News Appetizers! To get you through the mid-day news cravings.

First and foremost: don’t forget to have set your clocks back yesterday! I know, you didn’t forget, and if you did, you’ve already had a hilarious mixup and realized your mistake. But I needed an excuse to complain about the fact that I only got 23 hours’ worth of birthday this year. Boo. Hiss.

Santorum won the Kansas caucuses. Santorum. The guy who thinks single mothers should have to take a paternity test to prove to the government who the father of their child is. Won Kansas. My homeland. I am weeping into my coffee. (BBCCNN)

Santorum, obsessing over the dirty, dirty things that go on in your bedroom. Image courtesy of

The war-on-women-disguised-as-some-bullshit-anti-abortion-bullshit continues. Governor Perry of Texas excluded Planned Parenthood from its women’s health program, on the grounds that Planned Parenthood something something abortion something something. I SWEAR THAT IS HOW THEY GET THEIR INFORMATION. At any rate, since PP something something abortion something something, Perry has said that they will exclude it from their low-income health care program, which means they are losing federal funding, which means that the entire program is going to most likely fall apart. BECAUSE THE FACT THAT PLANNED PARENTHOOD PERFORMS A TINY NUMBER OF ABORTIONS USING NON-FEDERAL FUNDS MEANS ALL POOR WOMEN SHOULD BE DENIED HEALTH CARE. Pro-life, my ass. (NYT)

But, all the woman-hating that is being done by the GOP is pushing many centrist women to look towards Obama. If you want to be woman-hating, you should probably go whole hog and take away the right to vote. (NYT)

The U.S. economy is looking up! Hoorayyyyy! (NPR)

Banks are trying to lure in really rich people. I’m not sure why none of them have called me yet. (NYT)

The Egyptian doctor who is said to have performed “virginity tests” on protesters in Egypt has been acquitted because of witness discrepancies. I can’t believe there is such thing as a virginity test, that it would ever be used, and that there are probably people in this world who think they are awesome. The good news: because of the women speaking out, they have been made illegal in Egypt. (BBCCNN)

Samira Ibrahim
Samirah Ibrahim is the hero of the day. She spoke out, and now virginity tests are illegal in Egypt. Photo courtesy of the BBC.


A U.S. service member went on a shooting rampage in Afghanistan and killed civilians. 16 dead, including 9 children. I hate everything. (NPRNYT,  CNN)

Air strikes on Palestine. 13-year-old boy killed. I can’t. (CNN)

And there have been a rash of beatings and killings aimed at effeminate, emo, and gay teenagers in Iraq. For the fuck of shit. (NYT)

It’s been a year since the earthquake/tsunami/nuclear meltdown in Japan. (NPR)

In Syria, U.N. Arab-League Envoy Kofi Annan is supposed to have more talks with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. So far, the talks are getting nowhere. I’m going to hold out hope that they’ll get somewhere, and the awfulness will stop. (BBCNYTCNN) In the meantime, Turkey is getting kind of tired of Syrian refugees. (NPR)

A suicide bombing in Pakistan at a funeral killed at least 15 and wounded 37 others. Ugh ugh ugh.  (BBCNPRCNN)

Big shots in the Catholic church are trying to stop gay marriage from happening in England. Because if you let gay people get married, it totally ruins marriage for everybody else. Except not. (BBC)

Grenade attack on a bus stop in Kenya killed at least 5. Sigh. (BBC)

LSD can help treat alcoholism? (BBC)

Stem cell injections in kidney transplants can remove the need for a lifetime of anti-rejection drugs. HEY EVERYBODY STOP FIGHTING STEM CELL RESEARCH. (BBC)

TL;DR: women are less than human, people keep killing each other, and the economy is improving. Same shit, different day.

By Susan

I am old and wise. Perhaps more old than wise, but once you're old, you don't give a shit about details anymore.

22 replies on “News Appetizers! To get you through the mid-day news cravings.”

Sometimes I think the Catholic Bishops are trying very hard to make me convert to the Episcopal church. (If I wasn’t so dearly attached to my own parish, I’d probably be gone already.)

Dear Bishops,

You are not politicians. Every awful corrupt bit of awful that ever has come out of the church has come of it trying to get into politics. Remember the Borgias? The Spanish Inquisition? The selling of indulgences? I do, and it isn’t my job to know about church history. Try listening to the people in the pews for a while. You might learn some things. Like why so many women move to the Episcopal church.

– Opifex

Oh good. I like you too.

I feel like so very many Catholics are disgusted with the Bishops right now. The pedophile catastrophe. The fact that they are clearly in bed with the republican party. Their failure to realize that women are people. The problem is that we can’t do a whole lot about it, except complain and wait for them to die and hope that the next crop will have a better grasp on reality (the priests that I get along with are all younger dudes). Or leave the church, but a lot of folks feel they shouldn’t have to give up their religion because some old white men are being dicks.

As a lapsed Anglican I would say don’t be flirting with them yet.  In Canada they are running the risk of going entirely bankrupt due to trying to settle all of the horrific child rape cases from when they ran residential schools (you know, took small First Nations children out of their homes, moved them hundreds of kms away from their families, beat them for speaking their language at best and subjected them to horrific sexual, physical and emotional abuse at worst).  Ugh.

Don’t get me wrong, there are many wonderful things about the Anglican church.  I didn’t realize for a long time growing up that other churches didn’t have female reverends.  But, the Anglicans certainly have a lot of blood on their hands.

I also seem to recall a big division in the Anglican church about gay ministers, but can’t remember how it ended up.

If I was so inclined these days I think I’d go to the United or Luthern church.

The Episcopalians  for the most part have gay marriage on the kosher books as far as I know. And it isn’t like the Roman Catholics have a spotless history.

Truthfully, there are some theological reasons I am more Roman Catholic than any other breed. The idea of sacrificial mass, the intercession of saints, the reverence of Mary, First and Second Maccabees and so on. But I have my days when I get so damn tired of our hierarchy, that Episcopalian-ism seems like a halfway decent second best. But then of course I have my days when I am of the opinion that I shouldn’t have to compromise my own identity because of a couple of jerk Bishops.

The letter ends by telling Catholics they have a “duty to do all we can to ensure that the true meaning of marriage is not lost for future generations”.

On gay marriage in the UK, I posted the above (from the BBC article) on Facebook with this comment: “I can’t be the only one who read that and thought they’d lost the argument about 500 years ago with Henry VIII?” It really is a slightly bizarre argument that the churches have got themselves into, especially as they can’t even agree about where they stand on the issue.

Very sad week for world news. The murders in Iraq seem particularly horrifying as it’s being done somewhat officially and in the open. It’s another situation where Islamic governments and forces are becoming quite worrying.

By the way. Santorum. Looking at that picture, I can’t help but think I’ve seen him as the baddie in a Disney/Pixar/Dreamworks film.

Oh. And time differences/clock changes. Totally weirded out because we don’t change for another couple of weeks.

Once, we had a video chat set up with a group of students in Russia and our students in America.  Lots of planning went into it, and preparation, and then when we showed up, they weren’t there.  Because our time had changed and theirs hadn’t, which is hardly ever considered – it really should be a worldwide thing if at all, no?

And yes, it’s been a sad week for sure.  And every time I open this article and see Santorum’s smug face imagining my sex life, I regret using that picture.

Would be interesting if there could be more agreement on clock changes. But I can’t ever see it happening. There have been tentative discussions here in the UK about going forward two hours, which is, in the end, just fuelling animosity between Scotland and England. But that’s another discussion!

Really has been a sad week. And, my goodness, the Republican candidates just get more and more terrifying.

Crazy is Canada and DST.  One province, Saskatchewan, doesn’t ever change, there are pockets in both northern BC and northern Ontario (there may be more) that don’t change either.  So, for example, in northern British Columbia (but not all of the north, just some of it) sometimes is on Alberta time (province to the east) and sometimes on the rest of BC time.  However, north of that pocket, yet still in BC it does change.  It’s a mind f$@k.

I should add, there is a tiny pocket in Saskatchewan that does change – with Alberta.

There is a famous saying in SK that a First Nations chief once commented that only the government would cut off the end of a blanket, sew it to the other end and call it a longer blanket.

Where has the US been on this Afghanistan thing?


Why hasn;t anyone gotten angry? No one is angry enough!! This is crazy. I don’t just want the government to be sad or apologetic. I want the president to be apoplectic with rage. I want the generals to be shown speaking with locked jaws.

I want them to prove how much this means to them.  I want them to acknowledge that this is a tragedy for the Afghan people that should have been prevented.  I want them to acknowledge what this has done to our soldiers.  I want them to be sorry and as angry as the Afghans, because this is not right. And they should be angry.



I agree that they should be treating it with caution.  I just want someone to say “This is not the opinion of the US military and we are ashamed that we had this person among our ranks.  The grief and anger of the Afghani people over this incident is justified and we are taking swift and immediate action to bring the responsible party to justice.”

Frankly, at this point, knowing very little (it may change and maybe I’m too hasty about this.) but I support throwing him to the Afghan courts.

edited to say: No, I don’t.  I shouldn’t really think that in anger.  I know this base is struggling, it’s the roughest area of the country and there is extreme stress. Maybe waiting until more info comes out before I elect to throw him to people who will assuredly torture him is better.

He has a wife and two kids.  A wife and two kids.  My heart hurts so bad for his family.  How do they possibly cope with something like this?  He killed children, mothers, and fathers without regard.  Some of the tribal leaders are saying that there was more than one American soldier.  Please, please, please let him have acted alone.

I know.  It’s tearing me up and I’m just a spectator. 

That’s why I had to take back saying he should be given to the Afghans.  His family doesn’t deserve that.  Its crazy to be hoping that he’s suffering from extreme mental problems and that on medication he gets better enough to apologize to that community once he realizes that extent.  I can’t believe that psychosis is the best case scenario.

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