Mercury Rising 鳯女

Politics, life, and other things that matter

Archive for December 28th, 2007

Who was Benazir Bhutto?

Posted by Charles II on December 28, 2007

Benazir Bhutto as a young girl, from


Politicians are often the blank slates on which we project our own madness.  A recent article by the New York Times Company was so filled with resentment against Benazir Bhutto that I feel compelled to protest. The piece, which can still be read in the IHT, was a very personal attack against Bhutto as a woman and a Muslim. 

The worst instance was the choice of the phrase “the dance of the seven veils” to characterize Bhutto’s management of Pakistani political matters. The Dance of the Seven Veils is a well-known metaphor for sexual seduction, being associated with the dance Salome performed for Herod to get him to agree to murder John the Baptist.

It is worth recalling at this point that the Bhutto family has not been the murderer but, like the Kennedy family, the victim of murderous attack after attack. So, the peculiar metaphor of the Dance of the Seven Veils is not only Orientalist and misogynistic– with a whiff even of necrophilia– but it in effect criminalizes Bhutto as a murderer. Given the political context, of accusations by her opponents that Bhutto staged the first suicide attack against her, this looks very much like cleverly written hate-speech.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Media machine, mediawhores, Pakistan | 21 Comments »

Friday Cat Blogging

Posted by MEC on December 28, 2007

Because we need a little serenity this week.


Posted in (Rich) Taxpayers League, Alexander the Great, Friday Cat Blogging | 2 Comments »

Rudy Rudy Rudy

Posted by Phoenix Woman on December 28, 2007

One of the amusing things about the press’ ongoing obsession with Bill Clinton’s sex life is that he’s a Trappist monk compared to Newt Gingrich, Bob Barr, Rudy Giuliani and pretty much any Republican you can name, but none of those guys will be remembered by our charming elite GOP/Media Complex primarily as horndogs. Rudy’s currently in trouble because of Sex on the City, but I predict that the press and the people that control what go into high-school history textbooks will conveniently forget all of that and go back to describing him as Mister 911 America’s Mayor (TM).

Of course, Rudy’s doing his best to control how history, if not the legal system, sees him:

When a mayor of New York leaves office, little goes out the door but memories — unless he’s Rudy Giuliani.

Government rules discourage the city’s most powerful officeholder from departing with more than token gifts collected on the job. Ed Koch, mayor from 1978 to 1989, recalls keeping some neckties. His successor, David Dinkins, walked away with knickknacks from his desk, including a crystal tennis ball and a collection of photographs documenting his meetings with celebrities and business icons.

When Giuliani stepped down, he needed a warehouse.

Under an unprecedented agreement that didn’t become public until after he left office, Giuliani secreted out of City Hall the written, photographic and electronic record of his eight years in office — more than 2,000 boxes.

Along with his own files, the trove included the official records of Giuliani’s deputy mayors, his chief of staff, his travel office and Gracie Mansion — the mayor’s residence that became a legal battlefront during his caustic divorce.

The mayor made famous in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks has long described his City Hall as an open book.

In a Republican presidential candidates’ debate last week, Giuliani asserted: “My government in New York City was so transparent that they knew every single thing I did almost every time I did it. … I can’t think of a public figure that’s had a more transparent life than I’ve had.”

But the public record, as reviewed by The Associated Press, shows a City Hall that had a reputation of resistance — even hostility — toward open government, the First Amendment and the public’s access to simple facts and figures.

“He ran a government as closed as he could make it,” said attorney Floyd Abrams, a widely recognized First Amendment authority who faced off against city lawyers when Giuliani sought to shut the Brooklyn Museum of Art because the mayor considered a painting sacrilegious.

Posted in abuse of power, Bill Clinton, corruption, cronies, hypocrites, Newt Gingrich, Republicans, Republicans acting badly, rightwing moral cripples, Rudy Giuliani, Silly Republicans, totalitarianism, WTF? | Comments Off on Rudy Rudy Rudy

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