We’re approaching the end. Of what? Exotic dancing in Ohio! In my series of articles about this trend in Ohio ‘morality’, I’ve patiently waited for this legal battle to finally conclude. Well, apparently it has. In a recent report, the Supreme Court ruled that stripping wasn’t protected under 1st amendment and strippers can no longer touch patrons. This was the last-ditch battle of strip-club owners against a well-connected church PAC based in southern Ohio. No surprise it was a loss, but still sad to see that this is what our state has come to. (more…)



In Iran, home of Islam, the people are coming to grips with the reality that their perfect Islamic Democracy, based on the will of the people and a beacon of pride to the entire Muslim world, is nothing more than a veneer surrounding another Muslim Dictatorship. It is a painful truth, but it is the obvious result of mixing religion and Democracy. Religion is all about the centralization of power. Centralization is necessary to codify and disseminate the belief system. Democracy’s central goal is to disperse power among as many people as possible. These two systems are fundamentally contradictory, and their mixture will always end in strife. Now, strife has come home to Islam. I want to look at this issue from it many facets, in hopes to find a solution to the violence.

A tree of many branches

Every religion has sects with their own belief sprouting from the same basic tenants of their respective belief systems. In all, these sects only fine small percentages of the population to fill their ranks. In general, a religious organization or ‘church’ will try to attract the widest audience possible. this is as much an altruistic need to spread what they believe to be the ‘truth’ of your existence, as it is a simple economic need for survival of the church.

Sects have a tendency to lean towards fore fundamentalist views of the religion, and more strict interpretation of related texts. The more fundamentalist the view, the more likely freedoms taken for granted by a population at large will be frowned-upon, even ”outlawed’, by that sect, making the lifestyle unpalatable by most. Interestingly, the more fundamentalist the view, regardless of which major religion is discussed, the less violence is tolerated. (more…)

republicanismFormerly named “Go Teabag Yourself”, in appreciation of early 2009 Republican –backed ‘Tea-party protests’ against the Obama administration.

Obama has pledged not to initiate an investigation into the illegal activities of the previous administration. The impetus for this, the spirit of allowing the country to heal, is commendable. But it also allows the misinformation and pseudo-religious fervency fostered by that administration to continue to fester in the public mind. Obama’s economic initiatives are starting to show improvement, only a matter of months after their inception. The war, counter to pre-election opinion of Obama’s capability, is continuing to turn-around. Republican rhetoric for the last decade is beginning to be proven completely wrong in a very short period of time. Recently, I turned-on the TV and saw a full religious sermon televised on the FOX news, the only republican-activist news agency on TV. Not just covered by FOX- sponsored by FOX. Unfortunately, I was only surprised by the timing, not the act itself. When a news agency (even an openly activist one) crosses the line from news reporting to news creation, that shows desperation. When the core ideals of a religion are attacked, the population reacts by becoming fundamentalist. This party is reacting like a religion, not a political institution. (more…)

More and more, I’m seeing abortion in the news. It’s not a new issue, to be sure. But, for whatever reason, it’s taken center stage with fact that we’ve been attacked by a terrorist organization, that our sisters and brothers are now dying in an unending war, and our economy has crumbled around us. Why? If I had to guess, I would say the republican party is pushing the issue because they are losing on so many others (ecpscially the economy). And, like the lemmings we are, we go ahead and accept this as a valid issue to ruminate and wring our hands about. Yes, abortion is an important issue. But, it’s mind-bendingly important to a small, vocal group of people. They have led us to believe that we mus exhibit the same amount of moral indignation as they do, or risk being labeled a “baby murderer.” Horrors. It is an excellent marketing campagin. And it is working. 10 years ago, this was a fringe issue; now it’s center-stage. I’ve even found my moral compass being spun a few times when entering these murky waters. (more…)


I don’t know how late I am to this issue. Usually when I discover something new on the web, it’s already on it’s third or fourth orbit around the blog-o-sphere, and about to hit the news. This time, I appear to be more late than normal. A new propaganda movie, “Zeitgeist” is getting lots of (ink?) in the blogs and bulletin boards. Assuming I was about to see a German art film, I took a look. Holy cannoli! Art film..a little. Conspiracy propaganda… in Bunches! (more…)

In May, a 17-year-old Iraqi girl was stoned to death after seeing a boy of a different religious sect. On Tuesday, May 22, 2007, digby said:

“This is the fault of primitive religious fundamentalism, which is across the board, in every culture, contemptuous of women. This is why I have contempt for tribalism, fundamentalism and authoritarianism. When it gets right down to it, it’s always, in the end, about mob rule. A gang of violent bullies, often at the behest of some authority figure, “sends a message” by publicly humiliating, maiming or killing one of their own who had the temerity to fail to properly conform. Whether for God or country or tribe, it’s always some poor victim, lying on the ground, covering his or her head, surrounded by people who have turned into animals.”

Well put, digby. And thanks to Playboy Magazine for bringing this great quote to even more people.