our disgust? Or is it simply more fun to pile on the “barbie doll”?

  134. yttik

    Nails, I haven’t called anybody names. I stated a fact about how patriarchy impacts us all.

    The implication behind this statement, “people who will vote for a female candidate based on sex alone,” is that women have nothing to offer beyond their lady parts. One would never imply this regarding male candidates, he is presumed to consist of much more depth. Not true for women, obviously a large segment of the population regards us as having nothing more to offer than our sex organs.

    I care very little about how people vote or who they support, but I do find it annoying when one feels it necessary to, “alert (me) to the reality of voting effectively,” as if I had not been carefully observing this whole political dance for nearly half a century already.

  135. Ma'Whis'Ki

    [Palin, Schlafly, Coulter, and their ilk are the handmaidens. Those of us who are sickened by women who collaborate with the patriarchy are NOT the handmaidens.]

    Palin et al are used as the stalking horses of patriarchal divide-and-conquer tactics. They are ‘on the airwaves and in the news’ because they are *put there* by the patriarchal owners of said media outlets, and their public visibility is diligently maintained because they serve patriarchal ends, *not* because they have any real autonomous power of their own.

  136. Saphire

    Just like I can read men, I can read patriarchy in women (because I’m taught I have to to survive).

    When women get on the back of Palin I feel the patriarchy. When left wing feminists act like they want and have a right to attack right wing women I feel the patriarchy.

  137. Carpenter

    “word-salad!” I love it.

  138. iGuest

    “One would never imply this regarding male candidates, he is presumed to consist of much more depth.”

    Too true. And the reality is that there are many, many more people will vote for a man because he is a man than there are people who will vote for a woman because she is a woman.

  139. Carpenter

    On a policy level Palin is almost exactly the same as those men on the Christian right that we have been putting up for for the last quintillion years. So the question is, am I more angry at her than them and if so why. My answer is no I am not. On one level no, I don;t vote for them and I wont vote for her bc the tangible effects of policy are identical.

    The other level Palin works on is raising the deflection the political energy of women. Probably the reason women like her is because they are dissatisfied and on some level sick of being disempowered as women, but then all that energy is dumped into crapping on the NAACP, hating immigrants and being paranoid that the President is a nazi-commie-facist or whatever they say he is this week.
    This again is no different than what right wing men have always done say by getting poor white people to vote completely counter to their economic interest.

    I think it is fair to criticize Palin for all this. The GOPs ability to get people to sign on for thing diametrically opposed to what would benefit them makes me nuts in general.

    I also maintain that at its core the conservative philosophy is just anti-revolutionary in every way because according to them people have their societal position because they deserve it. I don’t think this can ever be made consistent with feminism.

  140. HeroesGetMade

    Men have been very successful at identity politics, especially on behalf of white men. Not only do they vote for themselves, even when better candidates are on offer, they shame other people into voting for them by yelling various telling epithets including “identity politics”, “vagina voter”, and my recent favorite, “racist”. It might take me a while to figure out how to vote with my vagina, but when I do, Dude Nation’s in trouble. In the meantime, I’ll be voting for other women until all women get represented, even those misguided right-wingers. We might need a 52% majority just to be on the safe side since the insane domination imperative apparently overwhelms Dude Nation and everything and everyone in its path.

    In the interest of bringing on the revolution we’ve all been waiting for, consider this – how do we get there with men in charge of nearly everything? There’s more of us than them so the way to end gender apartheid in power structures is to help each other out and stick together, especially when a quorum (30% some studies say) is achieved. Until that quorum is achieved, the male way of exercising power, the insane domination imperative, will hold sway same as it ever was.

  141. nails

    Revolution directly opposes the idea of having equal representation in an inherently sexist institution. This is like saying 50% female CEOs make us more equal. It doesn’t work that way, we would be equally represented in institutions that champion dominance and punish things like caring about each other. Women are honorary men when they climb to the top of those institutions, there isn’t any way for them to meaningfully alter the structure they stand upon. It would be women leading an institution that women weren’t allowed to build or decide the rules of. Revolution is about getting rid of those things, perhaps creating new things in its place that aren’t inherently dominant of other people.

  142. nails

    “The implication behind this statement, “people who will vote for a female candidate based on sex alone,” is that women have nothing to offer beyond their lady parts. One would never imply this regarding male candidates, he is presumed to consist of much more depth. Not true for women, obviously a large segment of the population regards us as having nothing more to offer than our sex organs. ”

    No, it implies that you directly argued that, which you did. It is unfair to argue a point and then blame ME for the implications of it. You were saying that I only consider women to be their parts because I was referencing YOUR point. Do you know what you are arguing anymore? I certainly do not.

  143. tinfoil hattie

    Or you can celebrate a woman who has found her voice and power and who is going to bring about some unexpected shifts in the way we look at women in this country.

    What, exactly, is “different” about the way we look at women now that Sarah Palin has come along spouting her feel-good slogans? (Feel-good if you’re a conservative, that is) We’re moving backwards if we “celebrate” Palin’s politics. I don’t like her message, I don’t share her politics, and I have no idea whether I “like” her, because I’ve never met her.

  144. iGuest

    “This again is no different than what right wing men have always done say by getting poor white people to vote completely counter to their economic interest.”

    And it’s no different than what left wing men have always done by using the abortion stick on women. What did voting for the “liberal” Democrat get women this go ’round? It got us an executive order for gender apartheid. The sad truth is that there isn’t a whole helluva lot of difference between right wing men and left wing men.

  145. iGuest

    “Revolution is about getting rid of those things, perhaps creating new things in its place that aren’t inherently dominant of other people.”

    Revolution is about changing the narrative. The narrative is one of the strongest and most dependable weapons in the patriarchal arsenal. Which is why I argue that Sarah Palin is a part of the revolution. She is changing the narrative. And she is changing it in a way, and in places, that left of center feminists can not.

    I’m not saying anyone has to like, support, or vote for her. I’m just saying our vitriol should be directed at the men, conservative or otherwise, who are our real enemy. Let’s not waste our righteous anger on Sarah Palin, that’s exactly what they want us do.

  146. Carpenter

    The abortion stick is a bit different. The abortion stick works because they ask “what is your alternative the right wing and no abortions at all?” It doesn’t implicitly deny that women have the right to an abortion. Whereas right wingers implicitly deny that women have the right to an abortion, that workers have the right to a minimum wage, that people have the right to free healthcare etc.

    What is also true is that there are many left liberal lawmakers and voters who strongly believe in a woman’s right to choice so that there is some hope for political progress. The right offers no such thing at all.

  147. Carpenter

    I just read “One Dimensional Woman” by Nina Power and it contained this essay about Palin that was pretty interesting

    http://flowtv.org/2008/10/sarah-palin-castration-as-plenitude-nina-power-roehampton-university/

    beware though, it also contains the words ‘castration’, ‘Lacan’, and ‘Herbert Marcuse’

    Anyway if Palin is transforming the narrative it is only that she isn’t explicitly saying ‘get back in the kitchen’ and that she supports title IX. Other than that she plays feminism against itself and is exactly as indictable as every other right wing politician.

  148. Kali

    The abortion stick is a bit different. The abortion stick works because they ask “what is your alternative the right wing and no abortions at all?” It doesn’t implicitly deny that women have the right to an abortion. Whereas right wingers implicitly deny that women have the right to an abortion, that workers have the right to a minimum wage, that people have the right to free healthcare etc.

    The only difference between the left wing men and the right wing men is that the right wing men stab us in the stomach and the left wing men stab us in the back. Do you actually believe, in spite of all evidence to the contrary, that the left wing men will support abortion after using it as a stick against us? Even after all the executive orders Obama has signed stabbing us in the back?

  149. Jezebella

    Sarah Palin isn’t transforming any damn narrative. She’s saying the same shit the right-wing dudes are saying, only far less coherently.

  150. Carpenter

    In terms of statistics the right wing has more stabbers and bigger daggers. Some left wing men indeed have the same, but I am not in favor of voting for them. Ben Nelson can kiss my ass for example.

    Do I personally believe left wing men will support us?

    I believe some will, not all of course. I also believe that without political pressure from the outside, left wingers in congress will cave to crazies on the right. If you are asking me about my personal political strategy :

    The revolution won’t come tomorrow. Starting my own country is not an option. Open armed rebellion isn’t an option. Going off the grid and being a hermit does nothing, in fact since I still have to eat and buy stuff I am still giving my silent assent to the system. Not voting is relinquishing what small political tool I do have, like when the Mensheviks held a protest walk out and got voted down in their absence. So I vote for left wing candidates. I know this (just voting)is not revolutionary, something else must be done if the paradigm is really going to shift. That something is got to be agitation that moves the entire dialogue to the left and includes everything from pressuring congress to calling bullshit on the gender binary in the media from any available platform.

    You might ask how is anyone going to start the revolution if I am still playing within the system? The president referred to journalist as ‘sweetheart’ for chrissakes. That one is hard. Then I guess my answer is use the system to install as liberal representatives as possible at the same time as general r consciousness. raising which will allow more changes to the system which will allow more platforms for consciousness raising. I don’t think completely withholding political support from the entire left is a viable strategy.

  151. Kali

    It would be women leading an institution that women weren’t allowed to build or decide the rules of.

    It doesn’t work that way. If women were equally represented in the leadership, then the question of “allowing” doesn’t arise. It is only when women are in the minority in the leadership that individual women leaders don’t have the power (i.e. are not “allowed”) to change the institution. There is some such thing as critical mass.

    2008 made me realize something. Women are never going to be judged fairly against men on the issues. There is a deeply ingrained double standard due to which women are judged more harshly than similar men by people who think they are deciding based on “issues”. If we vote based on issues (in the context of the double standard), we will never get critical mass. When I came to this realization, I decided to become a vagina voter. A few female kooks may be elected, but in terms of the bigger picture we would have a more progressive Congress overall.

  152. Kali

    I don’t think completely withholding political support from the entire left is a viable strategy.

    Who’s talking about “completely withholding political support from the entire left”? Are there no women on the left?

  153. tinfoil hattie

    She is changing the narrative. And she is changing it in a way, and in places, that left of center feminists can not.

    She’s changing exactly nothing. Her incoherent “Mama Grizzlies” video says nothing. Her policies are anti-woman, carefully worded “I would choose … ” answers notwithstanding.

    The narrative goes back and back and backwards. This is insane. HOW is Sarah Palin making things “better” for women? She’s not!

  154. Carpenter

    There are both worthy men and women on the left to support. This is far better than supporting the right(and implicitly withholding support from the left) because of far right female candidates.

  155. Comrade PhysioProf

    Or you can celebrate a woman who has found her voice and power and who is going to bring about some unexpected shifts in the way we look at women in this country.

    One can decry misogynist attacks on Palin without celebrating her or her sick-fuck far-right-wing ideology. And if she succeeds at furthering that ideology, the “unexpected shifts in the way we look at women in this country” are not going to be very good for most women.

  156. iGuest

    “Sarah Palin isn’t transforming any damn narrative. She’s saying the same shit the right-wing dudes are saying, only far less coherently.”

    I completely disagree. She’s effecting a change in the big daddy of patriarchal narratives: conservative Christianity. Who knows how far she’ll get but it makes sense to, at the very least, not play into patriarchy’s hand by mocking her and belittling her efforts. Actions speak louder than words, and, in pursuing a leadership role, she is challenging the evangelical belief that a woman’s place is as an obedient help-meet.

    Far less coherently? Than Huckabee? Glenn Beck? Or that fount of wisdom George Jr.? Is what they say somehow more “coherent” because they are men?

  157. iGuest

    “There are both worthy men and women on the left to support.”

    There is no “left” left in the Democratic Party. Let’s hope a viable third party comes to the rescue. And fast.

  158. veganrampage

    Here’s a link to “That’s My Congress.” The site tracks who votes the most progressively and rates the House and Senate on a scale of 1 to 100. Last I looked Franken was rated a 44. Yeah, I was surprised too. One can check on any candidate’s vote on any bill, and there is short and clear description of said bill. Good way to cut through the hype and bullshit, and find out just what these demented clowns are actually doing.
    Warning: patriarchy in full bloom at this site. Be sure to have vomit bags in close proximity.

    http://thatsmycongress.com/senate/senatediscriminationscorecard.html

    I am nowhere near as useful or willing a handmaiden or any kind of fucking maiden for that matter to the patriarchy as Sarah P. and I take umbrage at being told so en masse in this forum. Yttik.

  159. Carpenter

    They gave Arlen Spector a conservative rating of 5? That seems nuts.

  160. tinfoil hattie

    Really: What on earth is Sarah Palin CHANGING about conservative Christianity? I don’t get it. Really. Please tell me how she’s changing, rather than adhering to, conservative Christianity. Think Schlafly: did she change conservative Christianity?

  161. Vinia Bright

    The fact that some radical feminists give Palin a break because she’s woman whose how well Republicans understand gender/race/ethnic group essentialism and why they play these cards so well.

    If a man were saying what Palin was says, every single commenter in this forum would vigorously denounce him. And rightly so. Women like Palin don’t understand that they are members of an oppressed class, and that lack of understanding leads them to become oppressors. I don’t want anyone of any gender, including women, to oppress me.

    This is politics. The policies matter, not the person. Palin has internalized the patriarch to a much greater degree than any feminist I’ve ever met has, and the policies she wants to put in place are not good for women.

    I’d support the biggest, most mansplaining liberal d00d tool who backed abortion rights and other policies I support before I’d support a woman who espouses what Palin espouses. She might be woman, but she’s not one of us. IBTP.

  162. Shelby

    The vague feeling of “something is not right” is in fact completely specifiable: “a black person is occupying the WHITE HOUSE aggghhhhaiieeeeeee” – Kathleen

    You’ve hit the nail on the head Kathleen. That piece of crap is nothing but wall to wall honky. It doesn’t look like these idiot Republicans are trying to woo women of indigenous, black, asian or any other background. The message is simple. The earth has fallen off its axis. There’s a black man in power and honky is as angry as a grizzly bear.

  163. Ciccina

    CAN PEOPLE AT LEAST STOP REPEATING THE LIE THAT PALIN MADE PEOPLE PAY FOR THEIR OWN RAPE KITS?

    Jeebus, use the Google, already. Its not that hard. Not only was no one made to pay for their own kit, there was never any intention of making anyone pay for their own kit. Funding for the kits was never eliminated.

    [And for that matter, as Governor Palin didn't lift a finger to curtail reproductive choice. She's on record as being pro-sex ed, declined to seek federal funding for abstinence-only programs, has the same position on gay marriage as Barack, is not a creationist, and never tried to ban any books.]

    If nothing else, it makes it very hard to look down your nose at people who won’t let go of the Obama birth certificate bullshit when we’re still going around repeating the rape kit nonsense. I guess convenient myths are very hard to let go of, no matter what your political persuasion.

  164. Ciccina

    Must add more ranting.

    There are so many misconceptions about Palin stated in the comments. Some imply that Palin at a minimum doesn’t say women should return to the kitchen — when it should be well-known that Palin said people who think women shouldn’t pursue all the same opportunities men have are neanderthals who should go back in their caves. Others imply she is “just as right wing” as Christian conservatives, when she is not nearly that extreme – she breaks with their orthodoxy on many key points. Some say she’s only where she is because of powerful men, when powerful men in the mainstream (read: conservative) media and conservative political operatives from McCain’s camp and elsewhere have done their damndest to destroy her.

    One commenter goes so far as to suggest Palin doesn’t support single mothers — when Palin’s own daughter is one! If she thought marriage was always the best option for women, why did she tell her daughter that she opposes her engagement to her baby’s father?

    Think, people.

    Like it or not, Sarah Palin has shown up many progressive women by being unapologetic about seeking office while she has young children and not withering at the first whiff of criticism from the press. What is not to like about a woman who tells Chris Matthews and his ilk to get stuffed on a daily basis? The Democratic party cuts off women candidates at the knees because they’re too this or not enough that, and we’re supposed to just nod our heads and get with the program. Besides Hillary, Palin is the only high profile female politico who makes no apologies about the way she talks, the way she looks, the way she conducts her family life, and her political aspirations.

    Palin has horrible positions on a lot of issues – energy, health insurance, immigration, climate change – but when it comes speaking about the role of women in public life and standing up to misogynist bullies, she’s second only to one (Hillary).

  165. nails

    Kali- regarding the service of liberal dude politicans:

    I don’t think they will do us any special favors outside of not subjecting us to shit from the right wing.

    The way that politics have shifted towards the right in the past (and somewhat towards the left in the 60′s) could be an instructive case for supporting them until the pressure builds to make the far right more left. The right did make democrats more conservative over time, so it is a tactic that has worked in the past. Obama could be our Reagan, make it seem like the next president needs to give lip service to gays or women (and then maybe commentary shifts to reflect that, etc). Weeding out the influence of the mainstream media is impossible, but perhaps people can effect something by speaking about it in their own lives and with activism. Both major parties have changed a lot over their short histories. More organizing and pressure could bring change again, perhaps. We have models in other developed countries, all are more liberal than ours, which is a great advantage to furthering the rights of women in America. I think there is some hope.

  166. nails

    “Jeebus, use the Google, already. Its not that hard. Not only was no one made to pay for their own kit, there was never any intention of making anyone pay for their own kit. Funding for the kits was never eliminated. ”

    It isn’t that hard to figure out that uninsured people (or people with really shitty insurance) did pay for their rape kits.

    George Orwell once said “Seeing what is right in front of your nose is a constant battle”, and it is the absolute truth. You can’t read a headline about the rape kit thing being “debunked” and just accept it. It is the same crap the media has pulled for years on behalf of countless public figures- they insert some kind of accusation (either positive or negative) and plant a seed of doubt. It doesn’t matter if it is true, it matters that people hear about it at a critical time. They expect you not to be able to investigate it yourself, and in fact, many people are not capable of it for whatever reason. Having the word out there for people to discuss/hear from others is the important thing. This is how WMDs in Iraq were an issue. This is how the “Bulgarian Connection” was made when someone tried to shoot the pope. It happens over and over again. Stories that fall apart when subjected to the smallest amount of scrutiny are paraded around as proof of some thing or another. Sarah Palin did nothing to make sure that women who were raped did not pay for their kits (despite the especially bad rape problem in her state), and she is in the same league as countless other politicians in that respect. I think it is time that people here treat her like that- in league with other morally bankrupt people who demonstrate no concern for women as a class.

  167. nails

    “If she thought marriage was always the best option for women, why did she tell her daughter that she opposes her engagement to her baby’s father? ”

    She only said as much after the election was over. She said the opposite of that before- that marriage was the right thing to do when you have been pregnified by a dude.

    She has also gotten protection prayers against witches at her church and believes the earth is less than 10,00 years old. She is extreme.

  168. Comrade Svilova

    It doesn’t look like these idiot Republicans are trying to woo women of indigenous, black, asian or any other background.

    This. If we’re going to vote based on identity rather than policy, Sarah Palin, Michelle Bachman and the other Mama Grizzlies still doesn’t offer anything to women of color. Except racism, of course.

  169. allhellsloose

    Ciccina: One only has to look at the historical rise of Margaret Thatcher in Britain to see parallels with Sarah Palin. Mrs Thatcher was continually overlooked at parliamentary selection committees simply because she was a mother and the two, being a politician and a mother couldn’t possibly mix. It was finally as a result of support from other right wing women in Finchley that Mrs Thatcher got off the starting blocks. Why the issue of Children and Politics should arise in the 21st century is beyond me.

    This is an interesting debate. Do right wing women in power enable the feminist cause (seen largely as a left wing construct) or do they play lip service to it for shameful self progression? After all Mrs Thatcher is famous for (never?) saying ‘There’s no such thing as society.’ and her ideological promotion of the hideously anti-woman Milton Freidman economics.

  170. Comrade Svilova

    And as someone noted above, “Mama Grizzlies” implicitly excludes or devalues women who are not mothers. Sarah Palin isn’t just “a woman” for the purpose of identity politics. She’s a white, wealthy, conservative mother whose policies are not positive for women whose identities are dissimilar from her own. (Sorry for the double post.)

  171. Sophie44

    Kathleen: Seriously, do you not know who Dr. Socks is – seriously?

  172. Kali

    The way that politics have shifted towards the right in the past (and somewhat towards the left in the 60’s) could be an instructive case for supporting them until the pressure builds to make the far right more left.

    Reward the left for moving to the right? No, thanks. There are third parties out there if you want to make a statement.

  173. Kali

    If we’re going to vote based on identity rather than policy, Sarah Palin, Michelle Bachman and the other Mama Grizzlies still doesn’t offer anything to women of color.

    Because women of color don’t have any gender identity, only racial identity? You don’t speak for me as a woman of color.

  174. ivyleaves

    Take a gander at the number one organization for religious right women.

    http://www.cwfa.org/main.asp

  175. smmo

    Others imply she is “just as right wing” as Christian conservatives, when she is not nearly that extreme – she breaks with their orthodoxy on many key points.

    Show me where.

    This idea that Palin is “rogue” or somehow outside the mainstream of power is absurd. She is rabidly Christian, rabidly anti-choice, rabidly-capitalist, rabidly anti-environment. These place her at the center of power. Of course she is for women working, the right wants everybody working, as many hours as possible, for as little as possible. Whether this is for crap wages at Wal-Mart or unpaid raising the seven children one has borne because they had no access to birth control or abortion is irrelevant. There have always been right-wing women who buck the stay at home mantra, and like Schlafly and Schlessinger before her Palin’s supposed rebellion means absolutely nothing to feminists or women. So she stood up to David Letterman. That makes her a figure of popular culture, nor a politician.

  176. Alaska Lurker

    Hi. I’ve lived in Alaska my entire life and Sarah Palin has been a pain in my arse for a long time. I’d like to clear up any misconceptions on her stance on choice. Sarah Palin is anti-choice. She has advocated for and supported legislation to require parental consent for a minor woman’s abortion. Her ghostwriter describes her anti-choice position very clearly in Going Rogue. She probably would have done more to enslave women had she been Governor longer. Sarah Palin is anti-choice. She is also an idiot.

  177. HeroesGetMade

    “Revolution directly opposes the idea of having equal representation in an inherently sexist institution.”

    Don’t really know what that means, but the revolution will have already occurred when women are in charge of more than half of all human pursuits that really matter. Having a quorum or critical mass (30%, say) of women in any male-dominated organization inherently subverts that organization by changing how power is exercised, away from domination towards cooperation, away from hierarchies towards egalitarianism. Women created democracy, dontcha know.

    “This is like saying 50% female CEOs make us more equal.”

    Interestingly, the French have decided that 50% of CEOs should be female so as to avoid the economic apocalypse we are currently hurtling towards in this country. Women have different value systems than men and different ways of organizing themselves and others. Having them in charge changes the dance. Would that we could have people like Elizabeth Warren in charge of not only the new consumer protection agency for financial instruments, but all sectors of the economy.

    More examples of how putting women in charge changes the dance:

    - When Sweden elected its first female prime minister, she immediately made half of her cabinet women. Today Sweden is about the only country I know of that has criminalized prostitution for the buyer, but not the seller. Would that have ever happened with men in charge? Personally, I wouldn’t have put it past Hillary Clinton to have pulled a Swedish prime minister. Maybe that’s what all the boys were wee-wee’d up about?

    - Iceland has elected its first female (and openly lesbian) prime minister and one of the first things she did was fire all the bankster boys that jacked their economy. Recently, strip clubs were banned in Iceland. We could use some of that. Coincidence? I think not.

    This myth that men are always the best qualified candidate for any job that matters, and that women who want to grab the driver’s wheel are evil, stupid monsters gets us where we’ve always been, which is about as far as it gets from the revolution.

  178. HeroesGetMade

    “If a man were saying what Palin was says, every single commenter in this forum would vigorously denounce him.”

    Would that that were true! There seems to be quite a lot of misdirection of blame for what the men have done, the ones who were supposedly on our side, onto Palin. It looks like she has become the designated hate receptacle. Here’s an interesting quiz on who said what:

    http://riverdaughter.wordpress.com/2010/06/23/watch-what-i-say-not-what-i-do/

    Please be warned, however. This site has no use for our current president and does not mince words on the subject. The quiz is brilliant, though.

  179. Jezebella

    Heroes, the actions taken by the Swedish and Icelandic PMs would never be taken by Sarah Palin. You are comparing apples and oranges. Right wing women don’t do stuff like that. The myth that all women leaders put women’s rights first is what puts people like Sarah Palin in charge of Alaska. Show me one way she substantially, tangible, provably improved women’s lives and rights in the time she spent as governor of Alaska.

    I am also wondering how many people who voted “for Sarah Palin” think John McCain would be an awesome president. Because, folks, if you don’t like Obama, you were really not gonna like McCain.

  180. Carpenter

    There is this two fold way sexism operates; it assigns arbitrary attributes to women, then it devalues those attributes excluding women from agency in the outside world.
    For example, the nurturing role is arbitrarily assigned to women, then women are tols their nurturing nature disqualifies them from being president. So Palin is disagreeing with the second part of my previous statement, but not doing anything about the first part.

    Palin has carved out an partial exception from the rules for herself. She is also supporting policy that keeps women in lower social roles increasing the probability those roles will keep getting arbitrarily unequal socialization of women will continue and that women will continue to get put down for it. In matters of policy she isn’t anything new, she should be criticized the same way anyone else should, not harsher but not less harshly either.

  181. Zygar

    Refudiate.

  182. yttik

    Corpsemen.

  183. agasaya

    Heroes:

    Buying what a prostitute is selling IS illegal in the US. Recall Spitzer? “Johns” get busted but don’t receive equal punishment, of course. However, many get fines and their names listed in the newspapers – modern day equivalent of being in the stocks. Lawyers can even be disbarred or suspended (Spitzer negotiated some deal on that score).

    Which brings us back point of discussing the fact that all women are equal to men but it doesn’t mean all men, or all women, are equally good candidates for a job. A dumb woman in a position of power and authority will generally be implementing policies of some male behind the scenes (a Todd? a Cheney??) via lip sync.

    Speaking of competency, did the subject of this discussion even make it through her term as Governor? In a state where the heat is relatively low for officials? Should a Palin actually be given more responsibility in future if that couldn’t be successfully completed? Seems like her lack of qualifications for second in command were confirmed in her resignation.

    Work history counts in any gender. However, if the Right wants her for a spokeswoman, that’s their right. (sorry, unintentional).

  184. Fliss

    Isn’t there a middle ground? We don’t have to like what Palin says, but we’re almost too keen to jump on her as a woman in power and/or feminist.

  185. Fliss

    I agree about 50% of women in government = revolution. Before that, women like Palin have to play the game and act as puppets. That, or get shot down by everyone. Women making half or a majority in government changes everything, from the mood of feminism, spreading to everything else.

  186. Comrade Svilova

    There seems to be quite a lot of misdirection of blame for what the men have done, the ones who were supposedly on our side, onto Palin. It looks like she has become the designated hate receptacle.

    It’s very true that Palin gets extra, misogynist hate in cultural discourse in general, but here at IBTP, blamers who have problems with Palin have made it clear that they have equal problems with other Right and Left wing candidates/politicians. However, Palin and right-wing women are the subject of this thread, so there’s going to be more criticism on this thread of Palin et. al.

    Palin offers nothing to me as a working class person. Palin offers nothing to me as a aetheist. Palin offers nothing to me as a Marxist. Why should Palin’s gender suddenly change that equation and make her positions and policies good for me? It doesn’t.

    Gender essentialism is one of the biggest myths of Patriarchy. Patriarchy says: Women “are” nurturing, level-headed, caring, sensible and therefore they should be homemakers. Just changing that equation to “women are nurturing, level-headed, caring, sensible and therefore they should be in government” doesn’t undo the Patriarchal binary that makes men and women inherently different, creating gender rules and roles that force people into performing to society’s expectations, force people into heteronormativity, and punish all those who stray outside society’s proscribed rules.

    Sarah Palin’s gender matters less to than her beliefs and policies about the role of religion, the role of corporations and capitalists, and, yes, the role of women in society. Anyone, male or female, who shares Sarah Palin’s views will not get my vote.

  187. Kali

    Anyone, male or female, who shares Sarah Palin’s views will not get my vote.

    Did/will Obama get your vote?

  188. goblinbee

    “Which brings us back point of discussing the fact that all women are equal to men…”

    This way of putting it has always rubbed me the wrong way, as it sets men up as the standard.

  189. Kali

    Buying what a prostitute is selling IS illegal in the US. Recall Spitzer?

    Both victims and perpetrators are equally punished under the law (Ok, maybe the victims are much more likely to be punished). So, everything is equal. Gah!

  190. Laurie

    Here’s a sample of the “empowerful” women candidates Palin is putting big bucks behind: http://www.vanityfair.com/politics/features/2010/07/republican-politics-mama-grizzlies-slide-show-201007#slide=12

    Scary folks, to a woman. THIS is feminism? I don’t think so.

  191. Emma

    “Yeah, I’ll sure be celebrating when I’m forced to give birth to a kid I don’t want!”

    Then you better hope you never end up in the high-risk insurance pool where Obama just banned abortion coverage, even if you pay for it yourself.

    What’s really, really scary is that all this vitriol heaped on Sarah Palin directs attention away from the very significant undermining of women’s equality being done by Obama and his administration right now. Palin has no power. She is a roofie put in our drinks to distract up while the men on the left and right fuck us.

    Women on the right correctly understand that left male ideology makes them targets of all men: “legalized” (really state regulated) prostitution, pornography, and sex that women aren’t supposed to say no to because women can just have abortions. On balance, they’d probably rather negotiate with one guy, who protects them from the rest of the guys, than have to protect themselves from every guy.

    And wake up: Men on the left only “support” abortion (if the do) because it means consequence free sex for them. Obama, being a guy with a duly captured wife, doesn’t so much care and so acts exactly like he doesn’t care.

    I don’t know that I’d ever vote for Palin. But I’m sure as fuck not going to keep voting for the Dems/Left’s plantation system for women.

  192. pheenobarbidoll

    Because women of color don’t have any gender identity, only racial identity? You don’t speak for me as a woman of color.”

    And you don’t speak for me as a woman of color.

    She offers nothing for me as a woman of color. Her policies do nothing for me, will never include me (other than to fuck me over) and her attitude towards Native Americans is fucking repulsive.

    I’m supposed to ignore a white woman shitting on me because I’m NA just because she’s a woman and is getting shit on by the P as well?

    I don’t think so.

    http://www.nativeamericannetroots.net/tag/Sarah%20Palin

    http://www.indiancountrytoday.com/opinion/columnists/28313519.html

    “While Palin pays lip service to the fact that Alaska tribes are federally recognized, it is an empty statement because she insists they have no authority whatsoever to act as sovereigns despite that recognition unless, she argues, the state first permits a tribe to take some particular action.

    Palin has sought to block Alaska tribes from even exercising authority over the welfare of Native children again, unless the state through its courts first authorizes a tribe to act. It is a position that is so extreme that not only have the federal courts rejected it, but even her own state courts have rejected it.

    Nonetheless, Palin stubbornly refuses to relent, regardless of the consequence for village children caught in the middle of the resulting jurisdictional nightmare.”

    Palin can fuck right off with all the other genocidal fucking maniacs in her chosen party. Male and female both.

  193. Susan

    It is ideas that are important. Achieving a majority of women in any organization does no good if those women subscribe to patriarchal values that worship power over, authoritarianism and hierarchies; I suggest that it would do harm to Feminism by suggesting even wider spread female approval of the Patriarchy. The poisonous ideas of Might Makes Right, Because God Says So, Victims Deserve It and Only Powerful White Males Are Human are at least as noxious coming from women as from men. Determining who is a non-blamable victim is difficult, as such a corrosive system damages everything it touches, and heaping scorn on those who are engulfed by thousands of years of Patriarchy is unfair and unproductive, but there are some who benefit, and that can be in some part determined by the power of context in the context of power. People with the power to make things better, male or female must be held to higher account.

  194. agasaya

    Goblinee,

    Yes to that. Men are the standard. As in Orwell’s animal farm. Some animals are more equal than others. Pigs for instance. I’ll have to modernize my ways of articulating that one :-)

    Kali,

    The women were already punished or wouldn’t have had to sell their bodies. And they have to go back to it more often than not so, on it goes. Hardly equal.

  195. Comrade Svilova

    Achieving a majority of women in any organization does no good if those women subscribe to patriarchal values

    This.

    There are probably no politicians who do not participate in perpetuating patriarchy to some extent; but just because there are no perfect politicians doesn’t mean that there aren’t some politicians (even some female politicians) who would be definitely more problematic for women than some others.

    Blame should not be spared, for Obama or for Sarah Palin. But blaming Obama for his terrible policies while seeing Palin as a bright hope for the feminist future just doesn’t make sense.

  196. TwissB

    The connection of this anecdotal comment to this thread may be a bit tenuous, but since it is the 183rd item, I figure no one will see it anyway but I’ll feel better for getting it said.

    I find it odd – but perhaps typical of the way men disregard women – that the first report that I saw (on AOL) on the Sherrod firing was the outraged reaction of the wife of the white farmer. She told about Sherrod’s efforts on their behalf, the importance of her help to them, and the friendship that developed between her family and Sherrod. She said that she didn’t care if Ms. Sherrod didn’t do everything that she could at the beginning because she helped them so much. “And now I want to stand up for her and help her” (not quite an exact quote).

    Disregarding this testimony from a highly important witness, the media went on to say for many hours only that Sherrod said her comments were misconstrued. That made Sherrod appear to be offering the standard denial made by a politician who is in the wrong.

    IBTP

  197. HeroesGetMade

    “If we’re going to vote based on identity rather than policy, Sarah Palin, Michelle Bachman and the other Mama Grizzlies still doesn’t offer anything to women of color.”

    The handy slide show upthread (here it is again) shows that Palin is endorsing more than the lily-white: http://www.vanityfair.com/politics/features/2010/07/republican-politics-mama-grizzlies-slide-show-201007#slide=12

    The first candidate, Nikki Haley, was described in the South Carolinian parlance as a ‘raghead’ during the primary. She’s Indian-Asian. Another candidate in California is African American and a single mother, the double whammy. Yes, some of those women she’s endorsed are scary, but you have to look at the alternative. Nikki Haley’s a big step up for SC, but in NM, no matter what, the next governor’s going to be a woman. I’ll be voting for the woman to the left of Palin’s Hispanic endorsement, Susana Martinez, and hope like hell Obama doesn’t show up to campaign for Diane Denish. If he does, Diane’s toast and we’re stuck with police-state anti-immigration Susana. Dude truly is transformational, just not in any positive sense.

  198. HeroesGetMade

    “Palin offers nothing to me as a working class person.”

    Palin is herself a working class person; very few politicians are, especially at the national level. The difference that this makes is huge. People who have been handed things all their lives that they neither worked for nor earned can’t identify with those who work for a living. They also have a tendency to go all helpless when there’s real work to be done. For numerous examples, look at our previous and current presidents.

    “Palin offers nothing to me as a Marxist.”

    She aint no Hugo Chavez, but she did raise taxes on oil companies in 2008 and redistributed the wealth to Alaskans; if the GOP finds out, they’ll have to kick her out. It’s downright comical listening to folks call Obama a socialist, given the reality: http://www.cnn.com/2010/POLITICS/04/14/Obama.socialist/index.html

    If he was a socialist, I might’ve gotten over the trash-talking of the women and voted for him. Then again, there are some things you don’t get over as a feminist.

  199. speedbudget

    Just like women shouldn’t be held to a higher standard in the workplace or schools, women don’t get a pass just cause they’re women. Both attitudes are the bookends of Patriarchy.

  200. yttik

    “..women don’t get a pass just cause they’re women”

    Oh yes, that’s been a real plague. Women are always getting a pass just because they are women. That’s why we should make sure we knock down every woman we see getting uppity. It’s all in the name of equality, we have to make sure she’s not getting a pass just because she’s a woman.

  201. pheenobarbidoll

    No one should give her a pass because she’s racist against Native Americans, refused to add the local Native language to the ballots until she was court ordered to, and refused to recognize Nations sovereign status over their OWN CHILDREN not to mention fought again and again to end tribal sustainability so commercial fishing could line her pockets.

    So what if Native American children get shipped off to Christian foster homes where they are beaten,sexually abused and taught to be ashamed of their culture. So what if Native Americans can’t vote because the language isn’t theirs or is translated wrong. So what if Native Americans STARVE because she wants to make money and likes fishing. She’s a woman by god and that’s far more important than worthless Indians and their lives.

    Look at what she did with her power. She threw her lot it with the rest of the genocidal maniacs who hate Indians and want to destroy them. Uppity? No. Murderous and racist? Absolutely. Do I care if a genocidal racist is a woman? Not one whit.

  202. yttik

    Murderous, racist, and genocidal? Invokes prayer protection from witches?

    Well wow, this woman is fucking scary!! No wonder we bury women up to their neck and stone them to death. No wonder we burned so many of them at the stake. I mean obviously women are a threat to all of humanity and must be dispatched before they do any harm.

    We’ve really dodged a bullet by keeping them out of positions of power. I had no idea how dangerous women were.

  203. Tigs

    “Murderous, racist, and genocidal? [...]
    Well wow, this woman is fucking scary!!”

    Really yttik? Mocking critiques of policies that have been universally condemned by the oppressed community affected with sarcasm?
    That’s definitely the road to revolution.

  204. Jezebella

    Kitty, you are way the hell out of line. Nobody here is trying to keep “WOMEN” out of power, for crissake. Pheeno posted explicit and very fucking SOUND reasons on specific woman, Palin, should not be in power, and you go on a rant accusing a bunch of feminists of not wanting women to have any kind of power?

    Take a deep breath, mang, and bloody well LISTEN when a woman of color tells you that someone is a racist, dig?

  205. SelinaK

    yttik,
    Why is criticism of Palin as an individual suddenly an attack on all of womankind? People here have stated quite clearly that it’s her political viewpoints they have a problem with, what’s up with the hyperbole?

    I admit I can see where some women are coming from in their support of Palin because it IS highly unusual and unheard of for a woman to be a leading Republican candidate for the highest office in the U.S. and to get the support that she is getting for the most part from the Right. (I wish the Left gave Hillary that kind of support!) But again, she is not a friend to women’s rights and her ‘power’ if elected would be nothing more than being a puppet for the patriarchy. And if she fails, she will be thrown under the bus by the her own party, just like when McCain lost the election and the Right said it was all her fault.

  206. pheenobarbidoll

    http://www.nativeamericannetroots.net/tag/Sarah%20Palin

    http://www.indiancountrytoday.com/opinion/columnists/28313519.html

    Since the word of an Indian is just hysterical nonsense, perhaps *several* Nations are good enough to criticize one white woman.

    And since it’s difficult for you to grasp: I’m not discussing ALL women in power, I’m discussing THIS woman in power and what she has done to Indians. Not what’s been speculated, not something made up to attack her. What she actually did as governor. She was ordered to add Native languages on ballots THREE TIMES before it was done. Because she’s a racist.

    She tried to take food from Natives mouths. 60% of their food source point of fact. Because she’s a racist. Know what Indian women are forced to do to feed their children? They turn to prostitution. Think taking away 60% of a food source prevents or contributes to that?

    She tried to force the tribes to get state permission first before exercising sovereign rights over Indian foster children. Hazard a guess as to what happens to those children under christian, white foster care under the state. There’s a reason Indian women are victims of rape at 5 times higher than anyone other women. This is part of that reason.

    Her actions contribute to the *ongoing* genocide of the Native American peoples.

    Racist and genocidal. The truth sucks, but it’s only uncomfortable for you. It gets us killed.

  207. Comrade Svilova

    Questioning or criticizing Sarah Palin’s policies /= devaluing women or condemning them to the stake.

    Are the Blamers who dislike Obama racists? No. They have legitimate concerns about his policies.

  208. HeroesGetMade

    People here have stated problems with what they think are Palin’s political viewpoints. It’s a mistake to believe everything you think without some supporting evidence. Sure, she’s about as pro-life as you can get, but she’s never used elective office to impound any other woman’s uterus on behalf of the state. She’s also said that the whole abortion debate should not be in the political realm. Wish the men I’ve voted for had that much sense.

    Setting that one issue aside, exactly what policies does she support that are anti-woman? Not policies you think she supports, but ones we have her actual words or actions on, preferably actions? She supported same-sex partners benefits for government employees in Alaska and appointed a pro-choice judge to their Supreme Court. On the negative side, she appointed a rape fan as Attorney General and needs to explain that one.

    Anyone running for public office should be questioned and criticized, but based on their actual words and actions, not what people suppose their policies are. After about 5000 years, all of us know where the highway goes when it comes to men’s policies regarding women. It aint pretty. It’s time to see what the women can do; it would be a real feat to do worse.

  209. tinfoil hattie

    Heroesgetmade, did you READ what pheeno wrote? Or do policies harmful to Native Americans not count?

  210. Inverarity

    Sure, she’s about as pro-life as you can get, but she’s never used elective office to impound any other woman’s uterus on behalf of the state. She’s also said that the whole abortion debate should not be in the political realm.

    No, she’s said it should be a states rights issue, not a federal mandate. This is the standard pro-life position, because right now it’s the federal government preventing states from outright criminalizing abortion. She hasn’t personally signed any pro-life legislation? So what. Most governors don’t get an opportunity to do so. Do you think she wouldn’t have if the Alaska legislature had put an abortion ban bill on her desk?

    She supported same-sex partners benefits for government employees in Alaska

    No, she did not. She opposed them. When the Alaska Supreme Court said “Tough, the law was passed and it’s Constitutional,” she agreed to obey the law.

  211. pheenobarbidoll

    We don’t count. We are the first thrown under the bus (when it’s actually remembered we exist to begin with and I’d be willing to be no one else knew about her track record in regards to Native Americans) for the benefit of what ever issue someone else holds dear.

    supporting evidence is available, but here, let me be the token WOC who doles out the thinkystuff in bite sized little pieces. It’s my job to lead honkies through it after all.

    Palin opposed subsistence protections in marine waters, she opposed subsistence protections on many of the lands that Alaska Natives selected under their 1971 land claims settlement, and she opposed subsistence protections in many of the rivers where Alaska Natives customarily fish.

    May 2007, the federal court rejected the State’s main challenge, holding that Congress in 1980 had expressly granted the U.S. Interior and Agriculture Departments the authority to regulate and protect Native and rural subsistence fishing activities in Alaska. (Decision entered May 15, 2007 (Dkt. No. 110).)
    Palin has also sought to invalidate critical determinations the Federal Subsistence Board has made regarding customary and traditional uses of game, specifically to take hunting opportunities away from Native subsistence villagers and thereby enhance sport hunting. Palin’s attack here on subsistence has focused on the Ahtna Indian people in Chistochina.

    Although the federal district court rejected Palin’s challenge, she carried on an appeal that was argued in August 2008. (State of Alaska v. Fleagle, No. 07-35723 (9th Cir.).

    Both the state courts and the federal courts struck down Palin’s policy of refusing to recognize the sovereign authority of Alaska Tribes to address issues involving Alaska Native children. Native Village of Tanana v. State of Alaska, 3AN-04-12194 CI (judgment entered Aug. 26, 2008) (Ak. Super. Ct.); Native Kaltag Tribal Council v. DHHS, No. 3:06-cv-00211- TMB (D. Ak.), pending on appeal No 08-35343 (9th Cir.)).

    Palin was ordered by a special three-judge panel of federal judges to provide various forms of voter assistance to Yup’ik voters residing in southwest Alaska. Nick v. Bethel, No. 3:07-cv-0098-TMB (D. Ak.) (Order entered July 30, 2008)

    Maybe Native advocates from over 200 Alaskan tribes hold enough weight to compete against one white woman. I doubt it though.

  212. pheenobarbidoll

    Ive posted links, but they all get eaten by the moderation monster.

  213. Comrade Svilova

    From an interview posted on OnTheIssues.org:

    Q: Do you consider yourself a feminist?

    Palin: I do. I’m a feminist who believes in equal rights and I believe that women certainly today have every opportunity that a man has to succeed and to try to do it all anyway. And I’m very, very thankful that I’ve been brought up in a family where gender hasn’t been an issue.

    Source: 2008 CBS News presidential interview with Katie Couric Sep 30, 2008

    Q: Where do you stand on the Ledbetter Fair Pay Act?

    Palin: I’m absolutely for equal pay for equal work. The Ledbetter pay act–it was gonna turn into a boon for trial lawyers who, I believe, could have taken advantage of women who [would] allege discrimination many, many years ago. Thankfully, there are laws on the books, there have been since 1963, that no woman could be discriminated against in the workplace in terms of anything, but especially in terms of pay. So, thankfully we have the laws on the books and they better be enforced.

    It’s great that Palin feels that equality has been achieved and that all women have to do is turn to the government to enforce our perfectly equal rights. It must be a lot nicer thinking that perfect equality exists rather than constantly seeing the evidence that it doesn’t.

  214. speedbudget

    Guys! We are in a post-feminism society! Maybe the revolution happened while I was sipping my mojito. You don’t have to be a feminist to be a feminist anymore! And anybody who says you aren’t a feminist is just some sharia law adherent who wants to silence you. Don’t believe the hype!

  215. sargassosea

    “It is no secret that rock’n’roll values women only as receptacles, but what may be less obvious is that this makes rock’s whole rebellion-against-The-Establishment ethos a total crock of shit. In fact, rock’n’roll, like any other cultural movement generated within a patriarchy, is just an intensified little microcosm in which the hegemony of the culture that spawned it is concentrated, exaggerated, and ultimately consecrated (such as in a fanboy rockumentary).” – Twisty Faster, circa 2005

    Replace rock-n-roll with politics-n-Palin (and Mama Grizzly videos) and this still holds true.

  216. Kathleen

    HGM — “setting that one issue aside”

    hee hee. hee hee. hee hee. hee hee.

  217. janna

    I agree, Kathleen. “Setting aside the pesky issue of women’s rights, Sarah Palin hasn’t actually been that bad for women.”

  218. Saphire

    Yttik and team are making by far the best and most intelligent arguments (bad arguments usually cling onto cliches). I don’t agree with the idea there’s an ideology we have to agree to i.e. leftist ideology to be a feminist – we just have to hate our oppression.

    In my view, the very slowly progressing current movement is the opposite – it’s not cool to hate our oppression; and to be a feminist you have to seem scarily left- wing. It’s just a pattern I’ve noticed. One that makes ‘feminism’ non-existant and/or annoying as feck.

  219. HeroesGetMade

    I did indeed read pheeno’s comment, and appreciate that she tried to provide linky goodness, and of course Native Americans are people and count. I’m just beginning to get a handle on the moderation monster’s appetite and have discerned that comments deviating from the general subject of women and feminism are especially yummy, and the cherry on top is links. This is a good thing, and why I love this blog, because changing the subject away from women is what happens everywhere else.

    The fact that the subject keeps meandering away from the basic question of whether Palin or any other conservative woman can be a feminist rather gives the answer to the question away. There’s not much there as far as her being anti-woman in general, so objections lie in her other political positions. Not being a fan of basic GOP talking points, I get that, as nearly all of them have several failed experiments informing their basic badness. Trouble is, there is no party on offer at present that gives a rip about women in general, so the reasonable thing is to ignore party affiliation and unite with other women across tribal divisions. That will shake up the patriarchy and the women’s auxiliary, big time. This goes against everything we’ve been taught, which sets us up for divide and conquer tactics and was taught by patriarchy – those other women over there, they’re bad, stick with your own kind.

    As Exhibit A, take a gander at the Journolist fiasco, it’s very instructive. The librul dude blogger boys first banded together to take down Hillary Clinton, then turned their sites on Sarah Palin. As everyone here will agree, they don’t exactly have the same political positions, so the librul dude blogger boys objections were based on things Hillary and Sarah have in common like scary lady parts. We all look alike to them in the end, they don’t really care about our politics. And, like all boys clubs that like to pretend otherwise, Journolist had some token women in the club. One we all know is Katha Pollitt, who thanked god Hillary Clinton didn’t get elected president because of all the misogyny that we’d have to endure as a result. Same misogyny she had a front row seat to on Journolist, no doubt. There’s a revolutionary for the ages! Now she wants to tell us why Sarah Palin can’t possibly be a feminist. I think I’ll pass since she seems to specialize in being wrong, on more than one count.

  220. HeroesGetMade

    Women’s rights hopefully encompass more than a single medical procedure, though I can see how it’s handy for the boys to play political football with women’s rights by narrowing it down to just that one thing.

  221. pheenobarbidoll

    Native Americans have women too. Eradicating our ability to procure 60% of our food source affects Native American women. Poverty and inability to feed ourselves contributes to NA women turning to prostitution in a desperate measure to keep their children from starving.

    Allowing the state to interfere in Tribal authority over children affects NA women. Tribal ideas of what constitutes taking children away from mothers is drastically different than the State. For instance, not being Christian isn’t a good reason in Tribal eyes. Neither is being impoverished.

    So you see, discussing Palins policies in regards to NA’s is very much a womens issue. Only ignorance would argue otherwise.

  222. tinfoil hattie

    heroesgetmade – is your obtuseness intentional? THERE ARE NATIVE AMERICAN WOMEN.

    Yeesh.

  223. tinfoil hattie

    Women’s rights hopefully encompass more than a single medical procedure, though I can see how it’s handy for the boys to play political football with women’s rights by narrowing it down to just that one thing.

    That “single medical procedure”? Are you serious? You pretend abortion is about “a single medical procedure” as though we’re talking about whether or not to get a mole removed. What you really mean, of course, is whether women have sovreignty over our own bodies, no input or permission from our menfolk required (as our president would have it).

    Palin isn’t in favor of women actually having bodily autonomy. If she were, she’d declare it loud and proud, in her biggest feminist Mama Grizzly wolf-huntin’ voice.

  224. Inverarity

    So, Katha Pollitt is a tool of the patriarchy and should be ignored because she hangs out with liberal dudes. But Sarah Palin is not a tool of the patriarchy, even though her positions are indistinguishable from all the conservatives dudes she hangs out with.

  225. Kathleen

    HGM’s comments are a perfect example of the sort of phony contrarianism that has become central to American politics: basically, she’s telling us she’s the REAL radical and we can’t handle her mind-blowing avant garde-ness because she supports one of the most retrograde conservative bs artists possible.

    Katha Pollitt is a tool of oppression, Martin Luther King belongs to Glenn Beck, if you don’t support the war in Afghanistan, what, ?you DON’T WANT GIRLS TO GET AN EDUCATION?, if you are obsessively focused on pesky little things like abortion rights or the continued existence of American indigenous societies PFFFFFFFFFFFTTTT don’t you see you are just a servant of the status quo? Hail the brave contrarians who are the defenders of the embattled white patriarchy, they are the real revolutionaries here.

  226. iGuest

    goblinbee, excellent point! I’m going to try to remember to reverse that phrase from now on and say “men are equal to women.”

  227. nails

    Emma-
    “Then you better hope you never end up in the high-risk insurance pool where Obama just banned abortion coverage, even if you pay for it yourself.”

    You are arguing that having access to abortion is as crappy as not?

    There weren’t high risk insurance pools at all before, they were called “not having insurance” before legislation passed to stop that. Companies just dumped people whenever they felt like it (including women who needed abortions). It is horrible that abortion isn’t covered, but before then insurance companies just decided if it was covered or not, for whatever reason. It was dumb luck if you got yours covered, and if you had a job that offered insurance chances are you could afford the abortion anyway. It isn’t great but it is something to have abortion clinics exist.

  228. nails

    Pheenobarbidoll-
    “supporting evidence is available, but here, let me be the token WOC who doles out the thinkystuff in bite sized little pieces. It’s my job to lead honkies through it after all.”

    I am sorry. I’ll try harder to be more aware of issues that affect NA people, do more research, etc.

  229. iGuest

    pheenobarbidoll, you’re Alaska Native? The beautiful boy in my avatar(s) is Alaska Native. His amazing 80-something great grandmother still spends every summer under canopy and living off the land. Oddly, I’ve never heard any of my Alaskan Native family say anything (positive or negative) about Sarah Palin.

    FWIW, I’m what the white supremacists call a “mud person,” too dark to be considered good for the (master) gene pool.

  230. Emma

    Hey Nails,

    Nice rationalizing of your continued support for the most anti-choice Dem to occupy the Oval office since ever.

    Except….not. You DO understand that Obama has *banned* insurance coverage for abortions in the high risk pool? Even if the woman pays for it herself she can’t get it. You do understand that this *banning* was not mandated by Federal law? You do understand that this *banning* was not necessary for any reason?

    You can continue to rationalize your support for Obama and other anti-choice Dems, and mis-direct your rage at the women who are not in power, but may I suggest it’s not the brightest strategy for political change one could come up with?

  231. Emma

    “There weren’t high risk insurance pools at all before, they were called “not having insurance” before legislation passed to stop that.”

    And, about this? Legislation was passed to stop what — not having insurance? Don’t make me laugh. Legislation was passed to mandate that people either buy insurance or pay a fine. That doesn’t mean that people are now magically covered by insurance. It means that those people who can’t afford insurance can now pay a fine for not being able to afford it. All without the safety net of a true public health plan. And all without insurance companies being required to provide *equal* insurance coverage for men and women.

    You need to lay off the fucking hopium laced kool aid and get on the clue train. But, anybody who still relies on “Look at Obama’s website!” at this late date clearly isn’t interested in reality.

  232. Susan

    Word, tinfoil hattie.
    Unfettered right to abortion is not a minor fetish. Women either own our bodies in the same sense that men own theirs, or we don’t. Without a baseline acceptance by society that women own themselves, no other legal or political gains address the real problem, a deeply ingrained belief that women exist for the use of men. We can’t make a dent in rape, pornography, trafficking, unpaid domestic work, and all the systemic ways too numerous to list that our status as second class humans informs.

  233. iGuest

    Abortion rights are essential. Which is why I no longer vote for candidates just because they have a “D” by their name. Women need candidates on the ballot who are completely committed to reproductive choice. Withholding pro-choice candidates is the same as withholding bodily autonomy. The One Party has painted us into a corner. It’s time to break out even if we get our feet dirty, at least we’re fighting back.

  234. nails

    “Except….not. You DO understand that Obama has *banned* insurance coverage for abortions in the high risk pool? Even if the woman pays for it herself she can’t get it. You do understand that this *banning* was not mandated by Federal law? You do understand that this *banning* was not necessary for any reason?”

    What I do understand is that high risk people would not have had coverage for their abortions with or without the bill. It means he didn’t give enough of a damn to help. I get it. It is bad. It isn’t banning abortion bad, which is the counterpoint to what I was discussing. It is having legal abortion available vs not.

    Am I supposed to oppose something that leaves abortion legal over something that would not? Saying that it is good that Obama hasn’t banned abortion in the way that other politicians would does not mean that I love obama or that I think he is the greatest womens rights president ever, or even that great. Neither of the parties offer much to anyone who isn’t part of the privileged groups in society, pragmatism is justified in such a circumstance. Sarah Palin does not represent my interests ideologically or pragmatically.

    “And, about this? Legislation was passed to stop what — not having insurance?”

    No, to create a high risk pool at all. High risk got you dropped before, which meant that people who actually needed expensive treatment went bankrupt trying to pay it (is the #1 cause of bankruptcy in the US), and some of the debt got excused (because bankruptcy debt always does to some extent), so the hospitals had to eat the cost, and so they jack up the price of treatment to compensate, and then insurance rates go up (some of this is just greed, some necessity), so what constitutes a “risky” applicant is even more narrowly defined and companies only want very healthy people, which means MORE people get dropped, etc. It creates a viscous cycle that explains why an asprin is 15$ at the hospital. No care for abortions vs no care at all (except emergencies) is still a better deal.

    It was one thing in the healthcare bill that really did need to happen. I am not saying it is all good or anything, but it is once again the difference between having insurance or not for many people, and it should bring the costs down for treatment for multiple reasons.

    Another thing that people need to realize is that the insurance companies aren’t going to give in without a major fight, because passing something like single payer would ultimately mean the destruction of the vast majority of health insurance companies. These huge companies could spend all their money opposing healthcare and still not be as bad off as they would be if single payer nationalized care passed, because at least there would be hope to get the money back. It is unlikely that someone else could have gone up against that and won.

  235. pheenobarbidoll

    No, I’m not Alaskan Native, I’m Keetoowah. I posted links waaaaay up if you want to look over the Alaskan Native criticism of her attempt to sandbag their rights. They were stuck in moderation limbo (no one’s fault, I’m not complaining just stating why they weren’t viewable) and the crap she pulled in 2008 is staggering. Sadly, I’ve discovered many Native Americans have no idea what goes on because we don’t have access to as much information. I send letters to my family so they can be aware and they live on a reservation. Unless I tell them, they don’t know.

  236. pheenobarbidoll

    Nails, my comment was to HeroesGetMade in reference to the statement about having an opinion not based in evidence.

  237. nechemos

    pheeno I think it’a racist to insist that all native americans think alike. I know many who are very conservative, support policies that make my hair curl, but to insist that “native american” has only one flavour is kine of…racist.

    I’m a real honest to got native canadian, and I don’t think it’s feminist to flay Sarah Palin. I’d also point out that her husband and kids have native fishing rights. So it’s doesn’t make sense to me, what you say she’s doing.

    Her kids are as much native as you are, or at least they would be. I’d bet you’ve got whitey in your background somewhere. Not something you need to apologize for though.

  238. Kathleen

    nails — somebody *did* go up against that and win: Obama. Voters wanted the public option. Obama didn’t say during the election “pfffft, that’s not remotely a possibility”. He said he supported the idea. I don’t want to threadjack, I don’t hate the guy, I voted for him, but the fact is he had the support of the voters on a LOT of issues he’s backed down on. Before the elections he was pro-public option, pro-choice, not exactly anti-war but at least critical; he’s reversed on everything — sold out the public option, my head about exploded when he signed that “no coverage for abortions EVAR document, he’s upped the murder of civilians via drones, authorized the assassination of U.S. citizens…

    He’s DID go up against all kind of crap and win. He entered office with what Shrub used to call “political capital” out the wazoo. Why hasn’t he used it?

    sure, he’s better than McCain/Palin. But that’s a hurdle a newborn fieldmouse could clear.

  239. pheenobarbidoll

    nechemos if you read carefully you’ll see I have yet to claim all Native Americans think the same. And pray tell, how does one go about being racist against oneself? One can be biased either for or against (self loathing is common when you’re taught you’re shit) but Indians have no social or economic power to be racist. Prejudice + Power= racism.

    I’m aware her husband and kids have Native fishing rights, I’m also aware both support commercial fishing over Native fishing rights. Hence her attempt to remove Native fishing rights in order to open up sports and commercial fishing waters. Greed isn’t restricted to one race. And what I say she is doing? No, I’m citing court documents.
    State of Alaska v. Fleagle, No. 07-35723 (9th Cir.).

    Native Village of Tanana v. State of Alaska, 3AN-04-12194 CI (judgment entered Aug. 26, 2008) (Ak. Super. Ct.); Native Kaltag Tribal Council v. DHHS, No. 3:06-cv-00211- TMB (D. Ak.), pending on appeal No 08-35343 (9th Cir.))

    Nick v. Bethel, No. 3:07-cv-0098-TMB (D. Ak.) (Order entered July 30, 2008)

  240. pheenobarbidoll

    “Her kids are as much native as you are, or at least they would be. I’d bet you’ve got whitey in your background somewhere. Not something you need to apologize for though.”

    This is straw manish. Who said anything about her kids not being Native? How is it relevant? Is your argument here trying to assert if she’s married to a Native she can’t be racist? A wife beater is married to a woman, yet it’s clear he hates women.

    “and I don’t think it’s feminist to flay Sarah Palin.”

    It’s neither feminist nor anti-feminist to “flay” someone for their blatant racist actions and call attention to their policies regarding an oppressed group.

  241. veganrampage

    @HGM- Holy sick fuck shit! “Setting aside that on issue?” NO. Racism NEVER gets set aside. Advanced patriarchy blaming here.
    Pheeno,I declare solidarity with you.

    @Yittk
    http://santitafarella.wordpress.com/2008/09/16/sarah-palin-and-the-exorcist-before-she-ran-for-governor-a-kenyan-demon-vanquisher-and-witch-hunter-laid-hands-on-her-and-said-lord-make-a-way-and-the-lord-apparently-did/

    Funny you should bring up witches. Palin’s church brought in a pastor from Kenya to do an exorcism in Wasilla which she attended. He drove a woman from her house and banished he

  242. veganrampage

    Continued) He had driven a woman from her house in Kenya after he publicly declared her a witch because there were car accidents frequently near her home. Sweet.

  243. yttik

    Native Alaskans also depend on commercial fishing to earn a living. They do not hate sports and commercial fishing. 75% of the jobs available are in fisheries. The issue is not a cut and dry as some want to portray it.

    But my problem is with the constant double standard applied to Palin:

    “The Obama administration is launching a rapid, sweeping review of the way the federal government manages subsistence hunting and fishing in Alaska, Interior Department officials said Friday…”

    http://www.adn.com/2009/10/23/984677/feds-seek-to-reshape-hunting-and.html

  244. yttik

    You’ll be happy to know Mama Jane is alive and quite well, Vegan:

    “The only miracle Muthee has done is to chase away Mama Jane,” she says with a booming laugh. Robust and topping six feet in the trademark shiny white robes of her church, Njenga is undeniably still in town.

    http://www.womensenews.org/story/campaign-trail/081012/kenyan-who-blessed-palin-chases-witches-at-home

  245. pheenobarbidoll

    60% of Native Alaskan food sources come from sustainable fishing and hunting. Stop with the straw man crap. No one said anything about hating commercial fishing. Eradicating Understanding that eradicating Tribal fishing waters is bad when 60% of the food source COMES FROM THAT is not the same as hating commercial fishing.

    Start a topic about Obama and I’ll go on about him all day and night. I recall making numerous posts about Obama and his lack of interest in Native affairs, I believe that last time he bothered even voting on anything was over 8 years ago and during his campaign he paid the usual empty lip service. But you didn’t know that, did you? So what have you done with your ignorance? Made assumptions and declared there’s a double standard.

    So why don’t you trot on out and find where I’ve praised Obama’s treatment of Indians and quote them. I’ll wait. I’ll also wait for an apology, but you won’t give it because it’s not in you to admit maybe you can’t actually read my mind and you have no idea what I think of Obama.

  246. pheenobarbidoll

    From your link kitty-

    “When Muthee came, he took a loudspeaker into the street and he told people to pray for seven days that I would die,” Njenga says. “If I was not known in the town, I could not have survived even to put my children through school.”

    Wow. Sounds like she’s alive and well through her own actions and reputation despite Muthee’s attempts. His failure at getting her killed doesn’t make his attempt OK.

  247. pheenobarbidoll

    Also, care to address the fact Palin let an man who tries to incite violence against women pray for her?

    Or is that just too much?

  248. yttik

    “care to address the fact Palin let an man who tries to incite violence against women pray for her?”

    Care to address the double standard? Nearly every male politician who has ever run for office has had a man pray for them who has likely incited violence against women.

  249. pheenobarbidoll

    It’s called the Patriarchy.

    Now, care to address the subject in regards to SARAH PALIN? Yanno, the actual subject of THIS thread?

    Any chance?

    No?

    Didn’t think so.

    And don’t think I didn’t notice the lack of addressing my other post, the one where I point out remarks I’ve made about Obama’s crap treatment of Native.

  250. yttik

    “It’s called the Patriarchy.”

    No kidding. And you seem to believe that Palin must be held accountable for existing within it, when in reality no one can escape it.

    As to addressing your other points, why should I? You just seem to want to attack me with the same kind of misdirected rage that people dump on Sarah Palin.

  251. Comrade Svilova

    Yttik, we can hold Sarah Palin accountable for her perpetuation of patriarchy in this thread without absolving Obama from his responsibility for his Patriarchal actions.

    I agree with you that there’s a dramatic double-standard in the culture in general, and that a lot of the criticism of Sarah Palin in society at large is motivated by misogyny. But when you talk about the double-standard, you seem to be implying that Blamers here are misogynistic. However, it seems that the vast majority of the people posting here are not perpetuating this double-standard, and are happy to criticize Obama and Left Wing politicians as well as Right. We’re addressing Sarah Palin and Right Wing Women in this thread, because that’s the topic of the thread.

    Criticizing Sarah Palin on a radfem blog doesn’t = endorsing Obama.

  252. Jezebella

    Yttik doesn’t care about Native Americans, is the lesson I have learned in this thread. Miss Kitty also doesn’t listen to Native Americans. Miss Kitty thinks we should never, ever, criticize a woman unless we are also going to criticize President Obama. She also thinks we should vote for women who hate women. I’m kind of wondering why Miss Kitty is here at all.

  253. Emma

    “So why don’t you trot on out and find where I’ve praised Obama’s treatment of Indians and quote them.”

    I think, rather, it’s the determined indifference to Obama’s clear endorsement and active furtherance of the racist patriarchy through his policies that rankles. Not to mention others’ (nails’, in particular) knee-jerk defense of Obama in the face of well-earned criticism.

    “Also, care to address the fact Palin let an man who tries to incite violence against women pray for her?”

    Care to address Donnie McLurkin and Rick Warren?

    In my view, it’s not that Palin is such a great person that’s the crux of the issue here. Because I don’t think Palin’s a great person.

    But, and here’s the crux of it for me: I do think Palin’s doing the same things that every other politician does. So the particular and specific vilification of her is extraordinary, especially in light of the demonstrated reluctance to similarly vilify, oh, let’s say, Barack Obama for his equally, and equally harmful, anti-woman, anti-choice policies and his equally bullshit “hope” and “change” mumbles. It strikes me as the same kind of vilification of Clinton as “pro-war” in the same moment that Obama promised to increase combat troops by 100,000 and double down in the “smart” war in Afghanistan. And, yes, Obama made both those promises during the campaign. But it was Clinton who was “pro-war”. That rankles exactly because it stinks of sexism, not because Clinton was some kind of anti-war candidate (she wasn’t).

    Also, within the confines of her particular political and religious milieu Palin’s doing something fairly extraordinary, that is take the reins of political leadership using the limited tools available to her. She IS a modern-day Phyllis Schlafly, but unlike Schlafly she’s seeking power of her own for her own ends, mainly making a fuckload of money. And good for her, IMO. Make fuckloads of money, dump that loser Todd, hire a nanny to watch her irritating children, and be a social-political powerhouse. I don’t agree with what she’s using to become a powerhouse, or her views on many, many things. But at least she’s making the sexism in her own specific world back up and make room for her. Something Schlafly wasn’t entirely able to do. (Read C. MacKinnon’s essay re: Schlafly in Feminism Unmodified for an interesting perspective on Schlafly and sexism.)

    Do I think Palin’s good for women? Largely, no. But I sure as fuck don’t think Obama and the Dems are any good for women and I wonder at the minute gradations of difference so many posters want to find between them. I think it’s because making Obama look good requires making first Clinton and then Palin look much worse than they actually are. If that’s not sexism itself, at the very least sexism makes it easy to do. And that’s what I care about.

  254. Emma

    “Yttik, we can hold Sarah Palin accountable for her perpetuation of patriarchy in this thread without absolving Obama from his responsibility for his Patriarchal actions.”

    Yet, there are those in this thread who ARE absolving Obama and others who seem determined to ignore Obama’s equally repugnant attitudes toward and actions against women.

    I think holding Palin accountable *requires* holding Obama accountable in the same moment exactly because, within the larger context, holding Palin “accountable” is largely about making Obama look better by comparison. A context which, IMO, has been recreated in these comments quite successfully. I find it utterly remarkable that a) Obama is a) being defended here, b) Obama’s specific racist, sexist actions are being pooh-poohed as insignificant next to the horribleness that is Sarah Palin (who doesn’t even hold office, will likely never hold office again, and is clearly just making money while the sun shines), and c) Obama is STILL being defended with the admonition to “go look at his website”.

    It speaks to a level of politicial naivete that is incomprehensible to me, especially so among a cadre of women who proudly consider themselves patriarchy blamers of the first order.

  255. Jezebella

    First of all, there is no determined ignoring of Obama’s “clear endorsement and active furtherance of the racist patriarchy” in the feminist movement, but this thread? It’s about Sarah Palin.

    But what gets up my snoot is that she’s calling herself a feminist despite her clear endorsement and active furtherance of the racist patriarchy. War is peace. 6 is 9. Up is down. Palin is feminist. Ignorance is strength. Freedom is slavery. What further gets up my snoot is that there are women who believe that she doesn’t hate women as much as the next patriarch, and who believe that her “feminism” is good for them.

  256. Emma

    “Miss Kitty thinks we should never, ever, criticize a woman unless we are also going to criticize President Obama.”

    I don’t know about Miss Kitty, and won’t speak to what she might believe. But I think that, yes, we shouldn’t criticize any woman politician unless we are going to simultaneously criticize the men who are currently holding power in the Oval Office, the Senate, the House, the Supreme Court and on and on. Because Palin is utterly indistinguishable from Obama, if you actually take the time to look. And, again, making Palin look so bad is really only about making Obama and other anti-woman Dems look good. Period.

  257. Emma

    “First of all, there is no determined ignoring of Obama’s “clear endorsement and active furtherance of the racist patriarchy” in the feminist movement”

    That’s really funny. Of course there is. Katha Pollitt? Ms. and it’s “this is what a feminist looks like” cover? NARAL endorsing Obama over Clinton in the primaries against the specific wishes of their affiliates? The women’s leadership in the Senate voting for anti-choice provisions in Obama’s health care reform, with feminist leadership endorsement?

    And it’s right here in this thread: “We’re not talking about Obama, we’re talking about Palin!!” is just one form of it. Palin’s anti-choice views are exactly the same as Obama’s anti-choice executive orders and legislation he’s signed. Why can’t we talk about that when we talk about Palin? Is it because then, maybe, Palin’s anti-choice policies will be properly contextualized? Anti-Palinism is the stick that’s supposed to keep women voting Dem against our own interests.

    What’s wrong with Kansas, my ass. What’s wrong with women?

  258. Emma

    “But what gets up my snoot is that she’s calling herself a feminist despite her clear endorsement and active furtherance of the racist patriarchy. War is peace.”

    What gets up MY snoot is Palin being so specifically and viciously attacked for this while the man who actually is escalating the war in Afghanistan is getting a pass because “oh, we’re not talking about HIM right now. can’t you keep focused on the horrible woman?”

  259. pheenobarbidoll

    “No kidding. And you seem to believe that Palin must be held accountable for existing within it, when in reality no one can escape it.”

    So it’s OK for the state to take away a Nations sovereign authority over their children because hey, no one can escape it. I think I’ve heard quite enough of your not so subtle Fuck The Indians.

    As to addressing your other points, why should I? You just seem to want to attack me with the same kind of misdirected rage that people dump on Sarah Palin.”

    Why should you? Because you made inaccurate claims, that’s why. And yeah, Indians always have “misdirected rage”. That’s simply another way to say Hostile Indians. We’re savages like that.

    Emma and Kitty need to type in Obama in the search bar here and start reading. Start with Fuck Obama, Fetus Brown Noser.

  260. Emma

    “No care for abortions vs no care at all (except emergencies) is still a better deal.”

    Really? Really? This is where you come down? And you want to say Obama’s better than Palin because….why, exactly? He’s banned the most at risk women from getting insurance coverage for abortions *when he didn’t have to*. He *reached out* and did this. How does this make him “better” than Palin? Being forced into having a child you don’t want is the same whether it’s because you can’t afford an abortion which by governmental mandate isn’t allowed to be covered by your insurance or because abortion is banned. A ban is a ban is a ban.

    Here’s what I think: if we’re going to die because of lack of health care, I think we should have to do it on a gender equal basis. As long as women have to eat shit so that “everybody else” can benefit, women are going to be fucked. And goverment mandated no insurance coverage for abortions and other specific reproductive health care, while MEN get everything they need and want covered, including penis pills, is EATING SHIT on a specifically gender unequal basis.

    Your lack of knowledge re: the Obama administration’s rollback of women’s choice is stunning. Absolutely stunning. Your rationalization of his anti-woman actions is incomprehensible. I don’t understand why you’re doing it. Truly I don’t. But I know this, your patriarchy blaming skills are far below what they need to be to get that “revolution” you mythologize.

    Your idea of “revolution” seems to be settling for what we can get when men are in charge and simultaneously attacking any woman who doesn’t meet your feminist purity test.

  261. Emma

    “Emma and Kitty need to type in Obama in the search bar here and start reading.”

    You need to enter “nails” in the “find on this page” search bar and start reading. I’ve never seen such blatant excuse making for woman-hating in my life.

  262. iGuest

    nails, keeping abortion “legal” but impossible to get is in some ways worse than banning it. It tells society, that gender apartheid is okay; it’s perfectly fine to segregate women’s reproductive health with an executive order. It’s similar to the segregated south when blacks had the right to vote but were not allowed to do so. It sends us back to the bad old days when only rich women could get abortions.

    The Democratic Party is not our friend. They are the enemy who buddies up to us and tells us all the things we want to hear and then stabs us in the back. At least the Republicans attack us front on.

  263. janna

    Personally, I admire all of you Palin-supporters. Not only are you defending someone who is, let’s face it, pretty indefensible, but you’re also using Palin’s ineffective debate style. What commitment!

  264. pheenobarbidoll

    Are you afraid you’ll learn you made the wrong assumptions? Are you afraid to read the flaying of Obama after you and kitty have asserted it doesn’t exist here?

    When does my oppression as a Native American get to count? AFTER you’re satisfied I also hate the policies of every other asshole?

    I’ll get right in that Massa.

  265. Emma

    “Are you afraid to read the flaying of Obama after you and kitty have asserted it doesn’t exist here?”

    Go back, read again. What I’ve said is that there is a determined effort by commenters *in this thread* to either a) outright defend Obama’s woman-hating through rationalizations or b) turn the conversation well away from Obama’s woman-hating in favor of specifically coming down on Palin for her woman-hating when their woman-hating is indistinguishable.

    I’ve also said that the purpose of flaying Palin is specifically to make Dems’ woman-hating look better in comparison, a dynamic fully recreated in the comments to these threads.

    Do you want to call out woman-hating, or do you want to call out Palin? There’s a difference which is worth thinking and talking about.

  266. pheenobarbidoll

    And yet, I’m not one of them. But I’m not allowed to discuss Palin and her actions specifically towards Native Americans until the important people get defended first.

    Right now, I’m calling out Palin. Why? Because she’s the thread subject. Also, because I’m not going to sit in the back of the oppression bus. I’m uppity like that.

  267. yttik

    That’s right pheno and jezabella, when you run out of logical arguments, just accuse me of racism. I have to laugh, only on enlightened feminist boards can I be magically transformed into a wealthy white male. Poof, the melanin fairy strikes again.

    Thank you, oh intellectually superior leftist feminists, for pointing to the error of my racist ways. I’ll go back to my trailor park now and oppress some more brown people.

  268. Emma

    “Criticizing Sarah Palin on a radfem blog doesn’t = endorsing Obama.”

    Is the point to criticize Palin personally, or criticize the anti-woman policies she fronts? Because I see a lot of personal vilification of Palin that doesn’t square with a feminist critique of patriarchy.

    Palin is beside the point. She is one in a long line of women fronting for patriarchy, some of whom even did it while calling themselves feminists. It doesn’t make her uniquely horrible in the way the comments here imply and I fail to see why it makes her deserving of the personalized vitriol flung at her.

    I’ll refer you, again, to MacKinnon’s essay in Feminism Unmodified, which originated in a face to face debate with Phyllis Schlafly, called “Not By Law Alone: From a Debate with Phyllis Schlafly”. What is remarkable about it is that MacKinnon called out the woman-hating that had kept Schlafly in her place while Schlafly simultaneously worked against the ERA. But she never called Schlafly a name, never implied that Schlafly was to blame for the sex discrmination against her, never implied that Schlafly was uniquely responsible by virtue of her gender for the anti-woman policies she was fronting, and acknowledged Schlafly’s incredible political skills that, absent sexism, would have landed her a top political job in the administration she worked so hard for.

    She said, right in there, Schlafly herself is the victim of sex discrimination, without ever condescending to or demonizing Schlafly or the women she represented. That’s feminism.

  269. Emma

    I know I’m serial posting, but I think this is so important. In the concluding paragraph of MacKinnon’s piece re: Schlafly, she says this:

    “I have often wanted to ask Mrs. Schlafly: why are you so afraid of our freedom? Now I am beginning to see that if you assume, as she does, the sex inequality is inalterable, freedom looks like open season on women. We deserve better, and we will have it. I personally promise you, Mrs. Schlafly, that the only question for the future of women’s rights, as with the ERA, is not whether but when.”

    Schlafly, Palin, all the women that follow them — they believe the sex inequality is inalterable. That freedom looks like open season on women. How do we respond to that? By making it open season on Sarah Palin. Kudos to us.

  270. Tigs

    “Palin’s anti-choice views are exactly the same as Obama’s anti-choice executive orders and legislation he’s signed.”

    I guess I have a really hard time believing this specifically. I’m not claiming Obama is a great fighter for women’s bodily autonomy, and expansion of the Hyde Amendment was both enraging and heart-breaking (although to characterize it as ‘just something he did’ is either disingenuous or naive), but I am really, deeply convinced that the shitty Democratic politics are better than the shitty Republican politics.

    Take for example, the difference between appointing two pro-choice women to the SCOTUS, versus committing yourself to supporting women pro-life women candidates, where in pro-life is a position that “contradicts the claim that abortion is a woman’s right and the premise that abortion somehow liberates women” and parrots the view that abortion is “child murder” (Cite: Susan B. Anthony List website). I think that’s a meaningful difference.

    I know that Obama et al (and I also think the obsession with OBAMA is weird– he’s a pretty standard centrist Democrat, I don’t get why it’s all about him…) aren’t radical feminists, but I think that collapsing politics into identity can’t be good for politics.

    Note: My concern about Palin only extends to the likelihood of her becoming an elected official and helping others to become elected officials. If she wants to be a pundit and make money, all power to her.

  271. pheenobarbidoll

    Kitty, you’re the one ignoring the valid criticism from a WOC in favor of defending Palins white privilege.

    When I provided links to court documents, you ignored them and changed the subject to other politicians. When I pointed out I have and do in fact call out behavior of male politicians you ignored that.

    It’s quite clear that I,as a WOC, am not allowed to have any criticism of Sarah Palin because others are sexist towards her. So my status as a woman AND as a WOC don’t matter.

    Please quote where I called or even implied you were a man.

    And excuse me while I laugh myself sick at your use of the word logic. Every post you’ve made is chock full of logical fallacies and you seem to have an obsession with the Straw Man fallacy in particular.

  272. Emma

    “I guess I have a really hard time believing this specifically. I’m not claiming Obama is a great fighter for women’s bodily autonomy, and expansion of the Hyde Amendment was both enraging and heart-breaking (although to characterize it as ‘just something he did’ is either disingenuous or naive), but I am really, deeply convinced that the shitty Democratic politics are better than the shitty Republican politics.

    Take for example, the difference between appointing two pro-choice women to the SCOTUS, versus committing yourself to supporting women pro-life women candidates.”

    Functionally, what has the difference been? Has Obama enacted ANY legislation that protects a woman’s right to choose? Is the Supreme Court any less right wing because of the appointment of Sotomayor? Or the nomination of Kagan? Are you sure where they are going to come down on the abortion question? Reagan appointed O’Connor, who basically supported abortion rights, after all.

    Functionally, what is the difference between Obama’s alleged “pro-choice” stance and the anti-choice stance of Palin and the people she supports? Not rhetorical difference, the actual difference in policy.

    As for supporting anti-choice politicians, how about appointing Tim Kaine to run the DLC?

    When there is a functional difference I’ll be glad to acknowledge it. And I’ll be glad to provide a rad fem analysis of that difference. But right now? No difference. Everything Obama could have done to support a woman’s right to choose, he’s done the exact opposite.

  273. iGuest

    Tigs, I have the opposite view. It’s understandable that liberals and feminists would be focused on Obama’s betrayals to reproductive rights. After all, he’s POTUS. It’s the obsession with Palin that I find weird. Right now, she’s just another Republican who hasn’t even announced plans to run in 2012.

    As for the term “standard centrist Democrat,” the problem is that the center post keeps moving further and further to the right. The Democratic Party no longer represents the liberal ideals that I value. Heck, they’re not even pretending any more. Obama’s two female picks for SCOTUS are the only things he has done that I can applaud. Let’s hope they’ll be as pro-choice and pro-civil rights as we want them to be.

  274. Kathleen

    yttik & Emma — it really is noticeable how uninterested you all are in *any* address of the racism inherent in Sarah Palin’s appeal. Pheenobarbiedoll has pretty much made herself into a battering ram on the issue and you just won’t engage her points. American politics are weird, and it really is impossible to slice through them with a single lens (it’s all sexism! it’s all racism! it’s all classism!). It’s a freaky-deaky mix of the three, and I think a lot of people in this thread and on this forum are really good at trying to think about all three at once.

    The way American politics get played out are a really toxic mix; when you ignore one of the poisons in the vat, *you are not helping*.

  275. Emma

    “it really is noticeable how uninterested you all are in *any* address of the racism inherent in Sarah Palin’s appeal.”

    It is really noticeable how uninterested you are in addressing how demonization of Sarah Palin personally is complicit with patriarchy and this complicity is inherent in the appeal of bashing her.

    It is really noticeable how uninterested you are in any address of the classism in Obama’s policies re: choice.

    Really, we can sling these brickbats all day. It’s useless.

    Of course, talking about *my own* points doesn’t require me to talk about *every* point that’s ever brought up.

    I’m willing to concede in this discussion that there is racism inherent in Palin’s appeal. But that doesn’t undermine any point I’ve been making, nor specifically support trashing of Palin as Palin. Because if racism is inherent in Palin’s appeal, it’s inherent in the appeal of every candidate who espouses her views. And there are many. So, if we’re going to talk about inherent racism, I still don’t get why the specific and vitriolic focus on Palin — who, after all, can at worst be seen as following the Repubs’ well-entrenched “southern strategy”, the brainchild of Atwater/Reagan.

    Critique Palin, sure. But why not use it as a jumping off point for a larger critique of the issues you’re allegedly concerned about? Palin is firmly entrenched in larger cultural imperatives of race, sex, class, ethnicity, disability, poverty, immigration, war, and national origin, among many others. I don’t see how this makes her so uniquely horrible in the pantheon of horrible folks out there. Why has she become such a focal point of vilification for us? Why?

    Regarding the special vilification of Palin as stupid, empty headed, barbie doll, etc. etc., I think of this quote:

    “I am not saying her finger near the nuclear trigger would make me feel particularly safe — just that by the standards set by the men in the job, she should be there. I privately believe that she has been trivialized by her association with women’s issues. I’m saying her analysis of her own experience is wrong. Their foot is on her neck, too, and I, for one, am willing to give her this chance to change her mind.”

  276. pheenobarbidoll

    WHERE in the bloody fuck have I (since I’m actually the one discussing Palins racism) said or implied there’s anything unique to Palin, her racism or her policies?

    “Of course, talking about *my own* points doesn’t require me to talk about *every* point that’s ever brought up. ”

    Right back atcha.

    “It is really noticeable how uninterested you are in addressing how demonization of Sarah Palin personally is complicit with patriarchy and this complicity is inherent in the appeal of bashing her”

    It’s been discussed. In other posts specifically about the sexism against Palin and the P’s atrocious use of her.

    Obama’s policies have also been discussed. In other posts specifically about him and his male privilege sexist actions.

    The only thing that would make Palin unique on this blog would be NOT discussing her specifically.

  277. Kathleen

    Emma — the so-called “Southern Strategy” (which works all over the United States) is a Nixon-era legacy, it wasn’t invented by Lee Atwater. Your lack of real interest in this aspect of American history and society is showing again.

    But more generally, your *exact* move “ah well, America is racist, whatevs, whattareyagonnado, back to the defense of Palin” — have you not seen this one million times from lefty dudes about sexism? “ah well, the world is sexist, whatareyougonnado, now let me tell you why classism is the most important thing….”

    And that dismissal, “ah, we can trade brickbats all day, but yours are stupid and pointless and mine are important”.

    Again, not helpful. Not cool. Not fooling anyone.

    *all of these elements are important*.

    all of them are taken seriously by any feminism I’m going to take seriously.

  278. Jezebella

    Emma, if you would like to see Palin critiqued in the larger context in the ways you describe, perhaps you should do so on your own blog instead of demanding that everyone else do it, instead of complaining that we aren’t doing what you want us to do?

    All of this “what about the men” derailing is a dodge designed to avoid the very real issue of the damage Palin herself is doing to feminism, and would do if in office. Much of this thread boils down to this:

    “Palin did/said [this offensive thing].”
    “BUT WHAT ABOUT OBAMA!?!”

    Does this kind of derailing really embiggen the discourse?

  279. Emma

    “Right back atcha.”

    Well at least we’re in agreement on this: calling people out for not discussing every issue anybody else has brought up is bogus. Right? So I look forward to you withdrawing your veiled charge of racism against me forthwith.

    “In other posts specifically about the sexism against Palin and the P’s atrocious use of her.”

    I don’t know who “the P’s” are. But I’m not talking about Twisty’s posts or other posts on this site. I’m talking about this comment thread specifically.

    I’m also not going to be playing a violin for Palin because someone is using her, because I think she’s complicit in being used to some extent. I’m also not going to spend any time defending Palin’s actions or views, because I’m opposed to them. Nor am I going to cry over somebody saying Palin’s not a feminist, because she isn’t a feminist.

    But this isn’t about who gets to call themselves a feminist or whether Palin’s views and actions are defensible. It’s about trying to figure out why “Mama Grizzlies” has the political traction is has. And it’s not because women who follow it (including Palin) are stupid, suffering from false consciousness, evil, irredeemably racist, or falling down on their job as women or political actors.

    It’s because they have the wrong analysis of their own experience. That’s a different issue than “they’re stupid,” “they’re racist,” “they’re tools of the patriarchy,” “they hate non-mothers,” “they’re rednecks,” or “they just hate everybody who ain’t like them”. And calling them all those things isn’t the right analysis, either. YOU have the wrong analysis of THEIR experience, is what it seems to come down to for me.

  280. Emma

    “Emma — the so-called “Southern Strategy” (which works all over the United States) is a Nixon-era legacy, it wasn’t invented by Lee Atwater. Your lack of real interest in this aspect of American history and society is showing again.”

    Well, I understood it to date from the time Reagan stood in Mississippi and orated in favor of States’ rights. Further research suggests that that was its resurgence, but that it really dates to the late 1940s, before Nixon even. I’ll pass on responding to the invective.

    “all of them are taken seriously by any feminism I’m going to take seriously.”

    And you’re the one who figures out who is and who isn’t taking any one of them seriously at any given time? You’re the gatekeeper here? Good on you. That’s a lot of responsibility.

    “Emma, if you would like to see Palin critiqued in the larger context in the ways you describe, perhaps you should do so on your own blog instead of demanding that everyone else do it, instead of complaining that we aren’t doing what you want us to do?”

    I’m neither demanding nor complaining. I’m offering my own thoughts on what’s taking place here.

    “the very real issue of the damage Palin herself is doing to feminism,”

    Feminism can look after itself without worrying about Palin. If Palin is the worst think feminism has to contend with, it should count itself lucky. I honestly see no damage done to feminism by Palin or anything Palin’s doing. I see damage to feminism as self-inflicted, vis my comments about Pollitt, and Ms.’s cover, and NARAL’s endorsement of Obama, etc. We can spend the next umpteen political cycles proving that Palin is not a feminist and hates women, especially Native women, Black women, lesbian women, non-Mom women, single women, women who love rap, and on and on and on. It won’t accomplish a damn thing except empower the Dems in their continued woman-hating.

    “Does this kind of derailing really embiggen the discourse?”

    Do the kind of personal attacks leveled against me, and the deliberate mischaracterization of what I’ve said, really embiggen the discourse?

  281. Emma

    “WHERE in the bloody fuck have I (since I’m actually the one discussing Palins racism) said or implied there’s anything unique to Palin, her racism or her policies?”

    Are you the one who said “the racism inherenet in Palin’s appeal”? Because that was what I was responding to.

  282. Kali

    As for the term “standard centrist Democrat,” the problem is that the center post keeps moving further and further to the right.

    And they will continue moving to the right because women with liberal/feminist values, sadly and ignobly, keep rewarding them with votes, even after being stabbed in the back again and again.

  283. pheenobarbidoll

    I don’t know who “the P’s” are. But I’m not talking about Twisty’s posts or other posts on this site. I’m talking about this comment thread specifically.”

    The P = Patriarchy. And this comment thread specifically is addressing Palin specifically because we’ve already discussed specifically sexism against Palin specifically. As well as Obama specifically. And Ted Kennedy/woman murderer specifically and on and on. The majority of posters here have already done what you want to do now. I’m not going to play catch up with you because you haven’t bothered reading archived posts.

    There’s always inherent racism in a white republican politicians appeal. You cannot avoid it. Neither can the white privilege in it be avoided.

    Exercising privilege (ie the racism issue isn’t really the most important focus, we should really be focusing on X) which has been done here doesn’t = you’re a racist. It is however, the first and most typical response to having that privilege pointed out. Suggesting someone alter their criticism of racism to encompass a larger picture (lest they not really be concerned about it) is typical as well.

  284. Comrade Svilova

    Since a lot of us (including Emma) are interested in looking at Palin and the Mama Grizzlies as an example of a larger problem (the situation of Right Wing Women, the Southern Strategy, etc.) why don’t we do just that?

    I’ll kick off with the observation that the phrase “Mama Grizzlies” is disturbing to me because it seems to make women who are mothers more valuable than other women, and as such it is in line with the Right’s tendency to stress motherhood, pro-life policies, and the traditional family over individual freedom and autonomy. And it’s provocative because the Tea Party is trading on the idea of individual freedom, but when messages like these are deconstructed, it suggests that individual freedom is more of a talking point than the real center of their vision for America’s future.

  285. Emma

    “I’ll kick off with the observation that the phrase “Mama Grizzlies” is disturbing to me because it seems to make women who are mothers more valuable than other women, and as such it is in line with the Right’s tendency to stress motherhood, pro-life policies, and the traditional family over individual freedom and autonomy.”

    I think Mama Grizzlies are willing to trade freedom and autonomy (which look a lot like abuse: prostitution, porn, date rape, abortion) for the (oft times illusory) safety of the family.

    I also think it validates how these women feel about motherhood: it’s a job that is undervalued by everybody, including the men on the right. I think it’s probably more accurate to say that Palin’s valuing of these women, giving them political power through her Mama Grizzly movement, actually gives content to the right’s lip service about how valuable mothers are. So, it fits right in with these women’s experience both as mothers and women on the right. Finally! the right is living up to its promise to keep them safe and value them.

    “it suggests that individual freedom is more of a talking point than the real center of their vision for America’s future.”

    But that’s just a truism of right philosophy: trade individual freedom for higher values — become a mother, join the military, go to work digging coal every day, change dirty diapers, go to church, don’t sin, don’t stray outside the community, etc. etc. The right never talks about individual freedom except derogatorily. Individual freedom is hippies, drugs, and abortion. Everybody on the right knows it and is fully on board with it.

  286. Kathleen

    Emma — that was me, about the racism inherent in Palin’s appeal. And your last few posts have made me realize we really disagree about Palin’s appeal: you think it comes from a place that is not racist. I think it comes from a place that is racist right down to the ground.

    I would agree with you totally that many of the *attacks* on Palin come from sexism.

    But the support for Palin? I think it is racist. I think the “vague sense something is not right” she talks about is code for “black people in the White House!”. And I think Palin’s being a woman provides cover for that racism, in that complex-mix of toxins way I was talking about. And I think feminists have to be able to see this, and think about it clearly, in order to understand what we are up against in the U.S. political landscape.

    The women (and men) supporting Palin may not have a *lot* of choices for supporting female candidates. But they have much, much, much better choices than Palin. Why do they pick her? I don’t think it’s because she’s a woman; I think it’s because she’s a racist supporter of racist policies. Being able to point to her “mama Grizzly-ness” is convenient, especially for a party and voting bloc that is overwhelmingly pale, male, and ferociously defensive about being called on its own racism.

    Being called on sexism is more complicated — one can always do what Palin et al do, which is to champion a (deeply sexist) version of femininity & masculinity and say you are protecting it against the “real sexists” (feminists). Conservatives try to do this with race, too, but fewer and fewer people find their fake anti-racism persuasive with each generation. However, their fake anti-sexism still rings viscerally true to a lot of people. That’s part of why it is so, so, so important to name it for what it is, and not to get fooled about it.

  287. Emma

    “And your last few posts have made me realize we really disagree about Palin’s appeal: you think it comes from a place that is not racist. I think it comes from a place that is racist right down to the ground.”

    I haven’t, I don’t think, taken any position about where Palin’s support comes from. Here’s what I do think: Even if there is racism in there, support for Palin also comes from the experiences of her supporters’ lives. I think it’s a mistake to see everything through a single focus.

    Since one question seemed to be how can feminism fight back against Palin, one answer seemed to be to understand the entire context of “Mama Grizzlies’” lives. Is racism in there? Accepting that it is, I don’t think that’s all it is. And understanding what’s happening, all of it, requires more than just calling people racists and moving on.

    “But the support for Palin? I think it is racist. I think the “vague sense something is not right” she talks about is code for “black people in the White House!””

    It could be. It could also be code for socialism. It could also be code for foreigner. All of which could also have ties to racism.

    I think very few people on this blog, and few people on the left, are ever going to be “fooled” about what’s going on with Palin. So, what’s the point of “unmasking” what’s “really” going on? What’s the end game here?

    Some people want to protect feminism. I think that’s a losing proposition. Some people want to accurately identify racism. Done and done. Some people want to expose Palin as not a feminist. Okay, mission accomplished. Some people want to expose Palin’s racism and sexism. Been there, done that.

    I want the correct analysis of Palin’s participation done. I want the correct analysis of her support done. Why? Because I think it hasn’t been done and I think the incorrect analysis leads to further empowerment of the right and further backsliding on women’s rights in the Democratic party – who are supposed to be our allies.

  288. pheenobarbidoll

    Racist right down to the ground. Absolutely.

  289. lawbitch

    Women who are content to gather crumbs under the patriarchs’ table are not our friends. Suffragettes did not the vote by accepting less than they deserved.

  290. nails

    Pheenobarbidoll- I know it wasn’t directed towards me but it made a difference anyway. I felt like shit after reading that, for not trying very hard. It shouldn’t be your job all the time. Thank you for your posts in this thread, they are excellent.

    All right, next thing:

    “She said, right in there, Schlafly herself is the victim of sex discrimination, without ever condescending to or demonizing Schlafly or the women she represented. That’s feminism.”

    It is a weird coincidence to be reading Right Wing Women by Andrea Dworkin right now, but by this standard Dworkin isn’t a feminist. She points out that Schlafly is a victim of sex discrimination AND makes a point of showing how oppressive her role was to women. pg 29

    “Phyllis Schlafly, the Right’s not-born-again philosopher of the absurd, is apparently not having a hard time. She seems possessed by Machiavelli, not Jesus. It appears that she wants to be The Prince. She might be viewed as that rare woman of any ideological persuasion who really does see herself as one of the boys, even as she claims to be one of the girls. Unlike most other right wing women, Schlafly, in her written and spoken work, does not acknowledge experiencing any of the difficulties that tear woman apart. In the opinion of many, her ruthlessness as an organizer is best demonstrated by her demagogic propaganda against the Equal Rifhts Amendment, though she also waxes eloquent against reproductive freedom, the women’s movement, big government, and the Panama Canal Treaty.

    She seems to be able to manipulate the fears of women without experiencing them. If this is indeed the case, this talent would give her an invaluable, cold-blooded detachment as a strategist determined to convert women into antifeminist activist. ”

    This is pretty damn harsh. It could be taken as proof that Dworkin fucked up feminism that one time, or that you can care about people as human beings while you criticize them honestly.

    I am really getting sick of hearing how sexist I am and how I don’t care about what happened to Sarah Palin. That election was what made me transition from a fence sitter on porn, a sorta fun feminist, into a radical feminist. I tried so hard not to pay attention to what was happening to Hillary Clinton because I know that it happens to all professional women, my dreams got crushed. Once she wasn’t in the running anymore I tuned back in, only to see a woman get hate pornography made of her and have skeevy old white men give her a head pat for not aborting her son. I realized then that no degree of conventional femininity would save a woman from dealing with this crap if she tried to get anywhere in life. It was a soul crushing sort of revelation. I most certainly give a damn, and I avoid reading about palin on just about every other website besides this one because I know that I will end up flipping out about countless dudes discussing her appearance or calling her a “bimbo” or some other crap. I hate it.

    At the same time, I could see the racism that existed when she tried to make it seem like Obama had terrorist connections. All the “take our America back” talk is the same racist code that has been used for decades. I could see the racism from HRC’s camp when they released photos of him with some kind of turban deal on as a young man. All of this fed into the hatred of Obama for his race. I saw how Obama couldn’t call anything racism when he had to put up with it (like the “YOU LIE” thing and the tea partiers), only white people from his own party could afford to take that risk.

    It isn’t all that complicated to see that experiencing sexism doesn’t excuse performing racism, and racism against obama doesn’t excuse his sexism. If we call out Obama on his behavior I don’t think many people here would be so eager to say that it is because we are all racists, but for some reason discussing SP’s policies makes everyone into a sexist. It isn’t fair to argue this way.

  291. Emma

    I never said that feminism is about not being clear or hard edged in your analysis. Which is what both MacKinnon and Dworkin were. Note that Dworkin didn’t go “well, Schlafly is a racist and so are her followers, and that’s that.” She did an actual analysis of what Schlafly did and wrote. I’ll also say that nothing here approaches Dworkin’s writing, so I’m not on board with hiding behind Dworkin’s stylistic choices.

    Also, I haven’t read RW Women in some time, and don’t recall the context of the quote piece. But I do recall a fairly astute analysis of why RW women are RW. One that doesn’t disrespect or dismiss them.

    However, if you want to talk about MacKinnon’s piece, which is what I’m talking about and have quoted, I’m happy to do that.

    Also, I’m not calling you a sexist. I’m suggesting a better political analysis than what you’ve, so far, been able to provide. One, for example, that does more than engage is this type of drivel:

    “I could see the racism from HRC’s camp when they released photos of him with some kind of turban deal on as a young man.”

    HRC’s “camp” did not circulate that photo, which in fact was of Obama in Somali dress. This kind of idiotic false equivalence is absolutely infuriating and a further indication of your fundamental lack of accurate information.

    I’m at a loss to explain why you make connections like this:

    “I realized then that no degree of conventional femininity would save a woman from dealing with this crap if she tried to get anywhere in life,”

    while simultaneously spreading crap from Drudge about HRC, excusing Obama’s anti-woman actions as the “best” we can hope to get, and going full bore after Palin as the worst thing since sliced bread. It’s a complete mystery.

  292. delineGBL

    I am First Naitons. I don’t care what phenobarbidoll’s political stance is. It’s her game that I don’t like. After folliwng the thread and reading all his/her posts and posts using that name on other boards and sites, I want to tell other posters here I don’t believe for one minute this poster is Native/First Nations/Navajo/Denetah/aboriginal. You’re being played.

  293. Kathleen

    Emma — “drivel”, “idiotic”, “fundamental lack” — maybe step back?

  294. Emma

    “Emma — “drivel”, “idiotic”, “fundamental lack” — maybe step back?”

    Sure, okay. Maybe you should step back and call out those who have been so quick to jump on me with personal attacks?

  295. iGuest

    “But the support for Palin? I think it is racist. I think the “vague sense something is not right” she talks about is code for “black people in the White House!”.”

    Do you have a better source other than the phrase “vague sense something is not right” to make your point? Most Americans don’t know Palin’s record regarding Alaska Native rights, so it doesn’t make sense to paint her conservative followers with the racism brush.

    From Obama’s slumlord connections to Palin’s record on Alaska Native rights, it seems to me that one thing they have in common is a complete disregard for the most vulnerable communities when they had the power to protect them.

    Another thing they seem to have in common is a similar devotion among their followers. And it’s always scary when one person can tap into the American myth machine and generate such blind faith. As POTUS, Obama has pretty much wasted his potential as a leader; we have yet to see what Palin will do if she gets that chance.

    But, rest easy, odds are she won’t get the chance. Misogyny runs too deep in the American patriarchy. She’s gonna need a helluva lot more than blind faith to make it across the finish line first. About the only thing that might give her the push she needs is an onslaught of sexist and misogynist attacks from the “progressives” in d00d nation. Sarah is a quick study and she plays the sexism card a lot better than Hillary ever did.

  296. smmo

    There is a very cogent argument to be made that Democrats, of which Obama is merely an average example of – not evil incarnate as the Palinistas would have us believe – will get women exactly nowhere. But to leap from that to a position of, so let’s go GRIZZLY – is nothing short of deranged. Yes, the Democrats have moved right on abortion policy and everything else. Because of people like Sarah Palin and her tea sipping ilk!

    Personally I’m sick and tired of deconstructing Palin from a feminist perspective. It doesn’t add up to anything but bad feelings. Ignoring her might be much more constructive.

  297. Kali

    And I think Palin’s being a woman provides cover for that racism

    I think Obama’s being half-black provides cover for sexism (his own and that of his supporters).

  298. nails

    Emma- I didn’t do that to you. Why do you think it is okay for you to do that to me?

    HRC’s campaign denied sending the photo, I am aware of that. It doesn’t mean they didn’t, I drew my conclusion based off of other evidence that is widely available. I also dislike being called uninformed about this because I didn’t take someones statement of non-guilt at face value- if I did that all the time then I would be mindlessly adhering to the status quo’s version of things.

    I don’t see why you are so angry at me that Obama is the best we can do, progress tends to happen slowly and he was a better choice than the competition (who would have won otherwise). It isn’t “defending” him to say that either, it is about as uncontroversial as saying “we have a two party system”. I want more, so much more, but I don’t expect more because it would be foolish. It doesn’t make him right or great or anything else. This is a bunch of bull anyway, I shouldn’t have to denounce obama in order to have my critiques of Palin taken seriously. I am perfectly capable of being wrong about one thing and right about another, just like anyone else. Even if I was an Obama fan it would not invalidate what I have to say on other issues.

  299. Comrade Svilova

    Emma, I definitely agree with what you described as the reason Palin’s Mama Grizzlies movement appeals to some women, but the video also relies upon the “take America back” logic that Nails references. It appeals partly based on the idea that there is a “true” America as well as (unspecified) groups who have taken the country in the wrong direction. The “something wrong” that the video mentions is more likely a black man in the White House, equal rights for women, abortion rights, gay marriage, etc. than it is abuse/oppression of women, porn, etc.

    It’s legitimate to take issue with the racist idea that America needs to be “taken back” (from whom?) even if it’s a woman’s articulation of the idea that sparks the criticism. Palin’s certainly not the first or only person to take this position, but she and her supporters are playing upon racism as one element of their political campaign and given that Jill posted this particular video, some of us are going to examine Palin’s articulation of this racist logic particularly closely in this thread.

    Taking issue with Palin’s rhetoric in a thread about a video expressing Palin’s views isn’t saying that “Palin is the worst thing since sliced bread.” It’s simply focused discussion.

  300. nails

    iGuest

    Don’t you remember the “pallin’ around with terrorists” thing? How she talks about “real americans”? Who are we “taking our country back” from? It is the same race baiting shit that the republicans have been doing for the last 30 years.

  301. Kathleen

    Kali — maybe you haven’t read any of the analysis of the racial and language politics involved in calling Obama “half-black”. I think at least you’d want to be aware of it before choosing to do so.

  302. Emma

    “The “something wrong” that the video mentions is more likely a black man in the White House, equal rights for women, abortion rights, gay marriage, etc. than it is abuse/oppression of women, porn, etc.”

    I never said or suggested that the “something wrong” Palin was referring to was the abuse of women. I was saying that the right’s failure to value individual freedom is a feature not a bug of their philosophy. So, pointing out that the right doesn’t really value individual freedom isn’t really a revelation — it’s a truism.

    I’m suggesting that women on the right reject actual feminism, and embrace Palin, because (among other reasons) the “individual freedoms” of the left — abortion, porn, prostitution, divorce, birth control — look like, and largely are, abuse of women or used by men on both left and right to use and abuse women.

    For all the imperfections of the family, it does offer some protection against abuse and use by men in general. Of course, it’s a protection racket, like paying protection money to the mafia. But being married is probably better than being prostituted on the street, and that’s the deal they’re making. What are we offering that’s better than that?

  303. iGuest

    nails, wasn’t that line a reference to a rich white guy who’s name escapes me because I’ve consigned him to the misogynist (expletive deleted) bin?

    The “take back America” thing is so insanely stupid. Take back? Conservatives are in control and have driven us over the edge and into the abyss. How much deeper do they want to dig this freakin’ hole? I don’t see it as racism, I see it more as a complete disconnect from reality. It’s like when they call Obama a socialist. One has to wonder what universe they inhabit.

  304. pheenobarbidoll

    “Do you have a better source other than the phrase “vague sense something is not right” to make your point? ”

    If I may, though this isn’t addressed to me.

    Her “sense that something is not right” is a continuation of her Obama “pals around with terrorists” and he “doesn’t see the same America” as her mostly white fellow Americans. What’s not right? He doesn’t share the same view of American. Why? He’s black, that’s why. And I seriously doubt she means it as ” of course POC have a different view of America than privileged white people, because POC aren’t treated as humans”.

    The “not like us” is an appeal to racism. It’s a sneaky one, that is loaded with probable deniability but I’ve yet to meet a POC who doesn’t recognize it.

    The “us” is now Mama Grizzlies.

  305. Comrade Svilova

    the “individual freedoms” of the left — abortion, porn, prostitution, divorce, birth control — look like, and largely are, abuse of women or used by men on both left and right to use and abuse women

    I’m not sure if you mean that access to abortion, divorce, and birth control is abusive to women or that to the Right they seem to be abusive of women; clarification would be helpful. Of course anything can be used in a detrimental manner, but arguing that abortion rights, the possibility of divorce, and BC “largely are” abusive to women is problematic to me. How such things operate, given our cultural context, could certainly be abusive. However, in and of themselves, the rights to bodily autonomy, divorce, and reproductive control are hard-won (and beleaguered) rights that are incredibly important to women.

    For all the imperfections of the family, it does offer some protection against abuse and use by men in general.

    I agree that family seems to offer protection, but the statistics on intimate partner violence, murder, rape, and abuse say otherwise.

  306. Emma

    “I’m not sure if you mean that access to abortion, divorce, and birth control is abusive to women or that to the Right they seem to be abusive of women; clarification would be helpful.”

    Sorry, of course that was less than clear. I’m saying: birth control and abortion are used to pressure women into sex, they provide consequence free sex for men, and remove one legitimate reason women had to say no to sex, fear of pregnancy. Divorce? Generally, women end up worse off economically after divorce than men. I’m saying these freedoms the left espouses do not automatically mean less abuse and more equality for women. Rather, they can be, and are used, by men on the left to divest themselves of responsibility for their actions: “Pregnant? Get an abortion!”

    “However, in and of themselves, the rights to bodily autonomy, divorce, and reproductive control are hard-won (and beleaguered) rights that are incredibly important to women.”

    Absolutely — unless you’re on the right and they look like things that break the deal women make with men through marriage.

    “I agree that family seems to offer protection, but the statistics on intimate partner violence, murder, rape, and abuse say otherwise.”

    Yes, I said “some” protection, I also said it’s a protection racket, I also said “(oft times illusory) safety of the family,” so you and I are agreeing. But what you and I see as systemic, women on the right see as a broken bargain caused by the individual freedoms such as birth control, abortion, etc. that the left espouses.

    We see the same things as women on the right, we just have different explanations for it. Palin understands that, and offers women on the right some fulfillment of the broken bargain.

    I mean, really, it’s not that complicated and it’s not a secret. Women make a bargain with men: I’ll marry you and you’ll protect me from other men. That bargain gets broken by things like abortion, birth control, divorce, homsexuality. And women get devalued by all of that, that is, why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free? Palin says: you did your part of the bargain, they promised their part, we’re going to hold them to it because we’re the powerful mama grizzlies!!

  307. smmo

    It seems to me that men of the Left and the Right make equal use of porn and prostitutes. The Right may want to frame it otherwise, but their sex scandal du jour ways has made that impossible. Carry my luggage indeed.

    Of course, it’s a protection racket, like paying protection money to the mafia. But being married is probably better than being prostituted on the street, and that’s the deal they’re making. What are we offering that’s better than that?

    We being lefty feminism? We offer ideals. It’s a damn better deal than most marriages.

  308. Emma

    “It seems to me that men of the Left and the Right make equal use of porn and prostitutes.”

    Yes, and so? So what?

    “We being lefty feminism? We offer ideals. It’s a damn better deal than most marriages.”

    Better than food on the table? Better than a husband’s paycheck? Better than not being prostituted on the street? Really?

    Also, no such thing as “lefty” feminism as such implies a “righty” or “centrist” or something else feminism. And I haven’t much use for a “lefty” analysis anyway.

  309. Emma

    “I drew my conclusion based off of other evidence that is widely available.”

    Such as? What, exactly?

  310. smmo

    Women make a bargain with men: I’ll marry you and you’ll protect me from other men. That bargain gets broken by things like abortion, birth control, divorce, homsexuality.

    Oh hi, 1953! How have you been? Me? I’m super busy looking for a husband, so I don’t have to prostitute myself.

  311. nails

    A member of her staff resigned after spreading the rumor that Obama was Muslim online, and then this scandal broke out right after that, with the party reporting it claiming to have gotten the material from members of her campaign.

    Lets say that she didn’t send it out-she gained from it and pretended not to.

    I don’t get how you could throw those words in my direction while trying to say that I shouldn’t critique women (because they are women). I am a woman. Where is my respect?

  312. Jezebella

    So, Deline, you’re going to just roll up in here, all newbie-like, and accuse Pheeno of being a liar? She is who she says she is, and any number of commenters here can vouch for that. Now: Who the hell are you??

  313. iGuest

    nails, is your comment at 5:05pm a response to mine? The “pals around with terrorists” was a comment Palin made about Obama’s connection with Bill Ayers, a wealthy white man.

    I’m not quite sure what words I may have thrown your way as it hadn’t occurred to me that there were any conservatives commenting here, but if you are a conservative who believes Obama is a socialist then I apologize for calling you crazy.

  314. delineGBL

    Jezebella. You’ve met phenobarbidoll? In real. Sitting right across from you? YOU. Not that you’ve heard, or someone else has.

    Otherwise.

  315. Emma

    “Oh hi, 1953! How have you been? Me? I’m super busy looking for a husband, so I don’t have to prostitute myself.”

    I’m describing a particular world view of a particular subset of people. What about that is so difficult to understand?

    “A member of her staff resigned after spreading the rumor that Obama was Muslim online”

    Not true. Low level volunteers in a field office were asked not to come back after they sent emails about Obama being a Muslim. There is a material difference there.

    “and then this scandal broke out right after that, with the party reporting it claiming to have gotten the material from members of her campaign.”

    No, it didn’t happen “right after” that. And the report was made on Drudge which, AFAIK, didn’t reveal his sources. So, I call BS on both of these things.

    “Lets say that she didn’t send it out-she gained from it and pretended not to.”

    Really? And she gained from it how? And pretended not to, how? You’re either spreading this crap deliberately or you’re too foolish or lazy to try and figure out the actual truth.

    “I don’t get how you could throw those words in my direction while trying to say that I shouldn’t critique women (because they are women). I am a woman. Where is my respect?”

    Your actions and words are irresponsible and ill-informed. If you don’t like the criticism, become informed and act responsibly.

  316. pheenobarbidoll

    So, Deline, you’re going to just roll up in here, all newbie-like, and accuse Pheeno of being a liar? She is who she says she is, and any number of commenters here can vouch for that. Now: Who the hell are you??”

    Hahaa, I didn’t even see that comment. I doubt the fact that I’ve met several people here in person would mean anything. I’m sure they’re just liars too.

  317. delineGBL

    I’m sure they wouldn’t know if you were or not. What I see here is a whole lot of racism. You show up and every racist here flashes it. They’ve done everything but say “How”. I suppose we owe you a debt of gratitude for the litmus test.

  318. pheenobarbidoll

    *headdesk*

  319. janna

    But that’s not Pheeno’s fault. She just says Uncomfortable Things that people don’t want to hear (but probably need to). If anything, I think the rest of us need to step up so that she doesn’t have to be the token NA Educator of White People, and always bear the brunt of the racism that invariably crops up.

  320. delineGBL

    I don’t know any native women who are so filled with hatred toward other women, of any colour. Seven generations of native owmen, none so filled with hate. So divisive. So destructive. That is not our way at all. That’s a message for the posters here. This person is scamming you.

  321. janna

    I know her and I don’t know you. So, I don’t know about anyone else (yttik might be interested; she seems to like taking on ridiculous causes), but I’m disinclined to listen to someone who jumps into the comments of a website and immediately starts attacking someone who has been a very valuable contributor for many years. But if this is important to you, maybe it would be a good idea to try and build some credibility before you start calling out long-time commenters? Good luck.

  322. Kelsey B.

    @delineGBL:

    I typed out and subsequently deleted two different responses to you, but then I realized that the only appropriate comeback to your comment is:

    Huh?

  323. pheenobarbidoll

    I must have missed the memo that declared The One Way for Native women. Or maybe it was trashed along with the Noble Savage handbook.

  324. Comrade Svilova

    @Emma:

    Thanks for the clarification. The logic of right wing women that you describe makes sense, but I think your description still doesn’t address the fear of Others that is another element of the appeal of the Right (to women and men, of course). And a significant portion of the Mama Grizzlies’ action will be directed at illegal immigrants, Muslims, and other groups they perceive as having “damaged” the True America. You have questions about the specific instances of racism Nails describes involving HRC, but whether or not those particular instances are true and well-documented, there’s a wealth of evidence from the campaign that race definitely was a factor for many “values voters” and there’s no reason to assume that it will cease to be an issue about which they care. Hence, the Right’s veiled racism is a good calculated strategy, and it is definitely one of the chords struck by the Mama Grizzlies video.

    (My personal example of how the extreme right uses racist rhetoric: a local mechanic who displays a bunch of signs that say “Don’t blame me, I voted for the white man” and similar slogans. He’s not as fringe as one might want to believe.)

  325. awhirlinlondon

    Fully expecting to be ignored granting that at IBTP, postings after approx number 175 indicate flame-war, which means that few people are listening and even fewer reading; however:

    1. “Kitty” and especially “Miss Kitty” are ad hominem attacks. Please fucking stop it already even if only to preserve your own credibility. The rhetorically-negative effect reflects on you, not on the person you’re attacking. Also? Rhetorically, it adds nothing. Your anger / disdain / contumely are all blazingly apparent without it. Note that I am in no way saying “back off on the blazing anger.” Just on the ad hominem assaults.

    I really wish the hell that we’d stop doing this anyway. We don’t and can’t see eye-to-eye on everything, but surely “we” have one hell of a lot more in common than “we” have with most of the rest of the world, and surely that obliges us to offer some form of mutual generosity, if not respect? I hate that the flame wars end up with wonderful commenters (where are you Ginmar and Kiuku? How I miss you!) fucking off. We were so much better with them. (I believe that Ginmar was kicked, though I’m not sure – if so, may I respectfully plead for her reinstatement? Class analysis without racism? Beautiful stuff and that combination so inexplicably rare!)

    2. I have learned a great deal from this thread and have been forced to re-think a number of opinions – an excellent thing, and one of the reasons I’m devoted to this place.

    Thank you, yttik for the shattering and illuminating comment about stoning women. Blew my mind. Re-framed my thinking. Still doing so. Bless you.

    Thank you to a number of others (including yttik) for finally explaining to this lefter-than-left and nonetheless Yellow-Dog Democrat (because what other choice do I have in the US?) why there are intelligent women who eschew politics. I had always thought that this was baby and bathwater, but I finally understand that this point of view insists that there is no baby to be thrown out. I don’t agree with you in the slightest (pragmatically – in terms of lives lived – I believe there is a massive, massive difference) but I am genuinely deeply grateful for the illumination.

    Thank you pheenobarbidol for enlightening me viz Native Americans and Palin. Or actually, Native Americans and a lot of the rest of US politics. I didn’t know and to my shame, hadn’t much thought about it. Because of you I am beginning to do both. Thank you. I know it’s not your job.

    Thank you nails and Comrade Svilova (there are a couple of others, but I can’t slog through all 389 comments to figure out whom at this point, but thank you too) for your obviously honest attempts to learn, listen, synthesise, extrapolate and engage.

    Thank you all, especially our wicked-witted host, for this materially, pragmatically life-changing place to read and think.

    3. Dear wicked-witted host’s secretary Phil: Would you mind awfully looking into the 28 cookie-trackers on this site? It freaks me out a bit. Who is doing the tracking? Granting that there is no apparent advertising, why? (This is what really freaks me out.) I rigorously brush them off every time I leave IBTP but who/what are they?

  326. delineGBL

    The “one way for native women” is your show here and the white racist, women-haters that you came to play. I say show because that’s what it is. You aren’t native. That’s my point. You’re playing some sick game. You’re white. That’s all I have to say.

    Deline

  327. Emma

    “Thanks for the clarification. The logic of right wing women that you describe makes sense, but I think your description still doesn’t address the fear of Others that is another element of the appeal of the Right (to women and men, of course).”

    Of course everybody has fear of the “other”, whether valid or not. And, sure, fear of the other, of change, of somebody who looks different is an element of what’s going on on the right. Is it the sole motivating, or even most important, element there? I don’t know. What I do know is that regardless of this fear of the other, we now have a mixed race president who is named Barack Obama. That, in itself, is a good thing. So, I’m not inclined to think that racism on the right, or left, is the trump card in this particular situation.

    “And a significant portion of the Mama Grizzlies’ action will be directed at illegal immigrants, Muslims, and other groups they perceive as having “damaged” the True America.”

    Like what? I actually think the “true America” is as much economic talk as it is race talk, if not more. With official unemployment at 10%, and actual at 20%+, these people’s lives are taking a huge hit. Huge. We’re talking about a DEMOCRATIC Congress that couldn’t even pass an unemployment extension. To borrow from Bill Clinton: It’s the economy, stupid. Economy trumps all, all the time. The race stuff is always mixed in there to keep class cohesion from happening.

    “You have questions about the specific instances of racism Nails describes involving HRC, but whether or not those particular instances are true and well-documented, there’s a wealth of evidence from the campaign that race definitely was a factor for many “values voters””

    I don’t have “questions” – I’m saying nails’ statements are WRONG if not deliberately false.

    And where is that evidence? Let me see it. There are a lot of ASSUMPTIONS, many of them class- and region-based, that white, blue collar workers from rural areas voting for HRC were voting based on race. But I see no EVIDENCE that that’s the case. Re: the general election: Obama won. So even if people were voting by race, it made no difference. So, again, I don’t see race as the trump card here.

    ““Don’t blame me, I voted for the white man” and similar slogans. He’s not as fringe as one might want to believe.”

    Fringe enough that Obama got elected.

  328. nails

    WTF are you talking about, delineGBL? You are saying that native people are incapable of having certain personality traits, when they are just PEOPLE with different personalities and temperaments just like everyone else. The traits you picked out for natives are the same ones represented in racist stereotypes. On top of no one giving a damn about the racism of female candidates this thread tops my list for racist bullshit displayed at IBTP. I am really disappointed in how this thread turned out.

  329. pheenobarbidoll

    Emma are you claiming that racists are the fringe?

  330. nails

    “The “pals around with terrorists” was a comment Palin made about Obama’s connection with Bill Ayers, a wealthy white man. ”

    She didn’t say “bill ayers, a wealthy white man”. She said “terrorist”, and you know what most people pictured when she said that, what most people picture when they hear ‘terrorist’. They pictured a brown dude. It was playing off of racialized fears that he is foreign, a secret muslim, etc. People who wanted some kind of mainstream nod to their racist fears got one.

  331. Emma

    Pheenobarbidoll,

    Please don’t put words in my mouth.

  332. Jezebella

    So I used the handy-dandy search doodad here, and discovered that delineGBL has never posted here before this thread, in which she promptly and repeatedly accused Pheeno of being a liar. I never thought I’d see anybody here stoop so low as to create a sock puppet to attack a poster. Never.

  333. pheenobarbidoll

    Emma, I’m asking not stating.

  334. iGuest

    True enough that she didn’t mention Ayers by name, but she did say “terrorists who targeted their own country.” I certainly knew who she was referencing. It is only when one makes assumptions about her audience that one concludes they heard code for “brown people.”

    I disagree that Palin has an inherent racist appeal. Palin has an inherent Christian appeal, which includes all those alleged “good” things that go along with god and country. And, the Others they want to take back America from are the liberal, socialist heathens (like me).

    Think about it. Nikki Haley is the daughter of Sikh immigrants, and yet Palin supported her, and defended her against negative attacks. The racism accusation just isn’t going to hold water, if anything it could cause a backlash.

  335. iGuest

    Geez Louise. No one is claiming that racism and racists don’t exist. It is an integral part of the patriarchy. To steal a phrase from tinfoil hattie: You’re soaking in it.

  336. pheenobarbidoll

    Don’t exist *at all* is not the same as exist on the fringe.

    Obama was elected despite racism, but it wasn’t because racists were on the fringe. That election is an example of the rare time when several oppressed groups managed outvote the dominant group. And the reaction of the dominant group has been to bring guns to town hall tea party meetings.

  337. Inverarity

    I never thought I’d see anybody here stoop so low as to create a sock puppet to attack a poster. Never.

    I dunno… Emma seems to have shown up right after Isabel got banned, and coincidentally, Emma is obsessed with (1) attacking nails, and (2) diverting everything from race to class.

  338. iGuest

    pheenobarbidoll,

    The dominant group wasn’t outvoted. The dominant group (the wealthy and the corporations) got exactly what they paid for: bailouts for wealthy bankers, the health insurance profit protection plan, the green light to destroy our gulf coast and a continuation of Bush’s policies.

    I hate to burst any bubbles but the dominant group doesn’t associate with the riffraff who carry guns to rallies. And right now they are celebrating with champagne, seven-figure bonuses and congratulatory toasts at the great American swindle they managed to pull off. (And which, mark my word, they’ll pull off yet again in 2012 when Jeb Bush is installed in the White House.)

  339. Emma

    Inverarity,

    I suggest you leave the question of sockpuppets or not to the owner of this blog who, after all, has all of our email addresses as a condition of posting here.

  340. pheenobarbidoll

    The problem iguest is that the gun toting riff raff don’t believe that, and have a long history of backing the dominant group. Especially when the dominant group scares them with words like Terrorist and Socialist and Muslim-Born-In-Kenya. And they use those words because “N-word in the whitehouse” is too blatantly racist. But you can bet they and those gun toting riff raff were and still are thinking it.

  341. phio gistic

    “I hate to burst any bubbles but the dominant group doesn’t associate with the riffraff who carry guns to rallies.”

    You don’t have to associate with them to egg them on and profit greatly from them.

  342. pheenobarbidoll

    Emma I’m not questioning who you are, but alternate emails are rather easy to procure.

  343. Emma

    Pheenobarbidoll,

    You certainly are questioning who I am, as is inverarity.

    As I said, I suggest you leave the question of sockpuppets to the owner of the blog who, like she does for everybody else, has my email address as a condition of my posting here.

    You aren’t the owner of the blog, you’re a guest here like everybody else. I suggest you let the owner run it the way she sees fit without static created by your conspiracy theories.

  344. Emma

    “You don’t have to associate with them to egg them on and profit greatly from them.”

    How is the dominant group iGuest describes “egging on” and “profiting greatly” from the tea partiers?

  345. Kali

    Talking about stooping low, it is rather low to attack someone for creating a sock puppet with any evidence at all.

  346. Kali

    I could see the racism from HRC’s camp when they released photos of him with some kind of turban deal on as a young man.

    Using the race card to bring down women (first Palin, now Hillary). Using unsubstantiated rumors spread by men to bring down women. That’s depressing.

  347. Kali

    Obama was elected despite racism, but it wasn’t because racists were on the fringe.

    Obama was elected because of misogyny. The misogyny factor played a much bigger role in the 2008 election than the race factor.

  348. Jezebella

    Kali, I accused no one in particular of creating Deline as a sock puppet, as there seem to be any number of people here who would like to discredit Pheeno. You must admit the timing of a new member with a very specific agenda is quite suspicious.

  349. Kali

    Kali, I accused no one in particular of creating Deline as a sock puppet

    Inverarity did.

  350. Kali

    To the people here defending Obama and playing the race card against HRC and Palin, please read the Journolist e-mails and digest what your beloved liberal d00dz think of women, and to what depths they are willing to sink to bring down a potentially powerful woman. How can any self-respecting woman be loyal to these guys?

  351. incognotter

    “How is the dominant group iGuest describes “egging on” and “profiting greatly” from the tea partiers?”

    Um, you did see the video footage of the Republicans on the balcony of the US capitol egging on the tea party mob, didn’t you?

    The “Tea Party Movement” was invented by conservative activists as a way to astroturf the populist rage which had been brewing on the left under Bush. It was a planned strategy to say “you think you’re angry? We’re angrier and we can shout louder and we want to take our country back,” thus astroturfing the folks who were pushing for taking our country back from an unelected president. The Tea Party movement took off and is arguably out of Republican control at this point. But the Republicans still play to them and egg them on and count on the rage from the right to outshout rage from the left so they can continue to get away with refusing to pass the legislation the people want — like raising the liability cap for the oil spill, and the unemployment extension, which was supported by 60% of the populace. Those fuckers left us to starve for a month because they had a loud mob to help give them cover, and they expect to use that as a wedge to regain the majority in November. In what way does that NOT constitute profiting from the existence of the tea party?

  352. Emma

    “Um, you did see the video footage of the Republicans on the balcony of the US capitol egging on the tea party mob, didn’t you?”

    Um, no. I didn’t.

    “so they [Republicans] can continue to get away with refusing to pass the legislation the people want — like raising the liability cap for the oil spill, and the unemployment extension, which was supported by 60% of the populace.”

    Um, you do know that the Dems have a majority in the House, a 60 seat majority in the Senate, and a President in the Oval Office, don’t you? So, pray tell, who is refusing to pass the legislation the people want? Bill Clinton passed his budget — which raised taxes on the top earners and expanded the EITC for poor families — with 50 votes in the Senate and a tie breaking vote by VP Al Gore. So, ask yourself: who’s not passing legislation?

    “and they expect to use that as a wedge to regain the majority in November. In what way does that NOT constitute profiting from the existence of the tea party?”

    Sure, using the tea party to gain a majority in Congress would be profiting from the tea party. If that’s what was going on. In fact, Dems are being doomed by their own actions, e.g. their failure to extend unemployment benefits. “It’s the economy, stupid.” Among other things, Dems failed to pass an adequate stimulus plan through timidity, stupidity, or whatever. But 10% unemployment? It’s on Dems.

    And, um, you knew that Obama whipped for TARP, i.e. the $22 billion bail out for Wall Street bankers, didn’t you? And, um, you knew that Obama and Dems wrote and passed (with 51 votes in the Senate BTW) a “health care reform” bill that doesn’t have a public plan, requires people to buy insurance from the insurance companies at risk of being fined, and doesn’t cover abortion or specific reproductive health services for women. I mean, um, you do get that DEMOCRATS did all that, don’t you?

  353. Comrade Svilova

    But I see no EVIDENCE that that’s the case. Re: the general election: Obama won. So even if people were voting by race, it made no difference. So, again, I don’t see race as the trump card here.

    I’m not playing the Oppression Olympics. Saying that there’s a racist appeal in the Mama Grizzlies’ rhetoric doesn’t say that sexism isn’t a factor in elections. Let’s not focus on quantifying whether racism or sexism is worse; both are problems, and Sarah Palin is as ill-equipped to end both sexism and racism as is Obama.

    We can object to racism without being sexists. We can object to sexism without being racists. Both are problems that affect women.

  354. Emma

    You, and others, seem to think that race is the determinative factor in anything having to do with Obama, including the election.

    Even if I concede that every person who voted for McCain in the general election was a racist who voted for McCain because Obama is African American, Obama still won. So something trumped race. What could it be??? Could it be, hmmmm, maybe the economy? Which was melting down in September, 2008, after all.

    I don’t doubt that racism is at work in many subtle and blatant ways. I’m not quite sure how that makes the President of the United States and the Democrats the poor little victims of Sarah Palin and/or the tea partiers and/or the Republicans.

    Yeesh, Obama’s the most powerful guy in the world, with the biggest bully pulpit in the world, the Democrats control 2 of the three branches of the Federal government, and all I hear about is how they can’t do nothin’ cause racism is flourishing in Sarah Palin’s coffee klatsch meetings. Come ON. Give Obama and the Dems a little more credit for their own agency.

  355. janna

    Kali, I accused no one in particular of creating Deline as a sock puppet

    Inverarity did.

    No, Inverarity accused someone of creating Emma as a sock puppet. And Emma seems to be claiming (twice and in the exact same words) that the owner of the blog would know, because she has Emma’s email address. This is particularly compelling, considering that we’re issued one email address at the time we begin using the Internet, and we are never able to change it or create a new email address. That’s why I still use the same email address I was issued at the age of 15, “LibertarianChix2002 at hotmail dot com”.

    On the other hand, she is walking and quacking a lot like Isabel. I guess if she tells us she hates us all, we’ll know for sure.

  356. smmo

    Emma is just a garden variety PUMA, soon to be exploited the Tea Party. Nothing to get worked up over – racism doesn’t exist, there is no left or right in feminism, Obama is the worst person that ever lived, and Palin is NOT (insert truth here.) Dangerous ideas, to be sure, but not worth arguing with in this forum.

  357. Emma

    Really, that’s the best you can come up with? That I’m a PUMA? Okay, fine, guilty as charged. Oh noes, I’m a PUMA! :)

  358. Emma

    Although I do think it interesting that PUMA, i.e. the women who most loudly protested against misogyny in the primaries, is the worst insult you think you can come up with. Damn those uppity women!

  359. smmo

    Emma your analysis is so weak and schizo that it isn’t worth refuting. The Democrats have moved too far to the right so let’s support the Tea Party? It isn’t possible to refute that, it is too deranged.

    I also especially love that you vehemently defend the backwards cultural biases of Palin’s base, yet in no way admit that it is these exact same biases that are preventing real health care reform, financial reform, etc. That isn’t how our system of govt. works, no matter how much Dick Cheney would like it to be so.

  360. smmo

    Emma, there were plenty of women who complained very loudly about misogyny during the election. I was one of them. However, they:

    1. Had noticed that patriarchy existed before 2008

    2. Weren’t easily duped lunatics ready to be exploited by the Republican Party

    3. Therefore weren’t PUMAS

  361. Jezebella

    smmo, thank you for sorting that out for me. I’ve been trying to wrap my head around this whole “The Democrats are too right-wing so vote for the Tea Party candidates, which is even more right-wing” message and it’s so ass-backwards I couldn’t string it together.

  362. Emma

    Well, I sure would appreciate it if you showed me where I ever said vote for or support the tea party. It would be a revelation.

    The same goes for defending the cultural biases of Palin’s base. I’d sure like to see where I said that.

    Indeed, had I adovocated for any of those things, I probably would be schizo and a lunatic.

    But, wait! Doesn’t the feminist movement take disability discrimination seriously? After all, biases against persons with mental illness are very real, very harmful, and do a great deal of damage. I am, therefore, surprised to see such bias being expressed here. I think you would want to examine the many analyses of this type of discriminatory language before you choose to use it.

  363. smmo

    Actually, Emma, schizo simply means split. From the Greek. But they’re brown too, so you know, prolly terrorists.

  364. iGuest

    Hold on there. I don’t recall anyone saying to vote for Tea Party candidates. The 30% (or 50%) solution is not about voting for either party. It’s about voting for women regardless of party. Anyone who is upset that the idea of political parity may entice voters away from the garden variety male politicians is seeing the One party through rose-colored glass. The conservative chorus on the far right and the progressive chorus on the center right are being played by the same wealthy businessmen.

    The interesting thing I noticed about that Journolist debacle is that it was women who tried to course correct the discussion. I’ve also noticed on Sarah’s list* that as more men sign on the conversation begins to turn ugly. Speaking for myself only, I believe that electing more women to political office is imperative. Patriarchy is killing us. We have no time to waste.

    *Yes, I belong to many lists cuz I’m nosy like that. FWIW I’m a McKinney supporter (and desperately hope she’ll run again so I will have someone to vote for).

  365. Emma

    Ah, yes, I’m sure that’s how you meant it.

    And by “brown” you mean….?

  366. Comrade Svilova

    I don’t doubt that racism is at work in many subtle and blatant ways.

    Okay, cool. It sounded to many of us like you were saying that racism wasn’t a factor in the Tea Party at all and that we should rally along with Palin and her supporters and their cultural biases because the Democrats are sexist and at least Palin is a woman.

    It is possible for a feminist to be against both Democrats and Republicans, and to criticize both camps for how they both employ sexism, racism, able-ism, etc.

    (I’m with Emma on the use of “schizo;” I know that as smmo said, it technically means “split.” However, given our cultural context, it takes on connotations that aren’t great.)

  367. Saphire

    I think we’re forgetting something girls. The left HATE you! It was designed, like every other institution, with our oppression in mind. As our oppression is inextricably linked with the oppressions the left is interested in, the left goes the extra mile (look at PETA!).

    Stop trying to use left-wing templates for your feminism. You’ll fail miserably.

    The left hates you, you sound too lost when you think otherwise. Let’s make feminism about women for godsake. I don’t like the tones when left- wing women argue against a radical feminist on other forums. It’s horrible, like a bunch of cats desperate to attack a down and out fox. And it’s going on in this thread.

    Things aren’t black and white, use your heart to see if you’re oppressing someone, not notions of leftist ideology from the 60s.

  368. lawbitch

    iguest, I’m in Texas and I have to disagree with your point about the tea baggers being an powerless fringe group. Some of those nuts who carry guns are powerful and/or rich. Unfortunately, the tea parties around here are well attended by local and state government officials and candidates. These people have powerful contacts in Washington. I agree that they seem deranged but some powerful and/or rich people are deranged.

  369. pheenobarbidoll

    Emma- AGAIN, no I’m not questioning who you are. I’m pointing out a fact. I can go right this second and create another email account. Just like that. What Jill can use to actually track people is their IP address. If I posted from my house, even with a different name and email, my IP will match under my regular handle. This blog, like many others, logs IP addresses.

    Get it? Email is an ineffective way to ID someone. Period.

    Kali- The RACE CARD????

    There’s no such thing.

    To quote The Angry Black Woman’s Blog

    “I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about this concept of a Race Card. What is it? Is it the Jack of Spades? Or one of those Chance cards from Monopoly? (You look at a white woman wrong in the grocery store, go directly to jail) Maybe the race card is part of the Tarot deck and stands for the ability to never get ahead in any aspect of life simply due to a mistake of birth.

    Or maybe, just maybe, it doesn’t exist.

    No matter what the race card actually is (or isn’t), there is something white people need to understand: I’m not playing it at all. This isn’t some kind of game to me. The fact that issues which affect my entire life and the lives of billions of people on this planet are dismissed with a crude allusion to game play is not only rude, but ignorant and cowardly as well.”

  370. Gayle

    “Emma is just a garden variety PUMA, soon to be exploited the Tea Party.”

    Wow. I thought this thread hit a new low when nails resurrected an old Drudge concocted smear against Hillary Clinton to prove something about Palin. What do those two women have in common again? The mind reels.

    Here’s a clue: Emma has a right to her opinions as does yttik. Some of us– me, for example– appreciate their posts. If you want to debate try to do so with actual counterpoints rather than attacks and insults. No one wants I Blame the Patriarchy to become another Daily Kos.

  371. smmo

    Gayle you really need to lower your outrage bar.

    I thought I made some pretty snappy and even germane retorts to Emma but oh well. We can’t all be Sarah Palin, after all.

  372. Jezebella

    I gotta be honest, Saphire: I zoned out on your last post after you addressed the commentariat as “girls”.

  373. nails

    Man, theres an awful lot of crap being flung my way in this thread. I better run for office, then you guys will like me anyway, right?

  374. Emma

    Gayle doesn’t seem all that “outraged” to me. She seemed to be making a point.

    Pheeno,

    You certainly are questioning who I am. Again, if the owner of this blog wants to talk to me about who I am, she has my email. As she does for everybody.

  375. pheenobarbidoll

    No Emma I’m not. I know this for a fact, because frankly I don’t actually give a shit who you are. I was sans computer when the Isabel dust up occurred and have no clue who she is, nor do I care. If I suspected you were Isabel, I’d come right out and say it. I’m not going to play the bad guy because you can’t read.

  376. Jezebella

    Nails, we have no choice but to vote for you. Clearly, you’re the best candidate for the job. Any job. Whatever your platform.

  377. Kali

    Yes, the Democrats [in reference to Obama's throwing women under the bus] have moved right on abortion policy and everything else. Because of people like Sarah Palin and her tea sipping ilk!

    Evil woman made helpless man do bad stuff. Where have I heard that one before?

    The level of woman-hating going on here in the name of anti-racism is amazing.

  378. Kali

    You look at a white woman wrong in the grocery store, go directly to jail

    Of all the examples she could have used she had to use the “white woman falsely accusing black man of sexual assault” meme. We don’t have enough of accusing rape victims of making it up in this country. We now need to further this “women are liars” meme as long as we put “white” in front of the “women” and as long as the accused is a black man.

  379. iGuest

    Kali @ 8:38 and 8:56, you are right on. Patriarchy is such fertile soil for woman-hate that it pops up in the darnedest places.

    nails, I’d vote for you in a heartbeat. Get on the ballot already!

  380. smmo

    I said:Yes, the Democrats have moved right on abortion policy and everything else. Because of people like Sarah Palin and her tea sipping ilk!

    Kali responded: Evil woman made helpless man do bad stuff. Where have I heard that one before?

    The level of woman-hating going on here in the name of anti-racism is amazing.

    The poor level of reading comprehension here is what is amazing.

    “The Democrats” (very large political party that includes women) have moved right. Because, among other reasons, of a smaller, loathsome, political movement that the woman under discussion here – Sarah Palin – has chosen to strongly identify herself with. How is stating this fact woman hating?

  381. yttik

    “Of all the examples she could have used she had to use the “white woman falsely accusing black man of sexual assault” meme.”

    Spot on, Kali. What always amazes me is how accusations of racism are often used to oppress women of all races.

    It’s especially lobe blowing when accusations of racism are used to demean and silence women of color. Patriarchy has a real sense of irony.

  382. Kali

    “The Democrats” (very large political party that includes women) have moved right.

    The comment about “the democrats” was in response to criticism of what Obama did. That is another feature of the patriarchy. When individual men do bad stuff, they are not attacked as individuals. The criticism is diffusely directed at groups, i.e. corporations, republicans, whites, the rich, etc. It is the other way around with women. When groups that women belong to do bad stuff, individual women in that group are singled out for vicious attacks, as is happening here with Palin.

  383. pheenobarbidoll

    Says the person who actually posted ” playing the race card”.

    That’s rich.

  384. HazelStone

    The Tea Party is a group of wealthy, white ultra-rightwingers that want to destroy everything I care about — access to reproductive health services, the environment, the US as a haven for refugees and emigrees (including my Mom), and the system of progressive taxation.

    Sarah Palin is the de facto leader of the Tea Party. As a public figure, leading a loathsome political movement she should be up for critique. Just as Obama is up for critique (and has been critiqued here as pheeno pointed out) as leader of the other major party.

    Obama is terrible on issues as well. That doesn’t improve Palin’s record or positions.

    And for the record, I don’t particularly want any ultra-right wing former politicians to do well, not as pundits or kingmakers or authors. Their ideas are vile. I don’t care if they are women.

  385. smmo

    The comment about “the democrats” was in response to criticism of what Obama did. That is another feature of the patriarchy. When individual men do bad stuff, they are not attacked as individuals.

    I agree that Palin has been attacked as an individual for the crime of being female. That is not what is happening here. She is being fairly criticized for her political choices.

    Additionally, to claim that Obama is not being attacked as an individual for the crime of his race is another feature of the patriarchy. To ignore that is racism.

  386. Emma

    “No Emma I’m not. I know this for a fact, because frankly I don’t actually give a shit who you are.”

    Then why continue to harp on it? It’s an odd way of showing you don’t care about something: jump into a conversation you’re not involved in by making innuendos, and then keep the whole thing going by repeatedly insisting you’re not doing what you’re doing. Yes, it looks exactly like you don’t care.

  387. Comrade Svilova

    I agree that Palin has been attacked as an individual for the crime of being female. That is not what is happening here. She is being fairly criticized for her political choices.

    And I would add that it’s not only Palin but other Right Wingers (male and female) who are being criticized (here, on IBTP). Their policies are destructive, whether they are male or female.

    The fact that Democrats’ policies are also destructive doesn’t eliminate the problems with the Right. What a radical idea: all of the established political parties are terrible for women and other marginalized groups. Let’s critique them all! But don’t try to stop someone from criticizing the racism in Palin’s PAC video by saying that Obama is a sexist. The latter may be true, but it doesn’t make the former criticism invalid.

  388. pheenobarbidoll

    Ah, I see. Responding to repeated ” you do too think Im someone else” is harping on it.

    Incidentally, I’m not the one who brought up or implied one damn thing with your name in it. Go back and re read please. You’ll see my only surprise was over suddenly, after years and years, several NA women pop into existence having never posted before nor even seemed to have read one word on this blog previous to their sudden interest in this specific thread. That and ONLY that was my the subject of my comment. You were never even mentioned. My first response to you was to point out email is faulty, given that anyone at any time can make one up. That’s it. That’s all. Yet you ran with it like your ass was on fire and your head was catching.

  389. iGuest

    Ruh roh! Team Sarah has reached 2 million fans. Hmmmmm. Now that’s something to ponder.

  390. smmo

    And Kobe Bryant has 3.5 million. Squee!

  391. Ma'Whis'Ki

    In the 2008 presidential election, I voted for Cynthia McKinney, because *I really wanted her to be the President of the U.S.* I also changed my official voter registration to Green in 2000, when I realized (after looking at a lot of voting records) that there was *no essential difference* between most Democans/Republicrats currently in office then: they were all the ‘finest government that corporate monies could buy’, and they still are.

    The idea that people should vote for the lesser evil to keep the greater one out of office is nothing but slow collective suicide, for it always keeps some form of evil in power, and I have no respect for that as an argument to keep voting along the same old ‘devil you know vs. the devil you don’t’ party lines. Ditto the old ‘but my friends/family will be mad at me/think I am politically uncool’ excuse. That’s bogus, too.

    I would gently suggest that everyone go to their local library and get a new voter registration form (most public library systems have them available as a public service for their communities). It takes exactly 5 minutes to fill it out. Change your party affiliation to *anything but Republican/Democrat*. If people do this in sufficient numbers, it *will absolutely* scare the members of *both* corporate-parasite parties, because it means that not only can they not count on your vote, *they cannot count on your monetary support or volunteer-time for their candidates/programs*.

    The way to counter the pillar-to-post mentality is to refuse both the pillar *and* the post, and to stop listening to the status-quo shills who keep opining that ‘a third party will never work’. The *only reason* the shills say that is because they have been paid to (out of the war-chests of both fat-human-blood-sucking-tick parties), to keep everyone from jumping ship for a third option. A viable third party is what both sides of the aisle *deeply fear*, as it is a vote against, and entirely outside of, the current two-headed-bloat-monster con-game that is currently being run.

  392. joy

    “The way to counter the pillar-to-post mentality is to refuse both the pillar *and* the post, and to stop listening to the status-quo shills who keep opining that ‘a third party will never work’. The *only reason* the shills say that is because they have been paid to (out of the war-chests of both fat-human-blood-sucking-tick parties), to keep everyone from jumping ship for a third option. A viable third party is what both sides of the aisle *deeply fear*, as it is a vote against, and entirely outside of, the current two-headed-bloat-monster con-game that is currently being run.”

    Amen! Was wondering when somebody would point out the elephant in the room.

    (If someone else did before, sorry. There are nearly 400 comments.)

  393. HazelStone

    Dems have been backing climate legislation. Dems backed the stimulus. Dems backed healthcare reform. None of these are perfect, or even very good. But they are better than nothing and CERTAINLY better than the option proposed by the GOP.

    In my home state, Dems fought DAILY against cuts to GMAC that would leave the poorest people without state healthcare. State Dems passed requirements to invest in renewable energy.

    The differences may not be big enough, but they exist. I am not content with what the Dems are doing and that’s why I keep working to improve it.

    Stop blowing smoke up my ass and calling it El Nino.

  394. HazelStone

    Also, as someone who worked in politics in a state with a viable (for a while) Green party and Independence Party who both qualified for state matching campaign support, I can promise you that the parties did absolutely nothing to court this vote.

    If anything, it caused the Dems to triangulate more for the center because those progressive voters were now unreachable and they needed to peel off more center/right leaning swing voters to keep viable. So good luck with that.

    What HAS worked is efforts to get IRV going in our state, so people can vote for other parties without “spoiling.”

  395. Kali

    The idea that people should vote for the lesser evil to keep the greater one out of office is nothing but slow collective suicide …

    The way to counter the pillar-to-post mentality is to refuse both the pillar *and* the post, and to stop listening to the status-quo shills who keep opining that ‘a third party will never work’.

    Thank you for saying that. I absolutely support the following two strategies (even better in combination):

    1. Vote for the most woman-friendly third party.
    2. Vote for the woman when the options are all male.

    Imagine if women had gone out in droves to vote for McKinney in 2008 instead of voting for Bush III because he was (allegedly) the lesser evil. It would have brought the Democrats in line, yanked them miles to the left. In the next election we would have had actual options.

    I think women need to understand something. Democrats are not ideologically committed to women’s rights the way that Republicans are ideologically committed to be against women’s rights. If Democrats believe that they can screw over women and still count on their votes, they will definitely do it. The message that democratic women are sending loud and clear is that, yes, you can screw us over and still count on us as long as you throw us a few crumbs occasionally. Even pretend crumbs and lip service are OK. How disgustingly ignoble and strategically stupid.

  396. Emma

    Ah, I see. Responding to repeated ” you do too think Im someone else” is harping on it.

    Incidentally, I’m not the one who brought up or implied one damn thing with your name in it. Go back and re read please. You’ll see my only surprise was over suddenly, after years and years, several NA women pop into existence having never posted before nor even seemed to have read one word on this blog previous to their sudden interest in this specific thread. That and ONLY that was my the subject of my comment. You were never even mentioned. My first response to you was to point out email is faulty, given that anyone at any time can make one up. That’s it. That’s all. Yet you ran with it like your ass was on fire and your head was catching.

    Ah, yes, you’re continuing not to care, I see. That’s lot of CYA for somebody who doesn’t care….

  397. Kali

    If anything, it caused the Dems to triangulate more for the center because those progressive voters were now unreachable and they needed to peel off more center/right leaning swing voters to keep viable.

    Maybe those progressive voters are unreachable because the Democrats don’t care about reaching them. Why aren’t the Democrats trying to move to the left to attract the progressive voters instead of moving to the right to attract the voters on the right? Maybe if the progressives showed some spine the Democrats would pander to them instead.

  398. Emma

    Dems have been backing climate legislation. Dems backed the stimulus. Dems backed healthcare reform. None of these are…very good.

    Soooo, not seeing why I should support them…

  399. Kali

    Dems backed healthcare reform.

    The healthcare “reform” the Dems backed was gestated in a right wing think tank in the 90s. And this is what we are supposed to be supporting in the name of progressivism. Bizarro world indeed.

  400. Kali

    And this is what we are supposed to be supporting in the name of progressivism.

    And not just in the name of progressivism, but in the name of feminism! The very same healthcare “reform” that creates a gender apartheid where women are second-class inferior beings not deserving of the same respect and rights as men.

  401. janna

    In my state, you can’t vote in primaries if you are not affiliated with either the Democrats or the Republicans. Being able to vote in primaries is important to me. So I will continue to be affiliated with the Democratic Party and vote for third parties as necessary.

  402. Jezebella

    So, any and all third parties are going to be automatically patriarchy-free? Doubt it. From what I hear, all manner of political movements from the far right all the way through the middle to socialists and on to the anarchists are pretty much dude-run, for the dudes, by the dudes. Ask a woman activist. She’ll tell you. The patriarchy is in play across the spectrum.

  403. Gayle

    I wonder how many states do that, Janna? Forcing people into a party is wrong on so many levels.

    In my state you can declare undecided and vote in either Primary. You do have to declare R or D when you walk through the door to vote but you can change back to undeclared once you are done.

    I’m not sure what they are going to do when two greens decide to run against each other.

  404. iGuest

    HazelStone, where there’s smoke, there’s fire.

    “‘Worst Bush-era policies’ becoming the ‘new normal’: ACLU”

    http://rawstory.com/rs/2010/0729/aclu-report-obama-core-liberties/

  405. iGuest

    Ma’Whis’Ki, I’ll be moving next week and when I register to vote with my new addy, I’ll update my party affiliation too. Thanks for the reminder.

    Kali, word, word and …

    “1. Vote for the most woman-friendly third party.
    2. Vote for the woman when the options are all male.”

    Word!

  406. smmo

    Vote for the woman when the options are all male.

    Vote for Michele Bachman. Vote for Kelly Ayotte. Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer has been great for WOC, no?

    Terrifying.

  407. Emma

    I wonder how many states do that, Janna? Forcing people into a party is wrong on so many levels.

    Well, it is for the party primary. So, I don’t think it’s too much to ask that if you’re going to vote in a party’s primary, you be part of that party.

  408. Stillwater

    I’m emotionally threatened by these people calling themselves bears of any variety. I like bears. When I put on my brown fuzzy bathrobe, I even kinda look like one.

    These women think they will earn themselves favors (less beatings) from men by acting like this.

  409. nails

    iGuest-

    “nails, I’d vote for you in a heartbeat. Get on the ballot already!”

    K, I am running as the Nazi party candidate then.

    Well, someone needed to godwin this thread.

  410. wiggles

    @iGuest
    July 21, 2010 at 6:08 pm

    “There are both worthy men and women on the left to support.”

    There is no “left” left in the Democratic Party. Let’s hope a viable third party comes to the rescue. And fast.

    The Green party would be viable if people would stop being chickenshits and vote for them.

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