Remember a year or so ago when Obama and John Kerry were telling us that the US HAD to go to war in Syria because their leader had used chemical weapons against rebels? Because Assad's alleged use of sarin on his own people was just too barbaric for us to just sit back and do nothing. The war propaganda machine kicked into high gear and Americans were horrified nightly by news footage of Syrian children being gassed. Most of you scoffed at anyone who suggested that this war plan for Syria made no sense because the US itself has repeatedly used chemical weapons. The article below contains proof that we did. And that it harmed our own soldiers because the military didn't bother to follow it's own protocol to protect them.
We ended up going into Syria anyway, not to protect children from chemical weapons. We went in to combat ISIS, the horrible group created in Iraq--in a large part because the US had destroyed Iraq acting upon Bush's lies. ISIS sprang from the chaos we brought to Iraq and you still believe anything any US president says about the need for war? The goal is perpetual war, because that keeps their campaign donors paid. There isn't even a need for the US to combat ISIS, no matter how many people they've beheaded or burned in cages. Many of ISIS's neighbors are heavily armed and could squash ISIS. But they don't have to step up to that plate, because our corrupt White House would rather jump in to any conflict to create work for defense contractors using our tax dollars. As they've just jumped into Yemen. We're providing weapons for the Saudis to attack Yemen, one month after Obama praised that the "Yemen model" was a model for success in fighting terrorism. This praise came right before we closed the US Embassy in Yemen, their president fled in a boat and the country exploded in violence. Sounds like a real success story, don't it? Why don't we just admit that we understand nothing about our foreign policy? How could we understand something which makes absolutely no sense?
In the article linked below you can see how much the government really "supports the troops"--ignoring their own safeguards to protect soldiers from discarded chemical weapons remnants. Oh well. The soldiers are unfortunate collateral damage. Which is perhaps why Obama switched to drones. Well, at least for a little while.
Now you didn't hear much about this because our corporate media was too busy psychoanalyzing a german pilot. An independent group just determined that 1 million Iraqis were killed. Google "one million dead in Iraq", hit news and see how no news outlet you recognize comes up. In a war we should have never started. A war which Hillary supported. Who's the terrorist now? I'd say it was the country that killed 1 million people for no reason. At least ISIS, however gruesome, has a religious motive--however misguided I feel it is-- and doesn't kill just for greed as the US does.
NY TIMES: Under Secretary Brad R. Carson acknowledged that the military had not followed its own policies for caring for troops exposed to old and abandoned chemical munitions that had been scattered around Iraq, and he vowed improvement.
To me, the scandal is that we had protocols in place and the medical community knew what they were, and yet we failed in some cases to implement this across the theater,” he said. “That was a mistake, and I apologize for that. I apologize for past actions and am going to fix it going forward.
Michael Musto interviewed Anita Sarko, Johnny Dynell, Chi Chi Valenti on the golden years of NYC's club scene dating way back to the Mud Club. Yes, I know. We're all jaded, aging hipsters. But it's fun to remember, especially as clubs (especially gay clubs) close down and downsize nationwide.
BUNNY: I always say that we used to bring something to the party. Now they just bring cell phones.
CHI CHI: At Jackie 60, an artist would just walk into a Bettie Page Night with 10 assemblage statues of Bettie, or photographs of Bettie that were themselves wrapped in bondage. And they would just bring this to the party, in the same way that somebody else would bring a fierce Bettie Page look. We still encourage that at things like Night of a Thousand Stevies—that if you do nothing else, bring a tambourine and a shawl. But there’s something that comes up from a dance floor, the magic of an audience at clubs, and you first need people who are going to make that kind of magic to gather with the coven.
BUNNY: I read an article about how gay men in large cities around the country are living on their smartphones and the clubs sit empty. Listen, I’m a slut and I’m sure I’d be doing it too, if I were in my 20s and wanted to plaster a picture of my asshole on Grindr and say “I’m 5 feet away.” But if I posted it now, the only person who’d come would be a laser hemorrhoid surgeon. But the thing that made me so angry about that article was the assumption that we were only in clubs for sex! There were clubs that were non-sceney, like Rawhide, where with a minimum of conversation you got the job done--you saw the size of the dick hanging down their leg and you left. But we didn’t go to the clubs just for sex! We went for fashion, conversation, dancing, or performance — to get turned on to music that we trusted the DJ to break.
Hillary progressive? DREAM ON! She's remaking herself to seem like a progressive precisely because she isn't one now and is getting flack for it. She represents everything about our political system which needs to change. And I love these people claiming that they want a Clinton/Warren ticket. What would that achieve except the optics that Hillary is less of a slave to corporations than she is? And vice presidents are so powerful that having Liz in the White House could really curb Hillary's urges to act like a Republican? DREAM ON!
"I've argued that Hillary Clinton is at risk of being a weak presidential nominee -- on several counts. She seems like yesterday's news rather than tomorrow's. The excitement of a having a breakthrough woman president is blunted by the fact that her husband got there first. She will raise a ton of money from Wall Street, just like the Republican nominee, blurring differences and depressing turnout. Despite the absence of a formidable primary challenger (assuming Elizabeth Warren doesn't run), Clinton is still likely to under-perform in the primaries.
Still, Clinton is likely to be the Democratic nominee. So what might she do that could improve her own chances -- and our chances of getting a president elected in 2016 who is first of all a Democrat, and maybe is some kind of real progressive as well?"
I had a blast at The Monster last night. I'd promised Princess Diandra that I'd burn some of her faves. (Yes, this tranmama still uses cds.) She's even emailed me some of her favorite songs that would "make an old queen feel c#nt" so I burned a whole stack of them for her. And promptly forgot to bring them! But HRH seemed to enjoy the Diana's exercise jam Work That Body and Patti's Music Is My Way Of Life. I'll bring Diandra's hits next week because Going Back To My Roots and Mainline should have already been in my book. (Although I actually forgot the entire book, too.)
Also seen: Billy Erb, Balazs Kmety,Jay Inkpen, Tim Arnold, Gazelle Paulo, Cameron Nico, Ero Marc Lamb, Craig Ferguson and Petra Mason, who sold a bunch of copies of Beefcake 100% Rare, All Natural. I autographed a few between spinning my compact disks (!) and was so horrified by my post-keyboard penmanship that I had to admit it looked like the handwriting of a spider on drugs. And that's not what I am. Well, I'm on drugs. But I'm no spider. Am I? Nevermind.
Then Linda Tolbert attacked the dance floor in a flawless Farrah wig and jeweled bangles accenting her rapid-fire karate chop moves. I must admit that I hadn't actually seen that karate chop movement since the days when Kung Fu Fighting was on the radio. And I did thrill to the sight of her picking up on that ragtime horn feel that I always get from Stevie Wonder's Sir Duke, with a touch of ye old Charleston. Linda and I are both serial posters on fecesbook. Often preaching politics, but in person, we're very different from our online personas. Linda was such a scene stealer that I think every club needs to hire her as a hostess immediately! Definitely a motivator on the dance floor. She popped over to the booth at one point to ooze "I'm loving the new disco me." As was everyone who saw her!
I also forgot my camera, but Aner Candelario didn't, and he got some stellar "poppers "footage I can't wait to see. Especially since I'd slung that wig way back on my head. Thanks to all who came out. Doing it all again Easter Sunday so hop on by from 6-10. With DJ Scotty Rox on afterward with a show by Bob The Drag Queen and friends. It's free and the night has a very unpretentious boogie in a basement feeling.
Pat Field was kind of us to mention the night in this weekend's NY Times. In additions to my friends and disco lovers who are regulars, one night Sarah Jessica Parker turned up with hubby, Scott Shaiman and Andy Cohen. So you just never know anything exempt that it's casual and vintage fun in a still-open West Village venue that's still rocking.
Monsanto's pesticide Round Up was recently found by the World Health Organization to cause cancer. Monsanto genetically modifies most of our food and is given a helping hand by corrupt politicians like Obama, who appointed former Monsanto official Michael Taylor a a senior position at the FDA--the agency charged with safeguarding our food and drugs. And Michelle Obama has the nerve to espouse a healthier eating campaign while her husband works hand in hand with poison peddlers.
Here's a french interview where a Monsanto rep claims that Round Up is safe to drink a quart of. Watch what happens when the interviewer asks him if he'd enjoy drinking a glass of it....
After being sampled by so many other artists, Chic is biting it's own jam: I've Got To Love Sombody Today by Sister Sledge--which has a similar chord progression. Good! It was a genius song and didn't take off for the Sisters. I spun at Pacha the night Chic performed and I gotta say, this video is a disappointment. So many exciting moments--like the artists themselves and the hyped crowd rocking out--yet they went with a dull model with no clothes. Which was played out 20 years ago in dance videos. But it's great to listen to!
What Patricia Field does on Sundays: "Sometimes we might go to the Monster where one of our favorite D.J.s, Bunny, works. It’s early on a Sunday night, kind of like 7. Sunday hours, tea dance style."
It's actually 6-10, free, and I don't know if Patricia Field will be there but plenty of others will be. So if you like disco classics and cheap drinks, bring it on. I am usually at The Monster the 1st and 3rd Sundays of each month but this month it turned into 2nd and 4th. In April, we're back on regular schedule.
Multi-colored candy corn is now being repackaged for Easter by religious freaks as Jesus Promise Seeds. Sounds yummy and I should know--I tasted a guy named Jesus's seed last night. Fundamentalist Christians want to de-stress cute bunnies and pastel-trimmed baskets and hammer Jesus back into the holidays. Speaking of hammer, why not market them as vinegar-flavored, bloody nails and call them Crucifixion Seeds? This same candy company calls candy corn Harvest Seeds around Hallowe'en because that's the devil's holiday--aka gay Christmas.
Interesting article is kind of skewed toward Village types who don't want to see NYC turned into a shopping mall of fast food chains. Yet it also offers the side of landlords, who some aren't predisposed to see as reasonable. A new Small Business Jobs Survival Act threatens to limit astronomical rents for the bodegas, bagelries, pizza joints an Irish pubs which define NYC's character. But that would also limit rents and landlords have hung onto these properties precisely so that one day they could charge higher rents. Who is to say whether they have the right to? The people who reside here, who want to preserve the feel of the country's greatest city? Or the property owners. At least it may now come up for a vote in City Council, after being blocked by former Council Speaker Christine Quinn. Do we value NYC as it is enough to cut into landlord's profits? If so, support the SBJSA at savenycjobs.org.
THE VILLAGER: Following The Villager’s announcement last month that the newspaper would be co-sponsoring a groundbreaking forum on the Small Business Jobs Survival Act, there has been a surge of public support to pass the long-stalled bill.
The overall effort is being spearheaded by the Small Business Congress NYC (savenycjobs.org).
Basically, the act offers a way to staunch the city’s hemorrhaging of mom-and-pop shops in the face of skyrocketing rents and amid the influx of chain stores, which are among the few businesses that can afford the astronomical rents.
However, last week, a leading voice for the city’s real estate industry lashed back, saying that the measure, if passed, would amount to an “unconstitutional taking,” by limiting landlords from maximizing profits on their property.
The bill, in one form or another, has been blocked for coming up for a vote in the City Council since the 1980s. It calls for allowing commercial tenants in good standing to be able to renegotiate “fair” 10-year leases: If a tenant and landlord cannot come to terms, there would be nonbinding mediation, followed, if necessary, by binding arbitration.
As recently as five years ago, the S.B.J.S.A. had 32 sponsors in the 51-member City Council, but was — once again — blocked by coming up for a vote, this time by then-Council Speaker Christine Quinn. A bill can pass with a 26-vote simple majority, while 34 votes is veto-proof against mayoral opposition.
Advocates charge that big real estate has always worked quietly behind the scenes to ensure that the game-changing proposal never sees the light of day.
Following The Villager’s publicizing its March 5 forum at Judson Church and the subsequent increased media coverage of the S.B.J.S.A., the number of the legislation’s current sponsors has crept up a bit, from 14 to 16.
But Steven Spinola, president of the Real Estate Board of New York, blasted the bill, saying that it’s not even clear if it can be legally implemented.
“Yes, I’m very familiar with it,” Spinola, head of REBNY since 1986, said of the S.B.J.S.A. “We’ve gone through different administrations with it. We are absolutely convinced that the City Council, the mayor do not have the power to impose control on the leasing of properties. We have had discussions with the Corporation Counsel [the city’s Law Department]. At the very least, it would have to go to the state — and we’re not sure that the state would have the power to impose this.”
Even if the bill were somehow to pass, he assured that big real estate would not take it sitting down.
“This is a constitutional taking, and it will be legally challenged,” he stated.
As you can perhaps tell from my latest posting binge, I've gotten my computer back from a week of repairs. I didn't mean to ignore anyone's posts on my page but I don't love fecesbook enough to type essays on my phone. But now I'm back and what a news week! I can't think of anything which sums up my central themes that both political parties are failing us, that our government does whatever corporations want and that our corporate media is not putting 2 and 2 together to actually inform us than in a recent broadcast of Chris Hayes' ALL IN show on MSNBC.
Chris began with a segment on Ted Cruz announcing his White House run. I'm all for discrediting Republicans, which "liberal" news like MSNBC sees as their purpose. Chris spotlighted Ted's recent appearance on some late night talk show where the candidate pretty much denied global warming--claiming the record snowfall in Boston this winter as proof that there's no warming. This is the dumbest argument to avoid science. Global warming is part of climate change so we can expect weather extremes both cold and hot, from drought and tsunami.
Get the message? Bad Republicans! Dumb Republicans! Science-denying Republicans! Hey! Democrats must therefore be better, right?
Chris then interviews the ambassador to Costa Rica, a country which just ran all of it's power from renewables like wind, solar and geo-thermal for 82 days. Roman Macaya then claims: "There's been an assumption that economic growth has to be at the expense of the environment or vice versa." Yes, that assumption is made most by most politicians who take bribes--I mean campaign donations--from fossil fuel vendors. He continues: "And Costa Rica proves the opposite. Between 1986 and 2012, we tripled our GDP per capita. We also almost doubled our population and we went from 21% forest coverage of our territory to 52%. "
Chris finished the piece by quite rightly noting that Costa Rica is doing something pretty incredible to address the harmful effects of emissions. Which begs the question: WHY ISN'T OBAMA DOING ANYTHING INCREDIBLE? But MSNBC doesn't want to criticize Obama much, because just as he's a corporate puppet, they are the corporate media and they must perpetuate the myth that democrats are the answer to republican folly. Republicans like Ted Cruz may deny that climate change exists, but if Democrats like Obama are still doing the bidding of fossil fuel companies and Hillary, more of a corporate puppet than Obama is waiting in the wings--WHO CAN YOU VOTE FOR IN THE NEXT PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION FROM EITHER PARTY WHO WILL TAKE MEANINGFUL, RESPONSIBLE STEPS TOWARDS A SAFER PLANET?
No one. There isn't a candidate running in either of our two parties who'd give up campaign donations from oil and coal--despite scientific reports that 80% of fossil fuels must remain in the ground starting now. Not waiting and kicking the can to another climate change summit months away in Paris where world leaders, drunk with corporate cash, again take baby steps to address a monumental crisis which is not something in the distant future. It's here now! Talk of rationing water in CA due to years of drought? How could anyone who is selling themselves as a leader be so soulless as to let their personal greed and quest for power destroy the only planet we've got? Yet this is the new normal. Costa Rica can do it, but our elected official who supposedly represent us can't even try.
So glad I could cheer you first thing in the morning and you all have a wonderful weekend!
It's snowing on the first day of spring in NYC. Not such a big deal. But factor in the drought in California, Colorado and Sao Paolo--the freaky snowfall in Boston and parts of the south this winter. Then remember that one of our two political parties denies that climate change exists. Florida recently banned government employees from saying "climate change." You can ban the word and say it doesn't exist, except that now it's actually here--not in the future. The drought in CA is the worst in 1,200 and with 1 year's worth of water left, the rationing of water is imperative. Ice bucket challenge, anyone?
The island of Vanuatu was just hit by cyclone Pam, as many South Asian countries have been hit over the last decade. Do you not see more drastic weather conditions in your lifetime? Maybe you haven't lived as long as I have, but I can see it. Vanuatu lost 80-90 of it's buildings and about half of the island nation's population is now homeless. Often, the emissions of wealthy nations like the US and China are hurting poor countries the most.
So here's Bill McKibben of 350.org suggesting what you and I can do, since governments are too greedy to shift towards clean, renewable energy. A movement is starting to divest or stop investing in fossil fuel companies. The UN now supports this movement. I guess investors have to take their money away from fossil fuel companies and then the companies won't have as much money to bribe our politicians with. Anyone with a brain knows we have to do something.
Bill McKibben: "I don’t think that Paris in December, the next big negotiations, is the absolute key. I think what happens in Paris will depend on what kind of organizing we do before that, how much we stand up to the real powers that be, which are the Shells and the Exxons and the fossil fuel industry. They’re the guys who are playing the politicians, not the other way around. And so, this fight around divestment, around things like Keystone, putting ourselves in the way of every new fossil fuel expansion—what we’ve been calling a fossil freeze—is absolutely crucial. It’s hopeful, because that fossil freeze comes in a moment when we’re also seeing a solar thaw, Amy. The price of solar panels is dropping so fast that their spread is now—the amount of solar power in the U.S. doubled last year. We could do this. If we can break the power of this industry, if we can throw off its dead weight, then the world actually has a fighting chance not of stopping global warming—it’s, as Vanuatu illustrates, too late for that—but of keeping it from getting entirely out of control. It is the greatest fight we’ve ever been in. And though we don’t know how it’s going to come out, we know that we’re all needed to make a real, real part in that battle."
GUARDIAN: "A hard-hitting EU report on Jerusalem warns that the city has reached a dangerous boiling point of “polarisation and violence” not seen since the end of the second intifada in 2005.
Calling for tougher European sanctions against Israel over its continued settlement construction in the city – which it blames for exacerbating recent conflict – the leaked document paints a devastating picture of a city more divided than at any time since 1967, when Israeli forces occupied the east of the city.
The report has emerged amid strong indications that the Obama administration is also rethinking its approach to Israel and the Middle East peace process following the re-election of Binyamin Netanyahu as Israel’s prime minister."
While Obama is "re-thinking" it's approach to Israel, maybe we should consider not giving Israel $3 billion per year as we cut money for education here and watch our infrastructure crumble here at home?
YOU THINK YOU SUPPORT OBAMA AND DEMOCRATS? YOU DON'T EVEN KNOW WHO THEY ARE UNLESS YOU ACQUAINT YOURSELF WITH OBAMA'S DIRTY TPP DEAL WHICH IS SO UGLY THAT HE'S PUSHING IT IN SECRET.
Obama is turning his back on his own party but finding allies among Republicans. Yes, Republicans who slam everything Obama suggests on principle are behind him on this rotten TPP trade deal. The deal affects over a dozen nations which account for 40% of the world's GDP. But Obama wants the provisions of the deal, written by lobbyists and corporations who would benefit from it, kept secret. If you're an Obama supporter, I dare you to defend the TPP. Just try! And you aren't familiar with the TPP, the your ignorance is boosting someone who is actively seeking to screw working Americans in favor of huge corporations.
For all of you who have forwarded the "Blame The Black Guy" memes when people gripe about problems started by George W. Bush, here's a situation where the black guy deserves all the blame. None of Obama's crap about supporting the middle class makes a lick of sense when he's trying to destroy the middle class, our jobs and drive down wages with this dirty deal. All unions are against it. Environmental groups are against it. The agreement would ban Buy Local movements. Internet neutrality groups are against it. It will allow Big Pharma to drive up drug prices worldwide with monopolies. Here's what Rep. Rosa DeLauro of Connecticut had to say about it: "If the TPP would be as good for American jobs as they claim, there should be nothing to hide."
This goes right along with the notion that Democrats as well as Republicans are out to screw the average worker in favor of the mega-rich who bribe them. Democrat Bill Clinton passed NAFTA which destroyed American manufacturing jobs. Now another Democratic president is trying to shaft American workers.
Lori Wallach: "If you go to our website, TradeWatch.org, we’ve literally done a side-by-side of Obama’s policy goals as a president and everything fast-tracking the TPP would do to basically undermine everything that he has fought for, from lower medicine prices to re-regulating Wall Street, to more energy-efficient climate crisis-combating policies, to allegedly this middle-class economics agenda. The TPP and fast track are the antithesis.
But one other thing about fast track folks need to know, which is—and this gets to the weird politics—you’ve got the president basically doing the bidding of all the big corporations and commercial interests that spent millions of dollars to make sure he wasn’t elected the first time and to try and not elect him the second time. Against him are the entire labor movement united."
PS: Corporate whore Hillary Clinton also supports the TPP. Which is why Democrats are dead as a party of the people. Watch this and tell me one good side of the TPP.
I'm very excited to be guest vocalist for a track on Alex Gimeno's aka Ursula 1000's new album. I really love the track Alex sent me to write to and went all out with back-up vocals and too many sections because I wanted to try to live up to my favorite Ursula 1000 track, Kinda Kinky--which is both kitschy, sexy, and musically great. Don't know if I succeeded but we'll see when it comes out this summer!
If the policemen who are overly aggressive towards black males are just a few bad apples, then those apples form an enormous orchard which spreads nationwide. This case from Charlottesville, VA is still developing, but this kid seems like the most upstanding college student imaginable who claims he was not drunk and who did not use a fake ID as has been reported. Yet power-mad cops decided to gang up on him and shove his face into the pavement with their knees in his back until he required 10 stitches.
And these UVA cops don't only target blacks or males. Check this nonsense out:
HUFFPO: "In 2013, a UVA student spent a night in jail after a seven plainclothes Virginia ABC agents surrounded her car and tried to break her car windows. The agents had mistaken her pack of bottled water and cookie dough for beer. Virginia ABC officers charged her with assaulting a law enforcement officer and eluding police.
The ABC initially defended its agents and blamed the cookie dough-wielding student. The commission later conceded the agents violated policy during the incident."
NY TIMES CHANGES IT'S POSITION ON HILLARY'S EMAILS
I'm not a fan of Hillary Clinton. Recently, I questioned her use of a private email server and her only handing over the emails she wanted to. However, now the source accusing her of improprieties is walking back their initial claims that Hillary may have broken regulations. Or even reversing it's course. Since the NY Times were the original source of the allegations of Hillary's wrongdoing, much of the commentary stemmed from their coverage of Emailgate. So if I was wrong in my speculations based ion faulty info, I was wrong and am happy to admit it. I have many other reasons besides her emails to dislike her--like many her policies. But I'm not going to fault her for something she may not have been guilty of. This article gives side by side comparisons of what the Times originally said and their current, very different position on this. The Times is considered the gold standard of journalism in the US, but they've admitted a mistake. Their mistake caused every news channel to rave over this for a week. If they were raving over erroneous reporting, it's important to spread this retraction widely as well. Would they have valued a sensational scoop over accuracy? I don't think that says much about their paper.
I'm spinning this Saturday at The Cuff in Seattle if anyone out there lives there or is visiting. It's kind of a leather bar/club but everyone from club kids to drag queens to twinks show up as well. I think I've seen a plush or two there as well! I've been there 3 or 4 times and have had an absolute blast. And I might be able to work off a few of those calories from that crumpet shop at Pike Place Market. Have you had those? I worship those weird, regional berries that they make jams out of--like lingonberries and marionberries. For some reason, my whole family loves offbeat jams. And I know you all needed that info today! But hey, at least it isn't about politics! Hee hee!
A poor gal was walking past the construction of the Greenwich Lane apartments and a piece of plywood flies into her head. As if that wasn't bad enough, the force from the blow knocked her into the building. The Greenwich Lane is the former site of St. Vincent's Hospital. Debris also flew off the building site and struck someone in the head in 2014. So no more hospital, just construction causing head injuries including a fatality. By the time she reached Bellevue hospital, she was dead. Construction has been shut down for an investigation. In 2013, the Dpt Of Buildings found that scaffolding on the 17th floor was not properly connected and a danger to workers and the public. 11 serious building code violations at this site since 2012. But hey, what are life and public safety worth when you can sell a penthouse for $45 million?
Puke! Here's your only choice for president, Democrats. And oddly, something like 80% of dems support her, yet they also dislike the war she represents. She also voted for the Iraq war as senator which was/is the biggest foreign policy blunder ever. The chaos we brought to Iraq for no reason enabled ISIS to form in Iraq. And the quote was actually from 2008. Both parties represent war. And while Hillary didn't sing "Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran" like McCain, she said it. You don't get peace by voting for war-mongers!
I'm deeply saddened by the passing of Cashetta Scott Weston. But she died in Puerta Vallarta doing what she loved most--performing her great big heart out. Cashetta was a big part of the NYC drag scene--performing at Lips, many clubs and bars, at Wigstock and more. But since she was a Jersey girl, she didn't feel the need to stay in NY like those of us who came from other places and felt we were finally home. So she hit the road with a passion. I think she also realized that her passion for magic was going to be her gimmick in a world of many similar queens.
I marveled at how hard she worked on the tricks from her early shows at Fez. A drag magician was fairly uncharted territory. But Cahetta slaved over it, receiving new tricks in the mail each week and devoting timeless hours to perfecting her craft. After stints in Fort Lauderdale and Provincetown, she finally made her dream come true with an open-ended run doing magic in Las Vegas. Which was natural for her, because as Cash put it: "I'd been turning tricks since I was a little girl." I'm really glad I happened to have a gig in Vegas which enabled me to catch her act. It wasn't the fanciest room in Vegas, but dammit: Cashetta was a Las Vegas showgirl/magician! So all of her hard work paid off and I was so proud of her.
But show business aside, I can't quite describe what a true friend she was to me. And probably to every person she ever worked with. Drag queens aren't always supportive sweethearts, but Cashetta was. The bitch even took days to teach me how to learn how to use a computer in her East Village apartment--so you can now blame her for all my FB diatribes. Big, brassy, sassy, funny, talented and kind are how I'll remember my dear friend. I loved Cashetta, but I hate magic! I just know there's a trick, but I just can't figure it out. Some of her initial attempts at magic weren't so great so I urged her to add some comedy to her act until her slight of hand improved. But look at her now--she's done the ultimate disappearing act. I wish that were a trick she'd return from. I put a few links of Cashetta performing as comments to help us remember. I think the drunk vlog may not capture her talent as much as it captures her unstoppable joie de vivre.
This hysterical, clever show is at Stonewall for the next several Thursdays. It's a small space upstairs and was at capacity when I caught it during it's last run. Sketch comedy at it's best and up-to-the-minute new material. I've been a fan of Unitard for years but I've never seen David Ilku, Nora Burns and Mike Albo better than they are in House Of Tards. DO NOT MISS! And buy a few drinks while you're at it. How rotten would it be if Stonewall, birthplace of gay rights closed due to rent hikes?
Many of you like to praise Obama for the modest economic recovery during his presidency. But here's the real Obama who is not at all concerned with improving economic conditions of the average worker or anyone seeking a job. He is actively, secretively trying to destroy American jobs with a trade deal called the TPP which was written by corporations and the White House. It's creepy. And while we think of Republicans as the party of the 1%, Obama is acting on behalf of the 1% just like his fellow Democrat Bill Clinton destroyed manufacturing jobs with his trade deal NAFTA. And for a president who campaigned on more transparency, it is absolutely disgusting that Obama is trying to ram this through with no discussion whatsoever in Congress. Because if it's secret, lobbyist-written terms were ever discussed, no one but Republicans would support it. Many democrats whine about it, but they don't have the balls to stand up to a president of their own party. And many of them are in the pockets of corporations just like Obama. I'm glad Keith Ellison does, and he has put together this petition. Which is only asking that Obama stop pushing the "fast track" which would prevent discussion. And while we're on the subject of Democrats who screw working Americans just like their GOP counter parts, Hillary supports the TPP just like all corporate, Republican-lite "Democrats." So shoot woking America in the foot by supporting these saboteurs and their dirty deals. If passed the TPP could have as lasting an effect as Obama's Supreme Court picks.
Rep Keith Ellison: "The Wall Street-backed Trans-Pacific Partnership is NAFTA on steroids.
We've been down this road before. NAFTA was sold to the public in the 1990s as a job creator, but it turned out to be a job killer. It badly hurt the American middle class, sending untold thousands of jobs overseas and eroding wages for others.
But you know who did benefit? Huge multinational corporations.
Now lobbyists for these same corporations are helping craft the deal entirely in secret. And Congress is being asked to grant the president "fast track" authority, cutting out the congressional oversight role.
Join me, thousands of fellow progressives, and my colleagues Representatives Mark Pocan and Raúl Grijalva from the Progressive Caucus in calling on ALL members of Congress to say NO to fast track authority now.
Thousands of American jobs are on the line.
With the stakes so high, passing "fast track" authority would be downright anti-democratic -- no input from the public and no oversight from progressive members of Congress to fight back against the corporate wish list we know is coming."
Fred "The Animal" popped by The Monster last night. A revered drummer who has played along to NYC djs adding a live feel to their sets for decades, Fred's talents were also tapped to pep up the classic house track Jazz It Up with vocals by Barbara Tucker. Fred currently plays at Ladyfag's weekly shindig. I had mentioned in an interview Fred as someone uniquely NYC and he wanted to thank me. He had a print-out of the article. Bless his heart--he couldn't tell me what website it was from and neither could I because we both need reading glasses. But this friendly soul was on his way to see 90 year old drummer Roy Haynes at a jazz club around the corner. Talk about the beat of NY!
I don't care if the president is white, black, a woman, a Republican or a Democrat. When choosing which president you want, we need to be honest about what the role of the American president actually is: starting wars. Not necessarily because the US is under any threat, but because our president and Congress are paid to do the bidding of weapons manufacturers and defense contractors. Wars mean that these industries get paid, so our "leaders" are willing to cast aside the wishes of the American people who've said we don't want war. And who are tired of being the world's police and nation-building while this country falls apart. We've expressed that clearly, yet even a Nobel Peace prize winner like Obama is always on the look-out for new military conflicts. Is ISIS awful? Sure, but it's heavily armed neighboring countries all have powerful militaries which could step in and defend the region if the US did nothing.
So we're back in Iraq, which the last 4 presidents have found a reason to invade. And 1 day ago, the White House changed it's plan to withdraw troops in Afghanistan to a level of 5,800. Now we'll stay there with 9,800 until 2016. (Does anyone else recall the from 2014 "We'll be out of Afghanistan" deadline Obama set while campaigning as a peace-loving, war-ending president?) We're fighting ISIS without a war authorization from Congress and Obama's proposed authorization will officially give future White Houses frightening new powers. Why are we arming Ukraine--because we're hoping for a new conflict there? Hey, we've messed up the Middle East--let's revive the old war with the commies! And suddenly, there is an issue with...Venezuela?
Last week, the White House called Venezuela an "unusual and extraordinary threat to national security." We've placed sanctions--the way our bullying nation says "We don't like you" on seven top Venezuelan officials for alleged human right violations and corruption. Because with police departments like Ferguson all over the US unfairly targeting blacks, 1 in 5 women raped on our college campuses and a similar number in the military, we need to hunt for alleged injustices in Venezuela. There's injustice all over the world, but which country are you president of, Obama?
I ask you--are you guys aware of the threat from Venezuela? Not that you should have access to the info that the president does, but it's wise to question our government. I'm a drag queen with no access to state secrets, but I knew the evidence tying Iraq to 9/11 was faulty. Hillary proved she was no leader by voting for the Iraq war as a Senator. And that war, led to the chaos in Iraq which enable ISIS to take hold! But if you always want war because it's profitable, a new enemy's existence--even one as savage as ISIS--is a win for the US. The war profiteers can continue to get paid. And the public will support the fight against ISIS if you blast enough images of gruesome beheadings on TV. Just don't show any images of the grim murder scenes from Obama's secret drone wars which are just as savage and which many civilians die in. Beheading and getting burned in a cage are savage, to be sure. But does it really matter how an innocent person dies as a result of someone's misplaced aggression? If you die from ISIS decapitating you or you die because a US drone blows your head off, you still die and that death is still wrong!
So I have to question any new "extraordinary threat" announced by my government, which has a dreadful track record of foreign policy. Here's what they're up to in Venezuela:
"On February 19, the mayor of Caracas, Antonio Ledezma, was arrested for allegedly being involved in a U.S.-backed coup plot. Days later, Venezuela announced it had arrested an unspecified number of Americans for engaging in espionage and recruitment activities. Venezuela also announced a series of measures, including visa requirements for U.S. citizens and restrictions and the downsizing of the U.S. Embassy in Caracas. This all comes as Venezuela faces an economic crisis in part because of the plummeting price of oil."
And their president's response to the sanctions:
"PRESIDENT NICOLÁS MADURO: [translated] President Obama has decided to put himself into a box with no way out, a box of failure. And he has decided that he wants to be remembered in the future like Richard Nixon and George W. Bush. President Obama will be remembered in the future for his decision today and the aggression against the Venezuelan people, the noble people, because the people of Venezuela are a peaceful people. President Obama, you don’t have a right to attack us nor to declare that Venezuela is a threat to the people of the United States. You are the threat to the people of the United States, you who decide to invade, to kill, to finance terrorism in the world."
I have no reason to trust the Venezuelan president since I have no knowledge of him. I do remember cheering the last Venezualan president, Hugo Chavez, however. He told the truth about George W. Bush in 2006. At a UN speech the day after Bush had spoken at the same podium Chavez said: "The Devil is right at home. The Devil, the Devil himself, is right in the house. And the Devil came here yesterday. Yesterday the Devil came here. Right here. [crosses himself] And it smells of sulphur still today." What a great read!
The video I've linked shows an insane exchange where the State Department's Jen Psaki claims: "These latest accusations, like all previous such accusations, are ludicrous. As a matter of long-standing policy, the United States does not support political transitions by nonconstitutional means. Political transitions must be democratic, constitutional, peaceful and legal." A reporter than refers to the many coups that we've been involved in in South America. The US is screwing around all over the world in ways we don't even hear about because our news media, unlike Democracy Now!, doesn't run ads by companies which profit from war. Or because we are more interested in entertainment news like Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan or Justin Bieber doing jail time or how "black" the Oscars are.
But the State Department is lying when it claims we don't support political transitions which aren't legal. Was it legal to lie about Iraq's supposed weapons of mass destruction and ability to create a nuclear weapon? No, and Bush and Cheney should be tried for war crimes. Is supporting Syrian rebels to overthrow their leader constitutional? The US has a long history of overthrowing governments. Here's a historian's list of our interventions just from South America in this fascinating video.
MIGUEL TINKER SALAS: "I would have loved if that kind of exchange would have got broader diffusion in the U.S. press, but the fact is that it hasn’t. And we continue to have the belief that the U.S. does not—is not involved in unconstitutional change in Latin America. And as a historian, the record speaks just the opposite, from ’53 in Guatemala to the Dominican Republic, to Chile in ’73, and through the support of the Argentine military dictatorships and Brazil, and, if we want to go even closer, to 2002 in Venezuela, when the U.S. actually did support a coup against the democratically elected Hugo Chávez, the shortest coup in the world, and the coup that brought Chávez back to power, and then again in Honduras in 2009, and, not shortly thereafter, in Paraguay with Lugo, where they said it was a democratic transition, when in fact it was an unconstitutional shift in power. So, again, the notion that the U.S. has not supported both military coups directly or through what they call soft power is really ludicrous."
US foreign policy is what's ludicrous. And our president sets foreign policy. Sanctions are sometimes a lead-up to war and Obama's assertion that Venezuela represents an "extraordinary threat" to the US is nonsense. The analysis in this piece suggests that we're sanctioning Venezuela because we've eased sanctions on Cuba. And I guess we've got to have an enemy in Latin America? Or somewhere close? Also very interesting to note: the US is Venezuela's largest trading partner. What does Venezuela sell us? 95% of VZ's exports are oil. Hmmm. We've never started a war over oil before, have we?
There is no presidential candidate currently arguing for peace except the rotten Rand Paul. And even if they do campaign for peace, we see how peace worked out once Nobel Peace prize-winning Obama got into office. In fact, Rand Paul's argument for peace is anti-Hillary, because she's more of a hawk than Obama. So we have the Democrats, formerly the party which skewed towards peace currently at war with the choice of one more hawkish presidential candidate in Hillary Clinton. See any avenues running towards peace with Democrats? (Which is why this lifelong Democrat has rejected what my former party has become.) And Rand Paul, from the traditionally more hawkish Republican party, is thinking he can gain traction against his rivals by calling the GOP too hawkish. Sadly, only Rand Paul is articulating what the American people overwhelmingly want: PEACE. If our government supposedly represents us, why do we never get the peace most of us desire from either party?
If you've made it through this insanely long post, bless your heart. Maybe you're interested enough to watch the video. I have to giggle a little because I never dreamt that I'd be writing anything like this. But our country is on the wrong track and everyone who sees it needs to raise their voices.
Is this the most polarizing issue of our times? I have seen so many people post this about a law passing that fines wearers of saggy pants. It seems that many of the people who hate this the most are men of color above 30 who see it as trashy and demeaning to the race. Maybe some whites hate it, too, but not me. As a transvestite, I don't like banning any type of clothes or I might be next. As a slut I say MORE NUDITY, not less. As a bottom, I just wish they would let the front hang out as well. But as a former crazy kid, can't the brats have a little fun and express themselves? I've seen some of the best street styles from kids who don't have a lot of money but who wear their clothing in a different way to give it a little flair. Is something wrong with this? Are you seeing any nudity or even underwear in this pic? And whether you like the trend or not, do you really want to pay police to run around with a ruler measuring how low somebody's pants hang as opposed to focusing on more serious offenses? Is this just another way for police to stereotype young men of color--because that is DEFINITELY a big problem nationwide. I say leave 'em alone. To me, it looks ridiculous. But are we legislating against taste in clothes now?
Those Wildwood days will have a bit of a different look beginning Tuesday.
That's right, if you're heading to the boardwalk there, make sure you hike up your pants!
The ban on overly saggy pants is taking effect.
The new regulation states you can't have your pants more than three inches below your waist.
And the same goes for bikini bottoms and dresses!
Violators of the law will be fined $25 the first time and up to $200 thereafter.
Beefcake, a new book from Rizzoli's Universe imprint on vintage porn by Petra Mason, is now out. With a foreword by me! Check it out on Huffpo:
Here's a taste of my foreword, which is printed in it's entirety on today's Huffpo with steamy images from the book if you care to check it out:
"But we weren’t so focused on politically correctness back then -- closeted gays were so happy to get any porn at all that they’d rather get off to it than go off on it. The side of the brain that becomes sexually aroused is very different from the rational side, which is aware of society’s mores. What turns you on is what turns you on. And while it may not be very politically correct to say it, one of the reasons these models are so alluring is that they’re often straight. It irks some members of the gay community because it may hint at self-hatred, but many gay personal ads request “straight-acting” partners. Okay, so they’re looking for gay hookups but are turned off by gay mannerisms. I mean, how does one take a dick up the butt in a “straight-acting” fashion?
It’s a dichotomy that exists in the gay world, but the fact is, many go-go dancers and hunky bartenders hired in gay clubs are straight. There’s a hint that they could be gay-for-pay, which adds a little forbidden appeal and unattainability to them. PC or not, it drives some of us wild! If you are turned on by manly men, who is more manly than young straight men? While the wrestling matches and gladiator themes may be a tad hokey, I’m not sure that pictorials of fey hairdressers disrobing in a salon would sell many copies. In fact, some of today’s porn actors are so primped and pumped with bleached teeth, lip gloss, and plucked eyebrows that while they may have a dong down to their knees they are way too feminine for my taste. These guys are real men, with none of that overly styled fuss. Their muscles seem natural, not steroid induced. And you get the impression that these models were working-class guys, a little down on their luck, who perhaps didn’t realize how gorgeous they were. Sometimes their youthful innocence, raging hormones, eagerness to please, and complete lack of experience as models do somehow evoke the beauty of the gods of antiquity—even without the big budgets needed to create historical accuracy or themes that always make sense. I think that’s why these photographs are still being published today, just as we treasure the naively stunning low-budget flick Pink Narcissus from the same era. They’re some of the most sizzling homoerotic images of all time. Enjoy!"
Join Lady Bunny on Sunday, March 29 for a release party of "Beefcake" where she will spin disco classic and sign copies of the new vintage photography book. The party will take place at NYC's The Monster from 6 p.m.-10 p.m.
Just went to Duane Reade--which I'm obsessed with--and I asked the young lady behind the counter if people actually got cash back. Because I don't like answering "no" before I can finish paying. That's just me--I never want cash back but that's only MY personal preference and you may be different. She said that people got cash back so often that some people would actually buy 4 things in a row because you can only get $20 back per purchase. It was early and ma coffee was still kicking in so to be sure I was hearing correctly I asked her "So people actually make you ring up 4 separate items in order to get $80 cash when there is a bank across the street?" She said yes. I guess this is just how people do it now and this is just an old bitch ranting again. But does this strike anyone else as odd? It's definitely new. Maybe you can explain the upside to a fuzzy-headed senior.
20 Unbelievable Reasons To Start Your Day With Water and Lemon
Water with lemon provides the body with electrolytes which hydrate your body. As lemons contain good amount of electrolytes such as potassium, calcium and magnesium.
Water with lemon is good for the joints, reducing pain in the joints and muscles.
Warm water with lemon helps digestion as lemon contains citric acid. It interacts with other enzymes and acids which easily stimulate the secretion of gastric juice and digestion.
The liver produces more enzymes from water with lemon than from any other food.
Water with lemon cleanses the liver. Lemon juice stimulates the liver to release toxins.
Water with Lemon helps fight infections of the respiratory tract, sore throats and inflammation of the tonsils. This is due to the anti-inflammatory properties of lemon.
Warm water with lemon helps regulate natural bowel movement.
Water with lemon is indispensable for the normal work of metabolism. Since lemon is a powerful antioxidant, it protects the body from free radicals and strengthens the immune system.
Water with lemon aids in proper functioning of the nervous system (as lemon has a high content of potassium). Depression and anxiety are often the result of low levels of potassium in the blood. The nervous system needs a sufficient amount of potassium to ensure sustainable signals to the heart.
Water with lemon cleanses blood, blood vessels and arteries.
Water with lemon can help lower blood pressure. A daily intake of one lemon can reduce high blood pressure by 10%.
Water with lemon creates an alkalizing effect in the body. Even if you drink it immediately before a meal, it can help your body maintain a higher level of pH. The higher the pH, the more your body is able to fight diseases.
Water with lemon is good for the skin. Vitamin C in lemon, improves our skin by rejuvenating the body. Drinking water with lemon regularly (every morning) will improve the condition of your skin.
Water with lemon helps to dilute uric acid, the built up of which leads to pain in the joints and gout.
Water with lemon is beneficial for pregnant women. Since lemons are loaded with Vitamin C, it acts as an adaptogen helping the body cope with viruses such as colds. Furthermore, vitamin C helps the formation of bone tissue of the unborn baby. At the same time, due to the high content of potassium, a mixture of water with lemon helps forming cells of the brain and nervous system of the baby.
Water with lemon relieves heartburn. For this, mix a teaspoon of lemon juice in half a glass of water.
Water with lemon helps dissolve gallstones, kidney stones, pancreatic stones, and calcium deposits.
Water with lemon helps with weight loss. Lemons contain pectin fiber, which helps suppress hunger cravings. Studies have proven people with a better alkaline diet have lost weight faster.
Water with lemon helps with tooth pain and gingivitis.
Water with lemon prevents cancer. This is due to the fact that lemons are a highly alkaline food. Multiple studies have found that cancer cannot thrive in an alkaline environment.
How and when to drink water with lemon:
For this purpose, use warm purified or spring water. Take half a Cup of warm water without sugar and squeeze in there at least half of lemon or lime. Better to use a special juicer (to get the most juice with minimal effort). You can also use lemon essential oil. (where to find)
You need to drink water with lemon first thing in the morning on an empty stomach. Some recommend a drink of water one hour before meals for maximum results.
So, when life gives you a bunch of lemons, make water with lemons.
A VERY IMPORTANT PROTEST IN GREENWICH, CONNECTICUTT
I gotta pay my taxes. You gotta pay your taxes. So isn't it odd that 3 busloads of protestors had to head to Greenwich, Connecticutt on Saturday to demand that rich people pay their fair share of taxes? Surely, the wealthy could easily afford to pay theirs. But they don't want to, just as many of us don't WANT to pay our taxes every year. We have to--they don't. Why should the mega-rich pay taxes when they get a much better return on their investment from buying government officials on up to our president? You know that crazy rising GOP star Tom Cotton who spearheaded the now-denounced Republican letter to Iran telling them to ignore Obama's attempt a a nukes deal? Why was stopping an Iran deal such a big issue for him? A pro-Isreal group gave $1 million to his campaign. You have a voice in this country if you can afford one--why do you think blacks are being gunned down by cops with no repercussions? They can't afford to buy politicians. That's how it works, folks. These bums in office are supposed to represent those of us who vote for them, but instead, they represent whoever pays them. Note that these protestors are specifically denouncing the millions given to DEMOCRAT Mario Cuomo to make sure that income inequality is not eased in New York state. Neither party represents working Americans and the challenges they face--that might cost the filthy rich a bit more to fix.
But isn't it sad that citizens have to go out in the rain to demand that people and corporations pay their fair share of taxes? Why are no candidates addressing gross injustice? Many huge corporations pay $0 dollars in taxes and many more get breaks or exploit loopholes like moving their headquarters to the Caribbean. Despite the meager economic recovery under Obama, one trend continued throughout the Bush and Obama regimes--CEOs making enormous record profits. A perfect example of the widening gap between the mega-rich and the rest of us. When Romney was running, the last thing most of the country wanted was a government for the 1% which he advocated. And which he was caught on tape denouncing many of us as "takers" at that fundraiser in Palm Beach. So he lost. Yet with Obama, we got a government for the 1% anyway. And if huge corporations are really in good with our government, they don't just get off from paying their taxes or a large portion of their taxes. If you're as tight with the government as the banking industry is, you can actually declare that you are "too big to fail" and have taxpayers like you and me bail you out with the hundreds of billions of dollars Bush and Obama green lighted. And Obama has littered his cabinet with fox-regulating-the-hen-house wall streeters.
It's very sad that protesters, not the government or any major candidates, have to lead the call for the wealthy to pay their fair share. But the overall goal of our government is to shaft the poor--who have no money and therefore no voice--and to work on behalf of the 1$. This mission crosses party lines. And as we prepare for an election, know that while a few candidates like Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren support evening income inequality, they can't afford to even run (much less win) without spending millions. Can the poor/middle class afford to give millions? Nope, so their interests won't be represented. And Hillary is seen as the Democratic front runner because she can raise the money need to win. And she'll raise it primarily from huge corporations who she'd have to repay once in office. At the average worker's expense. Just as Obama campaigned in his last election on a promise to raise taxes on the wealthy who earn above $250,000. He won and immediately changed that to $400,000--which lost the government a fortune! Our politicians are so in bed with the 1$ that they don't even want tax dollars from the wealthy--they're getting much more directly through campaign donations.
Look at the demands of these Greenwich, Connecticutt protesters. Better wages, affordable housing and more funding for public schools. Don't most of us want that? Yet none of the Republicans running for president are addressing these issues. And Hillary, the heir presumptive, hasn't yet figured out which lies she's going to tell to trick voters into thinking she doesn't represent the 1%. We also won't hear Hillary discussing how unfair the Citizens United ruling, which enables corporations to give unlimited, secret amounts to political campaigns--because she'll be too busy collecting coins. We need to hear candidates saying corporations must pay their fair share of taxes.
Here's what the protesters were saying as they targeted the home of hedge fund billionaire Paul Tudor Jones.
“The hedge funds are inequality on steroids,” Kink said.
“People are making fortune after fortune off of other people’s misery,” Kink continued, contrasting Bill Ackman who he said has made serial fortunes with Burger King, McDonald’s and Wendy’s while fast food workers and their families struggle to survive, often winding up in homeless shelters.
Kink said the protesters were from several groups whose messages dovetail. “We’re advocating fair share taxes on those who can afford to pay, better wages for workers and funding for public schools,” he said.
Asked why the protesters were targeting Paul Tudor Jones on Saturday, Kink said, “Paul Tudor Jones specifically led the donors, the super PACs, the PACS that have piled $40 million in campaign cash into New York politics. Our governor, Gov. Andrew Cuomo, got $4.2 million himself and and another $2.6 to committees he controls.”
Kink said Tudor Jones was one of ten billionaires who created “New Yorkers for a Balanced Albany,” and along with Paul Singer, Dan Loeb and Louis Bacon raised $4.2 million in just 10 days.
“They swung control of the state Senate over to the Republicans, so they have low taxes, loopholes and no fair share taxes on the rich,” Kink said. “They are destroying the public school system with their latest policy preference for charter schools,” he said, adding that 97% of New York students do not go to charter schools. “They’ve hijacked the entire education agenda for their personal predilections.”