What Are You Talking About?

Filed under:Language Barrier,Priorities,WTF? — posted by Anwyn on June 18, 2009 @ 10:04 pm

Mr. Jonathan V. Last, here, seems very opposed to and disgusted by the idea of men in the delivery room during the births of their children. Other than that, and the fact that I too despise the expression “we’re pregnant,” I don’t know what the hell he’s talking about.

It wasn’t until the late 1960s that men began taking the last step. Urged on by books such as Robert Bradley’s “Husband-Coached Childbirth,” men started going the distance. By 1970, the delivery room had been pried open.

All manner of idiocy followed: tape recorders, cameras, video. Husbands huffing and puffing with the mothers. The expression “we’re pregnant.” Various fads have cajoled fathers into cutting the umbilical cord or playing catcher as the baby exits the birth canal or stripping off their shirts and clutching the newborn “skin-to-skin.” By the late 1970s, a man was considered something of a monster if he didn’t at least stand north of the equator during the delivery of his child.

He spends the first nine paragraphs loathingly reciting the history of how fathers went from off the scene entirely into the delivery room, and then spends the last three chapters wailing about society’s tolerance for absent or deadbeat fathers. While I sympathize on the last score, I wish he would explain to me what the hell one has to do with the other.

Yet today it is socially acceptable to father a child without marrying the mother or to divorce her later on if mother and father actually do bother to get hitched. And at the same time there is zero tolerance for a husband who says: “No thanks, I’ll be in the waiting room with cigars.” Ms. Leavitt’s fascinating history suggests that childbirth is just one more area where our narcissism has swamped our seriousness.

Whose narcissism, exactly? A birthing mother’s narcissism in wanting the person who, theoretically, is her companion and partner in all of life’s big decisions and events, in the room with her when a drastic, potentially uncontrolled event occurs resulting in the birth of his own child? A father’s narcissism in thinking his presence is necessary for this event? Who and what? And who cares? The idea seems to be that social norms now require the father present at the birth but let him off scot-free for the rest of the child’s raising. Does Mr. Last seriously believe that a father who stands ready to abandon his child and the child’s mother is going to feel constrained by customs requiring him to cut the umbilical cord? Does he really think the majority of the country both a) derides a man as less than a man if he fails to be present in the delivery room AND b) thinks it’s okay for him to then step out of his child’s life? Of course not. The bigger question is, just how does he propose “society” control the latter? The former, according to him, was brought about by an influential book that caught on into a trend and evolved into a norm. Great. If that method is so powerful, let’s use it on the deadbeats! Oh … you mean it won’t work on irresponsible trash like them? Huh. I thought Mr. Last said they could be found dutifully at the bedsides during the delivery. Weird.

Via Hot Air headlines.

How to Retard Your Teenager’s Growth Into a Responsible Adult

Filed under:It's My Life,Priorities,Rants — posted by Anwyn on June 13, 2009 @ 8:36 pm

1) Allow her to attend functions at a church you yourself do not seem particularly involved in.

2) Allow her to make her own commitments to that church, such as, for example, participation in an especially codependent music group.

3) Plan a surprise slumber party for her birthday on a Saturday night, before a big performance at church the next morning; suddenly realize, on the night of the party, that your daughter’s commitment to the previously mentioned music group will, GASP, ensure that there are three or four teenagers not of your own family lying around your house on Sunday morning without your daughter to keep charge of them, and phone the director of said music group to imply that her expectation that your daughter appear at both dress rehearsal (at a moderately early hour on Sunday morning) AND the performance (an hour after the rehearsal due to competition for rehearsal time in the sanctuary) is a bit extreme and inform her that she “may or may not see” your daughter at rehearsal, though she will be at the performance, because you don’t want to let the music group down “one hundred percent.” Only fifty percent; that’s acceptable, since of course this is YOUR convenience we’re talking about, and never mind giving your sixteen-year-old daughter the option of keeping or breaking her own commitments by the lights of HER priorities and good judgment.

And some people wonder why the director has bad dreams.

Okay, the Dude Really Likes Politics

Filed under:Good Grief,Politics,Priorities,Television — posted by Anwyn on April 7, 2009 @ 7:18 am

**SPOILERS** for last night’s House below. (more…)

For Smart People, You’re Awfully Damn Dumb

Filed under:Jerks,Politics,Priorities,Sad — posted by Anwyn on March 31, 2009 @ 9:12 pm

Auto execs who flew their corporate jets to DC to shill for taxpayer money for stockholder corporations? Dumb. Bankers and financial gurus who insisted certain businesses were too big to be allowed to fail? Dumb.

You shilled for all that taxpayer money and honestly didn’t believe it would have government filaments unbreakably attached to every single dollar? Really? You didn’t consider the possibility of Obama handing you your marching orders every day from now on? Really?

God, are you dumb.

I’d rather be the one to be telling you what to do, since it’s my money, but hey, it’s some untraceably small percentage, so my elected representatives whom I didn’t vote for get to tell you what to do instead. Isn’t it fun to get barrels of money from an apparently limitless well?

God, are you dumb. Our country’s economy may die, and if it does, your hands were on the stake through its heart.

Buy Honda. And Toyota and Nissan. And Hyundai. And Mercedes and BMW and Volvo and Volkswagen. Drive the government out of the car business. And hoard your cash and drive them out of the banking and financial services business, too. Out.

He Did It All for Charity?

Filed under:Priorities,Toys, Adults' — posted by Anwyn on March 30, 2009 @ 8:09 pm

Am I the only one who finds this a bit self-indulgent?

A guy rowed across the Atlantic–successfully–to support cancer research. He hoped to raise $500,000. He’s raised $100,000. But:

He and his sister spent $60,000 of their own savings to have his boat custom built, and he took a leave of absence from his financial services job.

Seems to me if he’d donated the $60,000 plus a percentage of the salary lost during his leave of absence, he could have done as much good as he’s done so far without all the soreness, exposure, and freeze-dried food. But then he wouldn’t have a custom-built boat and the honor of being the third American to row the Atlantic.

Or maybe I’m just a grinch. I guess he could’ve just bought the boat.

Via Instapundit.

Also, maybe I didn’t emphasize this enough–he’s raised $100,000, or only 20 percent of his goal. Which makes him utterly unlike the Canadian mentioned by Janie in the comments, who ran across Canada–a place known to contain people to ask for $1, unlike the Atlantic Ocean–and raised over $24 million even though he was ultimately unsuccessful at running coast to coast due to his own cancer, which took his life soon after. Raise your hand if you believe CNN would have covered this had something happened to prevent Paul Ridley from rowing the whole way across the Atlantic. So, yes, his success at completing the journey has drawn attention and will probably draw funds, but two points: 1) He clearly focused more on buying the boat and getting it and himself ready than on raising funds, and 2) If he had been unsuccessful, he’d still have the boat and the attempt, but probably not nearly as many funds. He took a rather large risk of blowing the whole venture and completely stalling out at $100,000.

I’ll wait and see where his funds totals end up, but I think the comparison with Terry Fox is strained at best.

Republican Party, Democrat Party … Tea Party

Filed under:Politics,Priorities — posted by Anwyn on March 19, 2009 @ 9:22 am

Term limits, flat taxes, strong national and border defense, strong Second Amendment, and the vote only to people who pay taxes (though, contra Neal Boortz’s position quoted at that link, it should still be one person, one vote). And then if you want to let the government buy your vote (literally: pay you taxpayers’ money so that you then lose your vote), that’s your own funeral.

I used to be against that last, but if we’re really headed into a situation where ever-larger numbers of people will be on the government dole, let them choose between the taxpayers’ money and their ability to vote more of it to themselves. That’s fine.

And as for the name, it’s not much sillier than “whig.”

On second thought, if we allowed only taxpayers to vote, would we need term limits quite so much? If legislators had to run for re-election but didn’t have to bother promising taxpayer handouts to people who couldn’t vote, would we need to limit terms? Feel free to discuss, if anybody’s still reading here.

And, Just Like Clockwork:

Filed under:Jerks,Not Cool,Politics,Priorities — posted by Anwyn on February 6, 2009 @ 3:10 pm

Liberals who advocated unrestricted abortion in the name of government butting out of “reproductive freedom” and universal health care start demanding that the government dictate who may have babies and how many since, after all, with universal health care, we’re all paying for it.

That would be why the smarter among us keep howling NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO to universal health care. Duh.

Via Ace.

Obama Spending Your Money on Global Abortions

Filed under:Abortion,Church of Liberalism,Politics,Priorities,Sad — posted by Anwyn on January 26, 2009 @ 8:23 am

Killing our own babies isn’t enough. We have to make sure that everybody else in the world has access to dead babies as well. Because that’s what it’s about: global fairness and domestic unity. I certainly feel less divided now, don’t you?

I guess now that he’s got the president’s salary and perks, this issue isn’t above his pay grade any more. Whew. Somebody tell Scarecrow the real way to get a brain.

Hey, how about less net spending, Mr. President? Maybe we could stop funding domestic abortions at a slightly higher than 1:1 ratio.

Quote of Every Woman’s Whole Life

Filed under:Authors,Priorities — posted by Anwyn on January 10, 2009 @ 2:07 pm

“There isn’t one man in ten million that’s worth breaking your heart over.”

–Harriet Vane Wimsey in Dorothy Sayers’s Busman’s Honeymoon. Easy for her to say. And with the object/person confusion, too. Thanks for the tip, Harriet!

Of All the Editors in the World

Filed under:Blogging,Need a Good Editor?,Politics,Priorities — posted by Anwyn on January 8, 2009 @ 2:41 pm

…I never thought I’d have much respect for one at the Huffington Post. I read this post taking Al Gore to task for spreading the nonsense that is human-inflicted global warming climate change last week and was duly shocked that the HP ran it–shocked, surprised, and pleased.

Now Arianna huffs, in an effort to retain her cred with her peeps:

When Ambler sent his post, I forwarded it to one of our associate blog editors to evaluate, not having read it. I get literally hundreds of posts a week submitted like this and obviously can’t read them all — which is why we have an editorial process in place. The associate blog editor published the post. It was an error in judgment. I would not have posted it. Although HuffPost welcomes a vigorous debate on many subjects, I am a firm believer that there are not two sides to every issue, and that on some issues the jury is no longer out. The climate crisis is one of these issues.

Dear Associate Blog Editor at HuffPo: Bravo. Even if you only did it to stir the pot, bravo anyhow. When Arianna fires or disciplines you, I hope you decide you’d rather retain your integrity than that job.

Via Hot Air headlines.

Plenty Days, I Just Want to Move

Filed under:Church of Liberalism,Priorities — posted by Anwyn on December 26, 2008 @ 11:11 am

It’s not the article, it’s the comments. So much certainty amid so much hand-wringing, anxious to let you know that it’s no longer Global Warming but now Global Climate Destabilization. Chew on that one for a minute–did you know we had a stable climate before we started driving cars? I sure didn’t.

At least if Portland is being stupid enough to admit, as is Seattle, that they refuse to salt down the ice because of “danger” to the environment, a quick Google doesn’t show it. That’s probably the only place in the country where the government could say something so obviously against its own interest and that of its citizens and still not be crucified for it. It’s bad for Puget Sound. Okay then. At least in Portland I’ve done ODOT the courtesy of thinking it was just incompetent rather than malicious. Hey, Seattle–that snowpack may do pretty well for cars with chains until a slight thaw. Then try going up a hill in six inches of ice slush, even with chains, and let me know how that works out for you. I just did it a couple days ago, and it’s nothing I want to repeat ever.

Seattle link via Ace. Begging people to stay off the roads, surprise, doesn’t work.


Filed under:Not Cool,Politics,Priorities — posted by Anwyn on December 10, 2008 @ 12:28 pm

Email your representatives. It probably won’t stop it, but let them know you’re angry. They’re about to write a blank check for huge, unwieldy, inefficient, and bloated corporations practically held hostage by the UAW … held hostage in their private jets, that is. This is preposterous. Let your reps know what you think. I just did.

No Auto Bailout

Filed under:History,Jerks,Politics,Priorities — posted by Anwyn on December 2, 2008 @ 10:14 am

Stupid stunts as the politics of finance.

Of the very thin specifics of Ford’s plan in the linked article, they are all salary cuts or freezes for management. When it comes to what the UAW will sacrifice, there is a vague sentence about “cost cutting.”

No bailout. Email your senators. The Great Depression was caused in part by an administration that pressured industry to keep wages unaffordably high until mass layoffs resulted. The UAW will do the same if given half a chance–except they will milk the government trough for all it’s worth for as long as they can possibly avoid the layoffs. Taxpayers will be paying the artificially high wages of uncompetitive workers. This is not economically sound.

The U.S. auto industry is not competitive with overseas makers. They can either become competitive through realistic cost cuts, including wages, or die.

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image: detail of installation by Bronwyn Lace