Hillary Went To Work Sick–Should All Americans Get Paid Sick Leave?

Some Americans who only want what the rest of the world has are called radical. This is a fascinating look at one area we’re behind in.

BBC.COM: “Hillary Clinton will not be the only American who has gone to work this week with an illness that should have kept her at home.
By showing up for a 9/11 commemoration ceremony on Sunday, despite being diagnosed with pneumonia, the Democratic presidential hopeful was doing what millions of Americans do every day – ignoring her symptoms and attempting to “power through” a day’s work.
“No one’s allowed to be sick. Sickness is weakness,” says LeaAnne DeRigne, associate professor of social work at Florida Atlantic University.

“The attitude is ‘I’m irreplaceable – if I don’t show up, my job won’t get done.’ Some of it is also concern about how you are going to be viewed as an employee – whether you can be counted on or not. Whether by having too many sick days, too many absences, you are not seen as reliable.”

She adds: “At the very core of being American is the idea of being a hard worker.”

Not that most Americans have a choice in the matter.
America is the only developed industrial nation that does not guarantee paid sick leave by law.

Eligible workers are allowed to take up to 12 weeks off for illnesses or a new baby without fear of losing their job – under the Family and Medical Leave Act, signed into law by Bill Clinton in 1993 – and many companies will allow their staff a few days’ sick leave as part of their employee benefits package.

But for millions of low-paid workers, the rule is simple – if you don’t show up for work you lose a day’s pay.”

MORE: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-37353742

Hillary opposes it. Trump opposes it. Sanders opposes it. Obama supports it. WHY?

Hillary opposes it.
Trump opposes it.
Sanders opposes it.
Obama supports it. WHY?

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Yep, forget everything you heard about the GOP Congress blocking all of Obama’s great legislation because that is not happening right now. Obama is joiniing republicans in Congress to trying to shaft the American people in such a dastardly way that no presidential candidate could even put their name to without losing the working class’s vote. It’s so shamefully pro-corporation that even many democrats in Congress can’t support the president of their own party in this. It will kill jobs, compromise US sovereignty, enable drug monopolies so that EpiPen episodes can happen worldwide, harm the environment and much more. If you know about how bad the TPP is for 99% of us, please call your Senator today. If you don’t, maybe you’ll read what’s below. If this deal were good for Americans, Obama wouldn’t have rammed it through in secret. If 1/5th of my friends called in today, it could be a big help in stopping the TPP. Or if all my friends are not affected because they are part of the 1%, could you please lend me a million bucks for 50 years?

FOOD AND SAFETY WATCH: “The fate of the corporate-rigged Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is being decided right now.

That’s why dozens of organizations are working together to make TODAY a nationwide TPP Call-In Day — to get all of our representatives to publicly announce opposition to the TPP before the election.

Call your member of Congress right now to get him or her to issue a public statement opposing the TPP

The TPP’s backers are twisting arms and calling in favors, trying to scrounge up enough congressional support to schedule a vote on the dangerous deal in the lame-duck session of Congress.

They know their only chance to get the TPP approved is to hold a vote after the election when representatives’ political accountability to constituents is at its absolute lowest. But we can foil that plan if we force members of Congress to take a public position before Election Day.

That is because they know they cannot be for the TPP and then face the voters. Americans are furious about the influence corporations have over governments and the decisions that shape our daily lives – and the TPP is a horrifying example of corporate influence gone wrong.

The TPP will offshore millions of American jobs, expose the U.S. to imports of unsafe food, and empower corporations to attack hard-fought U.S. environmental and health safeguards.

The TPP language could also dissuade rigorous oversight of imported foods, including inspection of fish imported from TPP member countries that raise farmed fish with chemicals and antibiotics not allowed in the U.S. Already federal inspection of seafood imports is already inadequate with just over 1 percent of imported fish and seafood shipments being inspected or tested.

Call your member of Congress right now and urge him/her to publicly oppose the TPP

The TPP language could also allow private corporations to set food standards. One of the most concerning aspects of the TPP is the Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) mechanism, which allows private corporations to sue national governments over rules that companies believe inhibit their profit-making ability. As ISDS tribunals in other trade agreements such as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) attest, trade courts have consistently ruled against nation-state bans on toxins, laws protecting forests or water services, restrictions on mining, and many other public and environmental safeguards.

To make matters worse, any U.S. food safety rules on GMOs, labeling, pesticides, animal drugs, or additives that are higher than international standards could be subject to challenge as “illegal trade barriers.”

Under “fast-track” trade authority passed earlier this year, legislators must vote a straight yes/no and are not allowed to amend any text of the TPP. Congress must take it or leave it – and they should leave it. Instead of elevating economic, health, and environmental standards across borders, the TPP creates a race to the bottom.

Fight the TPP corporate power-grab by calling your representative now >>

Calling your representative is quick and easy. And it REALLY makes a difference. The offices keep a log of calls and track the overall numbers. For your call, we’ll provide a toll-free phone number right to your representative and sample script for you to use.

Some of the world’s biggest corporations are pushing for the TPP and are relentless about having a lame-duck vote on the deal. The other side has more resources, to be sure, but we can still kill the TPP.

That’s because our side represents the biggest most diverse coalition ever assembled to fight corporate-rigged “trade” deals. This diverse group — labor, environmental, consumer, faith, health, family farm, civil rights, senior citizen, youth, LGBT and other organizations and activists — has united because the TPP is a corporate Trojan horse packed with devastation for all of our goals and the policies we all care about.

The whole coalition is taking part in the TPP Call-In Day to have congressional office phones ringing off the hook. Please join us!

If we all take action together, today, we will make a serious impact on Capitol Hill.”

My thoughts on Hillary’s mysterious illness.

Are people really still up in arms about Hillary having trouble breathing, getting overheated and nearly falling to her knees during a 9/11 event? Lemme tell you, when I’m at an event and I see either a 9 or 11, I drop right own to my knees, get extremely overheated and it ain’t long until I’m having trouble breathing!

Israel Spits In Obama’s Face…So He Gives Them $38 Billion. Sound Legit?

Over the weekend, headlines noted that the White House was “livid” with Israel’s Netanyahu over his remarks on video claiming that UN member countries who support a Palestinian settlement are engaging in “ethnic cleansing” of jews. I think anyone who is honest with themselves knows that it’s actually Israelis who’re engaged in ethnic cleansing of Palestinians, but for whatever reason, the US and the UN were livid over Netanyahu’s remarks.

And what would you do if you were livid with someone? Reward them with the most money you’ve ever given them? Hardly, yet that’s what the Obama is doing. $38 billion over the next 10 years–the largest amount we’ve ever paid to any country. Oh, but in exchange for the money, Israel is making concessions. One of them is that Israel agrees not to ask for more money. Well, why would they need to ask? We’ve just given them more than ever.

Can you imagine what $38 billion could do for the US? Create jobs, install solar panels, go towards cheaper education and health care, rebuild our crumbling infrastructure, get vets the care they need when they need it, expand social security benefits a little, improve our system of education, etc. But no, we’re more concerned with Israel’s well-being than our own. When you hear pundits on the news discussing US foreign policy, you’ll often hear them discussing “US interests.” For example, Leon Panetta recently used this expression to say that Hillary was more prone to use military force to advance “US interests” than Obama has been. Typically, “US interests” refers to conflicts we start or fund which do not actually protect the US from any attacker. Israel is key among them, since the $3.1 billion we currently give them every year (which even Bernie Sanders votes to approve) means that US taxpayers actually pay more for Israel’s defense than Israeli taxpayers themselves do. It doesn’t stop at Israel. The US regularly buys it’s allies. We’re so hated and distrusted that we’re forced to buy our friends. A clear indication of a foreign policy gone wrong, yet one espoused by democrats and republicans.

Bizarrely, it’s often claimed the Israel needs our financial aid because they are the lone democracy in the Middle East. We like to cultivate democracy overseas–remember how our media proudly displayed the ink-stained fingers of Afghan women who could finally vote? The problem is, that the US is now an oligarchy in which corporations, not voters, control the government. We don’t have democracy here, yet we pay to support democracies overseas. Doesn’t pass the smell test.

Has f#cking around all over the world helped the US? No, it’s created terrorists groups like ISIS and Al Qaeda. Do you give record sums to countries you are “livid” with? Does that even make sense? And would you, voters, prefer to see your tax dollars support the country you live in rather than a bully like Israel which is engaged in ethnic cleansing? If your answer is no, then you aren’t voting for anyone candidate in either major party. I’d hate to see how much we’d give Israel if we weren’t “livid.” And I love this headline which makes it seem like Obama bucks the GOP. There is no difference between the parties on their support for Israel. Even at a time when Israel spits in Obama’s face…again.

HAARETZ: “For the umpteenth time, senior Obama administration officials were caught by surprise by the fact that Netanyahu has no qualms about attacking them, even during a highly sensitive period when he needs U.S. diplomatic and military assistance.

Officials at the White House and State Department have sensed that, since the report, Netanyahu has been ridiculing them and, in the worst case scenario, actually spit in their faces.”

Don’t you love to repay spit in your face with a payment of billions? Those billions come directly from your tax dollars–do you pretend to have no say in this? By saying nothing, you condone this lunacy.

read more: http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/1.741299

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/us-israel-military-deal_us_57d8634ee4b09d7a68804e58?section=&

Our Rotten Congress Finally Passes a 9/11 Bill….And Obama Prepares To Veto It?

Yesterday, we remembered 9/11. Friday, our typically do-nothing Congress actually passed a bill which would enable families to sue Saudi Arabia, where almost all of the 9/11 hijackers came from. Yet Obama says he plans to veto it.

Why would Obama not want to enable 9/11 families to sue? Because it sets a legal precedent which could enable countries the US has killed many in to sue us. That, and the fact that we wouldn’t want to endanger our relationship with Saudi Arabia since we sell them so many weapons.

I saw one article about this which claimed that this was a rare occasion in which Obama broke with his party’s leadership, who supported the bill. Actually, that’s not exactly true. Few democrats in Congress support the TPP, ether. Neither Sanders, Clinton, Warren nor even Trump support that awful trade deal. So what exactly is Obama doing? He’s taking advantage of a head-line grabbing tabloid election to distract us and undermine the country in favor of countries which send terrorists here and corporations which want to send what’s left of our jobs overseas.

Congress feels so strongly about this bill that they intend to override his veto–which they’ve never attempted during either of his two terms. So our lawmakers represent us, and who does Obama represent in vetoing this bill? Saudi Arabia? Or just anyone who will pay him? Certainly not the families of 9/11.

Obama Expected To Veto 9/11 Bill Because It Sets A Dangerous Precedent

https://thinkprogress.org/house-passes-9-11-bill-db5c0ce36b51#.1tt6t51dp

New Interview With Call Me Adam

New interview and here’s a taste:

Lady Bunny is a living legend! She has been on my radar since the days of Wigstock and I’m thrilled to have been given the opportunity to speak with her. In what is probably one of my raciest interviews to date, Lady Bunny and I definitely take things to a new level!

We dish about her new one-woman show Trans-Jester!, the creation of Lady Bunny herself as well as her drag festival Wigstock, working with RuPaul, being a judge on Drag U, and a revelation that will make a lot of jaws drop!

In Trans-Jester!, Lady Bunny presents new parodies of selections from Adele, Rent and Bruno Mars punctuated by zany Laugh-In style zingers, as well as insightful social commentary, targeting the current overemphasis on political correctness. Lady Bunny breaks down some of the latest buzzwords that we’re all supposed to remember for every for every occasion as we “evolve.” Lady Bunny may also shock you with revelations about her own gender identity. “She” asks pertinent questions about cultural appropriation prior to declaring her undying love for black cock in a vulgar version of “Uptown Funk.” Lady Bunny brings it on home with a show-stopping finale featuring two classics from Gypsy and Follies. The eclectic evening also resurrects songs by country star Lynn Anderson, Millie Jackson and even an original tune which pokes fun at the dating life of whatever sex it is you want to call this “Lady.”

1. You just stared a month long residency at the Stonewall Inn with the return of your show Trans-Jester! What made now the right time to do this show again after just completing a three-month run of it?

Well, Miss Graceful broke her little toe and was banished to wear flats for over a month. It’s hard to read your audience when you’re wearing Payless size 12 ballet flats! But we still had full houses when we were doing Monday-Wednesday shows, so it seemed unwise to end the show completely. Also, I had a lot of traveling to do this summer which was booked before the show kept getting extended. It was an extraordinary experience to perform at Stonewall while people grieved the shooting at Pulse. The community just sort of organically gravitated back to where it all started–Stonewall. Not the most chic venue, not the latest, but that’s where gay rights began in this country. It was landmarked this summer by President Obama, so I think it’s a great place to be on a stage asking: Have we got so many letters in the LGBTIQA that no one knows what that even stands for any more? How does a community which can’t even name itself defend itself? I’m sick of the infighting over labels that goes on within our community when I’d much rather be fighting our oppressors–not each other. But this is all very high-minded talk for a show which is basically a raunchfest, with an overall theme of poking fun at political correctness gone wild. With the infernal Trump, political correctness is still in the news. But Trump and his followers use a shield of politically incorrectness to hide their racism and xenophobia. I’m coming from a liberal viewpoint opposite from Trump to bemoan the fact that we aren’t allowed to laugh anymore. Or mock things which strike us as amusing.

READ THE REST:   http://www.callmeadam.com/interviews/2016/9/5/call-answered-lady-bunny-trans-jester-at-stonewall-inn-nyc.html#.V9Ax8cdlmEL

A Sneak Peak At Trans-Jester!, My New Show At Stonewall Tonight Through 10/1

Trans-Jester! is back at The Stonewall Inn through October 1st. The show pokes fun at PC word police between snippets of humor which is alternately raunchy and plain silly. It’s Wednesday through Fridays at 7PM–except this week we only have shows on Wednesday and Saturday. Hope you can make it!

Pussies Gone Wild!

My Thoughts On Mark Ruffalo Casting Matt Bomer In A Trans Role

I’ve seen friends posting about this who have different opinions of this male actor playing a trans character. Here’s mine.

It would be nice if all trans roles were played by trans women. But there is nothing nice or fair about Hollywood. Stephanie Mills created the role of Dorothy in The Wiz and sang it to perfection, but Diana Ross got the movie role. Diana was too old for the part and not half the singer Stephanie is, but Diana was cast because she was prettier and a bigger star. Is it nice? No. Did it make Stephanie Mills feel good? I doubt it. Is Hollywood concerned with making people feel good or making business decisions?

Harvey Fierstein originated and excelled in Divine’s role in Hairspray on Broadway. He would have been just as fantastic in the movie. Instead we got a lame performance by John Travolta in drag, because Travolta is a bigger marquee name and therefore would sell more movie tickets than Fierstein. Even though Travolta’s take on the role was widely slammed as poor.

Honey, I rolled my eyes so hard when I saw Terrence Stamp playing a post-op trans woman in Priscilla, Queen of The Desert. He may have played the part well, but the close-ups showed Stamp’s full beard! I don’t think many trans women who undergo sexual reassignment surgery keep a full, this beards, do they? I was told by an insider that even Stamp himself was concerned about his noticeable stubble conflicting with the role, but the powers that be dismissed his concerns. They didn’t want Stamp to pass, because it might confuse dumb audiences if Stamp’s character looked exactly like a woman.

So whether we are discussing Oscars so white, trans actors only being allowed to play trans roles, gay actors only playing gay roles or whatever, you can’t expect a cutthroat industry like Hollywood to do what you think they should do. They don’t operate in a world of “should” and they never have. Look at the laughably idiotic asian role created by Mickey Rooney in Breakfast At Tiffany’s. Don’t you think there were plenty of asian character actors able to play that role way better? Or take the recent bashing of Zoe Saldana when she was chosen to star in the Nina Simone biopic. It is absurd that Hollywood wants to make a movie about a darker skinned singer, yet producers are too scared to risk defying mainstream beauty standards to cast an actress who looks like the singer she’s portraying, because we mainly want to see movies about pretty people. They couldn’t even get someone plain to play a character named Ugly Betty.

Nothing about Hollywood is fair, or some of my very talented trans friends would have entire vehicles written for them–many are talented, beautiful and fascinating. Candis Cayne, for example. What was her last role? To add some bubbly personality and charm to I Am Cait because it’s show’s awkward star possessed no star quality whatsoever. Why not just make Candis the star then? Because Candis isn’t a former Olympic athlete or related to the Kardashians. And speaking of the Kardashians, how do you think multi-talented performers like Jenifer Lewis and Megan Mullally feel about how fair it is that an entire entertainment empire was built on the “talent” of Kim K, which boils down to performing fellatio on a “leaked” sex tape?There is nothing fair about show business and everyone who seeks work in this industry knows that. You can try to change it but I sincerely doubt you’ll succeed. What you are asking of Hollywood is that a system which seldom represents many things fairly to change it’s ways. It’s like telling an asshole–please stop being an asshole. Does that ever work? Because an asshole usually won’t care what you think. Although now, they issue apologies…and go right on doing what they were gonna do anyway.

And for those PC types who howl that cisgender men should never play trans roles, can you please explain what transsexual Laverne Cox is doing playing a “sweet transvestite” in the upcoming remake of The Rocky Horror Picture Show? According to the current PC logic which I don’t subscribe to, Laverne may confuse viewers because she is a transsexual, not a drag queen. One could easily argue that Laverne is stealing a drag queen’s role and that only drag queens should play drag queen roles. The fact is, Laverne worked very hard, got lucky and became a big enough star to warrant a starring role. And if you really want to follow this through to it’s logical/illogical conclusion, Laverne and other trans actresses should never play characters which are biological women, because that steals roles from actresses who were born female. Is that really what trans actresses want–to pigeonhole themselves? I’m sure they’d be delighted to play real women or possibly even drag queens as Laverne Cox is now doing in a big budget spectacle. The message is that trans can play any role they set their sights on, but only trans can play trans roles. How does that add up?

In the Birdcage, Hank Azaria was a stand-out playing a flaming gay maid. Hank said he was straight, yet he even received praise from GLAAD for playing an extremely flamboyant, stereotypical mincing and lisping gay maid. I’m sure plenty of gay actors could have played the role just as well as Hank. But isn’t the whole art of acting the ability to portray something which you aren’t? Anyone should be able to play anything, in my view. And now I’m strapping on my mary janes for my audition to play Honey Boo Boo’s younger sister in a sex tape with Ray J which I just know is gonna be my big break!

Mark Ruffalo Apologizes To Trans Community For Casting Matt Bomer As Trans Woman

Nasa Warns Of Record Temperatures Which No Mainstream Presidential Candidate or Obama Will Address

This is frightening. And there is no one on the political landscape who will do much about it. Bernie Sanders was instantly ridiculed for suggesting in a debate that climate change was the biggest threat to national security, even though the Pentagon itself is well aware of this for some time and agrees with Sanders. We’d prefer to have enemies we can actually go and kill as opposed to fighting an enemy which we are allowing to kill us, and which might force politicians’ corporate donors to trim their profits in order to save the planet. It’s the ugliest, most short-sighted greed imaginable which no responsible leader would consider.

Yet our leaders do more than consider it. Obama is constantly paying lip service to action on global warming at high profile, international climate talks which are little more than photo ops that kick the can down the road to the next high profile, international photo op. Meanwhile, Obama is green lighting offshore drilling for the 1st time ever along the eastern coastline from Florida to Virginia, he gave Shell (with it’s poor record on safety) the rights to drill in the Arctic, and he just visited the flooding in Louisiana for a photo op. The next day, inside the very Superdome under which Katrina victims cowered, the federal government sold off leases for more drilling in the Gulf, mindless of the horrors of the BP spill. All democrats agree while campaigning that we need to move towards green energy, and even countries much poorer than the US (like Brazil) are implementing these changes successfully. I guess their leaders are superior to ours in at least that respect.

Hillary sold fracking (which can taint drinking water) worldwide as secretary of state, yet pretends to be concerned over victims of poisoned water in Flint, Michigan for her photo op. Will it be a feminist milestone when our first female president poisons Mother Earth with the rampant greed of the US? Trump is too insane to get elected, but if he were, his party traditionally doesn’t even acknowledge that climate change exists.

So if you read this article and it concerns you, know that no one in our political mainstream has any plans to pare down our use of fossil fuels. Even the idiotic Texas oil man George W. Bush claimed that we are addicted to oil decades ago. We’re also addicted to needing the only planet we can live on. Which we are currently destroying. What really kills me is the christians, who would preach hellfire to sinners like gays or women who get abortions. Yet these same christians could care less that we’re destroying the home they think God gave to us. I’m glad the youth are concerned abut this. One recent estimate claimed that it will be too hot to hold the summer Olympics by 2085. Even a nut like Tammie Brown, who called me upset about this yesterday, knows that we need to listen to the Indians on this one.

GUARDIAN: Nasa: Earth is warming at a pace ‘unprecedented in 1,000 years’
Records of temperature that go back far further than 1800s suggest warming of recent decades is out of step with any period over the past millennium

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/aug/30/nasa-climate-change-warning-earth-temperature-warming

Wait! Lady Bunny is “Singing” Sondheim?

v2Thanks to all who forwarded/watched this version of I’m Still Here from the Wigstock cruise. The intro is cut off here, but I tried to say something about a sense of loss both of the funky NYC we used to love, but also of some noted performers we lost along the way. I hope Stephen Sondheim won’t mind, but I lengthened his arrangement to include room to give shout-outs to many who lit up the Wigstock stage going way back to Baby Gregor–who did a phenomenal Janice Joplin while possibly on even more drugs than she–to Dean Johnson, Page, and many of the stars of the Ballroom scene like Dorian Corey, Octavia St. Laurent (who showed off both her gorgeous voice and figure) and to WIllie Ninja, who was something of a regular. And if anyone is wondering why I mentioned Vickie Sue Robinson, this latina diva actually Turned The Beat Around one year at Wigstock before her untimely passing.

I have never been a show tune queen, but I perform a different version of I’m Still Here in Trans-Jester!, which opens at Stonewall Inn tomorrow night. Another surprise hit from that show is another Sondheim tune, Rose’s Turn. Definitely a new direction for me, But don’t worry, there are still plenty of fart and penis jokes!

Trans-Jester opens tomorrow night and runs 8/31-10/1 at Stonewall Inn. For more info/tix:  http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2594512

 

ALL HAIL LUCILLE BALL–IN A LONG WIG!

I worship this fool! People ask me if I’ve seen this new show or that show, but when you grow up with mega-watt stars like Lucy, Carol Burnett, Flip Wilson, anyone on All In The Family The Jeffersons, or the Beverly Hillbillies, it’s hard to get into a Snooki, whose greatest talent is getting drunk and hanging around a beach. I especially love sensing a little remnant of Lucille’s showgirl days in the 40s when she first kicks her boot ever so seductively. In a hairdo which is both up and down, her mug takes on a teeny bit of an Audrey Hepburn quality. Lucy was always underrated a a beauty because she was just so damn funny. I don’t recall the exact episode, but on one of her often maligned but still genius later shows, she goes underground as a hippie to spy on her then almost grown kids. It was a hands-in-the-air howling situation to see her decked in a beatnik disguise. Maybe this song was from that one?

LADY BUNNY IN THE NEW YORKER!

A little write-up of my new show Trans-Jester, by Hilton Als. Check it out here:

THE THEATRE SEPTEMBER 5, 2016 ISSUE
LADY BUNNY, A CREATOR OF WIGSTOCK, HAS A NEW SHOW
“Trans-Jester,” at the Stonewall Inn, takes on everyone from Caitlyn Jenner to the thought police.

http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2016/09/05/lady-bunnys-trans-jester

For tickets, please visit: LADY BUNNY - TRANS-JESTER 11x17 - V3

What Do Martin Shkreli, EpiPen’s Bresch and Obama Have In Common?

Remember when Martin Shkreli jacked up the price of Daraprim from $13.50 a pill to $750 overnight? He instantly became the most hated man in America.

Within this week, Mylan’s CEO Bresch raised the price of EpiPen’s so much that Hillary Clinton rightly savaged her until she lowered the price, Sarah Jessica Parker quit as their spokesperson and Ralph Nader called the $400 EpiPen price hike “greed on steroids.”

Meanwhile, Obama is trying to push through the TPP trade deal which would give companies like Shkreli’s Turing Pharmaceuticals and Mylan enhanced powers to price gouge on life-saving drugs. Is there any outrage over that? Any name-calling? Any awareness at all? Any mention on the news? Nope.You guys are too busy wishing Obama happy birthday and saying how much you’ll miss him as president, while he’s cementing the rights of pharmaceutical giants to form monopolies which can more easily rip poor people off in poor countries. Far from lowering prescription prices here, the TPP enables unscrupulous pharmaceutical giants to export the US’s absurdly high prices all over the world.

Clinton, Sanders and even Trump claim they are against the TPP. (No one believes Clinton is against it and no one believes Trump on anything.) Why is Obama for it and why do you give him a pass on what you slam others as monstrous for?

Under the TPP, America’s insanely high drug prices will be an unappreciated export

Do I dare attempt to give a computer tip on the eve of my 54th birthday?

I am one of the least tech-savvy people I know. Most 5 year olds have a better grasp of technology than I do and I’m even too dumb for my smartphone. I actually like to talk on mine–ain’t that crazy? Since the sound has been lower on my last three iPhones, I entertain a conspiracy theory that the developers frown on chatting to force you to continually fuss over new aps. I like that app which sparks actual conversations. It’s available on every cellphone and it’s called the OFF button.

I’ve always gotten Apple laptops because Cashetta was kind enough to show me some basics and claimed Apple computers were easier for idiots like me. Many trips to the Genius Bar later, I would like to dare to share a tip. Don’t laugh! Just in case this helps any of you who use a Mac. Had I known it, it would have saved me so much time, hassle and tearing my wig hair out!

Time Machine may be great for some things. However, if you have a software issue(s) and you have to take your computer in to be wiped clean and then reinstall the operating system and all your data, be warned. When you reimport all your data from a Time Machine back-up, you reimport all of the software issues that brought you to the Genius Bar in the first place. The same is true of restoring your data using Migration Assistant, according to the Genius Barman I spoke with today. Time Machine basically takes a snapshot of everything on your computer each time you back it up. That snapshot includes all the software bugs! They will return along with your data if you use Time Machine.

So my advice is to back everything up manually by dragging and dropping all your precious photos, music, videos, etc. onto the external hard drive you use for back-ups. Feel free to correct me if I’m wrong and you’re more knowledgable about this stuff than I, but it’s taken me a lot of time chipping away at the advisors to get the truth–you shouldn’t rely on Time Machine as your only back-up. And since these external hard drives can fail like any device, back it up on more than one if you’re dealing with irreplaceable stuff like a memoir. Forgive me if this is common knowledge already, but I sometimes feel like Apple is pushing this Time Machine as so fabulous when it can actually restore your problems along with your data. I’m sure you’re thinking “Saturday night! Let’s all decipher tech tips from a senile drag queen!”

Also, I got some scary warning recently about how if your external hard drive runs out of storage space, Time Machine will start erasing the oldest back-ups on that drive. And the old ones might be the really treasured data–like photos taken when you still looked young! And if those disappear, what will you use for your slutty Craigs List personal ads and grindr?

1973 Bollywood Clip–one of the best!

I hope your day is as fun as this

My 1st ever TBT pic by Andy Warhol (I think!)

OK, yesterday I took the best album challenge and now I’m doing my first TBT. Next I’ll be playing Pokemon Go while SnapChatting. But hey, at least I’m not screaming about politics for a change!

Michael Patterson found this pic of me which I suspect was taken by Andy Warhol. Benjamin Liu, with me, was Andy’s assistant and invited a bunch of downtown kooks to a dinner party with Andy. I had just moved to NYC a year or two before, so I excitedly threw on this hideous polyester floral maxi. I’m glad the photo was in black and white so you can’t see the garish colors of the gown. Andy was aloof, but he snapped so many photos of me that I giddily (and drunkenly) assumed that I’d be the next Warhol superstar. Then someone told me that Andy often photographed people with no film in his camera just to get people at a party animated. It worked on this fool–cuz I gave him every pose I knew. This is the first pic I’ve ever seen from that night. I think I look a bit like Shelly Winters. Now you see why I wear lower lashes. But I could barely afford uppers back then! Let’s not even discuss the wig!LADY BUNNY WARHOL

Has Social Media Become Anti-Social?

I had an eye-opening experience the other night en route to a gig. I was a little late and quickly grabbed a cab. Suddenly, there was a commotion outside. An older white couple, a few school kids and a young, straight-appearing black guy were all yelling at me: “You’re dress is caught in the cab door!” I fixed it and thanked them. The whole thing was very interesting to me because there was no dragphobia, hagphobia, homophobia or transphobia on their part–all these people from all walks of life just saw a bitch who needed help and they gladly gave it. They may not have known what I was and I don’t always know myself, but their desire to aid a total stranger seemed very human to me. And “human”, I’m sorry to say, seemed refreshingly different.

Apparently, none of these folks stopped to think: Maybe she doesn’t align with my political or religious views so I won’t offer “her” my help because I might be helping the enemy. Nor did I turn and analyze them with stinking thinking like “The older white couple could be Trump supporters—so reject THEIR help and let your gown trail in the filth.” Or a bitter notion of “I’m so glad these brats could take time off from their Pokemon Go to rescue my stunning if oversized muumuu.” Or “That black guy is probably on his way to a #blacklivesmatter protest, so get his number and we’ll hook up later.” For a brief moment, all of our beliefs were suspended.

I got home later that night and logged onto Facebook, I had a totally different experience. So many people are at each others throats, drawing lines in the sand based on their views. As we spend more time on social media, we carve out our little online empires and lately I’ve seen so many people with posts like “Delete me if you support Trump” or “Admit that black lives matter more than all lives matter.” Or “cops’ lives matter more than blacks’ do.” I’m glad you care about causes. As you all know, I have strong views myself. But are we digging ourselves into holes online? I know I do, because Facebook’s algorithms feature friends’ posts who you have like more. So regardless of who you support, you are mainly seeing likeminded friends’ posts. They may be very illuminating posts, but they’re often slanted towards what you’ve already liked. One video I posted yesterday suggested that the cure for this was liking occasional posts from conservative sites or whoever the opposite of your own viewpoint is. While I can see that as a remedy or sorts, I couldn’t stop comparing my online and offline experiences.

Total strangers in the street caring enough about a fellow human being to do them a favor, and 5,000 “friends” issuing ultimatums. Has social media become anti-social? If we’re just in the middle of a toxic election and this will fade afterwards, then that’s understandable. (Although I don’t seem how two unpopular frontrunners result in many people being happy with the elections’ result.) I have axes to grind, too, and I’ll never suggest turning a blind eye to what issues matter to you. But over the past 6 months, has Facebook taken an ugly turn or are we merely reflecting on an uglier world? (Or in the case of cellphone footage of police killing black people, waking up to a world which some have been known to be very ugly for a very long time?) David Bowie died and then Prince, followed by months of tributes to each. Then the election cycle kicked in. Then Orlando. Then bombings worldwide. Has Facebook become a portal into death and despair in the last year? It certainly seems like it. Do we need an It Gets Better campaign for adults now?

As I headed uptown in a taxi, I passed a few guys hanging out on the street corner around 33rd Street who were laughing their heads off. I couldn’t tell you if they were old friends or if they had just met in a bar and were taking a cigarette break. But they were thoroughly enjoying each other’s company and sharing actual face time as opposed to FaceTime struck me somehow as a very “summery” thing to do. There’s not a ton of summer left. I know I’ve left out some of the other summery pursuits like picnics in the park and exercising outdoors (aka walking to the picnics). My friend Assaad Phoenix El Marjou told me his mother questioned him about his Facebook use asking him “Every morning you are typing for hours–who is paying you?” I think she has a good point, said the long-winded queen who has just finished another essay-length post. So I’ll see you all at the picnic! Or you can just enjoy the mouthwatering photos I post of the food.

BERNIE SANDERS JUST ENDORSED WHO?

Bernie Sanders always said he would endorse Hillary if she were the nominee, but a lot of us didn’t want to hear it. We prayed that an indictment over her emails, exposure of voter fraud/suppression in several states or his mistreatment at the hands of the DNC would cause Bernie to eventually seize the nomination or snap and run as an independent. Many of us felt he was too good for the democratic party anyway, since corporate democrats like the Clintons and Obama have blurred the distinction between the two parties and somehow it’s working people, not corporations, who always lose out. I repeat, that would be 99% of us who always lose out no matter which party is in power. Sanders’ agenda, far from pie-in-the-sky, actually sought to restore the democratic party back to it’s former luster before these war and Wall Street-loving “democrats” ran my former party into the ground. The rock bottom result is Hillary Clinton, who is almost as unpopular as the miserable Donald Trump. And seen as less trustworthy, not only because of a GOP smear campaign, but because of her own many lies, flip-flops and questionable record.

I imagine that Bernie himself never dreamed he would be catapulted as far as he was. Starting at 2% when he announced his candidacy, he was always viewed as a long shot and dismissed by the mainstream media as a fringe candidate. Well, that “fringe” candidate with his “radical” ideas won 20 states. In a world of corporate cash gone wild, this man defined what a grass roots campaign is all about. Sanders took the Occupy Wall Street ideas of income inequality and breaking up the big banks, put a suit on them, and got them discussed on national TV. He brought progressive ideas to primaries which resonated with millions of voters and was praised even by some Hillary supporters for bringing the debate to the left. A hardcore, jaded activist friend told me that while skeptical of even anyone who caucuses with the democrats, he got chills when he heard a crowd cheer at a Bernie rally in the Bronx when he denounced oligarchy.

Bernie lit the spark for a revolution and highlighted the need for fundamental change. Then he endorses the corrupt, dishonest, flip-flopping hawk of a candidate who personifies precisely what we need to revolt against. Sanders knows as well as I do what Hillary represents: greed, power to the corporations (not people) and inevitable war. I will be delighted if I’m proven wrong and a new, peace-loving Hillary rules over the land for two magnificent terms, but her record and stated goals during this campaign make that next to impossible. While Sanders can take his block of support and try to influence the DNC platform, that’s the same DNC which to shafted him repeatedly and brazenly. The DNC’s platform is a non-binding piece of paper which can be ignored by Hillary—possibly as soon as she pivots to the right in the general election. To take the time and money of youth, working class voters and those of any age or background who care about rampant income inequality and the death of the American Dream is a slap in the face to everyone who flocked to Sanders because he exposed Hillary for what she is: the opposite of progress and the definition of the very establishment we must change.

I was progressive before Bernie Sanders was running. Some of my friends are even more far-left than I and expressed doubts about the Vermont senator from the beginning. They doubted his sincerity when he let Hillary off the hook in the first debate about her emails. I, like many Sanders supporters, often wondered why our candidate was so gentlemanly towards Hillary–which completely negated the absurd allegations of sexism and the mythical Bernie Bros. (I have yet to meet one.) When reporters asked him why it was important for Hillary to release the transcripts of her Goldman Sachs speeches, he never took the bait. He could have said what we all know: that a candidate who doesn’t wish to restrict “too big to fail” banks because they’re in their pockets is likely to usher in another recession, housing collapse, austerity or whichever devious scheme benefits her Wall Street backers. He did not. Instead, he’d ask rhetorical questions like “Why would thesis financial institutions give so much money to someone and expect nothing in return?”

Sanders did claim that Hillary was unfit for office at one point. Bernie was referring to her dreadful record on foreign policy and I agree with him—she has apologized for her Iraq war vote as a mistake. The biggest foreign policy blunder in recent history and Miss Capable didn’t get it right? Only a few a few brave legislators like Sanders dared to vote against that war. Hillary supporters still try to claim that their gal didn’t know Bush was lying us into that war. I’m a drag queen with no access to secret dossiers, so if I knew Bush was lying, she knew. Even the bizarre Trump can boast that he knew the Iraq war was foolish and take his own party to task for both starting it and missing the warning signs. Hillary, who voted to create the chaotic war zone which gave birth to Isis, cannot do so without calling into question her own decision-making ability. She is also responsible for what Obama calls his presidency’s biggest regret—the regime change in Libya which Clinton pushed as Secretary of State.

I never viewed Bernie as a savior. For me he was always compromise, since he regularly approves military spending and funding Israel’s aggression. My go-to foreign policy expert is Middle East expert Phyllis Bennis, who claims that Bernie’s military objectives aren’t that different from Obama’s. Bernie did throw out the words “world peace” a couple times while campaigning, though. And you know that the “radical” idea of everyone living in worldwide harmony is like throwing red meat–er—gluten-free granola bars to us liberals. Obama campaigned as someone weary of war but then fudged his withdrawal deadlines from Afghanistan, is steadily sending more troops to Iraq, was saber-rattling at Syria not long ago, drone-bombing several countries we never declared war on and is seeking to quadruple the military budget for Central Europe. Is anyone from any of those regions seeking to invade the USA? No, but our misguided foreign policy of stirring of the hornets’ nests have scattered some of those hornets to the West to sting us here at home. You can’t bomb an ideology out of existence, but money-making bombs are what Hillary, Obama and every republican are all about. And hey, if you have more enemies, you get to have more wars which make somebody who cares little for our soldiers’ lives more money!

It was very important to us to feel that there is a choice of presidential nominees. That’s why the establishment kept dangling possible runs by Biden and Warren. And the press kept asking if Obama might endorse Sanders. These were never real possibilities, but they kept us from feeling trapped by Clinton’s inevitablty. Which is really just the establishment making sure it stays in power. I don’t care if you put a black man’s face on it, a white woman’s face on it or an orange republican face on it, I object to war and a government which serves giant corporations instead of the voters which it ought to represent.

I am not religious nor am I an overly spiritual person. But to see a bird land on Bernie’s podium in Portland and have him interpret it, over the roaring approval of the crowd, as a dove for peace….well, I like to imagine that this bird was a sign from the earth itself, which we are currently destroying with war and with inaction climate change.

I support Bernie for as long as he is running. But he no longer seems to be. He’s now playing within the system to enact progressive change within the party and elect like-minded legislators and I support him fully in this. When he returns to being a well-loved and trusted senator from Vermont, I thank him for his blast of new ideas from the north. Some may claim that progressive legislation is more likely under a President Clinton than a President Trump. They may be right, but then why is Trump denouncing the TPP when the DNC can’t bring itself to? I hate to say it but in this case, Trump is more progressive than the democrats. Sanders does not support the trade deal, Clinton claims she doesn’t (any more) and yet the DNC props the TPP up because they don’t want to embarrass Obama, who wrote the dirty deal? He needs to be embarrassed by the TPP. The fact that buffoon like Trump can campaign as a rich guy and still have a populist (if racist) message is proof of how the democrats have failed working Americans with trade deals like Bill Clinton’s NAFTA and the TPP. Hmmm, two DEMOCRATIC presidents trying to send our jobs overseas? I not only doubt Hillary’s commitment to opposing the TPP, I reject Obama for writing and pushing it and the democratic party as a whole for not openly slamming something which is so bad for most of us. But it’s great for corporations so you won’t hear much about it on the news!

I’l support Jill Stein, the Green Party candidate who won’t win, but who may poll well enough to get a place on the debate stage. Nothing Bernie can say will unify me with Hillary. This lifelong democrat from a family of democrats prefers to leave the party. If you think that my support for a third-party candidate increases Trump’s chances of winning and that scares you, then why didn’t you vote with the scandal-free, trustworthy democrat who was beating Trump in all the polls and who Hillary just adopted half the platform of? (To fool younger voters into getting on board with her so that she can dash their hopes if elected.) Be very careful with fear-based politics. You may be running so scared from the Trump monster that you blindly leap into the arms of another less obvious monster.

Some have called Sanders’ supporters sore losers. With Hillary, peace has lost. I’m proud to be a sore loser when a greater chance for peace loses. I’m concerned with policies not personalities, so whether Bernie or Jill is championing what matters to me then I’ll follow them. I’ll try and help slowly build a truly progressive party. This is, as Bernie himself said many times, bigger than one candidate. Whatever Bernie does from here on out does not taint the seeds of progress he planted. His ideas benefit 99% of us. When they lose, we all lose. So like many disappointed but still passionate supporters of Sanders’ ideas, I won’t abandon my fight for them whether he’s actually running or not. And a big part of that fight includes rejecting a candidate he has just endorsed.

WHY HILLARY’S FBI EMAIL & BENGHAZI SCANDALS DON’T WORRY ME–BUT HER RECORD DOES

You may have guessed by now that I’m no fan of Hillary Clinton. But I really don’t think milking her FBI email scandal is the best argument against her. Bernie Sanders got his first major bump in the mainstream media by claiming that “Americans are sick and tired of hearing about your damn emails” to Clinton at the first debate and I think he’s right—there are much bigger fish to fry. The FBI let Clinton off, saying she skirted rules. Look, very few of us know much if anything about legalese involving high level state department positions and what breach of protocol amounts to a broken law or laziness. So we certainly don’t know which offense deserves a reprimand, a slap on the wrist, a fine or prison time. Now I know that Sanders supporters were drooling over the thought of Hillary being carted off to jail and that spring boarding Bernie into the position of nominee, but this simply isn’t her biggest offense. Or the most clear cut. In my opinion, it’s like a republican to howl over something that isn’t that big of a deal when there are bigger ticket items she should be taken to task for. Clinton’s critics from the left are horrified about the direction she is taking the party into over decades. Like her and her husband’s move toward the federal government allying with big business to do their bidding and not ours. With a democrat now representing war and Wall Street, many lifelong can’t even recognize our own party with Hillary at it’s helm.

Hillary fans will determine that this FBI recommendation vindicates their candidate of choice. But even in victory, Clinton is shrouded in doubt by her the continued misconduct of her and her camp–the FBI’s recommendation will now go to Loretta Lynch, who just rendezvoused at a “chance” meeting with Clinton’s husband on a tarmac in Phoenix. I don’t private plane-hop much, but the likelihood of this seems very bizarre—especially when Lynch is later forced to joke about how inappropriate the encounter was and say she wished she’d known where the lock was on her plane to keep Bill out. And then after meeting with the former president, Loretta now claims that she’s going to abide by the FBI’s recommendation. Why? Because she wasn’t going to before? Did Lynch attend the Dr. Seuss School Of Law, because this makes no sense to me at all.

And of course, this whole thing proves that Hillary lies all the time. We didn’t need an FBI ruling to know that. But she lied about sending emails which were classified from her home-brew server. Whether you like her or not, it’s another lie. She sent at least 113 classified emails inappropriately. She also claimed that she used the home-brew server for convenience so she could mainly use one device. Not true. Again, I don’t know the proper protocol, but when you are under suspicion and asked to deliver all of your emails, you don’t delete a bunch of them unless they are damning. So even in “victory”, Clinton remains scandal-ridden, seems to feel she can lie under oath, ignore the rules and still suffer no consequences.

Besides her dishonesty, having the FBI director calling you “extremely careless” is a poor recommendation for a candidate for the country’s highest office who’s campaigning on her alleged capability and steady hand. We know she wants to contrast herself with loudmouthed fool Donald Trump, but the fact is that “extremely reckless” is exactly what Hillary is accusing Trump of. She doesn’t want Trump having access to power because this careless madman might control the nuclear switch. So how reassured can I be that Hillary, a known hawk, is going to be any better if she ignores rules which keep state secrets safe? “Extremely reckless” does not synch with her campaign’s image of her being steady-handed or capable. She’s capable, all right. But capable of what? I’m not paying her so she’s not working for my interests.

I think it is worth mentioning that this current email scandal is in no way the result of a decades-long GOP smear campaign agains Hillary. Her carelessness brought this on herself. I never bring up Bill and Hillary’s old scandals-why bother with hard-to-prove stuff when she has a rotten track record which is on the record.

There’s another episode over which Hillary supporters feel relieved, and that’s the recent completion of the Benghazi scandal investigation. Republicans made fools out of themselves in that 11 hour hearing in which they grilled Clinton ad nauseum over who was sent what and when. Hillary came out looking forceful, collected and yes, presidential. But everyone is missing the real scandal here. Why were we in Libya to begin with? Because as Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton saw it as her role to topple Libya’s leader for “humanitarian” reasons. He was a “bad man” like Saddam Hussein who Hillary voted as senator to overthrow in Iraq. She’s apologized for her bad judgement on that vote. So 10 years after it, she makes the same mistake and guns for regime change? She’s learned nothing from Iraq! So much for experience. She repeats her same mistakes.

The White House has claimed that Obama was 49% against overthrowing Qaddafi and 51% against it. Defense Secretary Bob Gates advised against the attack, but Hillary pressed it as necessary. Can you tell me when you ever have someone who craves war even more than the military chiefs? They always want war, but not as desperately as Hillary. Fast forward to now. Libya has become a hotbed for Isis just as Iraq has. We’ve now sent troops in to clean up Hillary’s mess. Obama has claimed that toppling Libya, Hillary’s foreign policy baby, was the biggest regret of his presidency. So the president whose legacy Hillary is trying to coast on is embarrassed by what Hillary did as his Secretary Of State? Hmmm.

Libya received next to no mainstream media attention. But before you claim that I’m wearing my tinfoil hat, let’s take a peak at an article in which the NY Times broke down the blow-by-blow machinations of the attack on Libya and interviewed key players. The NY Times has endorsed Clinton, yet even they find fault with what she did when she had access to power. It’s long, but I urge everyone to familiarize themselves with this little-covered event before you think of restoring Hillary to a place in our government.They do not paint a picture of someone capable or qualified for anything except using our tax dollars for more mass murder—I mean regime change. That sounds nicer, doesn’t it? Would the FBI’s James Comey view Hillary’s role in Libya as “extremely reckless”? I would, as even a paper which endorses her seems to.

But you please check these excerpts out and see what you think. Does Libya prove, like her “extremely reckless” personal email server, that Hillary is not capable, careful or even in possession of good judgement? Please note that Clinton ally Sidney Blumenthal urged Clinton to capitalize on the Libya “success.” Do a little more digging and you’ll find that Blumenthal stood to profit from the fall of Qaddafi. Doesn’t that remind you of that chilling video of Clinton claiming in 2011 that we must now “start thinking of Iraq as a business opportunity”? In other words, there is strong evidence that Hillary does not even believe that she’s engaging in humanitarian rescues for the people of Iraq or Libya. This soulless monster is motivated by profit—not some antiquated notion that the USA can help the world with it’s “humanitarian” bombs. Sending American troops to die in a desert so that her friends, allies and Clinton Foundation cronies can profit. This is what passes for foreign policy in a Clinton-run state department. Lovers of peace and justice do not need to cry over the the protocol of how some emails were sent or the republican’s Benghazi scandal when Hillary’s own record in office is the most damning thing about her.
NY TIMES:

Her conviction would be critical in persuading Mr. Obama to join allies in bombing Colonel Qaddafi’s forces. In fact, Mr. Obama’s defense secretary, Robert M. Gates, would later say that in a “51-49” decision, it was Mrs. Clinton’s support that put the ambivalent president over the line.

The consequences would be more far-reaching than anyone imagined, leaving Libya a failed state and a terrorist haven, a place where the direst answers to Mrs. Clinton’s questions have come to pass.

This is the story of how a woman whose Senate vote for the Iraq war may have doomed her first presidential campaign nonetheless doubled down and pushed for military action in another Muslim country. As she once again seeks the White House, campaigning in part on her experience as the nation’s chief diplomat, an examination of the intervention she championed shows her at what was arguably her moment of greatest influence as secretary of state. It is a working portrait rich with evidence of what kind of president she might be, and especially of her expansive approach to the signal foreign-policy conundrum of today: whether, when and how the United States should wield its military power in Syria and elsewhere in the Middle East.

Was the mistake the decision to intervene in the first place, or the mission creep from protecting civilians to ousting a dictator, or the failure to send a peacekeeping force in the aftermath?
Mrs. Clinton declined to be interviewed. But in public, she has said it is “too soon to tell” how things will turn out in Libya and has called for a more interventionist approach in Syria.

Libya’s descent into chaos began with a rushed decision to go to war, made in what one top official called a “shadow of uncertainty” as to Colonel Qaddafi’s intentions. The mission inexorably evolved even as Mrs. Clinton foresaw some of the hazards of toppling another Middle Eastern strongman.

“I think at one point I said, ‘Can I finish the two wars I’m already in before you guys go looking for a third one?’” Mr. Gates recalled. Colonel Qaddafi, he said, “was not a threat to us anywhere. He was a threat to his own people, and that was about it.”

About the time the air campaign began, Charles R. Kubic, a retired rear admiral, received a message from a senior Libyan military officer proposing military-to-military negotiations for a 72-hour cease-fire, potentially leading to an arranged exit for Colonel Qaddafi and his family.
But after he approached the American military command for Africa, Admiral Kubic said, he was directed to end the talks. The orders, he was told, had come from “outside the Pentagon,” though aides to both Mr. Obama and Mrs. Clinton said the offer had never made it to their level. He was baffled by the lack of interest in exploring an option he thought might lead to a less bloody transition.

“The question that stays with me is, why didn’t you spend 72 hours giving peace a chance?” he said.

MORE:   http://www.nytimes.com/2016/02/28/us/politics/hillary-clinton-libya.html?_r=0

Horrified by Orlando? Then make sure you aren’t voting in a murderer to the White House.

I wish I had never heard Cenk Ugyur from The Young Turks say this, but it’s true. Corporate democrats use their pro-gay stance to make themselves seem like progressives while they continue to harm the interests of most working Americans. It’s no skin off the nose of the banks, the corporations who pay $0 in taxes or the war machine if the democrats promote gay rights or abortion. It doesn’t take one dime of the establishment’s profits to grant gay marriage or let gays fight their unnecessary wars for them. In the same way, republicans who also are motivated by nothing but greed play on the anti-gay or anti-abortion sentiment of their evangelical voters. Both parties are punk-ing us on polarizing, social issues while they both continue their dirty work for the 1%. Are you one of the one 1%? Then why wouldn’t this bug you?

Some of us are not only defined by our sexuality. And some of us feel that if oppressing gay people is wrong, needlessly killing people overseas in countries which never attacked us and cops gunning down innocent people of color and getting off with no charges is also wrong. These injustices must also be fought for as gays seek equal rights for our own community. It’s called equality and we all deserve it. I can’t ask people to support my gay rights and then turn a blind eye to the widespread oppression of others.

Did the senseless slaughter in Orlando deep affect you? Then how can you possibly vote for Clinton, whose Iraq vote alone set the stage to kill hundreds of thousands of innocent Iraqis? There’s a big difference between the carnage in Orlando and Iraq: your tax dollars paid for those who died needlessly in Iraq. I don’t see too much concern among gays horrified by the Pulse shooting who support Hillary for senseless death she promoted in Iraq, in Libya and is now proposing in Syria. And why not? Because those victims weren’t in a gay club? Because they have a different religion or a different skin color? That enables you not to care about them?

If love is love, then death is death.

I know that it isn’t fashionable to compare struggles, but our oppressor is the same. Even if that oppressor happens to have a female face this time around. Hillary is an advocate of a system of mass oppression from perpetual war to starvation wages to private prisons to denying us affordable college and the health care they have in every other industrialized nation. Not to mention the fact that Hillary, the fracking queen, has no respect for an ailing female who all of us rely on every second of every day: Mother Nature.

Will I Vote For Clinton To Stop Trump?

A lot of people are asking me if I will go the “lesser of two evil” route and vote for Clinton so that Trump has no chance of winning. I am a lifelong democrat yet I could never cast a vote for Clinton. If/since the democrats have dared to select a flip-flopping, corrupt hawk like Clinton as their nominee, then I’m no longer a democrat. Here is my analogy.

I go into a restaurant and the waiter tells me that only two entrees remain: toxic diarrhea (Trump) and a regular turd (Clinton). Do I choose to eat one? No, I leave that restaurant and go to one I can stomach. I think throwing my vote away is casting it for someone who I find amoral, corrupt and war-like.

Some of you suggest that I should feel guilty if a monster like Trump is elected, because I choose to vote third party. I’m suggesting that Hillary has chosen unnecessary wars whenever she’s had access to power and this creates more terrorism. I would be ashamed to have my name behind a candidate who is hellbent on instability in the world. I live in NYC, where 9/11 went down. Future terrorist attacks will come here, to my home, not to a field in Montana or Idaho. Destabilize the world and my home could easily become a target again. So you do what you want with your vote and I’ll do want I want with mine. We all have our different concerns.

And do you have the nerve to tell me I have to vote a certain way in order to keep out someone out who may never be the GOP nominee? (Please remember that Trump’s own party loathes him and they could find a way to boot him a the convention. Then all this fear mongering against Trump will have been a mammoth waste of time during which we could have been debating Hillary’s policies, of which few of her fans seem aware and which I think she’ll ignore if elected anyway.) That’s democracy to you? Forcing me into a corner with crappy candidates? Sorry, but I deserve better for my tax dollars.

Detailing Trump’s many flaws over and over doesn’t improve Hillary’s many shortcomings and indefensible record. Trump is threatening to do horrible things. Hillary has already done them whenever she has access to power. So I’ll do all I can to stop both Hillary and Trump. For me, that means promoting candidates who benefit working Americans, peace, addressing climate change, affordable health care and higher education, etc. And staying out of wars which make no sense isn’t “giving away free stuff.” Cutting back on wars we are somehow losing against dirt poor countries would save a fortune which we could put towards benefitting Americans here at home and not destroying the planet to feed greed.

The DNC conspired against Sanders to root for Hillary despite the fact that Sanders was beating Trump by higher margins than Hillary–often double digits in several polls for months–and that’s WITH the media blackout on Bernie’s campaign. So it’s Hillary supporters who may elect Trump by shooting Sanders in the foot. YOU chose Hillary, the weaker candidate to defeat Trump. Don’t now turn around and say I, too, must support that weaker candidate when you’ve shafted the one who was beating Trump.

WILL TRUMP ACTUALLY MAKE IT TO THE GOP CONVENTION?

Maybe I’ve got this wrong, but I’ve never been able to see Trump as the eventual GOP nominee. I guess that’s why I haven’t been as horrified as others by this charlatan. I would never support any republican, which is why I don’t support Hillary. But I never thought Trump would actually end up running. Then he won the nomination.

Late last week on MSNBC, I started hearing reports that after his latest racist gaffe, Trump had gone too far this time and Paul Ryan was warning Trump that he didn’t have the GOP’s “blank check” endorsement. And that’s Ryan, who ran for VP last time around, so he clearly has political aspirations and has the party’s stamp of approval.The republican establishment hates Trump because they don’t actually like to admit that they’re racists. Or that they were at fault with the Iraq war or that the TPP sucks–as Trump has pointed out on the campaign trail. So we’ve recently seen well-loved GOP figures like Laura Bush say she’d support Hillary Clinton. And ex-NJ governor and fabled GOP “moderate” Christine Todd Whitman saying over the weekend she didn’t want to vote for Clinton, but she couldn’t bring herself to vote for Trump–as if she were still hoping for a GOP alternative candidate. They don’t trot Whitman out for nothing–this is orchestrated by the GOP in an attempt to make their party seem more reasonable than Trump. Here’s the cover of the Huffingtonpost today. I’m still having doubts about whether his party will kick him out or not.

Screen Shot 2016-06-20 at 9.42.41 AM

Or maybe he’ll just drop out and find a way to turn his newfound fame into profit. While president of the United States might appeal to his narcissism, the job would require a cut in pay. MSNBC reported that Trump had mentioned several times that he’d like to build a media empire based on the success of his campaign. Why would he be talking about any career choice other than running for president? Should his own party kick him out, all this talk about how horrible a Trump presidency would be for minorities, women, LGBT, gun rights, foreign policy and everything else would just be a waste of time. When the media could have been focusing on candidates who are actually running. Our media gives Trump so much coverage because their greed makes ratings matter more than discussing actual issues. Should Trump either drop out or get thrown out by his party, the constant reporting will have been a huge waste of everyone’s time.

Most people have viewed this election through the lens of HOW DO WE STOP THAT MONSTER TRUMP? Focusing mainly on this, we know that Trump called mexicans rapists, mocked a reporter with disabilities, called Carly Fiorina ugly, wants to ban muslims, wants to punish women who get abortions, etc, etc. But what if this monster isn’t actually going to end up running? Then we know a lot about Trump. Very few people know the actual differences between Hillary and Bernie’s immigration policy, tax policy, health care plans, college tuition fees, the death penalty, foreign policy, etc, etc. The media actually shafted Hillary as well as Bernie, because ALL the focus has been on Trump. But the democratic nomination was always hers to lose. And maybe Clinton didn’t want much examination of her policies since they are often subject to change.

Would the RNC ignore registered republican voters and try to dump Trump even after they chose him as their nominee? Who knows? But I wish the DNC would realize how deeply flawed Clinton is and do just that. I am not an expert on each parties rules of the selection process. But many are not happy with their party’s nominees, who both have very high negative ratings

THE UGLY SIMILARITY BETWEEN HILLARY AND TRUMP

Last night, MSNBC was gloating over how republicans are freaking because their party is toast with the loathesome Trump as their nominee. They claimed that he has no clear policy positions and has flip-flopped many times. And that Trump doesn’t hold the traditionally conservative views of the republican party. They were also mentioning Trump’s historically high negatives in polls. Candidates with high negatives seldom win. So those on the right are desperately seeking a new republican to a third party libertarian candidate to jump in to attract the votes of all those who will never vote for Trump.

Funny, that’s exactly how I feel about Hillary Clinton. She’s the democratic frontrunner, yet many in the party are so unenthused by her candidacy that they’ll break away from the party if she’s nominated. Like Trump, she’s known for having unclear positions and flip-flopping. (And lying.) Like Trump, she known for policies which aren’t traditionally associated with democrats–like a penchant US military interventionism, strong ties to Wall Street, fossil fuels, insurance industries, big pharma, Monsanto–the list goes on and on.

Here’s the good news. Democrats don’t need to come up with a new, alternative candidate at the last minute to save their party as republicans feel the do. We’ve already got Bernie Sanders. They ran a comparison of Trump and Hillary’s high negatives. Hillary’s were lower than Trump’s, but not by much. Bernie has high positives and his ratings for honesty and authenticity are through the roof. Democrats, ignore him at your party’s own peril.

IF OBAMA FAILED TO BRING PEACE, HILLARY ISN’T EVEN TRYING FOR IT AND YOU’RE VOTING FOR HER?

This is an article in the NY Times about how Obama failed to deliver on his promises of less war during his two terms. Please note that Hillary Clinton is considered more of a hawk than Obama and most democrats. And that one major reason that she lost the presidential race to Obama was that he opposed the Iraq war that Hillary had foolishly voted for as a senator. If Obama, a democrat, has failed to end wars and has actually started several new ones we rarely hear about, imagine what Clinton would do if we were so careless to select a nominee more hawkish than the current president who couldn’t make good on his promises to withdraw troops. Just go ahead and give up on peace with Hillary as commander-in-chief. A christian country which has given up on peace is a very confused place, isn’t it?

Why did the candidate Obama promising peace appeal to democrats 7 years ago, and these same democrats–who are allegedly weary of war–now embrace the more war-like candidate Hillary? When there is a perfectly viable candidate like Bernie Sanders who is more concerned domestic policy than new or continued military entanglements? The democratic party has lost it’s soul, with a hawkish frontrunner laden with Wall Street campaign contributions. War and corporate ties use to be more closely associated with that other party.

Also worth noting that the NY Times, along with CNN, apologized to their readers/audiences for not asking harder questions of the Bush administration in the lead-up to the Iraq war. And that this is a paper which endorses Hillary, while admitting Obama’s failure to involve the US in less wars as he’d promised. In fact, as we prepare to salute fallen soldiers on Memorial Day at the end of this month, most of us are forced to admit that we have no clue that we’re even at war with Yemen or Somalia. Support the troops? Most of you can’t even find all them on a map.

This article doesn’t mention it, but Obama has said that his biggest regret was military intervention in Libya, which Hillary urged him to launch as Secretary Of State. Even the Defense Secretary Robert Gates advised against it. But bloodthirsty Hillary pushed forward, and even the NY Times ran a blow-by-blow account which determined that Hillary was not concerned about the outcome of the action in Libya. Well, the outcome was chaos and the formation of ISIS in that chaos. We’ve now sent more troops there to clean up Hillary’s mess.

The Times article also quotes a military historian who claims that “No president wants to be a war president.” Not true. Plenty of presidents actively seek war. Or fail, as Obama has done, to withdraw troops as he promised when campaigning. Some presidents relish war. I believe Hillary Clinton is one of those. Far from learning her mistake of a vote for the Iraq war, in 2011 she said “It’s time for the United States to start thinking of Iraq as a business opportunity.” So she sides with Bush and votes for war, admits her mistake and almost ten years later is thinking more about how to profit from the war than end it? Hillary would love to be known as a war president and is pitching herself as one. She would gladly send US troops to unnecessary deaths to make lucrative deals for her wealthy backers. These aren’t wars which protect the US in any way.

DAILY KOS: When then-U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton voted to authorize the war against Iraq in 2002, she justified her support of the invasion as a way to protect America’s national security. But less than a decade later, as secretary of state, Clinton promoted the war-torn country as a place where American corporations could make big money.

“It’s time for the United States to start thinking of Iraq as a business opportunity,” she said in a 2011 speech.

The quote was included in an email released by the State Department on Wednesday that specifically mentioned JPMorgan and Exxon Mobil. JPMorgan was selected by the U.S. government to run a key import-export bank in Iraq and in 2013 announced plans to expand its operations in the country. Exxon Mobil signed a deal to redevelop Iraqi oil fields. JPMorgan has collectively paid the Clintons and the Clinton Foundation at least $450,000 for speeches, and Exxon Mobil has donated over $1 million to the family’s foundation…

I’m not sure what is most disturbing about this quote, the idea that the destruction of an entire country, the continuing death tolls of thousands of innocent Iraqi’s and American troops is a “business opportunity”, just so a few rich corporations could line their pockets, or the realization that this is actually not anything new, but is how our country functions– this is business as usual everyone:

JP Morgan and Exxon calling the shots, calling in their favors at the State department in exchange for some funding to those who allowed them to pray on the innocent. If that’s not an example of the revolving door, I don’t know what is.

I can only shudder when I think of all the other “business opportunities’ those in power have planned for us. This is what the establishment gets you; we have a chance to change this, let’s not let this opportunity go to waste.

NY TIMES: WASHINGTON — President Obama came into office seven years ago pledging to end the wars of his predecessor, George W. Bush. On May 6, with eight months left before he vacates the White House, Mr. Obama passed a somber, little-noticed milestone: He has now been at war longer than Mr. Bush, or any other American president.

If the United States remains in combat in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria until the end of Mr. Obama’s term — a near-certainty given the president’s recent announcement that he will send 250 additional Special Operations forces to Syria — he will leave behind an improbable legacy as the only president in American history to serve two complete terms with the nation at war.

Mr. Obama, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009 and spent his years in the White House trying to fulfill the promises he made as an antiwar candidate, would have a longer tour of duty as a wartime president than Franklin D. Roosevelt, Lyndon B. Johnson, Richard M. Nixon or his hero Abraham Lincoln.

Granted, Mr. Obama is leaving far fewer soldiers in harm’s way — at least 4,087 in Iraq and 9,800 in Afghanistan — than the 200,000 troops he inherited from Mr. Bush in the two countries. But Mr. Obama has also approved strikes against terrorist groups in Libya, Pakistan, Somalia and Yemen, for a total of seven countries where his administration has taken military action.

“No president wants to be a war president,” said Eliot A. Cohen, a military historian at Johns Hopkins University who backed the war in Iraq and whose son served there twice. “Obama thinks of war as an instrument he has to use very reluctantly. But we’re waging these long, rather strange wars. We’re killing lots of people. We’re taking casualties.”

MORE:   http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/15/us/politics/obama-as-wartime-president-has-wrestled-with-protecting-nation-and-troops.html?_r=0