Monday, November 07, 2011

The pregnant man

Tomorrow, residents of Mississippi will vote on the controversial "personhood" amendment, which outlaws abortion and some forms of birth control. This may or may not include the pill. The language of the legislation is vague and no one really knows how it will pan out.

The issue is bigger than Mississippi. Presidential candidate Herman Cain also supports banning all abortion. Obviously, a thousand sticky threads hang from this behometh, but I'm going to pull on the one that hasn't gotten a lot of press: Daddyhood.

The last time abortion was illegal in the United States, paternity was a dodgy thing. An unwed pregnant woman was often on her own, particularly if she was a certain kind of girl. A man could simply deny the baby was his.

I swear, Dad, I never laid a hand on her. I swear.

Who knows with a girl like that?


Hey, I paid for it. The rest is her problem.


You'd be surprised how many "good girls" fielded that kind of talk as soon as they were in a family way. Back then, owning up to the pivotal question, "Who is responsible for this girl?" was basically a matter of honor.

Well gentlemen, that has changed. Today's paternity tests are cheap and fast. Pregnant women can verify paternity as early as ten weeks into pregnancy. I have no idea how many women request it now, but if safe effective birth control and abortion are made illegal, I suspect paternity testing will go through the roof. Legally forcing men to submit to their end of the test cannot be far behind.

I'd like all you boys out there to stand up and say "mandatory DNA test" out loud.

Whether the blessed event unfurled in a bordello or nuptial bed, I believe paternity will soon loom large and that a man will be legally and financially bound to parenthood as soon as the two pink lines make it so. Obligation and responsibility will no longer be the right thing to do, they'll be mandatory. Soon, men will be just as pregnant as women in every aspect but the physical one.

I can hear it already.

It's about time.

A man should be responsible for his actions.

Praise the lord!

Yeah, yeah. We'll see how fervent those cries are when the real implications of fatherhood without options or escape take hold.

So then, gentlemen, congratulations. You're expecting.

*  *  *

121 comments:

Mrs. C said...

Yes!

So, boys, ya might want to consider voting on behalf your swimmers instead of our uteri.

Erin O'Brien said...

I envision this moment when the reality of illegal abortion/BCPs and mandatory paternity testing dawns on men.

I mean the moment they really get it.

I'm talking about being-obligated-to-a-severely-disabled-child-for-the-rest-of-my-life-because-the-rubber-broke WITH NO OPTIONS kind of moment.

Larry said...

Now, back when I was a lad , shortly after ejaculation, one began to think about the consequences. Sure, there was a sense of responsibility, but there was also a sense of FEAR. Making guys responsible for what they do with their wee wees would solve MANY social ills.

twinkly sparkles said...

I am so not sure about this, Erin. I doubt men will ever be made responsible in the way you imagine, paternity testing or no. But it would be nice. You know I'm sitting up here in my Blue State for a reason.

To me, it's all about making women pay for being female. Don't want to be pregnant? Tough, no abortion for you. Sexually active? That means you have to be ready for motherhood--no contraception for you. Want or had an abortion? Shame on you. Had sex? same thing.
Shame women, externalize everything you can't own in your own nature. Women have always been the vessels for that shame in restrictive societies. The pendulum swings dangerously in our country right now, though I have yet to find a culture in which women are not shamed for being female, at least in some measure. We have our own brand of it in the US and the religious right (are they still around?) have been fighting this one for a LONG time. I love the Palin family with the teen pregnancies but the insistence on family values. How exactly does that work? What the hell are family values anyway and who decides?

One great must-see film: "The Magdelena Sisters." If you are against abortion or contraception and if you are/were raised Catholic, you really have to see that movie. As a historical-fiction story, we should all see it regardless of beliefs and religious heritage. Really. See it.

Because our bodies are the bearers of babies, what happens is ultimately, for better or worse, right or wrong, OUR responsibility. This is why abortion rights are so critical and why women need to fight this. I don't mind that men are on board, because for fuck's sake, a lot of them are making the legislative decisions. But it is WE THE WOMEN who need to fight for reproductive freedom.

Sigh. Some mornings I feel defeated already.

jonas said...

Interesting idea. Just to be a pain: is this the other side of the same coin that says men have no legal recourse in preventing abortion of their own kid?

Bill said...

until I saw one of these, of my 1st granddaughter, I didn't really have strong feelings about abortion. But the thought of sucking that little person out of there and tossing it away, is almost imcomprehensible. How would I feel if the baby were growing in my body? I can't aswer that. I get why this is a contentious issue but there is one being who has nothing at all to say about it.

Ms Amanda said...

Or these boys can simply sign away their parental rights... No child support, no pesky visitation, no responsibility.

Anonymous said...

I think the technology and the social moment are in sync for test-tub reproduction of the kind envisioned in Brave New World. No sense in adding generations who, by virtue of unemployment or underemployment, are going to feel bitter and unfulfilled. Hell, if that fruit vendor in Tunisia had been able to find a decent job, or hadn't been educated to begin with, there might not have been an Arab Spring.
MR

Anonymous said...

Any man that is not the father who is obsessed with the contents of a womans uterus is sexually perverse.

I have 28 years experience in behavioral health with qualifying credentials and will argue that point of view in front of The National Academy of Sciences or any other distinguished group of academics.

I will await the invitations.

RJ

jonas said...

RJ, does is then stand to reason that a woman who is not the mother but is similarly obsessed would be deserving of the same diagnosis?

Anonymous said...

I'd be inclined to say yes and thanks for the clarification. It would have been more appropriate to say person. The other qualifier that will come up will be the interest of the mothers healthcare provider. I'd say that relationship is distinguished by professional responsibility.

RJ

jonas said...

Ah, ok. That makes more sense. Can you explain the 2nd part a bit more? I'm interested.

Anonymous said...

There might be people who would state that an OBGYN, as example, was unnaturally invested in the uterus and its contents. I'd say that they have a different point of view. Of course human nature being what it is that could not totally preclude the possibility one might be an OBGYN and sexually perverse.
I appreciate the feedback but am at work so if I'm slow to get back forgive me.

jonas said...

Ah, I see the point. Right. Most docs in that field are women. But I agree, they have their ethical responsibilities, regardless of their parts or politics. We can't assume they'd forgo one for the other. Nor can we assume people are perfect and don't blur those lines. Appreciate the clarification.

Work....work....hmmm...sounds familiar...

Bill said...

In some places,like these ,"content" is actually considered human. Also, "obsessing" and caring are two different things. A minor detail that the professor might want to consider.

Erin O'Brien said...

Twinks: who knows how it will play out? I do understand how you feel, though. Women. Are. Not. Incubation. Devices.

Jonas: sure depends on the situation. Case in point: A guy runs into a one night stand from last semester and says, Hiya shweetie. Hey, how'd that screw work out? You didn't get knocked up and end up getting an abortion, did you? 'Cause I'm not cool like that.

No idea what the ramifications are if the couple is married or in a LTR.

Bill: You realize of course that if the fertilized egg/person is endangering your daughter or granddaughter's health or ability to have children in the future, she'll be out of luck. You realize that if that egg was fertilized by a brutal rapist, your daughter or granddaughter will be forced to carry it to term?

jonas said...

Wow Erin, that's a very cynical and derogatory view of men. And frankly, I do find it offensive. How about considering all the women in committed relationships (married, even) who have had abortions without asking their partners? The fact is, the very law you're concerned about being overturned and want to rectify by legally obliging men to be accountable currently does not allow men to be accountable.

Erin O'Brien said...

Jonas: Offended? Tough shit. Paternity testing could have all sorts of implications. As for your saddened would-be fathers, yep, women have been having abortions that the fathers didn't know about for years. And yeah, I'm pretty sure a man could get a court ordered paternity test if he tried.

What's your point?

Anonymous said...

'"content" is actually considered human. Also, "obsessing" and caring are two different things."

It would be my assertion that spending time organizing a group like NRTL had nothing to do with empathy.(i.e. caring)or altruism.

To "cut to the chase" as they say.

I have a bias.

I do not believe the outcome of a pregnancy should be a matter for debate in the forums of public policy and in fact, once one considers the topic under consideration, it seems pretty odd.

I am not an expert on all animal or mammalian behavior but based on my enthusiasts knowledge I am not aware of another species that routinely designates unrelated surrogates for the care of unborn offspring. I stipulate I could be missing data and would love to hear otherwise.

Have a fine day.

RJ

Erin O'Brien said...

RJ +1

Sex, procreation and relationships are tender human phenomena and do not belong in the public realm. Overly simplistic? Probably, but it's my opinion.

Bill said...

It is comforting to know that there are experts in "persons who are obsessive about the content of another person's uterus". very interesting

Mike Lawless said...

I would accept a DNA test, but my cells are people, too.

jonas said...

My point? Your argument is that men should be made more responsible. As it stands, the law allows women to make that choice without the other, responsible party's consent. So, while the rapist argument is a always the fallback, no one wants to talk about the fact that men are largely ignored in the current equation. It's nice to assume that all women make the choice based on an absentee partner (college, rape, etc.). But that's rhetoric. By dismissing out of had the role and desires of would-be-fathers, you take a position that "right a wrong" by creating another wrong. Unless women conceive immaculately, I'm pretty sure it's a two-person system. Not sure why calling for men to be held accountable on one hand but advocating for their exclusion the other is anything short of hypocrisy.

Tough shit is right: I'd like some say in what happens to my future child. As the law stands, I don't.

Anonymous said...

@jonas @10:54am...'cynical'? 'derogatory'? How about 'accurate' and 'realistic'?
MR

jonas said...

Really, you want to go there? The picture being painted here is of men who go impregnating women as fast and irresponsibly as possible. Does that happen? Sure. Is it always or even mostly the case? I don't know. And, neither do you.

Its about as accurate to say that all abortions are simply birth control for women of lose morals. How's that sound? I promise you, that is actually part of the reality. But, do I know how much? No. So, I don't make generalizations about it.

The fact that any of this discussion comes down to denigrating men (or, anyone) to make a point is dumb, regressive, and counter productive.

Erin O'Brien said...

Your argument is that men should be made more responsible.

WRONG.

My POINT is that I believe paternity testing could make pregnancy a two-person venture soon.

Some men will be happy about that.

Some men will be unhappy about that.

Some women will be happy about that.

Some women will be unhappy about that.

Frankly, I'm not sure how I feel about it.

As for your future child: conceive it with the right woman and you probably won't have any problems. Then again, I don't peg you for the obnoxious college kid in my previous comment.

jonas said...

No, you didn't. But this is a debate being argued by women on behalf of women. There's more than one side of any argument.

Erin O'Brien said...

Everyone is welcome to voice their opinion here, Jonas, including you.

Should women be required to have the father's permission before having an abortion?

jonas said...

My point was not about me. No more so that you're arguing on your own behalf.

Should they be required? I think that's less a black and white answer than we've generally presumed. Yes, I know that this is a question that for many isn't a question. But again, if this is about responsibility, the process is currently unequal, all along the way (for both men and women). I've just always found it difficult to think it's completely fine that the decision is legally unilateral. Of course there are special circumstances. But should those define how we think about this? Base everything on a worse case scenario? And to be cold about it, do statistics support rape, incest, danger to the mother as predominant scenarios? Many would argue that %s don't matter. Maybe that's true. But when those reasons are held up for the rationale that women shouldn't be beholden to anyone in making that decision, I have to raise the question. Because as it stands, those potentials trump all other scenarios...including those with consenting adults in a committed relationship. And to me, that's at the very least problematic.

Judy said...

This is an interesting debate and I'm concerned about women's rights with this 'personhood' situation...when right is taken away, what right is next? Will women become incubators with no say...what about other minorities (either race/religion/ethic origin/sexual preference...will they also begin to lose their rights (perhaps voting rights)...

Anonymous said...

@jonas-were the level of personal accountability higher the phrases 'baby mama' and 'baby daddy' wouldn't have entered the lexicon. And on the side of town that I work, yea pretty much procreation occurs without any level of respect for the futures of the children (or the parents, for that matter).
MR

jonas said...

MR: you're 100% right...we live in a time where the social problems that contribute to your experiences are rampant. No question.

Erin O'Brien said...

Rational consenting adults don't have to worry about tests and lawyers and bullshit. They figure it out. They talk. They come to a mutual conclusion. And if they don't, then they tackle some difficult waters.

Women who get quiet abortions are usually terrified of something. I'm not going to list the things I've seen, but most of it is about horrible violence and fear.

So, what's the story behind every abortion? It doesn't matter. People are entitled to privacy and choices.

A man who tangles with a woman who's going to mislead him about conception and childbearing has big problems that spill outside of this issue.

Anonymous said...

AI concur with Erin 100% on this issue.
James Old Guy

Bill said...

Does anyone, here, think the content of the uterus has any rights? Just curious.

Erin O'Brien said...

Huh? What part of your body has rights that don't belong to you, Bill? What rights do artificially fertilized eggs have?

Do we celebrate our Conception Day? Hell no. We mark our birthday because that's the day we're BORN. The day we come into the world.

Does an expecting dad say, "I'm a dad!" Hell no. He says, "I'm going to be a daddy!" Because that baby isn't born yet.

That baby has an expectant mom to protect it. Some mothers are better than others. Some are healthier than others. Some are just plain awful. Welcome to the real world.

But by all mean, you list the rights a fertilized egg--excuse me--an unborn person should have. Maybe you should start with United States Citizenship.

Erin O'Brien said...

The amendment could subject both women and doctors to an array of criminal and civil suits. For instance, a doctor could be prosecuted for trying to save a woman with ectopic pregnancy, an abnormal pregnancy which occurs outside the uterus and is the leading cause of pregnancy-related deaths. It could require coroners to investigate miscarriages, which are reported to occur in at least a quarter of pregnancies, and it could make it possible for someone to sue on behalf of the egg that didn't implant because the woman used birth control.

From an article on Huffpo.

Bill said...

I understand your point(s) but, still, that little beating heart, those little arms and legs, that developing brain? That, "I'm going to be a daddy", daddy, can just as just as easily say, "I don't want to be a daddy". "Flush it"? Besides, you don't abort a diseased arm or gall bladder. And, neither of those can grow into your likeness. And then, there's that unfortuane little bundle of joy that is the victim of scissors inserted into the base of the skull. No birthday party. Of course if that hadn't happened, a safe car seat would have been required to get it home.

BTW, I'm totally in favor of rubbers and birth control pills. Anything that will prevent conception. Even the morning after pill.

Anonymous said...

Erin-
If I read the legislation correctly, hormonal birth control, IUDs and Plan B would all be outlawed, because they prevent implantation of a fertilized egg?
MR

Anonymous said...

"I understand your point(s) but, still, that little beating heart, those little arms and legs, that developing brain? That, "I'm going to be a daddy", daddy, can just as just as easily say, "I don't want to be a daddy". "Flush it"?

Assumes every fertilization will result in full term birth of a healthy infant. Pregnancy is a necessary but not sufficient condition to insure childbirth. Also seems to raise the question of the conditions under which an egg with personhood can be destroyed.. If an egg with personhood is an 8 yo Iraqi girl in Baghdad killed by a cruise missle is that equivalent to an illegal abortion?

Estimates vary but a quick review of epidemiological studies (Google: Miscarriage, Spontaneous Abortion)report 25-50% of all fertilizations spontaneously abort in the first 6 weeks of gestation.
Under the proposed legislation would this create a question of some sort of infringement of the fetuses legal status as a person up to and including murder?
Would abortion be an option if the health of the mother was at stake?
What about infants born with birth defects? Could the parents be held liable for negligent prenatal care or some such?

Methinks the Right to Lifers are attempting to stand on a very slippery legal slope.

I suggest penis and vagina conception permits be required so as to screen out incompetent conceptionists. This would include IQ testing, basic prenatal testing and genetic screening, among some things that might lead to enfringements of an eggs personhood. All in the name of limited government of course.

RJ

Bill said...

100% of abortions end up in death. Even if one excapes death, it will not be provided with care, and will die, if left up to our President. We don't want to spend tax dollars on an abortion and THEN on comfort care too!

Bill said...

Not to worry! It's only about 300 miles from Mississippi to Orlando. Plenty of services available and some pretty good prices too. Sunday Specials

twinkly sparkles said...

If you can care for an embryo in your body at any time and you are a man, go for it. Otherwise, it needs a woman's body to exist. Men simply can't do what we can. Sorry guys. I wish the culture could deal with that fact. Go see that movie I mentioned, too. Check your motives. Is this a control issue? Is it fear of death? Is it fear of female power? Look, I know the kinds of snickers my questions summon. But I am totally serious. I really believe this has to do with recognizing female power at its core.

You know what you men get to do? Mind where you deposit your sperm.

My eggs are inside and that's where life happens due to that fact. Test tube babies notwithstanding because that opens up a can of worms for me and those embryos still need a place to go and it's not in a man.

I have some problems with modern reproductive technology and interference in natural processes of childbirth (another unpopular opinion of mine with feminists and the Christian Right alike).

Because I have the ability to create life within my body, even without a man knowing that it has happened, I have the ability to destroy that life. Laws will not stop that fact. It's ancient and terrifying and powerful and I wish our culture would embrace this fact.

As unpopular as it is to address, I've always come to the point that, though an embryo is alive, it cannot exist outside of a woman's body. It is not a human being!

Men have not dominated women's reproductive and birth health for that long. In traditional societies, the realm of birth and reproduction was left to women.

If you want to talk about other mammals, remember that they will regularly allow their offspring to die if conditions are not favorable for survival. Birds, too. This is not a bad thing. This is inherent in the evolution of species. Stress of many kinds can induce unexpected outcomes.

Women have the power of life and death inherently in their bodies. Why is that so threatening? Why would you want to wrest this power from us? We didn't decide it; we were born with it.

I must say that I doubt I'll be able to keep up with this thread depending on how long it goes on.

I feel passionately about many aspects of this topic, but I don't feel teachable. My mind is set. I suspect that most anyone else here will not change opinions. So what's the point?

In conclusion: Stay out of my pussy unless you're invited in. Same for the rest of my body, including any medical procedure you can think of. Okay?

Bill said...

Twinkles, Is an e-vite out of the question?

Erin O'Brien said...

From twinks: I really believe this has to do with recognizing female power at its core.

Yep. And if you need any proof, all you have to do is dig Bill's comment:

"I'm totally in favor of rubbers and birth control pills. Anything that will prevent conception. Even the morning after pill."

How benevolent is our holy ruler! Allowing us to have some control over our filthy sin-ridden bodies! EXALT OUR LEADER! Now collapse to the ground, crawl to his feet and kiss the hem of his purple robe.


And more from twinks:

You know what you men get to do? Mind where you deposit your sperm.

Double yep.

Erin O'Brien said...

Wow.

It just occurred to me. All the men of today don't have any idea how pissed off women get over this. Now that the Mississippi issue is looming, truly threatening our sexual control and health, the boys are starting to see how sharp our claws and teeth can be.

Moderate conservatives used to solemnly conceded: A woman's body is hers. Period.

They knew when to back down and the men of today are going to learn, one way or another.

Anonymous said...

Erin. I get it re: women. I also understand men don't get a pass on fertilization or, like jonas suggests, that it's ever totally a womens issue.

But back to my original point and I'm done.
I have 2 daughters. One 21 one 13. If I ever know with certainty a man other than their partners or their doctors are looking at them and thinking about the healthy functioning of their sex organs I'll knock their teeth out.
I think fathers could do a lot in this regard to curb this perverted behavior.

Over and out.

RJ

Bill said...

No still means NO and some things never change

spants said...

I have a medical condition that leads to chronic miscarriages. I can conceive like nobody's business, but it doesn't lead to normal development. Most of my pregnancies end in
miscarriages at some point, but one just kept hanging on abnormally. It was making me sick. With every conception and subsequent ending, my hormones got more and more out of whack. I was depressed & I was losing my hair. I had headaches daily. I was suffering.

My doctor ended that one pregnancy with an injection of drugs. But under this proposed amendment, I would've had to stay pregnant until my body had finally had enough with trying to hang onto it. You see, my body and I really wanted to be pregnant.

Eventually, we discovered what was wrong with me and I now have a beautiful daughter. I got to choose how to handle my own body & every person - no matter gender, religion, background, financial status, state residency or skin color - should have at least that right. It is fundamental.

Anonymous said...

I think you got off topic with Erin.
Erin, I believe was writing about responsibility, of both parties.
The “Mississippi issue” is a hidden agenda of the religious right movement to ban not only abortion but almost all forms of birth control.
As my grandma used to say “using the back door is still sneaking in”.

I have a legal right to my religious views and my scientific knowledge hence the difference
of when conception starts and when life begins. My concerns are when my legal rights
are walked upon because the back door is left unlocked.

spants said...

I failed to mention an important detail. One of my miscarriages was a suspected ectopic pregnancy that cleared itself. I had blinding, excruciating pain followed by a miscarriage within a couple days. My OB was concerned that the pregnancy that we decided to end via injection would lead to an ectopic pregnancy again. Obviously that is a precarious situation. I shouldn't have to blow a tube or lose an ovary because of a backwards law. We should be able to protect our own bodies, even from themselves.

Erin O'Brien said...

Thanks for your comments, Spants.

Anon, going off-topic is just fine here at the Owner's Manual. Thanks for dropping in.

twinkly sparkles said...

RJ, now you've gone and taken your daughters' power away. Maybe they can protect and choose for themselves or perhaps I've mistaken your meaning. Maybe not the 13 yo yet (but she can be empowered now), but certainly your adult daughter can decide for herself who looks and who touches. What if she has a midwife? Can the midwife do any of the things of which you approve or only the doctor? (Sorry for my tone. As Erin stated, the claws come out, only these claws are vehemently attached to a vagina, uterus, breasts, and ovaries. Oh, and a female brain--maybe the scariest part of all).

Or those among us who have breasts, vaginas, ovaries, and uterii can all don burkas. Those work to protect women, right? Think about it, RJ. Your daughters wearing burkas. I recommend instead, a very good self-defense course.

dean said...

"Whether the blessed event unfurled in a bordello or nuptial bed, I believe paternity will soon loom large and that a man will be legally and financially bound to parenthood as soon as the two pink lines make it so."

In most places, this is already the case, and has been for quite a long time now. In most places, if a man is identified as the father, he is legally responsible for child support no matter what. In most places, if he fails to meet that obligation, he is subject to serious financial and legal consequences, including jail.

In some places, this is the case even when he is not the actual father, but has somehow acted in loco parentis.

So I fail to see how paternity will suddenly loom large. We're already there.

Erin O'Brien said...

Dean, I know paternity isn't anything new, but paternity in a land where abortion is completely outlawed? I don't think all the potential daddies have thought this one through yet.

Bill said...

Back in the day, when abortion wasn't as available and wasn't used as birth control, the guys, including me, were always worried about paternity. Lots of young guys "did the right thing" and married the young woman. Lots of those marriages survived. So did the "unwanted" fetus.

Anonymous said...

twinkly @10:02.
Make no mistake my daughters are taught from an early age they have power..of consent to sexual intimacy as well as a whole host of other things.
My statement was meant as one of support not one of usurpation.
But I am sincere when I say if a few fathers would stand-up to people like Haley Barbour and say "WTF business are my daughters ovaries to you? we could change the conversation.
I am a baby boomer. Ergo I dated the daughters of "The Greatest Generation." It is their values I reflect when it comes to respect for daughters. I think the proponents of legislation like the we have been discussing are objectionable on many grounds but most certainly are disrespectful.

Your feedback is appreciated.

RJ

Craig Hughes said...

Here's a "righty" that agrees with you completely EO'B. The issue that will ultimately cause me to loose my conservative credentials is a woman'a right to her body and everything that includes. I cannot get past that in whatever argument I hear to the contrary. It is why I want this issue to GO AWAY. It is, I believe, another control issue, where people feel the need to force other people to live in their image. I cannot abide.

Anonymous said...

Erin-
any idea whether or not the ovum in the 'Egg Art' post were fertilized or not?
MR

Anonymous said...

Just occured to me and I'm surprised no one else posted.

Corporation = Person
Egg = Person
Therefore Corporation = Egg?

RJ

alphadog said...

Maybe Mississippians aren't as dumb as y'all thought.
http://www.wlbt.com/story/15993188/mississippi-voters-reject-personhood-amendment

Anonymous said...

Nice 'yolk', RJ

Hal said...

That psychotic anti-abortion/anti birth control got CRUSHED!

Nice going for a state that didn't ratify the 13th amendment until 1995.

Erin O'Brien said...

I am elated over the election results coming in across the country.

The teabaggers had their collective nose cuffed. Hard.

Common sense and moderation won. Big.

Here's a good round-up article.

And one on the recall of the man who authored Arizona's anti-immigration law.

Erin O'Brien said...

Add the deliciously slow and drawn out orgasm I'm having over Herman Cain's self-destruction and I have to ask: does it get any better than this?

Anonymous said...

Alphadog said "Ya'll" and "Mississipian" in the same sentence.
Obviously a mole living in Yankeeland.
SALUTE!

RJ

PS- Seeins' how I ain't no chef I've always enjoyed SCRAMBLED EGGS! (Rim Shot)

Erin O'Brien said...

Per request: This tribute goes out to Mississippi from a caller.

Bill said...

Erin: That makes two of us who are elated! Me, because of the Obamacare smack down. I still don't get why working class people, in Ohio, making $50k, want to pay the benefits and pension plans for their public employees, doing the same jobs and making $100K. I guess $30 million in union money does weild some power.

Anonymous said...

"I guess $30 million in union money does weild some power"
But not nearly as much as 30 million in American Crossroads money, right?

"I still don't get why working class people, in Ohio, making $50k, want to pay the benefits and pension plans for their public employees, doing the same jobs and making $100K."

Citation for source material please.

RJ

Erin O'Brien said...

To understand Ohio SB5, you have to understand Parma, Ohio.

Parma school levies never pass, yet the beleaguered district still manages to get an "Excellent" rating by the state.

source

Parma teachers contribute 20 percent to their health care coverage, which is five percent more than SB5 mandated.

Parma school teachers are hard-working, reasonable middle class people. One of them lives on my street. We play Bunco together. We step into each other's back yards holding bowls of onion dip. We give each other's kids rides to the mall.

Parma teachers recognized the community's difficult financial situation they and negotiated accordingly. But reasonable and fair negotiations weren't good enough for Kasich.

Kasich could have come in and legislated a 15 percent HC contribution floor and a few other things. People would have very likely accepted it and many would have lauded him.

But no.

He had to belly up and bust every public union, with his legislative lackeys doddered along behind him.

But this is Ohio. We can throw laws away, which is what we did yesterday--handing Kasich his ass to him on a platter.

What's the vernacular? Oh yes: shellacking.

Bill said...

Erin: I love the way you spun the Parma teachers description. I particularly liked the backyard onion dip thing. That would have made a great segment on the Ed Schultz, MSNBC show. The teachers get an 80% discount on their health care premiums. Not bad. I'm sure there's a generous pension plan too. I absolutely do not blame them for whatever they get. If the voters there, think that the teachers and other union members deserve benefits above and beyond what the non union taxpayers receive, then more power to them.

RJ: My source is Rush Limbaugh or some other right wing hater. Don't remember.

Hal said...

Erin, I want Cain to survive this and win the GOP nomination.

That will ensure an Obama landslide win.

It would almost be as bad (or good) as Obama vs. Palin.

Cain is Palin.

Anonymous said...

haters gonna hate

hyperbolics gonna hyperbole

RJ

Anonymous said...

Erin-
-certain individuals don't get and seem to be impervious to education about the fact that SB5 appealed to a broad swath of Ohio voters because we have an innate sense of fair play.
-Union bargaining rights didn't cause Ohio's financial problems
-Stripping union rights isn't going to solve Ohio's financial problems.
-Mr Kasich DID NOT run on stripping union rights during the campaign. If he had, Fox News would have bought the bandwith to broadcast it OVER and OVER and OVER again, in an endless loop.
-Any idea that any union rank-and-file are earning anywhere near $100k is a fiction of the right. Tenured UNIVERSITY professors earn $60k-70k. You can draw your own conclusions as to the corresponding pay scale of public school teachers.
-Since he took office, all the while squealing "CRISIS", Mr Kasich has been doling out tax breaks for businesses and corporations
-Since he took office, all the while squealing "CRISIS", Mr Kasich has dramatically increased pay for HIS staff members.
-Short term-memory loss is a sign of early-onset Alzheimer's
-Telling a true-to-life story of the close-knit nature of Ohio communities and of the relationship we have with our neighbors who also are public servants does not constitute 'spin'

WV: this one is too good to let pass: "stifi"- Kasich had a 'stifi'
for our cops and teachers, and he got a 'stifi' right back from the voters.

Anonymous said...

The silence from the west coast is astonishing...can't really co-exist when the fact-based world and the Faux News world collide...and so much the better for the silence...

Bill said...

Sorry about the silence. Watching the excellent debate. It's on CNBC.

Mrs. C said...

What was your favorite part, Bill? When Perry flubbed his lines the first time? Or was it when he flubbed them the second time?
I didn't catch much else that wasn't a repetition of the previous 18,942 iterations of this debate cycle...

Erin O'Brien said...

MR: Let's just keep replaying the "oops" clip and ignore him. Pass the onion dip, please.

Mrs. C: don't forget to say "nine nine nine."

Erin O'Brien said...

Hal: Calin?

Mrs. C said...

...or "Nein! Nein! Nein!"

Or, perhaps, "Number nine? Number nine?"

WV: poliscr, as in "Duck! Here comes a poliscr!"

Erin O'Brien said...

actually where I live, it's

"nine nine sevenGODDAMNteen"

There's an eight percent sales tax in Cuyahoga County.

Good christ, is this really the best the righties could do?

No time to properly link it now, but I'm pretty sure all of our darling GOP candidates supported the Mississippi personhood amendment except Huntsman.

Watch them squirm now that it was trounced.

I sure as hell Obama takes the goddamn gloves off for his second term.

Anonymous said...

The 4 or 5 finger gloves?

Lg‑promo‑mickey‑mouse
mickeyclub.wikia.com

RJ

Bill said...

Mrs C: My favorite part was Newt chastising the press over their OWC coverage. I also liked the "Princess Nancy" comment by Cain. Perry's memory loss was actually pretty sad. Romney, as expected, continued his march to the debate stage with President Obama.

Al The Retired Army Guy said...

I've not read any of the responses in this thread (because I suspect they stray from the original post by Erin). I will say this, however, in response to Erin's original comments ...

If you took the time to make the baby, you are now obligated to take the time to raise it (particularly if DNA tests prove you are the father). You want to call yourself a man? Man up and raise that child. If you don't, well ... you're less than a man IMHO. Real men don't run away from the responsibility of raising children IMHO (much like real men, IMHO do not cheat on their wives).

I have no children, BTW, but if I did, I sure as shit wouldn't be hiding behind a DNA test to avoid responsibility. If I made the decision to have sex with a woman without the benefit of birth control and a child was the result, that child is now my responsibility (along with the woman). No escaping that reality. But that's just me.

As for abortion - for me personally, I do not support it (in other words, if my wife were pregnant I would not opt for abortion). But for others ... they have to live with that decision, not me and as such it is none of my business. Or the business of others IMHO.

Not a political post, merely one explaining how I feel on a particular social issue as opposed to a political one.

Al
TRAG

Bill said...

Al, The reality is that abortion IS a political issue. By the way, did you know that in California, if you kill a viable fetus, it is considered murder? Unless, of course, the mother gives a doctor the OK. This could be a social or political issue. It's a pretty volatile subject, I know.

Al The Retired Army Guy said...

Bill,

It is a political issue only if one accepts the premise that one human being can legally (and legislatively) tell another what another can legally (and legislatively) can do with their own body. Speaking only for myself, I feel I have no right to tell another person what they can do with their own body - nothing in the constitution talks about that if I read it correctly. To me, it is a moral/social issue, not a political one. There are those who want to make it a political issue for any number of reasons. I disagree with them.

I agree that this is a very volatile subject. But it isn't IMHO potitical for the reasons I've noted. Some have endeavored to make it political, and for the most part I ignore them, regardless of which side of the politcal spectrum they stand on.

Ultimately, this is about making choices. People make a choice to have sex (obviously cases of rape and other forced sexual activity do not fall into the realm of choice). Choices have consequences. You choose to have sex without birth control, you run the risk of bringing a child into the world. If you do bring a child into the world, you are now responsible, regardless of whether you're ready or not, want it or not, or can handle it or not. If you choose to bring the pregnancy to term, there are consequences to that decision (e.g., you have to raise the child, feed it, clothe it, educate it, nurture it, etc.). If you choose to abort the pregnancy, there are other consequences (gulit, regret, and other things). In the end, it's all about individual choices and consequences. Our politicians of all stripes would all do well to remember that, and just stay the hell out of our lives and stop demogoguing the issue.

Al
TRAG

Al The Retired Army Guy said...

BTW, somewhere, Erin is probably thinking "I love it when a conservative talks like a lib." I'm not talking like a lib (for that, I'd have to say things like "we have to pass the bill so we can see what's in it" or "some projects weren't as shovel ready as we thought they were," or "they (Republicans) can come along for the ride, but they'll have to ride in the back" ... all of these quotes were uttered by liberal politicians, and these quotes are a matter of public record). I am talking what I consider to be common sense, something that seems to be so lacking today on both sides of the aisle IMHO.

Al
TRAG

Erin O'Brien said...

Oh Al, if you only knew what I was thinking ...

Bill said...

If a fetus IS a person, the constitution protects it. If the fetus is NOT a person, it doesn't. Yep, it's a personal matter.

Anonymous said...

A Light in the Darkness...

"It is a political issue only if one accepts the premise that one human being can legally (and legislatively) tell another what another can legally (and legislatively) can do with their own body."- Al

RJ

alphadog said...

Which begs the question RJ, what gives another the right to vote away my freedoms?

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure I follow you Alph, that by supporting a right to privacy in re: conception that automatically excludes the regulation of any right. I mean I'm all over libertarian stuff like allowing drug use and prostitution but I think it's probably a pretty good idea to prohibit 100 mph auto races through school zones.

RJ

Al The Retired Army Guy said...

"If a fetus IS a person, the constitution protects it. If the fetus is NOT a person, it doesn't. Yep, it's a personal matter."

The operative word here, Bill, is the word "if." Last time I looked, as regards this issue, the Constitution doesn't address the word "if" as regards a fetus. Nor do any applicable federal laws. I guess I need a definition for "fetus" as it applies to our laws, and at what point we regard a child as a fetus. If I'm missing something, please correct me.

Again, in my view, this is all about choices. We wouldn't be arguing about fetuses if folks pulled their heads out of their collective asses and made responsible choices. Don't want to have to worry about abortion? Don't engage in activities that may lead to a decision as to whether to abort a child or not. Don't want to worry about fatherhood? Wrap that rascal, or better yet, don't engage in unprotected sex. If you do engage in unprotected sex, you are responsible, for the rest of your life, for the consequences that ensue. Oh, and don't whine about it. You made your bed. Lie in it.

Al
TRAG



9:26 AM

Erin O'Brien said...

We wouldn't be arguing about fetuses if folks pulled their heads out of their collective asses and made responsible choices.

Birth control fails, Al. Pregnancy can get complicated and dangerous.

Women used to die during childbirth all the time. They still do. Even in the US.

There is nothing simple or straightforward about sex, conception, pregnancy or childbirth.

As for freedoms, men have no idea. Think of this: you get diagnosed with testicular cancer. The doc comes in and gives you the news. You ask about treatment. He gives you some pamphlets about alternative medicine. Refers you to a holistic practitioner.

You ask about other options.

He says, "Sorry Mr. X, but the testicals house the fluid of life, which, by law, I'm not allowed to interfere with.

It's in God's hands. I'll pray for you."

That's what they were about to do to women in MS.

There isn't a man in the world who understands reproduction the way a woman does. There never will be.

Bill said...

Here you go Al. Like I said earlier; it's against the law to kill a fetus unless the mother says it's OK. This explains it

Anonymous said...

Conceptually what would be the distinction between being unborn and born again? As I exist today in a state of radical and pervasive depravity am I unborn?

RJ

Bill said...

Even morally corrupt and perverted persons are protected under the law. What a country.

Erin O'Brien said...

birth: the emergence of a baby or other young from the body of its mother; the start of life as a physically separate being.

Anonymous said...

"Even morally corrupt and perverted persons are protected under the law. What a country"

Then how come they're being run out of Ogawa Plaza in Oakland?

Then how come they can't build a mosque in Murfreesboro TN?

RJ

Bill said...

Well, RJ, we, 53%, can only put up with a certain amount of inconvenience. We do reach the point where, even though all persons are protected, under the law, someone gets to decice just how much protection is offered. Sort of like the abortion thing. Know what I mean?

Anonymous said...

Yeah. Rights are conditional. What a country.

RJ

Anonymous said...

"The more toppings a man has on his pizza, I believe the more manly he is…A manly man don’t want it piled high with vegetables! He would call that a sissy pizza."
Herman Cain

Andrew Breitbart tops his Pizza:
"The calls for Bachus’ head are being led by conservative gadfly Andrew Breitbart, whose blog published documents related to the accusations. Breitbart gave an interview and took to Twitter to demand Bachus quit.

“I want to see these people taken down. I want them to suffer Anthony Weiner’s fate. I want them to step down. I am calling for Spencer Bachus to step down, not [just] from being the chairman of the House finance committee. I think he should be in Joe Paterno-ville, he should be in exile,” said Breitbart Sunday evening in an interview with the conservative Media Research Center. “His constituency should surround his district office and call for him to be there, with pitchforks. What he did was egregious.”

Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1111/68319.html#ixzz1di9teYCA

RJ

Bill said...

If this congressional insider trading expose' doesn't piss you off; nothing will. It's just disgusting and should be a major issue in the 2012 campaign. Everyone in congress and in the senate, and anyone who works there, should only be allowed to have blind trusts. Thanks, RJ, for commenting on it.

Anonymous said...

Are you suggesting, then, that insider trading is ok as long as one is not a member of Congress? Or, as a corollary are you suggesting that markets are in need of regulation? And if so should there be penalties for violating the regulations? And if so would it be ok to develop "Dark Markets"(read: derivatives, credit default swaps) so if a trader wanted to be uninhibited and amoral there would be no pesky regulators around to stop them?

Capitalism just gets curiouser and curiouser.

RJ

Anonymous said...

BTW. Bachus represents Al-6 which is the congressional district in which my sister and a number of friends who were aghast at my 06 vote for BHO live.
Would it be in poor taste if I rubbed their nose in the gravy-sucking pig feces I suggested they'd get of they voted GOP?

RJ

Oh yeah. Al-6 is also mostly in Jefferson County, AL which just last week filed the largest municipal bankruptcy in US history.

Chickens comin' home to roost.

Cluck.

Anonymous said...

'08 vote for BHO of course.

RJ

Bill said...

Unfortunately it's not just Bachus. It's on both sides and it's deep. Even Martha Stewart went to prison for insider trading. How many people knew that congress was exempt from insider trading laws? I didn't. CBS, exposing this on 60 Minutes! I'm surprised but grateful.

Anonymous said...

Comment curiously devoid of reference to questions posed above. Nevertheless...OF COURSE IT"S ON BOTH SIDES! IT'S ON 8,10,12,16 SIDES! IT'S FUCKING CAPITALISM! FUCKING COLLUSION! FUCKING DECEPTION IS SYSTEMIC! IT CAN'T BE REFORMED! THIS SHIT'S BEEN GOING ON 100+ YEARS!

WHY AM I YELLING?


ARGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!

RJ

Al The Retired Army Guy said...

@ Bill - does the phrase "child in utero" equate to fetus? I"m asking because I'm a bit confused by the legalistic jingo here. Please clarify for me, i f you would.

@ Erin:

"Birth control fails, Al. Pregnancy can get complicated and dangerous."

No kidding. However, most unwanted pregnancies can be avoided with birth control. I've done some research, and while not 100% effective, condoms, pills, and other methods of birth control work in most cases.

"There is nothing simple or straightforward about sex, conception, pregnancy or childbirth."

Actually, there is something simple about it, whether we agree about it or not. It's called abstinence (and no, I'm not pounding a bible and saying you should abstain). If you choose to have sex, particularly unprotected sex, conception, pregnancy and childbirth are now possibilities. If you abstain, chances of conception, pregnancy and childbirth are vastly diminished. Just saying. In other words if you abstain, you will most likely not become pregnant. If you don't ... well ... do the math.

"As for freedoms, men have no idea. Think of this: you get diagnosed with testicular cancer. The doc comes in and gives you the news. You ask about treatment. He gives you some pamphlets about alternative medicine. Refers you to a holistic practitioner.

You ask about other options.

He says, "Sorry Mr. X, but the testicals house the fluid of life, which, by law, I'm not allowed to interfere with.

It's in God's hands. I'll pray for you."

That's what they were about to do to women in MS.

There isn't a man in the world who understands reproduction the way a woman does. There never will be."

In 1984, while a student at The Ohio State University, I read an article from Esquire magazine, written by William Broyles, a Vietnam veteran and a writer/producer of the TV show "China Beach." The title of the article was "Why Men Love War." It sounds offensive, but if you read the article, it makes sense. Men cannot give birth to children. They can, however, take the life of other men via war. In other words, they have power over life and death in situations involving armed combat. This is what, Broyles asserts, attracts some men to war - the control over life and death.

Women, on the other hand, according to Broyles, have that control via childbirth. They can or cannot bring children into this world, for any number of reasons. The emotional impact is, in many ways, according to Broyles similar to men and women. Men feel exulted in combat by taking out others, surviving. Women, on the other hand, give birth to a child, and survive as well. In other words, war, in Broyle's view is for men what childbirth is for women. I realize, BTW that some here at the Manual will not agree with Broyle's assertions.

Bottom line: men understand life and death as much as their female counterparts, but in a different way due to physiological differences. Women experience it in childbirth; men, for the most part, in war, if Broyle's view is any example.

I understand reproduction to mean the fertilization of a woman's ova by a man (or in vitro). I know what it takes to fertilize a woman's eggs (intercourse, or in the case of in vitro, ejaculation). To say that men will never understand reproduction like a woman does is disingenuous if you ask me.

As for testicular cancer, well, just shoot me in the head.

Al
TRAG

Anonymous said...

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

FREEDOM:

Liberty Square (Zuccotti Park), home of Occupy Wall Street for the past two months and birthplace of the 99% movement that has spread across the country and around the world, is presently being evicted by a large police force.

EVERYONE should get to the park immediately for eviction defense! Subway stations and bridges are closed. Please either take a cab or use Canal St. subway station (which is currently open.)

More information to follow.

Updates

1:38 a.m. Unconfirmed reports of snipers on rooftops.
1:34 a.m. CBS News Helicopter Livestream
1:27 a.m. Unconfirmed reports that police are planning to sweep everyone.
1:20 a.m. Subway stops are closed.
1:20 a.m. Brooklyn bridge is closed.
1:20 a.m. Occupiers chanting "This is what a police state looks like."
1:20 a.m. Police are in riot gear.
1:20 a.m. Police are bringing in bulldozers.

RJ

Anonymous said...

"I know you've come to kill me. Shoot, coward! You are only going to kill a man!"
Ernesto "Che" Guevara 10/9/1967

YOU CAN NOT KILL AN IDEA!

RJ

Al The Retired Army Guy said...

Uhh, you can kill an idea. Think "new Coke."

Al
TRAG

Bill said...

Che, on the other hand, liked to shoot defenseless boys. He was a coward. Only the left and uninformed, idolize this murderer.

Bill said...

Get a copy of "Exposing the Real Che Guevara: And the Useful Idiots Who Idolize Him" by Humberto Fontova.

Anonymous said...

Get a copy of the collateral death toll of all US Military soirees since 1960. Only the Right and the mindless miscreants that follow them rationalize those deaths as justified.

RJ

Bill said...

Changing the subject doesn't change the fact that your hero, Che, was a scumbag.

Anonymous said...

Dear Bill,

Let me be more specific. I will gladly debate you in a public forum. sans notes, sans internet regarding the moral superiority (ie "Scumbagness") of Murders committed by agents of US Imperialism in the name of Democracy vs Those committed by agents of anti-Imperialism and some other political ideology.
I stipulate that I will agree that a qualified neutral moderator will be empowered to interrupt me if I attempt to use changing the subject or any other tactic of sophistry to avoid addressing the issue directly. Of course there will be a caveat, that you agree to the same.

RJ

Anonymous said...

Uhh, you can kill an idea. Think "new Coke."

Al

“It always seems impossible until it's done.”
― Nelson Mandela

RJ

Al The Retired Army Guy said...

Now that I think about it, New Coke was actually a brilliant move. People hated it so much that they stopped making it, and bought more of the "old" Coke. Talk about savvy marketing.

Al
TRAG

Anonymous said...

@Al-there has been some talk in marketing circles that 'New Coke' was a brilliant ploy to get more shelf space in retail locations.
BTW-
I don't know about testicular cancer. I do know that a testicular ultrasound is a lot of fun.

@RJ-your ongoing "conversation" reminds me of a quote by Barney Frank:"talking to you is like talking to a coffee table, and I have no wish to do either". You are NOT the 'you' or the coffee table in that quote, my friend. Good luck with Forrest Grump.

Bill said...

No thanks RJ. I'd rather just have a conversation. Now, I'm off on a long run and maybe visit someone's mama.