Monday, December 09, 2019


Jim: Again with a roundtable.  Remember our e-mail address is and we can also be reached at  Participating in our roundtable are  The Third Estate Sunday Review's Dona, Ty, Jess, Ava, and me, Jim; Rebecca of Sex and Politics and Screeds and Attitude; Betty of Thomas Friedman Is a Great Man; C.I. of The Common Ills and The Third Estate Sunday Review; Kat of Kat's Korner (of The Common Ills); Cedric of Cedric's Big Mix; Mike of Mikey Likes It!; Elaine of Like Maria Said Paz); Ruth of Ruth's Report; Trina of Trina's Kitchen; Wally of The Daily Jot; Marcia of SICKOFITRDLZ; Stan of Oh Boy It Never Ends; Isaiah of The World Today Just Nuts and Ann of Ann's Mega Dub. Betty's kids did the illustration. You are reading a rush transcript.


Jim (Con't): So what would we like to talk about?

Marcia: First off, thanks for Friday's snapshot -- thanks to C.I. She said what needed to be said on a topic a lot of people looked the other way on -- Hillary Clinton's troubled relationship with lesbians. It needed to be said. Too often, especially among straight feminists, it doesn't get said. Maybe it makes them uncomfortable, maybe they don't want to call out Hillary, I have no idea. But her remarks were insulting and they did pass on the negative stereotype that we hate men. She was wrong. And she needed to be called out. I saw some LGBTQs calling her out but I didn't see anyone but C.I. address it from a feminist issue. Rebecca called it out from an LGBTQ angle and that's also appreciated when non-LGBTQ people call this nonsense out. I did see a few more do what Rebecca did online; however, there weren't a lot of them either.

Betty: I applaud Rebecca and C.I. as well. I would like to bring in a point C.I. raised that she noted wasn't time to explore in that snapshot: When straight women who are seen as less then feminine by society's standards -- or fear that they might be -- refuse to defends attacks on lesbians.

Trina: That really does exist. That's been true, sadly, throughout second wave feminism on to today. I hope it's less so. I see a lot less hysteria over that among young feminists. But, yes, some do go nervous and wobbly if they fear defending a lesbian will make them appear gay.

Cedric: And I'd argue that's a thing in the straight culture as well. For a lot of us males, it's something we fear as boys but grow out of as men. And, let's remember, Stan had to come out as straight.

Stan: That remains the hardest thing I had to do online and I'm not joking. I am Marcia's cousin and I defended her for that reason alone, yes. But I also addressed LGBTQ issues and it was about a year into blogging that I realized people thought I was gay. I didn't correct it because it didn't matter to me. It's not an insult or anything. But when I started seeing one woman, she would ask, "Why do you never mention me?" I'd act like I went to a movie alone, if you read my post. So, after this had gone on for about six months, I mentioned I'd gone to the movies with my girlfriend. And I got three e-mails asking did I mean a girl who was a friend or had I gone bi or straight? Again, I was fine if people thought I was gay, it wasn't an issue for me. It was an issue when I had to come out as straight because I felt like I was letting people down. I really wish I could have been this community's gay blogger.

Cedric: And there was a time where there was a rumor that Wally and Mike were lovers.

Mike: I loved that rumor. I encouraged it with jokes at my site.

Wally: And this is something that, as Cedric notes, some of us fear as boys -- I did fear being seen that way when I was 12. My voice hadn't dropped yet and there was a horrifying day at the grocery store one summer when an old man said, "Excuse me, Miss," as he walked past me.

Kat: It's 'cause you're so pretty.

Wally: Ha-ha. So, yes, at 12 it was a panic. But long before I hit 18, I was comfortable enough with myself and also aware enough of what it could be like -- the scary parts -- to be gay at a young age -- that's because we had an awareness effort in my high school.

Ruth: And this is Marcia's point, what everyone's talking about, that the discomfort goes to what is going on with the individual. It is an internal issue. It has to do with someone's own discomfort or hang up. As part of the second wave of feminists, I am aware that there were some who had huge reluctance to include lesbians. And there were some who would argue that it would harm the movement and how 'we' were seen if they were included. That was nonsense then and it is nonsense now. But I agree with Trina, I think it is less of an issue for the younger generation who are more comfortable with themselves.

Betty: And that's so true, it's their discomfort. And it's because of something like what happened with Wally where he was confused with a girl. But, unlike Wally, they weren't able to get over it. But they need to. We all love Marcia, she's our friend. And Ruth has a gay grandson, I've got a gay brother. We are all related and I'm sure if you step out far enough in your family or circle of friends, you will find someone who is gay. We are all God's children, as Whitney Houston said when she was performing at some benefit -- AIDS? -- and MTV asked her why she was there. It's true. We are all God's children and we are all worthy of love. I do not believe in tolerance. I believe in acceptance. You don't tolerate a human being, you accept them. I have been hugely disappointed in Hillary on the issue of inclusion. She did not lead on marriage equality. Her recent trans remarks were appalling insensitive and now she's going on Howard Stern to say she's not one of those 'man hating' lesbians. That is what her remarks were saying, C.I. called it correctly.

Ty: I want to note that there were complaints about what C.I. wrote to the public account of THE COMMON ILLS. Three different people e-mailed to gripe that this had nothing to do with Iraq and it took up time and there were other things to cover.

Rebecca: What a load of nonsense.

Ty: Agreed but Martha and Shirley asked me to bring it up if we had a roundtable -- Martha and Shirley work the bulk of the e-mails in the public account for THE COMMON ILLS. C.I.?

C.I.: As a feminist, I have to address topics that others may not. The Hillary thing had to be called out. Joe Biden groping young girls and women has to be called out. Both Hillary and Joe voted for the Iraq War and continued to support it long after it started. They are Iraq related as a result. I don't have the luxury of silence. If I could go on another minute?

Jim: Please do. I think I know what you're about to bring up.

C.I.: Kamala Harris, right? There were gleeful people just bashing her over and over. Michael Tracey was one of them. I don't hate Michael Tracey. I don't even dislike him. But he is the reason -- an example of the reason -- that I have to stop to address Hillary's remarks. He's not going to. Not in a serious way. He'll get serious on what he considers 'big' issues. But issues like this he'll ignore. As a feminist, I can't ignore them. I can't and I shouldn't. But there are so many issues that certain men define as non-important.

Rebecca: Their point of view. And they're wrong.

Elaine: I would agree with that. Time and again though there is a thing that bothers me online. Either we have men ignoring issues if the issues impact women or we have women ignoring war, peace and every other topic so that they can focus solely on issues of sexism in the workplace or whatever. I wish that men and women online would enlarge their scope.

Dona: I don't think I've ever agreed with anyone more than I do with Elaine right now at this moment. It's like a large number of us take ourselves out of the discussion. We abdicate our right to speak on issues and then we get dismissed as someone who just covers 'women's issues.' Women's issues are every issue in the world and we need to remember that. War is a woman's issue. Peace is a woman's issue.

Kat: You know for a very brief moment in recent time, it was as though we could grasp that and we could act on that. Kim Gandy was the president of NOW and she made these issues ones that NOW addressed. I praise her for that. I fault her for other things, but I praise her for that.

Jess: For me, Iraq remains a big issue. And I look around and it's not just women that are ignoring the topic. It's disappointing, at best. I'm tired of them, I'm tired of fake asses. But that's everywhere you look these days. "Hunter Biden did nothing wrong!" The hell he didn't. He may not have done anything illegal but what he did was unethical. No one in the family of a government official is supposed to profit off ties or to give the appearance of it. This happened while Barack was president. During this same time, Hillary had to agree that Bill's actions would not be connected to her so there would be no appearance of conflict. Why would that rule apply to Hilary but not to Joe in the same administration? It applied to Joe, it applied to everyone. It's not new. What was done was unethical. Quit lying. Jim: Jess is absolutely right. How about we note any other unethical things that are getting on our nerves?

Isaiah: Let me start. I listened to FAIR -- or it's radio program COUNTERSPIN. And they called out the revolving door of members of the press becoming officials in the Bully Boy Bush administration. But it was never an issue when it came to Barack Obama. I'm tired of it. But COUNTERPSIN, I also remember, refused to call out sexism in 2008. Ava and C.I. noted that their entire coverage of the sexism aimed at Hillary Clinton in 2008 was one sentence. One sentence. And they don't understand why we don't take them seriously. They think they can just pretend that didn't happen. Or that they didn't whore for Barack. I'd love to listen to COUNTERSPIN. I'd love to be able to donate to them again. But they abused my trust and they have never done anything to acknowledge that. Smartest thing would have been to have cleared house and started over. Smartest thing would have been to have owned up to their mistake but, barring that, smartest thing would have been for them to have cleared house and started over. Jim and Janine, I won't take you seriously until the time you get honest about the way you and FAIR whored throughout 2008.

Dona: I've got to jump in, sorry. But they want the corporate media to admit when they've made a mistake but they won't admit their own mistakes. If they would, I think people would respect them more. Instead, they act like they never whored and never made a mistake. It's nonsense. "Looking back at 2008, we see that we were a little too zealous in our support of one candidate and that led us to make mistakes." That's what you say. Don't play like your media watchdog concerned with fairness if you're not going to practice fairness yourself. And don't ask others to be accountable for their mistakes if you're unable to be accountable for your own.

Kat: I would go with it is unethical to keep lying that Russia screwed up the 2016 US election and playing like you care about election interference if you have not -- even to this day -- called out the 2010 move by the US government to overturn the Iraq election. Refusing to stand with the voters, the people of Iraq, refusing to stand with them did not help democracy take root and it gave thug Nouri al-Maliki a second term which led to the rise of ISIS.

Wally: Exactly. Completely unethical. And we don't need to hear from Tommy Vietor or this or that official from Barack's administration when they lie constantly and to this day cannot get honest about Iraq.

Ann: I agree with Kat and Wally about Iraq. I think though, my opinion, a number of people on the left began lying about Iraq the moment Barack was elected to the White House and they're in too deep to ever get honest at this point.

Mike: I think Ann's exactly right. These liars think no one is going to realize they lied. We know they lied. We know they're liars. Amy Goodman, I'm looking at you. They lie and lie and get worse and worse every day. Then some idiot airhead -- like Patricia Arquette -- who never kept up with reality, thinks it's 2002 and Amy's outstanding. She's worse than corporate media at this point.

Jess: Credit to Aaron Mate for calling Goodman out on a number of things. I'm sure that hasn't been easy for him. So let's give him some recognition for that.

Jim: Good point, Jess. Mate has earned praise so let's give that to him. It's rare that anyone does what he has so applause for him.

Ruth: I remember when Bully Boy Bush was in office and we could listen to multiple programs because people were telling the truth. Of course, looking back, they were only truth telling because a Republican was in the White House.

Trina: Weren't those the days? Now I just watch PBS which tilts right or listen to NPR which also tilts right. They're the closest I can find to fair and that is sad but that's what we've got. I can't take PACIFICA anymore. They lied way too much. I would listen to, for example, KPFA and I'd stream it constantly. I loved that they were truthful and looked at the whole country. When Mitt Romney was my governor and pushed through RomneyCare, they called it out on San Francisco-based KPFA. But when Barack took that same plan and forced it off on America, they acted as though that was a gift. Forcing people to buy insurance or pay a fine is not and never will be universal health care.

Kat: I specifically miss Laura Flanders. No one whored for Barack more. She might have been the first to run from the Iraq War as well. But she used to be worth listening to. Although she did make fun of a community member on air. But I miss being able to listen to her.

Ty: I still can't get over KPFA calling for publications to be burned. That to me was when it was clear that they had lost their way and would probably never find their way back. For those who missed that, THE MORNING SHOW co-host Aimee Allison didn't like a cartoon of Barack and Michelle on the cover of THE NEW YORKER and called for the magazine to be burned. She was hideous.

Ava: Let's also remember that she couldn't defend -- or wouldn't defend -- Helen Thomas.

Jim: Which you and C.I. covered in "Let's Kill Helen!" That really was a telling moment, when supposed lefties couldn't stand up for Helen and couldn't call out Barack Obama for his attack on her.

Rebecca: I hope to God that wouldn't happen today. I'm so sorry Helen got attacked and lost a job but I think she would appreciate that the incident really did have impact on the issue of Palestinians. It was more step of awareness in the long climb to equality for the Palestinians. A lot of people have been attacked for daring to call out apartheid and the targeting of the Palestinians. Helen Thomas got attacked for it. But those attacks only reveal the hatred and bigotry of the people attacking. Helen Thomas was a good lady and she is sorely missed.

Jim: Agreed and, on that note, let's go out.  This is a rush transcript.

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