Archives for posts with tag: barack obama

There is a week of mayhem to report.  A week of extraordinary conduct.  A week of moving back east.

Connecting with AA, meeting a man on the street whose face I never tire of.

I can’t show you his face.

Only in NYC.

Then, I meet a woman who KNOWS all about my film.  I mean, she knows the story like an urban myth.  But it’s not a myth.  It’s the sad truth.

“Oh, I know this story,” she said.  Her eyes sparkling with anticipation.  “I think he’s my friend on Facebook.  Yes, look…”  she pulls out her smart phone and there he is.  I push the phone away.  I shouldn’t be looking at that.

“What was he thinking?”  she roars with laughter.

Women love my film.  It confirms everything they think they know about men.  The injustice of men.

Dead five-year olds.  20 of them.

The children are shot dead by a crazed, entitled white boy.  The little bodies buried this week.  Lined up against the wall and executed.  You know they didn’t have a clue.  You know they did as they were told.

I thought about the little dog facing the lethal injection.

A horrific pendant: ten Afghan children are splattered into the mud by a drone.

Somehow their little brown faces are missing from the media.  Somehow the little white children in Connecticut are worth more.

This week has been all about mental illness and guns.   The mild wet weather.   The poem.  The fiscal cliff.  Obama.  That’s PRESIDENT Obama to you.

We asked you to vote for him, now he’s letting us down all over again.  Surprise, fucking surprise.

I saw a man being mugged on the 5 train.  Into Manhattan, a stealthy, tall, nimble black man rips an iPhone 4s out of an asian man’s hands leaving him with his ear phones on his head.  The rest of us sat amazed.

The white people urged him to call the police but he said, “I’m already late for work.”

I’m buying a parker.  It’s lined with blood-red shearling.  Like the monkey they found in Ikea.

Dinner in the neighborhood, dinner at the Mercer Kitchen with Courtney, dinner at the Standard Grill with Brock.

Dinner with Cristina who I have not seen for 30 years on the floor of her palatial Upper East Side home.  It was as if all those 30 years just melted away.   That we were friends again from last week.  Funny, compelling, brilliant, beautiful Cristina.

Dinner with new gay AA friends in cheap diners.

Dinner at Mary’s Fish Camp with Benoit.  We stop at Boxers (gay bar) on the way home.  There’s nothing for us.  Benoit peels off leaving me on the street and as I wait for the green light a handsome green eyed man says hello.

At first I wonder why.  Why is this stunningly handsome 27-year-old man saying hello to me.

Then we’re in Barracuda kissing each other.

I’m wearing that huge fur hat.

I can’t kiss him any more.  I can’t suck any more spit out of his mouth.  I can’t look into his green eyes.

I am so overwhelmed by him I walk through the rain until I am soaked to the skin.  Wondering how it happens?  Wondering how it ends up like this?

All the way home I’m humming Nature Boy to myself.

In the morning my room smells of damp fur.

Christmas Cheer

December 2nd 2013.  Just one year away.

1.

I didn’t stay at home last night.

On the way back to Malibu I stopped in at one of those coffee-house chains.  I sat nursing a cup of hot black brew.

I sat quietly.  I am wearing my black pantaloons (Miu Miu), a Stetson, raspberry colored hand knitted socks with sky blue trim.

I sat listening to a bunch of affluent white men in their 50’s and 60’s dressed in motor cycling leathers, complaining about President Obama.

They were rudely spouting one ill-informed cliché after another, rudely condemning: green solutions, ‘cripple’ access around Santa Monica, the ‘fiscal cliff’ etc.

These same men defend Israel.  Even though this week Israel and the USA find themselves horribly isolated on the world stage.

The old white men are stuck in another age, another time… baffled by a changing world… still unable to comprehend how Mitt Romney lost the election they were convinced he’d win.

I wanted to ask them questions but I knew nothing they had to say would tell me anything I didn’t already know.

Their fears laid bare:  Black leaders, electric cars, marriage equality.

“They’ll all cry that they voted for him.” they convinced each other.

I felt like I was on the winning side.  Their Schadenfreude didn’t feel dangerous… it felt old-fashioned.

On the way home I listened to something on NPR about a group called LA Jews for Peace.

A group of Jewish Americans committed to peace in the Middle East through a negotiated settlement to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, an end of the Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands, and opposition to American militarism, imperialism, and exceptionalism.

Their spokesman bemoaned America’s UN vote against Palestine.

America, like the old white men at the coffee shop, seems unable to comprehend or adapt to the changing world.

What the white men at the coffee shop don’t seem to acknowledge:  they have more in common with their President than they seem to realize.  I mean… Obama is only half black, raised by white folks… cup half full lads?  Surely?

Obama owns his whiteness in the Whitehouse and flays his blackness on the stump.

Barry Goodman (old white jew),  unfriended me on FB the day the UN recognized the Palestinians right to statehood.

Just nine nations voted against the Palestinian Authority’s upgrade to nonvoting observer state status, which passed the General Assembly 138-9, with 41 abstentions.

Voting “No” on Thursday were Israel, the United States and Canada, joined by the Czech Republic, Panama and several Pacific island nations: Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru and Palau. The Pacific nations typically support the U.S. and Israel at the U.N. on key General Assembly resolutions.

In the face of this terrific news self hating jews like Barry Goodman reacted like spoiled, entitled children.

In a unanimous resolution passed Sunday, Israel’s Cabinet said it would not negotiate on the basis of the General Assembly’s recognition of a state of Palestine in the occupied West Bank,  East Jerusalem and Gaza Strip.

“The unilateral step taken by the Palestinians at the United Nations violates peace agreements,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu complained, justifying Israel’s rejection of the U.N. vote.

Astoundingly, he bleated:

“The only way to Palestinian statehood and peace is through direct negotiations with Israel.”

Then he told the rest of the non compliant world  he was going to hold onto money that was owed to the Palestinians and build all over their shit.

2.

I don’t trust any of the gay men I meet in LA.   Industry men.

Bryan.  WTF?

I had lunch with one of Bryan’s boy toys yesterday, the second in one week.  I met a technician Bryan works with, Bryan says, “I don’t want to direct movies, I want someone else to direct them and I critique their results.”

After I started defending the Palestinians during the Israeli bombardment Guy S (second rate Bryan sycophant)  tells me that they all hate me.  That’s like music to my ears.

I call Tom.  Tom denies what I already know to be the truth.

They know, they all know that sooner or later I’m going to write everything down.

Hollywood Babylon style.

It’s just a matter of time.

3.

December 2nd 2013.   Just you wait Henry Higgins, just you wait.

Republican Jesus

1.

Election night 2012.

As my gay friends, blindly devoted to President Obama, danced with joy at the news that gay marriage was being approved by popular vote in three states… the first of its kind, that an ‘out’ lesbian had been elected to the US senate and that ‘their guy’ was going back to the White House… I shifted uncomfortably in my bed.

 In May, after years of unconvincingly claiming that his (Obama’s)  view on gay marriage was “evolving”, it miraculously matured five months before an election as support from gay and lesbian voters and young people – who are far more likely to support marriage equality – appeared to be softening.  A month later he halted the deportation of thousands of young undocumented immigrants with an executive order.

He could have done either one at any time.

The Guardian

As the results came in I watched my Twitter/Facebook/Tumblr feeds explode.

Lance Black told us that he was crying so hard with gratitude for the people of Maine, so blinded by tears he could scarcely post his thanks on Facebook.

“Thank you,  thank you, thank you.”  he wept.

I kept thinking:  Republicans want your money, Democrats want your hope.  What’s worse?

All night I knew that I was witnessing something sickeningly dishonest, as ersatz as the twin towers crumbling seem to conspiracy theorists.

I wondered again and again about the relative values of my gay brethren.

You see,  I couldn’t stop thinking about just one gay man.

I was plagued with the young face of Bradley Manning who presently sits in jail, a victim of Obama’s rarely mentioned dark side.

Since July 2010 he has been kept naked and  in solitary confinement.  According to his family he is going slowly insane.

Manning, you may remember, had blown the whistle on American war crimes in Iraq.  He posted videos, unleashed a  torrent of classified information to Wikileaks… his fury knew no bounds.

He had every reason to be angry.   He related to the wholesale cruelty and injustice being perpetrated on the Iraqi people.

Manning’s had a crippling history of emotional abuse, neglect, bullying and abandonment .

As a teenager he was taken to the UK by his British mother.  At school in Wales he became the target of bullying because he was the only American. The students would imitate his accent, and they apparently abandoned him once during a camping trip. His aunt told The Washington Post: “He woke up, and all the tents around him were gone. They left while he was sleeping.” He was also targeted for being effeminate.

As an adult he had one of two choices, he could take it out on himself like so many gay men and kill himself… or he could take it out on those who gave him the most pain.

He was rightly furious at how he was being personally treated by the military… facing his own demons as well as the worlds.

Every day he bore witness to atrocities against the Iraqi people, (the very people he was apparently trying to protect) and the atrocity of institutionalized homophobia.

Some soldiers, driven mad by war,  punish Iraqis.  A soldier walks into a village on his own and kills innocent men, women and children.   Some take it out on each other, a soldier rapes or damages or kills a colleague.  We know these stories.  They are legion.

Bradley Manning knew the truth had to be revealed.

The material he disseminated included videos of the July 12, 2007 Baghdad airstrike and the 2009 Granai airstrike in Afghanistan; 250,000 United States diplomatic cables; and 500,000 army reports that came to be known as the Iraq War logs and Afghan War logs.

It was the largest set of restricted documents ever leaked to the public.

The Wikipedia page for Manning has a great deal of unsubstantiated detail describing his ‘true nature’,  over turning tables, punching women in the face, carving words into a chair. 

Meanwhile, the heteronormative lesbian (Tammy Baldwin), looking like Laura Bush in her puce, slubbed silk jacket was on her way to the Senate. Hailed by the gays (even the ones who have no lesbian or even women friends) as the great Sappho answer to the LGBT political conundrum, applauding as she goes down on the neo-liberal pussy… rainbow bunting festoons her office.

Is Tammy Baldwin our LGBT hero?  Will the people of Maine win a GLAAD award like the people of Europe won the Nobel Peace Prize?

Bradley Manning is a true hero, a gay hero, a young man of conscience… yet he has been all but abandoned by the gay community.

Where are his GLAAD awards?  His rainbow bunting?  His gay applause?

Don’t weep for the people of Maine for voting on something that shouldn’t even have been on the ballot.  Weep for Bradley Manning who sits in a cell today for showing all of you the crimes being committed in your name.

2.

According to the New York Times, preparing President Obama for his first Presidential debate against Mitt Romney proved an impossible task for even his most trusted advisors.

David Axelrod, a senior strategist, told a surly Mr. Obama that he seemed distracted, but the President shrugged him off. “I’ll be there on game day,” he said. “I’m a game day player.”

As it turned out the President was not a ‘game day player’, famously caught off guard by Romney’s meticulous  debate preparation he crashed and burned leaving many of his most ardent supporters wondering why they were supporting him at all.

There’s something horribly revealing about this story.  It betrays exactly who Barack Obama is.

Aloof, dismissive and far more confident in his own ability than he should be.

For those who have performed on stage can confirm, no amount of rehearsal is long enough for any performance.   The dress rehearsal is imperative, it is at the dress rehearsal where all catastrophic mistakes will be made, never to be made again.

To have no rehearsal, no dress rehearsal, to stand on stage without any rehearsal whatsoever is arrogant at best, monumentally dumb at worst.

Arrogance may be Obama’s defining character defect.  More details reveal the President to be an even less sympathetic character.

Two startling facts:

He has never entertained either President Carter nor Clinton at the White House and complains frequently about being under valued.

“Stories abound of big donors who stopped giving as much or working as hard because Obama never reached out, either with a Clinton-esque warm bath of attention or Romney-esque weekend love fests and Israeli-style jaunts; of celebrities who gave concerts for his campaigns and never received thank-you notes or even his full attention during the performance; of public servants upset because they knocked themselves out at the president’s request and never got a pat on the back.”

There is an obvious lack of sophistication about the first couple that no amount of Jason Woo, Simon Doonan table settings or fancy interior decoration will ever mask.

Obama’s arrogance, his ego maniacal obsession with his own success would be worth something if he had some huge scheme, some Housman type plan, some Churchillian grandiosity, some Napoleonic zeal but all his arrogance boils down to… well, a miserable compromise.

Many liberals were annoyed during the first Obama term that Bush-era strong-arm tactics (including the ubiquitous executive order) were not used…  even as the President was bullied relentlessly by house Republicans after he lost control of Congress.

After the ‘shellacking’ he continue his obsequious placating of the far right of the Republican party.  Rather than insist on defending his oft lauded centrist position he crawled ignominiously further right to placate his foes.

The most annoying leitmotif of President Obama’s last four years, a recurring theme… must be his constant reference to himself as The President because if he didn’t remind you who he was… you might forget.

“I’m the president.” he tells anyone who will listen. “I’m the President!” he smiles, like JayZ might tell you he had sold more tracks on iTunes than any other artist since the Beatles.

And if that sounds vaguely racist, I remind you again what Don Lemons told me about The President, “Obama is the kind of black man who looks scared of white people.”

There’s something to be said for this analysis.

Not wanting to prepare for the Presidential debate reveals Obama’s fear of the very men the rest of us want to see him stand up against: The Good ol’ Boys.

The very same men who are at this moment witnessing the end of their white America, the very same white men who could not believe America would elect a black President twice.

The man they had humiliated with obstructionist politics, like tripping the nigger on the side-walk… just because they could.

His fear of white people coupled with the pitiful jokes, the self-deprecating bon mot.

“I was too polite.” he offered up after the first debate.

It caused radical friends to throw up their hands in fury.

Barry Obama, against all the Republican odds, is President re-elect.   It is up to him to start taking those who elected him seriously and not for granted. It is up to us to drag this  weedy President firmly into the 21st Century.

Americans, it seems, are baying for a modern America.

The cabal of white (Republican looking) social engineers who stand behind Obama (Tim Geithner et al) , using their half-black, amiable front man as a shield behind which they steal the money…. well, they need to wake up.

There are too many vocal opponents to the wholesale compromise that defined Obama’s first term.

Those who supported Obama the second time around are delivering a firm rebuke.  They want stuff.

The white men who have been controlling Obama, offering false hope to the Latinos and the gays to motivate their base… have opened Pandora’s box… yet the evil in the box seems poisonous only to the Republicans… for the rest of us it is the liberal air we breath.

3.

A Gay Poem

by Duncan Roy 2012

Don’t let climate change ruin your gay wedding.

Don’t let staff shortages due to deportation destroy your special day.

Try not to think about drone attacks on foreign shores.

Concentrate on the $160k baby you can’t really afford, grown in the woman whose name will never be known to the unborn child.

You’re spending your bonus money on Botox and patching your 25 years old lined forehead with restylane.

Thank God you’re marrying a fellow american or ICE officers might be your groomsman.

Thank God you can get married, you’ll never be turned away from the hospital as your husband lies dying of a meth overdose.

They found him in the sauna, multiply penetrated, cream pied, still dripping, swaying gently in a sling still wearing his military boots…

on your honeymoon in the leather bars of Berlin.

4.

20120930-093308.jpg

Quiet days on the ranch. Occasional parties. Trips to Van Nuys. Writing and preparing.

The election approaches. Everyone buying into it like it’s a real event.

Mitt Romney this and Paul Ryan that. Obama in the polls.

The more the right talk about, manifest socialism… the more the people will investigate. A self-fulfilling prophesy. The ill-judged Romney 47% remark seems to have hit a chord.

What sort of chord?

What does this random remark mean to those currently unemployed, underwater, disenfranchised?

In Europe the people are storming the palace. Austerity for what? Debt, deficit, bankers… as explosive as any Molotov cocktail to a modern European .

What is this debt? To whom do we owe the money? How did we get there in the first place? And why should we pay it back?

Unfortunately, if you rely on network nightly news programs for your information about the economy, you are likely to be misinformed about the main causes of the current deficit: in order of importance, the economic downturn, the Bush tax cuts and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The Center for Budget and Policy Priorities estimates that 34 percent of the 2010 deficit and 28 percent of the 2011 deficit can be attributed to the economic downturn.

The Bush tax cuts dwarf all other policy changes, costing the country an estimated $375 billion this year, or 24 percent of the deficit.

Newsweek: “the tax cuts were by far the largest, adding up to $2.3 trillion over 10 years.” Forty percent of the tax cuts’ benefits went to people earning over $500,000.

With cumulative spending of over $1.2 trillion for the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, the post-9/11 military escalation rounds out the list of top deficit culprits at 14 percent. (The cost could reach up to $4 trillion, including future veterans’ expenses.)

The news media under report or simply ignore the truth about the deficit instead concentrating on entitlements as the main culprit for the obscene debt.

The myth of the deficit is perpetuated by both parties, Republican and Democrat. It is very unlikely that the truth will ever be revealed by either Democratic incumbent or Republican Nominee.

If Obama wins in November he will have to re-calibrate his Presidency. He’ll have nothing to lose.

He may do what the loyal people of the USA have held onto both good and bad about their friendly President… that he is in fact the ultimate dog in the manger… an unchecked liberal, a gay loving entitlement loving…. muslim socialist… ready to launch the USA into the groovy 21st Century?

I’m not holding out much hope… but hey. I hope I’m wrong.

There’s always the deficit to worry about.

1.

No. Not what you ‘re thinking…hoping?

I set out at 6am for the Men’s County Jail to see my friend Jeremy who is presently residing in dorm 5200.  Jeremy is a good-looking white man in his mid-thirties. A meth head with a penchant for transsexuals.  He has two kids in Utah. He used to manage an ihop.  He is the kind of character I couldn’t invent from a movie I couldn’t write.  A charming man with anger issues.  Like most inmates he is pre-occupied with his own case, another miserable drug dealer hauled off the streets.  We spoke for thirty minutes, I left $50 for him to eat well and I drove home.

The deputies who processed us into the jail were very pleasant, polite.

2.

Yesterday we drove to Redondo Beach where we met with Democratic State Senator Lieu.  The second State Senator I have met this month. He has a strange constituency, ranging from progressive liberals in the Venice area to hard-core Odinists in Orange County.  We sat in the sparse office with his Harvard educated interns. They were polite but they didn’t offer us water or coffee.

Our successful visit last month to Senator Calderon lead to his decision to co-sponsor the Trust Act.  The bill then passed the Senate Public Safety Committee and is now headed towards the Senate Floor .  The Trust Act will make what happened to me less likely to happen to others. It may liberate the 3000 un-convicted men and women currently held on ICE holds in California.  The Trust Act will demand that ICE follows its own guidelines, its own rules.

It is essential that Senator Lieu support this bill.

Lieu is an interesting man.  In his Redondo office there is a huge studio photograph of Lieu and his family lounging on a white, fluffy rug. He is wearing a dress shirt but no tie.  He has been a vociferous supporter of the LGBT community, especially the transsexual population for whom he reserves special respect.

I sat with Kristine Chong from The Californian Immigrants Policy Center and three other Immigrant rights specialists… including a day labourer from Mexico in the Senator’s dingy ‘conference’ room.  Lieu’s people wore badly cut suits. We all began to sweat in the un air-conditioned office.

Antonio, the day laborer, spoke very movingly about the catastrophic effect ICE and the Secure Communities protocol are having on the immigrant population. Families broken apart, 5000 American children made orphans, their mothers and fathers deported.  Immigrants are routinely forced to sign deportation papers or threatened with months held in privately owned immigration camps, camps that are currently costing the people of California 6 million dollars a year

The situation is tantamount to ethnic cleansing.

This state has enjoyed, for many years, low-cost manual labour on which their false economy was based. Now, these undocumented migrants are being rounded up like animals. Targeted on the streets, in their cars, in their homes.

ICE have to deport 400, 000 people a year to fulfill a federal government quota.  Even President Obama’s announcement last week supporting The Dream Act didn’t stop three ‘Dreamers’ being deported yesterday.

I told my story. I told them what they must have heard many times out of Latino mouths. Spanish speakers, their accents somehow devaluing what they have to say.  Listen to me.  Listen to my clipped British accent.  Listen to me eloquently tell my story.  Pay attention to the dramatic pauses.

It is always very shocking for them (especially the starched, ivy league interns) that an affluent white person could have got caught up in the immigration net.  They bowed their heads in shame.  After 45 minutes our meeting is over.

They tell us that Lieu’s support on the Senate floor cannot be assured, he has to pamper to the right-wing element of his constituency. They say: Lieu, in the past, has been threatened physically for supporting immigrants rights. He received death threats.  Pampering to the right? I ask incredulously. Pampering to the right will keep this state poor, our children uneducated, the prisons full and gay men like me… unmarried and childless.

Be brave, I urge him, and do the right thing.

As we are leaving we pass another group of men and women patiently waiting their turn to be heard. They could have been Odinists for all I know, demanding that Lieu hunt down every illegal immigrant in California and throw away the key.

Dear Andy Gipson Mississippi state Rep. (R),

Apparently, on Facebook recently, you posted a note advocating the murder, slaughter, deaths of homosexuals after (black) President Obama had some personal feelings about gay marriage.

Well, I wholeheartedly support your ‘put homosexuals to death’ position…you know…kill a gay for Jesus. Yay. You’ve got my support.

However, I support you on one condition. You can kill any one of us..as long as you can look us in the eye and kill us with your bare hands. Your hands around our throats. For Jesus.

You know, like vegetarians who urge carnivores to try killing their own meat before they eat another burger.

I mean, it’s one thing to say something terrible like that Andy but it’s another doing it…isn’t it?

I’ve posted some pictures of some gay people and their friends below for you to imagine shooting or gassing.

I saw you with your kids. You’re obviously a good dad. I mean…apart from wanting to commit genocide.

Have you seen pictures of the gestapo on their days off? Holding their kids in their arms?

I noticed too that you dress your kids in army uniforms. Are you training them to kill gays?

I was in a pub once called the Admiral Duncan in London that was bombed by a man like you who wanted to kill gays. He killed as many heterosexuals as he killed homosexuals. He went to prison for a very long time.

Will it make you happy or sad when you squeeze the life out of your first gay?

Andy!!! God forbid! Have you ever thought your children might be homosexual? What will you do when your children want to come out? When your children ‘come out’ will you enjoy killing them?

How will you feel? Taking their lives for Jesus? I thought you people were pro-life?

Apparently, at the concentration camps in Germany (during the last great state sanctioned homocleansing) where large numbers of gays and lesbians were murdered…the guards tortured us before butchering us.

Could you imagine doing that?

Do you ever have thoughts like that?

How exactly do you want to kill us? I mean, there are millions of us…in God’s great plan…he sure fucked things up.

Disposing of all that gay meat and bones may very well increase the deficit you despise so much.

I’ve given your problem of eradicating us gays a great deal of thought.

It occurs to a simple-minded man like me that however many of us you kill we will return.

Every generation you straight people manage to make more gay people.

If, for instance, you could determine when we were fetus that we might be gay…would you offer free abortions to women…NOOOO!!!! No abortions. Nothing FREE!!! The deficit!!

OH…yes…we’re probably evidence of the devil’s work? Is that right? But, I can eat garlic and sprinkle holy water on my forehead without turning to dust or the water burning my skin.

I must admit that I’ve thought about murdering some of my exes and if you could start…when the day comes…and you get permission to murder us…can you murder my ex first? I mean, before me. So I can see it happen maybe? Then you can turn the gun on me.

Have you ever considered just murdering gay people for fun? You seem like you might enjoy it.

Thank God Jesus has people like you to help him at difficult times like this.

I thought ‘thou shalt not kill‘ was a commandment but you people seem to make this bible stuff up as you go along.

Do you think you could help me go straight, stop hankering after a mouthful of cock?

I may renounce my gayness and come join your congregation. Come and live at your house. Ex gay. I’m too old to be gay anyway.

No. I’m not doing that. I’m a butt fucking gay. Too old to be ashamed of who I am. Too old.

I live in California. If you are ever here and feel like killing me for being gay…or any other reason…just let me know.

Facebook me.

And just in case you didn’t think it could get any worse:

The charming words of Charlie Worley, another gay killing pastor.

 

Yasmin Nair: Gay marriage, as framed in the United States, is the ultimate neoliberal fantasy, in that it allows for a politics of the personal to masquerade as a necessity for policy change. In the process, it serves to distract us from the very real issues facing millions of U.S. citizens and residents.

Yesterday the President of the United States, leader of the free and democratic world let a middle-aged black woman from network TV know his personal opinion of…what they call here in the USA (divisively call) same-sex or gay marriage.

Languorous platitudes.

For many gays just listening to the President say gay and lesbian and marriage and agree in the same sentence was enough to have them wildly screaming with joy. Heading to their local bar and ordering martinis and Brazilian wax jobs…

You know, I’m an old fart, I’ve heard many politicians from all manner of countries embrace their gay electorate. The ones I remember best are Paul Keating in Australia who gave an impassioned speech about anti-vilification and inclusivity (made me cry) and of course Tony Blair who charged Waheed (Ali) with his far-reaching UK gay equality bill. (did not make me cry)

It seemed to us, during the grim Thatcher years, that gay rights would never materialize…that we were not welcome in our own country…but I put my faith in activists like Peter Tatchell who steadfastly turned up outside the homes of homophobes, the offices of homophobic organizations, held incendiary Outrage! placards, got arrested and generally caused trouble where ever he could so that our enemy never felt like they could get away with discriminatory behavior.

The gay elite sneered at Peter. They hated him for his trouble making, they called him insane, they denigrated his direct action. Recently, Elton John famously said that he was scared of Peter Tatchell but now (decades later) understands how important people like Peter are.

Peter is a national treasure, brain-damaged from repeated police beatings, poor from dedicating himself to our equality…thankfully he has been embraced by the same elite who once scoffed at his anarchic antics.

He taught me: never accept anything a politician says at face value.

So, when President Obama, flagging in popularity amongst his own, wants a boost? There we are…the convenient truth.

Today, I managed to incite the ire of my friends and foes alike by sneering at President Obama’s ill-judged and badly timed personal opinion about marriage equality.

The day after the 39th state in the union denounced same sex marriage and civil unions…North Carolina…he decides to ‘bravely’ come out for the gays.

Not everyone bought the president’s evolution.

“Waiting until AFTER the vote that divested NC’s gays of their constitutional /civil rights to speak for marriage equality is cowardly NOT heroic.” Roseanne Barr

Either POTUS had been forced into sharing his opinion by VP Joe Biden who declared his support for marriage equality a day or so earlier…or the entire fiasco had been manufactured by David Axelrod so President Obama could finally reclaim and re-energize his base.
“The president sets the policy. I am absolutely comfortable with the fact that men marrying men, women marrying women, and heterosexual men and women marrying another are entitled to the same exact rights, all the civil rights, all the civil liberties. And quite frankly, I don’t see much of a distinction– beyond that.” Joe Biden

Frankly, it wouldn’t surprise me if the scenario had been planned.

The President merely said what any intelligent, liberal, modern man in his position must have thought for some time. I doubt whether his position had ‘evolved’. All that had ‘evolved’ was the moment his pro gay position could be revealed for maximum impact.

He was described as ‘brave’ his decision as ‘risky’ and his few words as ‘historical’. The interview applauded by gay groups and liberal straights alike.

Today, yesterday, I engaged in heated debates on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, famously pissing off Jesse Tyler Fergusonwho appeared last night on Piers Morgan gushing over the president like a Thai hooker.

Jesse Tyler Ferguson@jessetyler

@duncaninla change takes time. It’s impossible to please everyone. Especially those who make it impossible to please.

Within minutes of the president’s pronouncement his liberal apotheosis began.

I was bombarded with fund raising requests from organizations like the HRC who shamelessly picked over the bones of the ‘unexpected’ Presidential LGBT patronage. The Obama ‘evolution’ will net millions for his campaign from traditionally very generous LGBT donors.

The gays reacted with unbridled and unquestioning enthusiasm, as a community we seem addicted to good news and paternalistic validation.

Upon hearing the Obamamessiah’s announcement Andrew Sullivan, the gay pundit had ‘tears in his eyes’. President Obama, according to Sullivan, has ‘let go of fear’. In Sullivan’s sentimental one issue world he succumbs, finally to the President’s change he could believe in.

Sullivan guesses that Obama has owned his blackness is the same way we must own our gayness. (I had tears in my eyes when I read that)

Andrew Sullivan gushes along side our friend Jesse Ferguson: The President’s endorsement will make young gays feel better about themselves, gay parents will know their kids have a place in the USA. In Sullivan’s exciting new world of Presidential fearlessness there’s a great deal of…expectation…I hope he isn’t disappointed.

Unless…of course, you’re the parents of children killed in drone attacks in northern Afghanistan…or find yourself out of a home or a job because the President is still fearful of the banks and his own military.

I found myself wondering what young straight people were thinking. Those who have supported the abstract notion of marriage equality but now peer at it cautiously…startled by the Presidential candor…like it’s a real issue and not something they have patiently listened to their gay friends bang on about.

Straight people might agree in principle with marriage equality but when ever we find this issue on the ballot…we lose.

Black voters, led by black churches, have played key roles in blocking same-sex marriage in states like California, where 2008 exit polls indicated about 70 percent black opposition, and Maryland, where black Democrats were part of a statehouse coalition that stalled a gay marriage bill in 2011.

Which brings me to this: The nub, the thorny question of style.

I have never liked the word marriage. It is steeped in heterosexual tradition.

I have never felt like I wanted to own this non secular word. It has nothing to do with me or the language and traditions of the gay life I evolved along side other men and women if the UK.

Yasmin Nair: “The fight for gay marriage, in granting that institution so much importance, is slowly eroding the possibility that the rest of the population might get rights and benefits without marrying each other. The fight over gay marriage has emerged as a progressive cause that all progressive straights should join when, in fact, it’s a deeply conservative movement that strips our movement of any imagination. Instead of asking for one way to grant rights and benefits, we ought to be advocating for a multiplicity of options.”

It is my understanding that when Waheed Ali was given the choice…he chose (after consultation) civil union as the way forward for British Gays and Lesbians. Now, 15 years later, those words are once again being re-evaluated. British gays are demanding the word marriage. Not my choice but, thankfully, they are fighting from a position of power.

Their equal rights already assured the word marriage is merely the icing on the equality cake…nor thankfully are the LGBT community in the UK hankering for the Queen to validate their position.

Once upon a time Civil Unions were mooted then tentatively offered to the LGBT community here in the USA but…they turned them down flat.

Even George W Bush thought Civil Unions a good idea. The LGBT community said they were not prepared to be separate but equal yet in the same breath tried convincing the skeptical that incremental baby steps toward marriage equality was the only way.

Civil Union might have been a great baby step…no?

Now, even Civil Unions are being outlawed for gay people. Since Bush left office the right wing has become insanely entrenched, enraged, intractable….and unbelievably…more right wing.

Later, in the ‘historic’ interview President Obama made it clear what he considered important elements of a marriage: Commitment and monogamy. I nearly choked. So many of my gay friends do not rate monogamy highly on their list of per-requisites for a good gay marriage.

We are entering uncharted moral territory.

Yesterday, my educated American friends were baffled and confused when I said: Capitalism discovered that the LGBT community was generally well educated and affluent…and could be bought.

It is indeed a very interesting time to be gay in the USA. However, I’d like to see less simpering, fewer baby steps and more activism. Less cowardice and ass bleaching and more brave souls willing to be arrested and stand up for the rights they expect others to win for them.

What we do with this presidential approval is up to us.

The only time I have ever felt proud of American gays in my life time was when prop 8 was ratified. The people took to the streets, they ensnared the traffic of Los Angeles, stormed Mormon churches and caused mayhem in the city.

It was a night to be proud to be gay and I urge you all to remember the anger you felt that night because you must feel that anger every night until you are equal in every way.

Jeanne Cordova: “At the time, selling out our radical underpinnings made me very sad. We egg-throwers had to morph into omelet makers. Unhappily, I was left with the realization that all social movements start with radical ideology, but unless they progress to a blood and guts revolution, like a socialist overthrow, movements must inevitably adopt a civil rights and assimilationist stance or die out.”

Sunday morning, Malibu.   You understand don’t you that I have not been to an AA meeting, therapy or spoken with my sponsor…not properly, for a week or so?  It leaves one feeling quite raw.

I should devote myself to healthy choices this week.

Joe left yesterday afternoon.   Back to NYC.  A friend popped over for dinner last night. I made the most delicious Italian feast.  We had a cuddle.  He left.

Totally forgot all about the party I was meant to be going to yesterday.  Instead I hung around in Hollywood.  Met a bunch of cool, young Hollywood types who shared their Obama disillusionment.

How in hells name will he turn this around?

Obama is fucked, the liberals have been fucked over.

How will he turn this around?

He can’t, it’s too late.

If only he would grow some balls, stop goofing around, stop reminding people that he is President.  Tap dancing when he should be banging heads together.   Somebody should remind him that he’s not a contestant on Dancing With The Stars.

Can you imagine what’s going on in the White House?  Obama looks petrified.  Overstretched, isolated, mocked.  When he speaks I can barely listen.  Continually grasping for the flayed notion that consensus politics will save him…us.   Grinning inanely.

When CNN anchor Don Lemons suggested to me at dinner that “Obama was frightened of white people.”  I was shocked.  But, I’ve seen it in Obama’s eyes.  Lemons was right.  He’s frightened of everything.  The most ill-equipped man ever to preside over the free world.

Who is running this country?

If you’re wondering why we are still sending drones into Afghanistan?  Perhaps it’s because Obama has no control over the military.    If you are wondering what happened to his inspiring oratory? Realize that even his speech writers have deserted him.

I wonder what he promised Geitner to stay by his side?  A penis enlargement?

If you are a liberal who is sick of watching Obama partying and quipping when your country is falling into a fascist abyss…demand that he is replaced by Hillary.

The Clintons, after all, have already stolen the money.

What will come next?   I urge you to worry.  Especially my gay and lesbian brothers and sisters.  There is a real and present danger that we cannot, must not ignore.  Perry and Bachmann have every chance of being elected.

There will be a time, very soon, when you will start taking this threat seriously.  You will set aside your hook-up sites, your apple martinis, the marriage sop you take for granted, the liberal air that you breath…and remember this:

In the 1920s, homosexual people in Germany, particularly in Berlin, enjoyed a higher level of freedom and acceptance than anywhere else in the world.  

However, upon the rise of Adolf Hitler, gay men and, to a lesser extent, lesbians, were two of the numerous groups targeted by the Nazi Party and were ultimately among the 6 million Holocaust victims.

Beginning in 1933, gay organizations were banned, scholarly books about homosexuality, and sexuality in general, were burned, and homosexuals within the Nazi Party itself were murdered. The Gestapo compiled lists of homosexuals, who were compelled to sexually conform to the “German norm.”

Between 1933–45, an estimated 100,000 men were arrested as homosexuals, of which some 50,000 were officially sentenced.   Most of these men served time in regular prisons, and an estimated 5,000 to 15,000 of those sentenced were incarcerated in Nazi concentration camps.

It is unclear how many of the 5,000 to 15,000 eventually perished in the camps, but leading scholar Ruediger Lautman believes that the death rate of homosexuals in concentration camps may have been as high as 60%. Homosexuals in the camps were treated in an unusually cruel manner by their captors.

After the war, the treatment of homosexuals in concentration camps went unacknowledged by most countries, and some men were even re-arrested and imprisoned based on evidence found during the Nazi years.

It was not until the 1980s that governments began to acknowledge this episode, and not until 2002 that the German government apologized to the gay community.   This period still provokes controversy, however. In 2005, the European Parliament adopted a resolution on the Holocaust which included the persecution of homosexuals.

On 29 May, Private Bradley Manning will have been held in USmilitary detention without trial for one year. A 23 year old openly gay man, he faces a battery of charges, including “aiding the enemy” – a crime punishable by execution under US law.Manning’s crime? It is alleged that he blew the whistle on war crimes and cover ups by the US military in Iraq and Afghanistan. If this is true, the man is a hero. He is a defender of democracy and human rights. His actions are based on the principle that citizens have a right to know what the government is doing in their name. Bradley should not be in prison. The charges against him should be dropped. Set him free. Instead, put on trial those who killed innocent civilians and those who protected the perpetrators.

Bradley Manning is a true patriot, not a traitor. He reveres the founding ideals of the US – an open, honest government accountable to the people, which pursues its policies by lawful means that respect human rights. At great personal risk, he sought to expose grave crimes that were perpetrated and then hidden by the US government and military. These are the characteristics of a man of conscience, motivated by altruism. Any misjudgements he made in the alleged release of certain documents are fair outweighed by the positive good overall. Thanks to Manning, we, the people, know the truth.

One aspect of Bradley Manning’s commitment to human rights is his active support for LGBT equality. He has participated in Gay Pride marches and campaigned against the ‘Don’t ask, don’t tell’ restrictions on US gay military personnel. In 2008, he attended a rally in New York to oppose attempts to ban same-sex marriage in California.

For nearly a year, Manning was imprisoned in harsh, inhuman conditions at Quantico marine corps base in Virginia. He was subjected to long periods of solitary confinement and many extreme deprivations, which amounted to pre-conviction punishment. After worldwide protests, he was recently transferred to a standard medium security military prison at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, where his treatment has significantly improved.

Manning is being held on the as yet unproven allegation that he leaked classified US military and diplomatic documents that were subsequently released by Wikileaks. These documents exposed US war crimes, as well as US foreign policy dishonesty and duplicity.

A senior United Nations representative on torture, Juan Mendez, reprimanded the US government in April 2011 for not allowing him to meet Bradley Manning in private and in confidence. This is the kind of censure the UN normally reserves for authoritarian regimes: http://tiny.cc/nq3mq

Mendez, the UN special rapporteur on torture, said: “I am deeply disappointed and frustrated by the prevarication of the US government with regard to my attempts to visit Mr Manning.”

My friend US congressman Dennis Kucinich and a representative from Amnesty International were likewise refused permission to visit Manning.

Also in April, more than 250 of America’s most eminent legal scholars signed a letter protesting against the mistreatment of Manning during the nine months he was detained in Quantico military brig, arguing that his “degrading and inhumane conditions” were illegal, unconstitutional and could even amount to torture: http://tiny.cc/bs95c

The open letter by these scholars states:

“For nine months, Manning has been confined to his cell for twenty-three hours a day. During his one remaining hour, he can walk in circles in another room, with no other prisoners present. He is not allowed to doze off or relax during the day, but must answer the question “Are you OK?” verbally and in the affirmative every five minutes. At night, he is awakened to be asked again “Are you OK?” every time he turns his back to the cell door or covers his head with a blanket so that the guards cannot see his face. During the past week he was forced to sleep naked and stand naked for inspection in front of his cell, and for the indefinite future must remove his clothes and wear a “smock” under claims of risk to himself that he disputes.”

The letter goes on to question the US government’s motives for detaining Manning:

“The administration has provided no evidence that Manning’s treatment reflects a concern for his own safety or that of other inmates. Unless and until it does so, there is only one reasonable inference: this pattern of degrading treatment aims either to deter future whistleblowers, or to force Manning to implicate Wikileaks founder Julian Assange in a conspiracy, or both.”

The list of scholars who signed the letter included Barack Obama’s own constitutional law professor, Laurence Tribe, a Harvard professor who is considered to be America’s foremost liberal authority on constitutional law.  He taught constitutional law to Barack Obama and was a key backer of his 2008 presidential campaign.

You can read this Guardian report about the mistreatment Manning suffered at Quantico: http://tiny.cc/junb2

In summary, the Guardian report states that was being kept in solitary confinement 23 hours a day, in a windowless room 12′ x 6′, and shackled hand and foot when he was transferred to a room where was allowed only to walk around in a circle. He was fed a daily diet of antidepressant pills which disoriented him, forced to stand naked, forbidden to exercise in his cell, and woken if he attempted to sleep in the daytime. Manning was continually subject to what is called “maximum custody”, and also to a so-called “prevention of injury” order, which among other things, deprived him of his clothes at night and also of normal sheets and bedding in favour of a blanket he describes as being like the lead apron used when operating x-ray machines. He was allowed no personal possessions.

This abuse of Manning constitutes illegal “cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment”, contrary to the UN Convention Against Torture and the 8th Amendment to the US constitution. It has been condemned by many civil liberties and human rights organisations, including Amnesty International: http://tiny.cc/7sr4w

The International Criminal Court should commence legal proceedings against the head of the US government and military commander-in-chief, President Obama.  He bears direct personal and legal responsibility for the mistreatment of Manning. He knew about it, publicly endorsed it and did nothing to stop it.

The transfer of Manning from Quantico to Fort Leavenworth – and the subsequent significant improvement in the conditions under which he is being detained – occurred just days after the legal scholar’s letter was publicised, and appeared designed to preempt plans by Manning’s lawyers to mount a legal challenge to the harsh conditions of his detention at Quantico. It also followed an online petition by avaaz.org which gathered half a million signatures in one week in early April.

Private Manning, a US military intelligence analyst, was arrested in Iraq following the release by Wikileaks of video footage of a US Apache helicopter attack that gunned down 11 Iraqi civilians in 2007, including two Reuters journalists and men who had gone to the aid of the wounded. Two children were also gravely injured when the US helicopter opened fire on their van. The video records US soldiers laughing and joking at the killings, and also insulting the victims.

The video of the massacre can be seen at: www.collateralmurder.com

This slaughter had previously been the subject of a cover-up by the US armed forces, which claimed dishonestly that the helicopter had been engaged in combat operations against armed enemy forces.

It is only (allegedly) thanks to Bradley Manning that we now know the truth about this slaughter of innocent civilians – and about the killings of hundreds of other civilians in unreported and undocumented incidents.

Daniel Ellsberg, who leaked the Pentagon Papers in 1971, which exposed US lies and criminality in Vietnam, has hailed Manning as a hero.

Manning is a humanist and a man with a conscience. When he discovered human rights violations by the US armed forces and duplicity by the US government, he was shocked and distressed. He became disillusioned with his country’s foreign and military policy; believing it was betraying the US ideals of democracy and human rights.

The abuse that first triggered Manning’s disillusionment was when he was posted to Iraq in October 2009 as an intelligence analyst. He was shocked to discover US military collusion with the repression of dissent in Iraq; in particular “watching 15 detainees taken by the Iraqi Federal Police….for printing ‘anti-Iraqi’ literature.” The offending literature exposed corruption in the US-backed government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. When he complained that US forces should not be assisting with the suppression of free speech and peaceful protest, he was told to shut up and that the US armed forces in Iraq should be doing more to silence opponents of the Maliki regime.

Manning is a US citizen but also a British citizen via his Welsh mother. Since he has been in detention, he has received no British consular support. Prime Minister David Cameron and his deputy Nick Clegg have failed to help him. They have never spoken publicly against his maltreatment or, as far as we know, made any private appeals to the US government and military to halt the abuse that Manning suffered at Quantico. So much for the coalition’s professed commitment to human rights and civil liberties.

Manning’s mother requested assistance from UK Foreign Secretary, William Hague, to ensure a British consular visit to her son. This request has been ignored: http://tiny.cc/4e732

TAKE ACTION – What you can do:

1.    Write to Bradley Manning. Send him your support: PFC Bradley Manning 89289. Fort Leavenworth Military Detention Centre, 830 Sabalu Road, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, KS 66027, USA. 

2.    Sign the petition in support of Bradley Manning: www.bradleymanning.org 

3.    Ask your MP and MEPs to urge the British Prime Minister and Foreign Secretary to ensure a British consular visit to Bradley Manning, and to press the US government to drop all charges and release him. You can email your MP and MEPs direct via this website: www.writetothem.com 

4.    Phone or write to the US Embassy in London – 24 Grosvenor Square, London W1A 1AE – 0207 499 9000

5.    Write to President Obama, The White House, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington DC20500, USA

6.    Please tweet this message: 

If Bradley Manning blew the whistle on US war crimes, he’s a hero. Free him. Sign the petition: www.bradleymanning.org  #bradleymanning

 

Osama Bin Laden is dead.  We celebrate his death along with millions of other Americans.  For those of us who lived through 9/11 this day will forever remain in my heart as one of the best EVER.  AMERICA!  Fuck Yeah!

Yes We Can!!!

Watch us celebrate!!

If you are having difficulty watching this video see:  http://duncanroy.wordpress.com

Thanks Donald.  You have been revealed.

Not only are you despicable for decrying gay marriage but now you have forced a black man in the highest office in the land to show his birth certificate like an undocumented worker.  What now?

Now you have the evidence that Obama with his weird name is really American you have decided to challenge the authenticity of his education.

Working in tandem with Fox News, in the back pocket of Rupert Murdoch…you are as credible as anyone can possibly be who works on a fake reality TV show.

A bi-product of your unrestrained Obama hatred?  The US press is finally talking about the vile racism that motivates you as well as these terrible Tea Party Republicans, these ghastly birther people.  They are finally acknowledging what I have been writing for months:  that these hateful people simply cannot come to terms with the fact that Obama is a black man in the White House.

Why has it taken them so long to articulate this?

Why?

Donald Trump.  What a terrible man.

His crude attacks on Obama may very well have finally focused the minds of this dumbed down, frenzied American media.  Even the so-called intelligent press jumped on the Birther conspiracy band wagon.  Now, like guilty children they stand back from the story embarrassed that they had anything to do with it in the first place.

Let us not forget that rotting at the very heart of this ‘news’ story are the mutilated bodies of countless black men, women and children whose enslavement, torture and death white supremacists like Trump, Limbaugh et al still gloat over.

Hung drawn and quartered, their bodies swing in trees for all to see.  This is exactly what is happening now.  An intellectual lynching.  I say again, these white, resentful fools are determined to undermine this President, not because he is a bad President but because he is black.

Fuck you Donald Trump.  Fuck you.

Robby and I walked on the beach yesterday.  The Little Dog was bitten (not badly) by a three-legged terrier.  He was terrified and screamed like a baby.  He is a bit traumatized today.  Keeping close to me.  The wound is healing.

I cooked a huge pasta dish for dinner and we sat on the terrace in the warm night air talking about the origins of Christianity.  The origins of the myth of Jesus and the pagan stories that fed into that myth.  After a while Robby went quietly to his room.  I asked if he was ok.

He said, “It’s like finding out that Father Christmas is a lie.”

He was really perplexed, his faith in the literal teaching of the Bible has been shaken.

This morning Juan came for breakfast to discuss his food truck idea.  We drank coffee and looked over the ocean.  The sea is calm.  Elsewhere tornadoes are raging through communities in Alabama.

I am thinking about the idea of mid-life crisis.  Will expand on this when I know what I want to say.

Fuck you Donald Trump.

Just one of many murders allowed to walk American streets freely whilst innocents languish in prison.

Add her name to a growing list of treasonous Americans who regularly incite hatred and violence against their fellow country men and specifically their President.   Sarah Palin, Rush Limburg and Glenn Beck: this grim triumvirate has become an impressive killing machine.

Bloated, ignorant commentators using freedom of speech as an ideological shield from behind which they scream their uninformed, toxic rhetoric.

In turn the dumb American proletariat, unable to fight for their own, turn on those who want to help them the most.

The ‘Christian’ hate speak of Sarah Palin and her legion of devoted followers has claimed the first of many of it’s intended victims..because, make no mistake, in the Palin home today they are praying that Congress Woman Gifford dies.

The meaningless sop, theses ‘thoughts and prayers’ offered to Gifford’s family and the American people from Sarah Palin this past twenty-four hours disguises a plain truth:  the only prayer to Palin’s God is that Gifford becomes just the first of many elected officials who will either be killed or too scared to stick to their ‘progressive’ principals.

This highly motivated fascist machine with its unpaid hit men will not, cannot be stopped with or for any reason.  They are deaf to anything other than their own message.

Still furious that a black man can be President these pink, treasonous men and women have done everything possible to stop Obama from achieving anything he promised the American people during his campaign.   Small minded folk, red necks, laughing amongst themselves as they take turns insulting the black man, tripping him up and laughing as he falls, spitting in his face…dragging him behind the car…hanging him from the nearest tree.

If only Obama didn’t look so damned scared, when Joe Wilson screamed ‘you lie’ (boy) “I called that nigger a liar to his face.”  Obama looked appropriately  sheepish at the good old boys.  Scared of the white man.  Michelle, on the other hand, shot them back that look..she isn’t scared because she knows exactly who these men are and who they represent.  But we all knew about her, we had been warned that she could be…uppity.

Their pink skinned agenda, as if you weren’t already aware:  No abortion.  More War.  More Guns.  More Prisons.  No Respect for the Environment.  Free to be Racist/Homophobic.  Free to ‘take down’ anyone with opposing ideas.  Free to make money by lying, cheating and stealing.  Free to treat the rest of the world as America pleases.  But most of all they want you to see things their way and no other way will do.

Today Sarah Palin’s followers are rejoicing that a health care supporting ‘blue dog’ democrat has been gunned down in the name of ‘freedom’.

I am neither surprised or disgusted because this is the American way, this is how Americans do things and will always do things.  Frankly, if they wanted it any other way..the rules would change.  Remember Martin Luther-King, JFK, Harvey Milk..etc. etc.  This is the most violent culture in the world.

If you have the guts and the motivation to assassinate then go right ahead.  Pay the price but go right ahead.  Survival of the fittest.  Manifest destiny.

The murderer is still alive to talk freely about his motivation.  I, and the rest of the world, will be fascinated by his story.  He didn’t bother to kill himself but let’s see if he survives to tell his tale.  He has served his purpose.

He has already been cast as a rogue liberal by the Tea Party…a Marx reading,  Hitler devotee..a loner and an iconoclast…he will be called a great deal more but none of it will be accurate.

(Surprise surprise…when he appeared in court the CNN reporter reported with some amazement that the mass murderer looked ‘normal’ ‘calm’ and ‘cooperative’.  He was not behaving like Charles Manson..he could be any one of our sons.)

Sarah Palin may very well be the next President of the United States, not just because she appeals to the lowest common denominator but because after years of pathetic ‘honorable’ Obama leadership this crazy, intensity addicted, short termist American public craves more drama…like a TV show..or an action movie…

The President of the United States is no longer elected, he is re-cast.

This childish, self-serving society gets the leaders it deserves.  Don’t tell me that it isn’t possible for someone like Sarah Palin to be president…that’s what they said about Hitler..the giggling German intellectuals…that what they said about Adolf Hitler.

If American liberals can’t stand up to these thugs then the rest of the world must.

Just a quick note about the repeal of DADT:

This gay male ain’t impressed. Like everything Obama does the goodwill gets lost in the detail.

I am not holding my breath for better treatment for gays in the military.

Of course DADT was absurd but repealing it does nothing when you get to thinking about the real and immediate problem for gay men and women in the USA:   The Christian Right hates us (along with the devout Muslim and the Orthodox Jew)  and would like us to self destruct in a cloud of holy vapor.

With the advent of fascist Palin and her ilk…who intellectuals love to laugh at as the German intellectuals did at Hitler…laws like this can be very easily repealed.  For Goodness sake, they are already discussing separate dorms for gays!

Now, let’s start talking about the real issue: legal parity, matrimonial parity and stop gawping over the death of a ridiculous law that affected a tiny number of men and women compared to DOMA which affects us all.

There’s something else, something I always forget to write:

The gays and the lesbians ain’t going anywhere.

We ain’t asking and you ain’t telling.

You murderous, repellent christian/muslim/jewish folks can kill every black man, every white man, every asian, every jew, every muslim, every christian, every aboriginal…but as long as there are humans on the earth we will be there too.

Get used to it!  Get fucking used to it!

We are your children and your grand children.  You can hunt us down and kill every one of us but tomorrow another gay will be born.

It is God’s Will you crazy Christian/Muslim/Jewish Cunts..it’s God’s fucking will.

As for the gays…

Parity, unity and now.

Get off your fat, lazy, complacent asses gay America and start breaking windows until you achieve equality.   Stop relying on bloated lawyers to fight unwinnable cases.  Do SOMETHING!!!  Do it NOW!!!

I know you won’t.  There’s a boy you’ve seen on Manhunt..a martini waiting for you at the bar…weights to lift at the gym.

I live in the USA. I am appalled by the lack of political initiative that gay people take or are engaged in.

Frankly this DADT repeal is small cheese.   American gay and lesbian equality is leagues behind the rest of the developed world because they refuse to engage in direct action.   They refuse to seen to have an opinion…refuse to fight in any meaningful way and, just as Obama attempted to engage with the Christian right with his ill fated consensus politics..reaching out to his adversary, the gays have their agenda prescribed by their homophobic enemies rather than doing what government hates most: insurrection.

Governments hate their own people on the street demanding to be heard.

Gay men especially still live in a great deal of  fear.

Look at the way radical British gay human rights activist Peter Tatchell fought hard and visibly for all to see, worked in tandem with Stonewall lobby type groups and allowed the oppressed a voice in the streets.

In America we are regularly stoned, beaten, insulted and killed.  It is time to fight back, it is time to be heard and a smidgeon of compassion is simply not good enough.

Fuck You John McCain for telling the world that the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell was a ‘sad day’. This is a small step toward equality for gay people in the USA. One Small Step.

The Senate vote is a vindication of Obama‘s decision to push for congressional repeal as opposed to unilateral executive action, though activists note he could have done both.

I am in Whitstable at my friend Carol’s house. She is having a huge party. It is thumping loudly in the cellar as I write. I know everyone in the house..everyone. This is small town living and I love it. Carol’s handsome son is a chef and has made delicious food.

They are downstairs drinking vodka and gin. They are listening to Senegalese music. They are eating the food and clapping and we are all wearing false moustaches.

I fell asleep.

At 5am I woke up and wandered downstairs to see what was going on and ended up with some good-looking 33-year-old. Really sexy man..blue eyes, hairy tummy.

I have been thinking a great deal about the life I left behind in LA. I wrote to a man I see around town called Dan Halstead..a manager. At his behest I wrote a little note explaining what has been going on with my health…sooner or later I will write in-depth here about the tumor..anyway, I wrote explaining everything and I received a two-word reply. I wondered why I even bother?

Before, before the show, before Jake, before returning to my home town..I would have been disappointed. Now, I just think it’s funny. His constipated reply made me laugh.

LA, NYC, LONDON…Sydney. The list goes on. I wish I could start again. Just like I did when I got sober. I started again and everything was new. Born Again.

The truth is: I am so disconbobulated that I don’t know where I should be.

Earning so much money these past months from selling art that I presently have no financial worries…but you know as well as I do…the drama, the interminable drama continues.

I could really do without what has been happening this past year.

Left a message for Phil to call me. When she returned my call I couldn’t bring myself to speak with her. It’s fucked up. Yet, I have held onto her for many years (for all the wrong reasons) so that she too becomes just part of the narrative.  The unfolding drama of my life.

On a good note I have been speaking to writers informally about our project. I think the majority understand what the film is about. Most of them get it but can any of them write it?

I am really enjoying watching British TV. Good political debate, fresh ideas and very little tabloid sensationalism. The news, when not competing for ratings, does as it is meant to: inform impartially.

Thinking a great deal about AA and my other 12 Step programmes and how much time I have wasted adhering to a programme that looks to all the world like some kind of white country club. There’s more to mine there, these thoughts about my cultish AA.

Really want to get back to a time where I was free of resentment. It is a gruelling, miserable state of affairs. Every fucking day my loathing is renewed.

Have a great deal to sort out and the only way I think I can sort any of it, overcome the profound sense of loss is to create..make something useful.

My irritation with Glenn Beck is balanced almost perfectly with my frustration for Barack Obama.  It is easier to listen to Glenn’s simplistic message (as it has always been when the right open their stinking mouths) than Obama the intellectual buffoon.

The problem, yet again, when the left of center are swept into power by the cheering crowds (when the pendulum swings) is that they are woefully unprepared to deliver what the people want.  When the right get into power they let off bombs and create armies and the fearful are made safe, the patriotic are assuaged, the rich rub their hands in glee.

When the left of center are elected they ‘negotiate’ with their enemies, they want to be ‘bipartisan’ and have absurd ’round table get togethers’ with their opponents to ‘sort everything out’.

Of course I am disillusioned by Obama just like you are.  I cried when he was elected.  I was so happy.  He promised so much and has delivered so little.  He and his administration cow tows to the likes of Glenn Beck.  Obama moans and whines, he says pathetically that “change is hard”.

Was the only ‘change we could believe in’ the black faces of the first family?  Was that it?

For those faces to then be called liars out loud by pasty white-faced congress men?  For those same black faces to doff their caps to people like Glen Beck?   To be called racists? Obama has not adequately taken the reigns because deep down he fears the consequences, he may be president but he does not behave like a president.  His rhetoric is merely that..rhetoric.  Hollow promises, empty gestures.  He looks haunted, like those negro men and women in the black and white photographs taken in the deep south, covering their heads as the police hit them with batons.

He looks beaten.  He sounds washed up.

Yet, all it would take is just one moment of clarity, one moment to take back his power, a moment of shock and awe.  It is unlikely to happen.  He is just too busy having his photo taken like JFK in the oval office with his little daughters.

Last week a friend of mine confided in me she had heard from reliable sources that Obama would not run a second term and that Hillary would be elected and everything would be just the way we want it.  Bullshit. Of course a second term for Obama is unlikely but not because Hilary is waiting in the wings to take the crown that was promised her. The people will choose a simpler message, a familiar message.  One that they can understand.  Change maybe what they want but they have washed their hands of change.  It’s too complicated.

The nation is crippled, the people are meek and fat and stupid and unable to change anything.  The nation is crippled by inactivity, inertia, fear.

The banks and their paid friends in government have deliberately crippled the USA.  They will do nothing to heal this country until they have an elected government who sees things exactly their way.

When the dependable right get back into power..everything will change.  Lending practices, house prices, small business..all will suddenly change and the people will breathe a sigh of relief.  The banking reforms will vanish, the Obama health care system will too.

My friends tell me that President Obama has achieved much but they forget that I come from a country where real socialists have changed the fabric of society for the good and the bad.  Where the pendulum really swung, where the people were represented and the legacy of that extreme governance is health care, education, infra structure.  That’s all I want for you.  So I do not have to endlessly put my hand in my pocket for the steady stream of homeless beggars now on every street in America.  Millions of desperate unemployed.

Obama has achieved nothing of any consequence, no real and immediate healthcare, no real financial reform.  How could he?  He surrounded himself with banking insiders.  Rahm Emanuel and Tim Geithner are complicit in the devaluation of your house, the loss of your job and as one government melded seamlessly into another oversaw a massive banking Ponzi scheme: the banks took your TARP money tripled the value of it and with huge grins on their bloated faces returned chump change to you the people.

Nowhere else in the world did this happen so effectively than here in the USA.  The Americans tried exercising monetary hegemony in Europe but the European Union is too disperate.  There are simply too many politicians from too many fractured political parties to bully and bribe and most of them have more integrity in one member’s little finger than the entire American congress and senate put together.

The European Union cannot be bought.  This explains the British ruling elites fear of the Euro, the European Union and everything east of the Channel.  Yet, look at what is happening in Europe.  The economies are growing, the people did not lose their homes, communities were not compromised.

We have had revolution in Europe.  Revolution is essential to destroy the status quo for the status quo is not good for the people.  It is good for the few.

The media and Obama hating pundits, as well they might, evoke the ghosts of the French Royal family but Michelle Obama is no Marie Antoinette.

It is easier for us to discuss Michelle’s vacations and high-waisted fashion faux pas than the dead and the maimed and the wounded in our fruitless wars.  Fruitless, unless you are the owner of a munitions factory or a service industry dedicated to war.  We will never be able to stop profligate war funding because we are coerced by the rich to believe it is our patriotic duty to support our troops by giving them more and more money as our schools rot and our teachers become beggars.

I am eager for revolution in whatever form it may take.  The people voted for Obama not to be meek or timid or careful of his enemies but to take back what had been stolen from us during the Bush years.  To restore what Glen Beck is now touting..some American honor.

Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh have chipped away at the truth of Barack Obama so that today more and more Americans believe that Obama is a Muslim, that he bailed out the banks, initiated the war in both Iraq and Afghanistan.

They believe that Obama is not and has never been..is not and has never been a bone fide American.  They believe that he is not like them, that he has become president by suspect means.  That the good people of America could never have deliberately elected a black man and his descended from slaves wife.  How could that have happened?

Their racist outrage has never been stamped upon, outlawed, mocked.  Why?   Because we were too busy, like bullied kids in the playground, crying and running away after trying to befriend and engage those who are simply incapable of listening.

After dinner, before the last US election, I sat in a ‘circle’ with a bunch of my Jewish hippy friends who live in Northridge, California.   They were praying quietly and not so quietly for the Obama presidency.

An African healer sat silently with us wearing traditional headdress and multi colored robes.   He had been flown to their house from Africa so that he might share his wisdom.

In turn they held a gnarled wooden ‘talking stick’ and gravely shared their optimism for the creation of Obama World.  The Obama paradigm shift, the liberal equal and opposite reaction.  A world where sanity and fairness would be restored.  Where this young black man’s promises would come true and Guantanamo would be shut down and wars would be ended quickly not slowly.  Where Bush/Cheney corruption would be revealed and the culprits brought to justice.

Some of the women cried.

When I was handed the talking stick I advised them carefully not to worship false Gods, that I did not share their optimism and that they would only be disappointed.   The hippies laughed at me with desultory guffaws but the silent African suddenly spoke up, “He is right!”  They looked at him aghast!  He pointed his long bony black finger around the room.  “He is right.  It is you all who are wrong.”

Duncan: 1.  Hippies: 0.

Stunning naivety, ignorance and blindness have kept liberals in the USA an amateur political sideshow, they remain inchoate and powerless.    They do not realize that they will never be represented by any established political party.  Ever.

So Obama has not, as I suspected, provided the ‘paradigm shift’ that so many of my crystal loving film industry friends thought he would when they rushed to elect him.

Indeed, quite the opposite has happened.

After 10 years of Bush/Cheney there was no equal and opposite reaction, there was just more of the same.  This time from a sweetly smiling, articulate black guy rather than the gruff inarticulate white guy.  He has let you down and it is all the more galling.

In Britain another altogether more intriguing story is unfolding..

I am oddly optimistic about the Cameron/Clegg coalition.  With no real power Prime Minister Cameron will have to toe the line and be more representative of the British people and their desires than cow towing to the ruling elite.  Even though he is cut from aristocratic cloth he seems rather more inclusive than the scarily evolved Tebbit/Thatcher type of Tory who changed Britain over three decades ago.

Watched the England/Germany game.  Proving that the squad seem more interested in their hair than scoring goals.  They are an unruly mob of shopping addicts who have lost their passion for soccer and developed an expensive taste for power and prestige.  Arrogant bunch of wankers.

Had a long chat with Dan in NYC.  I was describing how my newly gay friend was evolving.  I noted that he seemed to own and accept his power and beauty and acted accordingly.

We both agreed that if we had been that sure of ourselves when we were younger both of us would be dead.   It was people like my newly out friend (not that I am suggesting he is sleeping around) who died first of the mysterious disease that became an epidemic and withered away the most beautiful boys.

AIDS, thankfully, never got me.  I was always too much of a prude, never realized quite how beautiful I was and mostly too much of a snob and star fucker..unable to go near the average gay.   In retrospect I think things turned out just fine for gay men like Dan and me.  We survived.  Might not have had as much sex as the others but certainly never paid the ultimate price.

I have come full circle.  He, unwittingly brought me full circle.  Being in love then not being in love.  Wanting to own to letting go and enjoying, from afar, his freedom.

I have always fallen for the impossible.  Yet, unlike before, I do not want to punish him for being who he is and instead just take a small amount of satisfaction from his evolving self.  Like a bird trapped in oil in the Gulf of Mexico he is now cleaned up and ready to fly.

As he flies into his future..what of mine?  Well, I am ok.  I really am.  A great deal could be a lot better but I am OK.

We are off to Paris next week and part of me wants never to come back.

I loved being in love.  It has happened so rarely of late.  As I draw down the shutters on a gay life that I really have no reason to be part of I instead, sit at the edge of that world.

Perhaps there will be a time in the near future when he will come to me and I will be able to hear all of his conquests and heart breaks without my own heart being quite so broken.

Yet, even writing that, I know that he cannot (any longer) break my heart.

I knew with certainty that Obama would never satisfy the lust for change some of my friends thought he might,  just as they knew that I have been naïve about falling in love with him.  He was not sent to be the great love of my life.

He was sent, actually, to be my friend and for that I am very grateful.

P.S.  So Arrianna Huffington is bemoaning Obama and how frustrated people are with him.  How dare she!  It was her daily attacks on Hillary Clinton and lauding of Obama that galvanized so much support for him.  She was short-sighted and more overly impressed by his ivy league nerdyness than his ability to lead.  She wants 5 words to accept her webby award?  How about:  I was wrong about Obama.

Taking a Shit

British class shame is nothing a regular gun-toting American would or should know anything about.   Whether or not one has an understanding of manners, social hierarchy or top hats is neither here nor there.

I have spent blog time bashing America but really, the Brits are just as bad-if not worse.  My friend Pierre in New York, upon moving here at the behest of his company, missed London terribly but after a short while, much less time than I, understood why we come here and why we want to stay.   Pierre began to notice a change in himself and those around him.  He felt valued, pumped up, fearless.  In America he could feel like a man.

Like me, when he meets Brits who stay at home he marvels at their naivety.

It takes a huge amount of self-loathing to ‘know your place’.

In the USA there is no shame about bettering and reinventing ones self.  There are rules, of course, but every one of the rules (guiding principles) is designed to be broken.

You may have to pay a disgruntled employee a ton of money for a spurious sexual harassment claim but that’s how the dispossessed get their share of the pie.

Everyone is on the make, everyone!  It’s an on the make, nickle and dime affair that I am having with the USA.  It’s better than pecan pie and nuclear waste!  It’s more thrilling than Guantanamo Bay.

As a Brit I still hanker after public art and healthcare but the rampant small mindedness of my countrymen, their embittered jokes masquerading as irony, their post imperialist arrogance and their total inability to allow anyone to grow beyond the class they were born into keeps me from going back home.

I suppose for all my anti-American sentiment I love the hurly-burly, the hegemony, the extremes, the greed, the excess, the stupidity.  I love their terror of art and history.  I applaud their dogma and their denial.  I love that they think that they are the very best at everything they do when they are patently not.  I love that they behave like willful children.  I love that they think knowing about nature or food is elitist.  I love that an engaging presidential candidate can emerge from nowhere and take the world stage-where as the British produce a bunch of familiar, threadbare politicians like so many provincial repertory actors delivering lackluster performances in what passes for political theatre.   Imagine British MP’s sitting in their shared dressing-room waiting for lurid makeup to be applied before performing their ‘great scene’ during Prime Ministers Question Time.  Smoking, sinking rummers of whiskey, discussing their expense claims, squabbling over cabinet positions and who’ll wear what at the state opening of parliament.

We don’t cast our parliament terribly well.  Here they cast the Whitehouse like a huge movie.  No wonder Rahm and Ari Emmanuelle are behind Barrack.  They recognized his star potential and like a baby starlet hanging out in the Chateau Marmont plucked him from obscurity and handed him the best role ever in their box office blockbuster political thriller-so whilst the Emmanuells steal the money they got themselves the bestest alibi ever..a black president.  They got themselves a well-dressed first lady descended from slaves.  They got tears of joy at the inauguration and a divided, blind sided America whilst the spoils of the middle class were being divided up by unscrupulous hedge fund managers and Ponzi schemers betting on the downfall of their own and other nations.

So, there’s Barrack blustering over the war and the economy in his professorial tweeds, his sweet and sexy demeanor softening the hearts of the liberal elite and providing drama and focus for the next lot-the emboldened white Christian right.  There he is dithering over healthcare and everything continues just the way it was.

Am I the only one who can’t imagine Tim Geitner having sex with anyone other than himself?   He is such a WEED.

If China wasn’t running the world-this could look dangerous!

When British politicians get caught with their hand in the till-what paltry amounts of money they steal!  Awarding their friends dodgy $150,000 construction contracts and creaming a few quid and a meat pie for themselves…subsequently getting caught and fired.   An American politician wouldn’t waste his time or his position stealing so little.  Tony Blair is the only politician to get away with stealing real money.  He got away with the money and murder.  He understood what few in the UK do-that American politicians are not elected to represent their constituents but to steal as much money as they can within their 4 years in office.

And, you might ask, why shouldn’t he?  The Blair’s are just doing what the Royal family and the landed gentry have done for hundreds of years. He just took what he thought he was owed for getting to the top of the pile.  It must piss our lowly politicians off to go through all the pain of getting elected to public office and then once there, look around…bleak…lonely…underpaid.  Servants of the democracy that we hold dear and never really getting what they deserve-compared with the politicians in the USA who are on the fucking gravy train!

Drill baby drill, bailouts, healthcare, there’s money in them there policies..money for every politician in Washington, TONS OF IT!  Politicians accepting donations from whomever and where ever.

Poor old Dennis Kucinich-he’s the congressman President Obama lassoed into helping change the mind of the bold progressives who were holding out for a radical public option during the last few moments before the Healthcare Bill was forced into law.

Well, dear Dennis lives in a one room apartment in Washington…never accepts a dime from anyone..but he lives in a one-bedroom apartment with his wife Elizabeth.   If he had played his cards right, abandoned his principles and cut himself free from the people he was sent to represent then he could be living in a huge house in Georgetown-which is what the people expect by the way.  To the average American there is something vaguely retarded about a man who is able to steal the money but doesn’t.

That’s why we elected you into office!  To steal the money but, mind you, not so much that you piss the other thieves off who have seniority or think you are stealing too much.  Of course, once in a while an odd politician needs to be thrown to the lions so that the public think that the other politicians have some sort of morality.

This is America and once you get a handle on it it’s not that bad.  As long as you understand that to survive here you have to learn how to steal.  You have to learn how to lose.  Learn how to pick yourself up.  Not get trampled in the stampede.

You must definitely learn to rub belly..pat head..

1.

Time to reconcile, to forgive and forget.  Time to see Jennie.  Time to catch up, to make up, to explain.  Time to confide and wear dark glasses again.

“Let us suppose that I have wept, on account of some incident of which the other has not even become aware (to weep is part of the normal activity of the amorous body), and that, so this cannot be seen, I put on dark glasses to mask my swollen eyes (a fine example of denial:  to darken the sight in order not to be seen).  The intention of this gesture is a calculated one:  I want to keep the oral advantage of stoicism, of “dignity” and at the same time, contradictorily, I want to provoke the tender question (“But what’s the matter with you?”); I want to be both pathetic and admirable, I want to be at the same time a child and an adult.  Thereby I gamble, I take a risk:  for it is always possible that the other will simply ask no question whatever about these unaccustomed glasses: that the other will see, in the fact, no sign.”

Living in love, in a state of grace, in acceptance.   Living outside of pornography, fantasy, catastrophic thinking-living in truth, trust and kindness.

2.

In Europe things, economic things are getting a whole heap better.  House prices climbing, job prospects improving.

It’s funny listening to British people complain about their lot.  They really have no idea how lucky they are.  They are blissfully unaware what is going on here.  Nobody really reports it-no journalist can bring themselves to say these words:  America as we knew it is over.  America where all our dreams would come true.  Where the promise of freedom would be fulfilled, where truth and equality would be respected.  Where innovation and hard work would be rewarded.

What happened?

There has been an economic catastrophe in the United States of America, brought on by endemic greed, corruption and false Gods.  The American people are angry and rightfully so-but because they are so badly educated their anger is totally misdirected.  Because they have no democratic choice their vote is meaningless.  Because their government is utterly corrupt they have no voice.   Their youth are disinterested in anything other than instant fame, fast food, sexual gratification.

The elections have become Corporate America’s great firework charade, costing millions, lights up the night then all smoke and ash leaving things just the way they were before.  Conning the dumb people into believing that they have choice and change they can believe in etc etc.

The last election was the most cynical of all.  Listening to Obama make any promise he could to get those folks to vote for him then watch him and his party of fools renege on every one of his election promises-knowing that the American people will never lift a finger to defend themselves from their worst enemy-their very own government.

Today I listened to Tim Geitner finally admit that the millions of lost jobs were not coming back anytime soon.  Just as I predicted.   When as my ‘smart’ white AA Palisades friends were looking down their suburban noses at me telling me that things would be back to normal in a year or so.  I looked back at them in utter disbelieve.  Who were they trying to convince?  I would gently remind them that nothing was going to return to ‘normal’ any time soon.  They sneered at me.  They laughed because they didn’t understand.  They are complicit you see.  Complicit in the demise-in the USA’s financial melt down.  Do you think they just totally underestimated the depth of the deception?  The greed?  Or was this a risk the rich were prepared to take?

I don’t trust Tim Geitner, I don’t trust Rahm Emmanuel, I don’t particularly trust Obama.  But in a world of distrust I would rather have these bandits than the last mob.  The characters in this administrative pantomime are more entertaining than the last.

This ‘Democratic’ administration cast by Ari Emmanuelle.   Make up by..hair..

3.

The flight back home from New York was 45 mins early, which made up for the 6-hour delay on the way there.   The staff were sweeter too.  One of them gave me free food.  If you could call it that-processed crap.

I had had a lovely time in NYC and even though it rained and rained I felt at home, like I always do, in the big city.   I loved it.  I really did.

For my last night in town Joan took us all to the Spotted Pig.  I sat next to Lady Rizo and opposite Joan’s husband.  He told us how he once dated a girl Elvis was dating and even though I had heard the story twice before I was still captivated.

Jake mooned over Lady Rizo’s husband.


The pictures published this morning are part of my photographic essay commissioned by The Sydney Morning Herald in 2004 celebrating the Condoblin Batchelors and Spinsters Ball held annually in the depths of New South Wales.

B & S Balls are thrown to introduce the youth of rural Australia who live many hours from each other in the arid outback.

The Ball is actually a huge drunken brawl and as a sober man I was amazed by two things:  firstly how much alcohol was consumed and secondly how little violence there was.

I publish it to remind myself just how many things I have achieved.

The darkest part of the day is ironically the morning when I seem to forget just how damned capable I am.  Need to calm down.  Still experiencing waves of depression.  Still at the mercy of my mad head.  Mad head, thankfully not bed head-my hair is now cropped once again.  However, when buzzed my head get recognized more than when I have long hair.

The dog is waiting to go to Runyon, waiting patiently at my feet whilst I type this.   I am nearly out of the doldrums.  I can feel myself emerging.  Why did I get sober?  Why did  I go into therapy?  Peace of mind.  Not piece of mind-one of my mothers favorite expressions.  ‘I’ll give him a piece of my mind.’ she would say.

The mantra for this week is BE PRESENT.

I remember getting up each day and feeling like there wasn’t anything I couldn’t do.

Added to all the other problems I am utterly home sick.  Desperate to get back to my Island Jewel.  Held here by all sorts of stuff that needs dealing with.  The house, the garden, the book, the app, the art sale, what the fuck?

All I need to do is book an Air France flight to Paris and vanish but I am trying to be a good man.  Trying to be the sort of guy who can wrestle from his life some sort of sobriety and ultimately some honor.

Where in the world could I go if I wanted to start again?  I still love Memphis.  I loved it.  Who would I be when I got there?

What demons would I bring along with me?

Instead of running away I need to remember what I am capable of and invest time and energy in my work.   Recently Obama opined that ‘change is hard.’ and I was appalled by his admission because I rarely admit that it’s the goddamned fucking truth don’t ya think?.

me in hospital

From Steve Dunkley, first published on the BBC news website…with a few edits by me.

I should have credited him previously but failed to do so.  Sorry about that Steve!

If I do quote other writers I usually highlight in italics.

Duncan

Forgive the pun, but I’m sick of listening to the ideological bigotry being used by both sides in the current debate over healthcare reform. Even the fallacy that the debate could possibly be encapsulated by “two sides” makes me so angry. The very idea that being able to shout louder than someone else or that a few words written on a placard contributes anything to a debate on such an important issue is simply asinine. Such behavior, including mindless chanting of simplistic slogans, effectively halts all objective discussion and obscures the real issues.
So, stop mouthing off, stop quoting anecdotal examples and stop using prefabricated, emotive labels designed to perpetuate already polarized thinking.
This maybe a revolutionary idea, but why don’t we start looking at factual evidence backed up by legitimate research. Yes I know this a new concept, but just bear with me for a while, you never know, we might then draw some reasoned and sensible conclusions.
Here are some facts:
• The United States of America does not have the best health system in the world
• The United States of America does not have the worst health system in the world
• The United States of America has some of most advanced healthcare expertise in the world
• The United States of America’s delivery of overall healthcare and its health outcomes do not compare well to most other industrialized countries
• The United States of America has the capability to offer expert treatment to patients of all ages
• The United States of America has an illogically high incidence of infant mortality and avoidable death rates

Here are some factual statements and observations:
• The United States of America spends more (per capita) on administering the bureaucracy of its healthcare than any other country in the world. Sometimes by a factor of three or four over countries with effective universal systems.
• There is no particular reason why employers should continue to be responsible for providing healthcare. It is an invidious practice that can be extremely detrimental to both employee and employer interests. The practice has its origins in the pay freezes of World War II, yet now seems entrenched in the American working life. Why should your employer decide what health cover you get? Your family physician doesn’t tell you where you should work!
• There is no reason why a national, universal health plan should increase individual or government healthcare costs. Individual tax costs will increase but, if a scheme is implemented effectively, there will be no health insurance premiums to pay. Employers should no longer have to pay their portion to the insurers and there should be no co-pay. In case you missed that – NO CO-PAY! Your employer may even pass his or her savings on to you as a wage increase.
• Effective preventative healthcare makes an enormous contribution to the quality of life and the longevity of that life. In the current situation prevailing in the United States of America, there is little incentive for health insurers to finance preventative care. The premise is that, as people change jobs and healthcare insurers, the financial benefits of preventative medicine might be enjoyed by organizations other than those that originally funded it.
• Viewed from afar, the citizens of the United States of America are hypochondriacs obsessed by illness. This hypochondria is fueled by a constant barrage of television commercials for prescription drugs containing information that should only really be evaluated by competent medical professionals. Trendy acronyms only exacerbate the obsession – why not become obsessed by health and wellness instead?
• Market forces and human nature are generally inappropriate in healthcare. Physicians are encouraged to treat where treatment is perhaps unnecessary. Pharmaceutical companies need a steady stream of new illnesses, gullible or mercenary physicians and new drugs to keep them in business. Health insurers need to be able to promise nurturing care from cradle to grave and yet be able to deny treatment on all possible occasions.
Now that you’re thinking about shouting or painting a placard, here are some comparisons that will restore your faith in man’s inhumanity to man
Universal schemes can only provide the greatest good for the greatest number and will spend any and all amounts of money provided
Private schemes will drop you if it looks as though you might get a long-term illness
• Universal schemes will always treat acute cases first and will generally do these well. less urgent cases may well wait some time for treatment
• Private schemes will treat your acute or less urgent conditions entirely in respect of financial considerations, but will have you back in your car about the same time the anesthesia wears off, often causing you to come back again (with another co-pay) in a couple of days
• Universal schemes often provide unintentional long-term accommodation for the homeless
• Private schemes always use the latest and most expensive treatments irrespective of whether they are superior to proven treatments.
• Universal schemes are often unwilling to adopt new procedures until cost and/or patient benefits have been established

Here is a dirty word:
Single-Payer
Actually it’s two words, but you get the drift. Most universal or national health schemes operate this policy. Supporters of the status quo in United States health policies consider it blasphemy. It is a prime example of the emotive labeling so apparent in current healthcare discussions.
Single-payer simply means that payment for medicines and treatment comes from a single source. That single source is the organization that operates the health service – almost invariably the government. Pharmaceutical companies and medical practitioners abhor this policy because they are unable to play numerous payers (with differing priorities) off against each other. Instead they have to deal with a single body that has the single objective of balancing cost and patient benefit – more simply known as value for money. The VA health system bureaucracy “sorta-kinda” operates in a similar way to single-payer.
This does mean that many medical practitioners will get less for the work that they do. Pharmaceutical companies will undoubtedly claim that they will be unable to research new treatments. Personally, I can live with this because the physicians that earn substantially less will only be those who have been financially focused in their practices. Pharmaceutical companies will continue to research and develop because that is what they have to do to exist. Maybe these new pressures will force them to be more focused on effective remedies? Am I the only person who wonders whether drug companies develop new products and then look for an illness to treat with it? The objective of a healthcare system is to look after the receivers of that healthcare – not to make a few professionals obscenely wealthy.
The bottom line is that the current healthcare systems (in terms of delivery and outcomes) in the United States of America are ineffectual and probably irreparable in their current form. Federal and state politicians are scared to death of the pharmaceutical lobby and failure to be re-elected (but then I repeat myself). The AMA represents the interests solely of the medical profession and has stood four-square in the way of any proposed initiatives that benefit patients at the expense of their members. I don’t think insurance companies care one way or the other because they think they will still get a large slice of the cake whatever happens. When it dawns on them that single-payer may become a reality, they will get the rest of the politicians that the pharmaceutical companies missed.
It should not (and cannot) be beyond the wit of the US Government to take the time to investigate the healthcare schemes that are the most successfully operated in other industrialized countries. Surely, somewhere in this nation, we have officials with the ability to judge and evaluate the best of those and surely we have the expertise to implement such a scheme here.
According to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OEDC), in 2003/2004, per capita health expenditure in the United States of America was $6,120 (15.3% of GDP), life expectancy was 77.5 years and infant deaths, per thousand, were 6.9. During the same period in Japan, per capita health expenditure was $2,249 (8% of GDP), life expectancy was 81.8 years and infant deaths, per thousand, were 2.8.
Here are some final kickers. How can the country that considers itself the most advanced economy in the world, allow its citizens to be denied preventative healthcare because of corporate avarice? How can it allow around 700,000 families each year to bankrupt themselves seeking healthcare? How can it let people die for lack of healthcare?
For those that say government cannot afford universal healthcare, consider this: in 2003 (according to the World Health Organization) the United States government spent more, per capita, on healthcare than each of the governments of the United Kingdom and Sweden. Two countries that each have universal healthcare, the citizens of these countries did not have co-pays and both countries achieve generally better health results than the United States of America can boast.
Personal net expenditure on healthcare would drop significantly under a properly implemented universal scheme and a single payer scheme would have the potential to cut billions of wasted dollars out of administrative costs.
Finally, President Obama’s scheme will not work because it does not address the fundamental underlying problems. The supporters of the status quo will gladly watch the percentage of GDP spent on healthcare rise to 20% in the unreasoned belief that the marketplace will deliver effective healthcare and that we already have (of course) the best healthcare in the world. Basically we’re screwed!

New York bound.  Virgin America.  Everybody very polite.  The Rasta gentleman that I was originally sat next to smelt of cocaine.  The last time I smelt anything so repulsive was on Mike Elling’s breath at Jake and Rudi’s gayfest in Palm Springs.

Feeling very grumpy.  Wondering what the heck I am doing travelling East.  None of the reasons I thought were spectacular last week are spectacular any more.   Nobody is picking me up from the airport even though I ferry people back and forth from LAX.  They’ll be no more ferrying.   I thought I was seeing my friend on Sunday but he has reneged until Monday.   Oh Bollocks.  As we say in England.  Bloody Bollocks.

The rain that fell over LA last night was truly torrential.  We woke up to mudslides, smashed cars, and trashcans hurtling like torpedoes in two feet of storm water.  It was rather exciting.  I quite like a big storm to take my mind off the internal storm that rages within.  None of the people I am visiting this weekend are entirely appropriate for me to be visiting.  I have huge, overblown expectations and, as I described in my last post, I become closed down and broken the moment I experience any of the heady ‘love’ emotions.

I may very well just go to 12 step meetings with my friend Alexi and fuck the rest.

The most rewarding aspect to this lightening visit to NYC is the price of the plane ticket $98.  Very good value considering a taxi from JFK to Manhattan will be $45.  I may very well spite myself and take the sky train into NYC thereby risking a million questions from random civilians about Kari-Ann et al.  Actually, that’s not fair.  I get asked about Drew.  What’s he like etc.  I think they are rather disappointed to hear that he just a really sweet, empathetic guy.

With the great snowstorm comes the economic shit storm.  The markets are tanking.  Nobody is telling the truth.  Everybody looking to the ‘stock markets’ to see how a few miserable gamblers are reacting to world events.   It’s like hanging around the slot machines in Vegas trying to divine economic policy.    This country has been raped by a few cruelly greedy men who refuse the sanctioning of infra structure investment, who refuse to answer questions about who exactly has benefitted from all the money spent fighting dubious ‘wars’ in Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan.  Who go on threatening the taxpayer with the threat of further bailouts?  Good God, what has happened to this great country?  Even the government, with a visionary like Obama at the helm, needs a fucking hip replacement to take one step forward.

Apart from their irrational hatred of Obama and their homophobia I have a great deal of sympathy with the Tea Partiers.  Even though they are morbidly inarticulate in most instances they perfectly describe my frustration with government.  Even though they refuse to use these words, they know that their money has been misappropriated.  Stolen.  They want to know where the money went, why it went there and when the American taxpayer is going to get it back.

At the same time those weirdo tea party people are terrified of healthcare for all, which just totally baffles me.

3 more hours on this bumpy plane heading over the great white planes of Middle America.

The Cloud Gobbled Us Up

The rain just keeps on coming.   Folk are being evacuated over in Flintridge for fear of mudslides.

I paid my water bill yesterday and I asked the gentleman there if the Los Angeles County Waterworks harvest rain water.  He didn’t know.  He didn’t ‘think’ so.  He said, after some thought, “No, we don’t harvest the rain water.”

During the worst of yesterday’s storm the trees were bent double, the rain was smacking into the house horizontally and a waterfall pounded under the drive.  Perfectly normal, I might add, for Whitstable but noteworthy for Malibu.

One storm after another smashes into Southern California and will continue to do so until Friday.  After the storms pass we will have a few days of glistening palm trees and clean air affording views for miles around then the black LA dust will start building up over everything all over again.

I am guessing that this winter will be very wet.  Very, very wet.

Anyhow, the Democrats lost Massatusetts.   It didn’t come as any great surprise.  I imagine that it suits the White House as they now have a really good excuse not to do anything other than maintain the Bush status quo.  Obama will have an even better excuse after the midterms when the Dems lose both houses to the Republicans and the arguments get easier.   I am surprised we don’t all just start talking about terrorists again.  It’s so much easier than discussing healthcare or equality for the gays.

Today Obama is ‘all up in my grill’ screaming at the banks-more hollow words from a president who sucks on the cock of the banking/insurance industries.

The problem with New Agers is that they don’t get back quickly enough.  I am still waiting for the goat shelter to be built-so I can buy the goats.  I am still waiting for the fencing man to get back to me and the gardeners with their plan.  The only people who get back in a timely fashion are the solar guys who all want to sell $40k solar systems.

Rain Washes The Windows

Sometimes I have a waking nightmare that by buying goats and chickens and creating a kitchen garden there is something oddly Michael Jackson about me.  It was just a fleeting thought..

There is a storm brewing over Los Angeles and it seems also to be brewing in my heart.

I really need to connect with my 12-step brethren.   I am experiencing a disconnect.   My head is thumping and I know that this isn’t brain cancer just anxiety.

I know what to do-all I need to do is get on my knees and pray but I am scared of using up my only option.

I have a million things to do tomorrow.  Cooper arrives from NYC so maybe we can do those things together.

I have to take action rather than let life wash over me.  Yet, I feel tired-exhausted.  Keeping optimistic in profoundly pessimistic times is exhausting.

I think that you can tell, dear readers, that I am under the weather.

So, this week I have goat shelter, garden plan and solar decisions to make.   I have to prepare the house for rental and get the sofas that need repairing out of the house.  I have to call the bank and respond to various requests that have been left unanswered.

I think that the idea of a relationship weighs heavy on my soul.  I can’t go though any sort of misery again.  I want joy in my life and to share the projects I have with another interested party.

Haiti is a ghastly mess.  The images and news reports from the Caribbean are harrowing and add to my sense of helplessness.  It reminds me daily that a large earthquake in LA could cause the same sort of terrible catastrophe.  I have made several charitable donations and am shocked that Rush Limbaugh has urged his listeners not to give to any charities suggested by Obama.  What kind of racist monster is he?   Where is the compassion?

runyon viewEarlier this year, the LGBT/Queer Community violently protested outside the Mormon Temple on Santa Monica Blvd after it was revealed that the LDS had paid for damning, dishonest advertisement that scared the general public into voting against gay marriage in the state of California.

People felt compelled to march on the streets. It was a heartening sight. Bringing the city and traffic of LA to a roiling standstill.

Governments are filled with fear when people march on the streets. It is very effective.

Weeks after the event, hope that a young, fearless leader would emerge from the attacks on the LDS did not materialize.

Another missed opportunity to parley genuine outrage into political leverage.

The gay community lacks any kind of secular leadership. The politics of invisibility reign. Sadly, the invisigays determine the political landscape and are as unwavering and intransigent as any Born Again.

Ridgid, dogmatic…blind to other possibilities. Hung up on the notion that if gays can get married, have babies and retire behind a white picket fence THEY might not notice we exist.

President Obama has left the door wide open if the gay community wants to accept Civil Union as the way forward but the invisigays have set their sights on Marriage and nothing less will do. The invisigays arm themselves with the lackluster ‘separate but equal’ argument against civil union. They hook their marriage cart to hate crimes and refuse to engage with any other argument for change.

As dozens of young gay men and women, inspired maybe by Dustin Lance Black‘s film about Harvey MILK, leave their communities…escaping from people like Rick Warren (and Christians like him) flock into their local big cities in search of cherubic Dustin Lance Black (and boys like him) what can they expect?

They can expect gay bars and nightclubs and happy hours and gyms and free condoms and? And what else? A gay church maybe? What If they are looking for political leadership where do they look? If they are looking for moral guidance or evidence of who came before them or what battles were fought..what can they expect to hear?

Currently LA invisigay aspirational thinking is this: Abandon negative ideas and anger, keep your abs hard and after a few well placed naked pool parties, learn to ape straight culture by buying a baby.

Max Muchnick, creator of Will and Grace is very rich and ‘married’ to attractive lawyer Erik Hyman and as well-connected as any gays can be in Hollywood. Max recently penned an article for the Huffington Post about his motherless daughters. Children made thus: eggs from appropriate donor (white women can charge more for their eggs), womb donor, sperm from either or both of the gay couple = a $300,000 baby and Mother/women erased permanently, effortlessly from the picture.

Max complains that at LAX he had to explain to a security guard that his daughters had no mother. No mother? The security guard asked politely. How did the babies..happen? Max is outraged. Isn’t it evident to you that my husband and I are GAY.

There are pictures of Max and Eric awkwardly holding their babies in the LA Times. ‘There is no mother.’ Max boasts. Therefore, no hope of either of those little girls understanding where they came from or what kind of woman could rent room in their womb or sell their eggs. No one to explain how that could have happened. Would Eric and Max want their own girls to sell their eggs and wombs or be written out of their grandchild’s history?

Other gay men with motherless children explain patiently to me that because their children will be so loved they will not have to ask such uncomfortable questions like: WHERE’S MOMMY?

Gay men are spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to create ‘families’ regardless of the outcome. The marriage/baby aping of straight society smacks of the’ politics of invisibility’. If we get married, have children ‘they’ might not realize we are here, ‘they’ will have to treat us ‘normally’.

What are we meant to aspire to in 2009? What are we teaching the next generation of gay men and women?

At a West Hollywood party recently an invisigay father made a pass at me. It set me to wondering if his marriage meant anything at all-a marriage that others had fought so hard to get. Newly married, surrogate babies on the way and making a pass at a comparative stranger. When I put this to him he was visibly shaken. He told me that he felt bad, that I was making him feel bad. Worse, I said, than having had sex with me then going home to his newborn? He said, well, straight people do it. I laughed. What kind of straight people do we want to be? The kind that cheats or stays loyal? The kind that blows his family apart with infidelity, or the sort who honors the vows of his marriage? Do we, in fact, just want all the trappings of marriage and babies and behave like we always did?

Enhanced by Zemanta
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 4,236 other followers