Subliminal messaging

In CNN’s manufactured lifestyle article today (headline “More teens becoming ‘fake’ Christians”), a lovely white woman, dressed demurely, stands in front of an antebellum mansion. Her complaint? Teens today say they are Christian, but in reality this is what they believe:

Many teenagers thought that God simply wanted them to feel good and do good — what the study’s researchers called “moralistic therapeutic deism.”

This scores a bit of a religious criticism trifecta (must they always operate in threes?):

1. Morality cannot exist without religion (their religion, naturally)
2. Mandatory potshot at psychology, and by extension science
3. Belief in God without church trappings means god-is-in-lowercase.

The subliminal message? White people are no longer the absolute power in this country. Get back in the Big House by getting back to your (traditional American) Faith.

Hmmm, and wasn’t that Glenn Beck’s message at yesterday’s Whitestock rally in D.C.? Why, yes it was!

Note to America: If you find something is wrong with teenagers believing the purpose of their faith is to do good, and feel good, the problem is not with the teens.

Korean lessons

I’m not talking about learning the language. Korea is going through a massive change in governance as a result of exposed corruption at the top levels. Today three nominees for Prime Minister all had to resign their campaigns because of new revelations:

As just one of the men said, “I feel really sorry for causing trouble to all the people with my own problems,” Kim said in a nationally televised announcement. “I’m resigning from the post today with the thought that I should no longer be an obstacle to President Lee Myung-bak in his carrying out of state affairs.”

And in the U.S.? Let’s not even go to the corrupt, lying heads of insurance, banks, healthcare and other “free market” enterprises that flout laws with no consequence other than monetary rewards. They make crime pay, in spades. Let’s just stick with the obvious recent examples from our own corrupt political class such as Rep. Charles Rangel.

Speaking at a political forum in Harlem on Monday night, Rep. Charlie Rangel appeared to sharpen his public defiance of President Obama’s suggestion that he retire “with dignity” over his ethics woes, The New York Times’ Michael Barbaro reports:

“Frankly, he has not been around long enough to determine what my dignity is,” Mr. Rangel said of the 49-year-old Mr. Obama. “For the next two years, I will be more likely to protect his dignity.”

I find it just as odious that Pres. Obama wants Rep. Rangel to “retire with dignity” rather than be prosecuted for criminal activity as Rangel’s tit-for-tat response.

Both are sign of deep trouble.

Sungold marmalade

My experiment with using “earthbuckets” to grow veggies on the roof here has been a qualified success. The zucchini was so productive I pulled it up after a couple months so the Sungold cherry tomato would get more room to grow. Now, the tomato plant is massive but what with this one of the chilliest summers on record in SF, it has been a battle. The lemon is doing well, and the parsley is a sizable bush that seems to want to grow and grow.

With the brief warm spell this past week, I got a bunch of Sungolds picked. Still they were not as sweet as I wanted so I dried them out a little in a warm oven yesterday and I’ve ground them with olive oil and some salt in a mortar to use as a savory sandwich spread. Total result: about two tablespoons of tomato marmalade so far from the roof. Meh.

Foodie block party today

And do dress warmly - it's windy out there today!

It’s a block party on 18th Street between Dolores and Guerrero this afternoon. You know, the portion of 18th that stretches east from Dolores Park – past Dolores Park Cafe, Bi-Rite Creamery, Bi-Rite supermarket, Delfina, Pizzeria Delfina, Tartine. Need I say more? Okay – proceeds benefit a list of worthy causes including the children’s literacy project 826 Valencia, the Mission Women’s Building organization (with the huge bright murals) and more. Vendors include more than on just those blocks as well, such as Out the Door, Regalito and The Castro’s own Kasa Indian eatery. Yumms!

So, assuming that you’ve not flown across the continent to counter-protest the Glenn Beck Rally at the Lincoln Memorial today, and that you are not on a fruit detox, walk on down and enjoy some good eats!

Ken Mehlman outs himself, raises money for Gay Marriage fight

Ken Mehlman, the not-out but widely-known gay ex-RNC Chairman, has come out of the closet in an interview with The Atlantic. He is now raising funds for a group helping to reverse California’s Proposition 8 in the courts.

So, it finally turns out Mr. Mehlman’s Pinocchio nose is as long as the GOP elephant’s trunk. Glad he is finally officially out – and helping fight for equality now – but he has harmed many, many people by his leadership of powerful political forces aligned against our community.

For a fine commentary on that, read this Mike Rogers piece.

As we saw with Jim McGreevy, many gay leaders will attempt to elbow themselves to the front of the line to say on cable TV how wonderful it is that Ken is now being honest with the American people. Someone will be quoted in the New York Times saying something like, “After so many years of working for the Republicans, it’s wonderful to see Ken be true to himself.” Or perhaps you’ll read a quote in the Washington Post about how “every gay person is on their own personal journey and we are happy Ken has decided to be so open about his personal struggle.” Next up will come the book, then the TV shows, and of course the speaking tour.

…You see, while you and I had the horrible feelings of being treated so poorly by our President, while teens were receiving the messaging ‘gay is bad’ giving them ‘permission’ to gay bash, while our rights were being stripped away state by state, Ken was out there laughing all the way to the bank. So, if Ken is really sorry, and he very well may be, then all he needs to do is sell his condo and donate the funds to the causes he worked against so hard for all those years. He’s done a lot of damage to a lot of organizations, while making a lot of money. A LOT of money. It’s time to put his money where his mouth is. Ken Mehlman is sitting in a $3,770,000.00 (that’s $3.77 million) condo in Chelsea while we have lost our right to marry in almost 40 states.

Last morning in Provincetown

Carnival is over, and the town is noticeably less crowded. Colored streamers, feathers, and beads lie anywhere the street sweepers haven’t been able to reach. The air is even cooler this morning as if Jungle Fever (this year’s theme) has broken. Our house on the harbor hill has to be turned back over at noon. Sniff. A six-hour flight and we will all snap back to reality. Everyone who makes the plane, that is. Now, where is our missing housemate this morning?