Tags: douchebaggery

NOM: Losers

 The person who made this sign to display at a recent NOM "rally" is a piece of shit:

Also, NOM itself is fucking pathetic with their sad little "One Man One Woman" tour. When the COUNTER-demonstration outnumbers by five and tens time the size of their demonstration, then that's some really sad crap. Sad for them, anyway. To me it's hilarious iwhen they manage to draw together literally tens of people (like 45 or 50 at a recent in Wisconsin) and then 400 supporters of marriage equality appear to counter them.

Courage Campaign has been running a "NOM Tour Tracker" site to keep tabs on these creeps and let people know when they might attempt one of their dumb hate rallies in one's own town. While NOM itself is a pitiful pile of crap of an organization, it's probably wise to keep notes on the movements and activities of such groups because they tend to be magnets for potentially dangerous psychotics such the douche who made that sign, which I take as advocating the murder of my partner and me.

(Also, I noticed that the sign says something at the bottom about a "Cross Bearer Ministry." I don't know what that is, but if it's those people who tow around the big wooden crosses on wheels, then that makes it all the more stupid.)

Follow-up to previous entry from earlier this evening

I have had the opportunity to encourage several more editors to beware of the first-rights-reselling writer discussed in my earlier post, just in the short time it's been up. But meanwhile, over on the M-Brane blog, I was taken to task thus by one "Geraldo":

"You only pay $10.00? That's less than a cheeseburger deluxe. You really should pay professional rates, or at the very least strive to pay semi-pro rates or a decent flat fee. Sometimes writers make a living at this, and it's a known fact that, in some circumstances, reprints can be submitted for the lifetime of a writer's career. How can a writer live on ten dollars? Unless you are just a hobbyist publication, then it is understandable."

My reply there to this comment was perhaps overly harsh, especially the concluding "give up on your dream" statement, but I am admittedly rather prickly about this topic. Yeah, sure, I'd love to pay more for fiction for M-Brane, and I would if I could. And I expect to be able to do so one day. But as things stand right now, the thing makes no money at all (literally zero revenue in the last month), and I subsidize its minimal costs out of pocket and I don't even have to fucking do it! I do it out of love, same reason writers write short stories. Pay the bills? Make a living? On short fiction? Give up that dream right now.

For the first time in M-BRANE history, I get pissed off at a writer

For the past few days, I have been contemplating a dilemma in my capacity as editor of M-Brane SF Magazine. I discovered, to my great irritation, that a writer whom I have published a couple of times sold me first rights to his stories when, in fact, they had been previously published not just once but two times and three times. I don't take reprints, and if I did, I would 1) expect to be informed by the writer that the submission was previously published; 2) I would want to acknowledge in print the previous publisher;  and 3) I sure as fuck would not contract for first English rights on the story. 

For people not in the writing and publishing world, this may sound like an obscure and technical issue, but for me it is one of honor and integrity. This writer is a douchebag for misrepresenting his work as new, and he has made me look like a douche for publishing it as new. I have uncovered numerous instances of this kind of chicanery involving this writer and a number of other zines. I have informed the affected editors so that they can decide for themselves whether to do as I am doing and ban from consideration any future submissions from this person. I am sure there are many other publishers whom I have not yet informed because I am sure that I have not uncovered every instance of this situation. If this were some newbie writer who didn't know what he was doing, and had only done it once or twice, I could maybe forgive and forget. But this is a person with literally hundreds of credits (many of them evidently duplicative under false pretenses).

Despite my rage over this and my natural impulse to call out liars when I spot them, I think I have made the correct decision by not yelling this person's name far and wide and instead just dealing with it directly with the affected parties as I discover them. Word spreads among the zine publishing community. My research into this fraud happened to lead me to a blog that is evidently almost wholly devoted to hating this writer, and does so with great bile and personal nastiness. That sort of thing is not my bag, and I will not participate in it. But I will make sure to take any opportunity that presents itself to shut down yet another market for this particular writer. I have already closed about ten of them. 

O'Reilly is a mean, bitter man (probably with a small "tool," too)

Did you hear about the French McDonald's commercial focused on a gay teenager, and how Fox News thug Bill O'Reilly said it was tantamount to having ads inviting al Qaeda to McDonald's? GLAAD has this protest-to-Fox-News campaign in process, which includes a petition text that one may send to various Fox News executives (emails provided). While I support the idea of protesting about that ludicrous TV channel in general due its very existence and its generally offensive tone and character and the disagreeable sight and sound of most if its on-air personalities, and while I did actually send off my own abbreviated version of their petition letter to a couple of those emails, I will be shocked if any Fox people or O'Reilly himself apologize over this.

Why would they? Hating gay people is the stock-in-trade of media outlets like Fox, it's the very stuff of life for them. And while deriding gay people is great for them, deriding gay kids is even better. O'Reilly is by his very nature a jerk and a bully and a bitter old man, and gay teens are practically tailor-made for bullying in the kind of world Fox would like to create. Embedded below is the ad with the gay kid. Even though it's for a fast-food chain that I like about as well as O'Reilly, this ad is sweet and its appearance here causes the unprecedented situation of me applying both the "douchebaggery" (for O'Reilly) and "anti-douchebaggery" (for McDonald's) tags to this single post. 

Family Research Council at it again

I won't go on at length about this one. You can, if you really want to, read the details here at TPM . The gist of it is that the Family Research Council claims that their "research" has proven that the repeal of the dumbassed Don't-Ask-Don't-Tell law for the US military will ipso facto result in a lot of gay-perpetrated rapes of innocent str8 servicemen, blah, blah, blah-blah, blah. Also, if you dig pain, like to puke, and you crave even more exposure to sociopathic fucknuttedness, over on the right hand side of the TPM page is a link to another article about one of these dickbags claiming that Hitler and his whole Holocaust operation was a gay project.

The only reason I mention the whole dumbassity here at all is that I don't think I have yet bothered to highlight the Family Research Council in particular as one of the most bugfuck, batshit, looney-tunes, froot-looped boatload of gibbering morons that ever blighted this vale of tears. Even in a land stacked to the rafters with psychotic bigotry, they manage to stand out from the heap of worn-out discarded old shit, like a sleet of bat guano overlaying an attic full of someone's redneck grandpa's Klan memorabilia. To borrow some verbiage from the venerable Harlan Ellison, "I do not think I demean them much by perceiving them as creeps, meatheads, clods, fruitcakes, nincompoops, amoeba-brains, yoyos, yipyops, kadodies and clodhoppers."

In case you didn't bother to click over to the TPM article and decided to just take my word for it, I am copying here the picture that they used of one Peter Sprigg, "Senior Fellow for Policy Studies" at the Family Research Council. Don't let the haircut fool you: in fact, it's a dead giveaway. Peter Sprigg is almost certainly a bitter closeted homosexual. They all look and act more or less like this when they get into these kinds of jobs where they can work out their personal pain by amping up mouth-frothing insanity against their own kind. Remember this image. If you don't see Mr. Sprigg himself, you will see someone exactly like him someday and you will know the truth.

"Imagine if the Tea Party was black"

Once in a while, when I think there is no other good way to explain a problem or circumstance, someone does it perfectly, and I say to myself, "A) Why didn't I think of putting it this way, and B) Why isn't everyone in the country talking about this right now?"  Such a moment just happened when I found this item by Tim Wise in which he speculates, with totally reasonably examples, on how Americans might view the teabagger movement differently if it consisted of black people (or Arabs) instead of white right-wing douchebags.  Click that link and read it. 

Dear Angry Gubberment-Hating White Men: Look in the MIrror and See McVeigh Staring Back at You

As my current (soon-to-be-former) city of residence, Oklahoma City acknowledges the fifteenth anniversary of the bombing of the Federal building just a few streets away from where I sit now, I am struck by the irony of a gun-wielding mini-mob doing an Angry-Little-Dick-White-Man demo in DC and by local wingnuts seriously advocating establishing a citizen's militia in Oklahoma. Also, I am disgusted by one of our Congressman, Tom Cole, claiming that the bombing was "not a political event" and accusing one of his colleagues of "exploiting" it for political purposes by mentioning that this act of terrorism was conducted by right-wing extremists who wanted instill in the government a fear of the "people." Let me ask this: if that bombing was not a political event than what the fuck was it? Terrorism, by definition, is a political act. That's what it's for, asshole. Politics. What, were the 9/11 bombers just evil thugs who wanted to blow up building and kill people just for the fun of it? Is that seriously what people like Cole want us to believe? While reasonable people deplore the tactic of terrorism, it's entire basis is politics.

The Oklahoma City bombing was conducted by anti-government extremists, the ideological descendants of the Klan and the Birchers, people inspired by the The Turner Diaries, the political kith and kin of the douchebags carrying signs depicting the President of the United States as a monkey and threatening to use their guns to protect their so-called "liberty." McVeigh's descendants now lie that their taxes have been increased, that the government has taken over their lives, that Obama is coming for the their guns, and believe it when Glenn Beck and other bilious turds of that ilk claim that the evil government is readying concentration camps in which to intern all the good patriots of Palin-land. How sad it will be if the present-day Okie angry dickless dudes actually do succeed in setting up their militia. I wonder what the survivors of April 19, 1995 will think about it. 

A few months ago when I wrote my NaNoWriMo novel, I set in it an alternate America where much of the country had been overtaken by a new extremist political party which did indeed start creating new state militias for the purpose of resisting the Federal government. Based on how things seem to be proceeding in the real world, I thought it was a possible development, but I didn't think it would really start so soon. I still think (or at least hope) it won't really come to that. But if it does, will Obama deal with it with the way Lincoln did?

Niggers and Faggots: That's what the teabaggers are all about.

Though I said last night that I was done commenting on health care reform and on the politics of our dying country in general, I won't let this item pass. I  reprint here something from the Huffington Post. I'd like to draw your attention to the last line of it in particular, and just say one more venom-filled "die!" to the teabaggers. 

Abusive, derogatory and even racist behavior directed at House Democrats by Tea Party protesters on Saturday left several lawmakers in shock.

Preceding the president's speech to a gathering of House Democrats, thousands of protesters descended around the Capitol to protest the passage of health care reform. The gathering quickly turned into abusive heckling, as members of Congress passing through Longworth House office building were subjected to epithets and even mild physical abuse.

A staffer for Rep. James Clyburn (D-S.C.) told reporters that Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.) had been spat on by a protestor. Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.), a hero of the civil rights movement, was called a 'ni--er.' And Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) was called a "faggot," as protestors shouted at him with deliberately lisp-y screams. Frank, approached in the halls after the president's speech, shrugged off the incident.

But Clyburn was downright incredulous, saying he had not witnessed such treatment since he was leading civil rights protests in South Carolina in the 1960s. 

"It was absolutely shocking to me," Clyburn told the Huffington Post. "Last Monday, this past Monday, I stayed home to meet on the campus of Claflin University where fifty years ago as of last Monday... I led the first demonstrations in South Carolina, the sit ins... And quite frankly I heard some things today I have not heard since that day. I heard people saying things that I have not heard since March 15, 1960 when I was marching to try and get off the back of the bus."

"It doesn't make me nervous as all," the congressman said, when asked how the mob-like atmosphere made him feel. "In fact, as I said to one heckler, I am the hardest person in the world to intimidate, so they better go somewhere else."

Asked if he wanted an apology from the group of Republican lawmakers who had addressed the crowd and, in many ways, played on their worst fears of health care legislation, the Democratic Party, and the president, Clyburn replied:

"A lot of us have been saying for a long time that much of this, much of this is not about health care a all. And I think a lot of those people today demonstrated that this is not about health care... it is about trying to extend a basic fundamental right to people who are less powerful."

I will also point out again that these people brought that unflattering "teabagger" monicker upon themselves by not vetting the name of their organization before launching it AND having as their first major action sending fucking teabags to the White House. And it seems that some of these POS losers have embraced the insult anyway (see below). I mean, come on! Even if you hadn't heard of teabagging from the sexual (and faggot) "underworld," who didn't see the relatively sanitized Pecker version of it? Oh. Wait. Yeah. Douchebags who would join the Tea Party, that's who. Never mind. Jeeeeeeeezus! Gotta run (got some teabagging to do with my bf--we're faggots, ya know). 


Final comment on health care/insurance reform-related politics and douchebaggery

Anybody who knows me and my partner knows that we haven't had access to affordable health insurance in years. It had been a dream of mine since I became interested in national affairs way back when I was a little kid that the country that I was taught to believe was "The Best!" would someday move out of the middling ranks of the planet's countries and finally have universal health care. Well, that's obviously not  going to happen, and I have decided to withdraw from giving a fuck about American politics and concentrate on my fantasy world instead. But....

...If the health care bill actually does pass the House on Sunday, we will be happy. But not because we believe in some fantasy that we will be able to get insurance despite our non-employer coverage and our pre-existing conditions. That probably won't happen for years, if at all, anyway. So why will I be happy? Because Republicans, conservatives, birthers, ditto-heads, Fox News-viewers and fucking teabaggers will be UNhappy. That's all it is for us now. We just want those assholes to be defeated. When they say healthcare is NOT a right, they are insulting us personally. Fuck them. We don't even care what the bill actually does anymore so long as it makes Republicans cry and whine in defeat. Pure politics.

Turn that smile upside down

"Where is your smile?...The stupid, idiotic smile everyone else seems to be wearing!"
--Kor, from the Star Trek episode "Errand of Mercy"

Though I have not read the book itself, I was delighted to come across this review of Barbara Ehrenreich's recent book Smile or Die: How Positive Thinking Fooled America and the World. Like the reviewer, I found it intensely refreshing, even liberating, to know that someone finally had the guts to take a swipe at a fraudulent concept that has built a phony-baloney multi-billion-dollar industry and duped far too many people into believing that all life's problems are best solved just by wishing real hard and grinning a lot.

Years ago, when I was chef at the Saint Louis Art Museum, we endured a brief period where we were beset by a goofy Napleon-complex manager who never tired of making the claim that "it takes twelve more muscles in your face to frown than to smile." Whether that's true or not (I'm sure it's not), it was his standard admonishment to everyone and his way of trying to enforce the fascism of phony good cheer on everyone. In a restaurant situation like that, service personnel who are any good at their jobs at all will automatically adopt a reasonably pleasant and good-natured demeanor, including smiling, when approaching customers, but this dude never let up on his dimwitted  theme under any circumstances. I could be sitting in the back office entering inventory data into my computer and be criticized for not smiling while doing that. Why so glum? What's the matter with you? And so on. To not be deliberately forcing a broad smile at all times automatically meant that there was some kind of problem, and that the problem was my fault, and that I was an asshole for having the problem, and I should fucking fix it by smiling. 

This sort of nonsense seems to permeate a lot of workplaces, which is one of the many reasons why am I unsuited to having a day job and need to get fully self-employed again ASAP. At my current job, there was an incident which is what set me off writing this post in the first place. Every other Friday, an "in-service" meeting is held. Attendance is mandatory. Though I do not attend anyway unless I happen to scheduled for work on that Friday. I was there last Friday, and part of the purpose of the meeting was to watch the video Fish! If you don't know what Fish! is, maybe you have a spare few hundred dollars to buy a copy or maybe you, too, work for a douchey company that will show it to you as a "motivational" training tool. It's a short film about the Pike Place fish market in Seattle and how they turned around a failing business by adjusting their attitudes and starting to have fun at work. Easy, right?  I can see why my boss found this appealing, because he seems like someone who, by nature, would very much like to incorporate a lot of yelling, shouting, cheering, hooting, hollering, throwing objects, and jumping around like a giggling jackass at work all day. Sadly, the fun-loving culture of the fish crew cannot be transplanted into just any work environment (least of all ours). Indeed, one of the fish crew members says during the video something to the effect of, "If you just try to copy us, then it won't work." But watching that video is not actually what pissed me off during this in-service. What pissed me off was the fact that the boss, during his lengthy intro to the film, was throwing pieces of candy at us. So throughout the meeting, it was necessary to constantly catch pieces of candy or be hit in the head with them. And we had to smile the whole time, too, or be called out for not smiling enough. 

Ok here's the deal: fuck that. As a fully grown adult, I don't find candy to even be appropriate as an item in the room during a work-related meeting, and having it thrown at me is just about the last thing in the world that is going to make me smile. While I do like there to be a positive, pleasant atmosphere of cooperation and conviviality in a work place, I do not enjoy juvenile behavior, particularly not from people even older than I am. It doesn't make me smile. I am not even going to pretend it makes me smile. I am not going to wear a fake smile at work because someone is bugging me about it all the time. And you know what else? Just changing one's attitude does not always (or even usually) fix problems: you actually have to do something about them sometimes. So if things aren't going well at work or in life, it's probably not actually caused by you because you didn't smile enough or wish hard enough for good things. But it might require some actual work to fix it. Amazing how doing something sometimes gets a result.