Thursday, November 15, 2007


From the Archives

(February 2006) Just drove to the Gothic Wonderland to hear my friend Tuscaloosa read. The place was packed and she was, as always, brilliant and charming and oh so literate.

I’m so proud of her and the good work she’s doing.

Our friends remain aghast that Tuscaloosa and I never got together and, occasionally, I’m surprised by this too. In many ways, we’re a perfect fit. But I was married, then she was married, then I was married again and, well, the timing just never worked out.

We are very dear friends who recognize each other’s gorgeousness however and she’s someone I can talk with about anything—and someone I do talk with about writing on a very regular basis.

I’m going to include a long excerpt from Molly Ivins’s “Why Hilary Won’t Save Us,” but, first, can you believe that I actually heard an advertisement for a Toddler Spa (!) that offers designer haircuts and manicures?

Oh for the love of gawd throw your precious little rugrats outside and let them get grubby instead.

I mean, come on, if they can’t get their hands dirty when they’re toddlers, what hope do they have?

Anyway, here’s Molly. It’s just too good not to paste here:
The recent death of Gene McCarthy reminded me of a lesson I spent a long, long time unlearning, so now I have to relearn it. It's about political courage and heroes, and when a country is desperate for leadership. There are times when regular politics will not do, and this is one of those times. There are times a country is so tired of bull that only the truth can provide relief.

If no one in conventional-wisdom politics has the courage to speak up and say what needs to be said, then you go out and find some obscure junior senator from Minnesota with the guts to do it. In 1968, Gene McCarthy was the little boy who said out loud, "Look, the emperor isn't wearing any clothes." Bobby Kennedy—rough, tough Bobby Kennedy—didn't do it. Just this quiet man trained by Benedictines, who liked to quote poetry.

What kind of courage does it take, for mercy's sake? The majority of the American people (55 percent) think the war in Iraq is a mistake and that we should get out. The majority (65 percent) of the American people want single-payer health care and are willing to pay more taxes to get it. The majority (86 percent) of the American people favor raising the minimum wage. The majority of the American people (60 percent) favor repealing Bush's tax cuts, or at least those that go only to the rich. The majority (66 percent) wants to reduce the deficit not by cutting domestic spending, but by reducing Pentagon spending or raising taxes. The majority (77 percent) thinks we should do "whatever it takes" to protect the environment. The majority (87 percent) thinks big oil companies are gouging consumers and would support a windfall profits tax. That is the center, you fools. Who are you afraid of?

I listen to people like Rahm Emanuel superciliously explaining elementary politics to us clueless naifs outside the Beltway ("First, you have to win elections"). Can't you even read the damn polls?

... Oh come on, people—get a grip on the concept of leadership....

Alito is all but confirmed. New scandals are erupting daily. Please! Someone rise up already and call a spade a spade. As Barack Osama said of Rosa Parks, “she reminded us all of the central truth of the American experience—that our greatness as a nation derives from seemingly ordinary people doing extraordinary things.”

We are in need of a person who can do extraordinary things right now, before the corporations completely take over. (Alternet, 1/23/2006)

Molly’s letting out all the stops now.

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