Is America Burning - a Forum To Discuss Issues

All comments welcome, pro or con. Passionate ok, but let's be civil. ...Pertinent comments will be published on this blog. Air your viewpoints.


Skyline - Houston, Texas

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Peace - Updated for Clarity

I began reading Diva Jood at Journeys with Jood a couple of weeks ago. I'd seen her comments on other blogs and liked what she had to say.

Plus, she's a fellow Californian.

If you haven't read her posts, I think you'll like her. I do. (Update: I just read that again. What I was trying to do was recommend her blog. I made it sound like once you have, you wouldn't like her. That's what I get for posting with half a brain and one eye on my modem waiting for the net to go down.

So sorry, Diva.)

She's put together a collection of quotes about peace with a lovely peace symbol at the top.


The Future Was Yesterday said...
We must have started about the same time.:) I too, am very fond of the lady. She pulls no punches, yet does it with diplomacy.
Tuesday, July 31, 2007 11:29:00 PM
DivaJood said...
Granny, thank you! I am going to add you to my blogroll.
Wednesday, August 01, 2007 8:24:00 AM
Worried American said...
Diva Jood had been on Kvatch's Kommandos for quite some time.
Wednesday, August 01, 2007 8:49:00 AM

betmo said...
diva is a classy lady- and debates honestly and fairly even when she doesn't agree. with me- that's probably pretty often :)
Wednesday, August 01, 2007 9:18:00 AM
The Future Was Yesterday said...
You do better with half a brain, than 99% do with supposedly all of theirs.:)
Thursday, August 02, 2007 1:13:00 AM
Daniel said...

Hey, us bloggers are beginning to unite, speak as one.

We are a fearsome force especially with the Diva on our side.


Friday, August 03, 2007 7:37:00 PM


Monday, July 30, 2007

One Step Forward - Two Steps Back

I'm still having internet problems so, while the net is functioning, here's the very latest from New Jersey and its problems with the new civil unions law.

A victory of sorts but, as the article says, why should the burden be on employees to fight the inequities case by case. DHL and Fed Ex must be falling back on basically the same loophole.

A lukewarm attaboy to UPS. It took them long enough but eventually they did the right thing.

From Garden State Equality today:

Monday, July 30, 2007 - Moments ago, United Parcel Service caved in and announced that it would give benefits to employees in New Jersey civil unions on the same basis as the company gives benefits to married straight employees. Yet as of today, Garden State Equality has 211 cases of couples complaning to the organization that their employers are not recognizing their New Jersey civil unions. Among the companies flaunting the civil unions law, according to two of the complaints, are two competitors of UPS: Fed Ex and DHL.

"Equal protection under the law is not supposed to wind through a tunnel of hell, where gay couples have to threaten companies with lawsuits and where Governors have to write letters to shame the companies into doing the right thing," Goldstein said. "But that's what gay couples have been reduced to under New Jersey's civil unions law. This law is one of the biggest civil-rights failures of this or any other generation.

"Because of the New Jersey civil unions law, which isn't consistently respected in the real world, many gay couples have been reduced to begging. It's worthy of a cinematic tragedy, like when Oliver had to beg for more porridge. 'Please sir, may I have my civil union benefits?'

"The torture that UPS put this one couple through, before the company finally relented and gave the couple benefits, shows how pathetic the law is," said Steven Goldstein, chair of Garden State Equality. "Many companies don't understand the civil unions law, and many other companies understand the law but don't respect it. Either way, the law is an abject failure in consistently providing same-sex couples equal protection.

"What will happen to the employees who work for the many other companies, like Fed Ex and DHL, that won't cave in? How many of these couples and their children will have to suffer before the New Jersey legislature corrects the epidemic of inequality that the civil unions law has created?"

"Marriage is the only currency of commitment the real world universally accepts. Marriage is the only way same-sex couples in New Jersey will ever receive equality."
Worried American said...

The battle for equality must continue. It hasn't been easy and it will not be easy. The opponents are powerful with a lot of influence.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007 12:39:00 PM

Cost of Doing War (excluding the human factor)

Major General Smedley Butler: WAR is a racket. -

It is possibly the oldest, easily the most profitable, surely the most vicious. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives.
The list of profiteers would be too long to post on a blog. The Industrial Complex is merely a drop in the bucket of greedy money grabbers. Taxpayers pay for wars, Business profits from them. Not only do YOU pay for the wars, so will your descendents, repaying the massive debt Bush has made by borrowing money - especially from China.

Three charged in probe of Pentagon Iraq contracts:
A U.S. Army major accused of accepting millions of dollars in bribes from contractors doing business with the Pentagon in Iraq and Kuwait, his wife and sister, have been charged in Texas, the U.S. Justice Department said.
Yes indeed, prosecute those thieving minnows. But what about the larger fish that have also accepted and paid bribes? What about the crooked defrauders and scammers that have milked the war fund for billions and drained the Iraqi oil money and finances? Businesses that have been exposed receive a mere slap on the wrist, and the Mega-whales like Haliburton and KBR get off scott free.

Just in taxpayer money and borrowed money, what does the war cost?
This zfacts site presents a graph up to 2007:
Cost of Iraq War
The Pentagon's estimate of their monthly "burn rate" is about $6.8 B/month now, ... We're now near $300 billion, and annual costs are still rising. ...

Projected costs?:
War in Iraq could cost up to $9 billion monthly, says CBO

What could be done domestically with all that money? This excerpt gives a few facts re: the social costs based on war expenditures from 2004. What would the escalated costs of today pay for at home?
Excerpt from


U.S. Budget and Social Programs: The Bush administration's combination of massive spending on the war and tax cuts for the wealthy means less money for social spending. The $151.1 billion expenditure for the war through this year could have paid for: close to 23 million housing vouchers; health care for over 27 million uninsured Americans; salaries for nearly 3 million elementary school teachers [WA: who are leaving the profession in droves]; 678,200 new fire engine; over 20 million Head Start slots for children; or health care coverage for 82 million children. A leaked memo from the White House to domestic agencies outlines major cuts following the election, including funding for education, Head Start, home ownership, job training, medical research and homeland security. [WA: Pre-planned!]
And now Bush wants to wage war on Iran also, with an eye on Syria too? Gets us involved in Africa and lets his dogs of war growl at Venezuela. Dabbles in Colombia and other States. How much more can our nation tolerate? Or how much more will the world tolerate?


Daniel said...
Hey, as long as the wealthy are making lots of money, who cares if the taxpayers have to foot the bill for the wars for centuries. This is capitalism! Its motto: Enjoy now - pay later.Cheers from kangaroo land!
Monday, July 30, 2007 5:26:00 AM


Sunday, July 29, 2007

Ode to a Biting Insect (Skeeter?)

Some kinds of gnats do bite but also some people refer to skeeters as gnats. Puzzles me.

The image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Poem by Meleager, Greek Epigramist
Shrill-crying gnats,
shameless suckers of the blood of men,
two-winged monsters of the night,
for a little, I beseech you,
leave Zenophile to sleep a quiet sleep,
and see, make your feast of flesh from my limbs.
Yet to what end do I talk in vain?
even relentless wild beasts take delight
in nestling on her delicate skin.

But once more now I proclaim it,
O evil brood,
cease your boldness
or you shall know the force of jealous hands.

(from Greek Anthology)

Close this window Jump to comment form
Ingrid said...

Hello lovelies. Pardon my long absence. Having my children at home and not in school (yet) or summer camps has limited my online roaming abilities. Anyhoo, I'll be in San Fran next week for our holidays and then Idaho visiting friends and then SCHOOL!! (can't wait obviously)
BUT..speaking of gnats..I was told at a party recently that a certain pear lotion from Victoria Secret really (!!) helped ward off gnats during a camping trip. For all it's worth.. it might be something to check out.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007 6:01:00 PM

WA: Good to have you back, Ingrid. Welcome!


Skeeters - A Break From Serious Issues

A break from SERIOUS issues? Skeeters ARE a serious issue!
Some parts of the U.S. are suffering drought while other parts are having record rainfall. Rain equals water and standing water is the breeding place for mosquitoes. Mosquitoes are annoying but the main objection to them is that they carry disease viruses which they transmit to you -
Malaria, Dengue Fever, St. Louis Encephalitis, LaCrosse Encephalitis, Equine Encephalitis, West Nile Virus and a few other assorted nasties. Skeeters pick up the viruses by biting birds, animals or humans carrying the blood-borne viruses and pass them on to you when they bite.
Certain mosquitoes "specialize" in specfic viruses but we won't go into that here. For more info, do a search on "diseases carried by mosquitoes". Protect yourself but especially protect your children .


Insect experts offer their take on what works and what's a waste of money in fending off the seasonal pests.

By Christopher Solomon

It's summertime, and the livin' is … buggy.

In much of the country, Swat Season is in full swing, and the shelves sag with products that claim to help you survive in comfort. Unfortunately, most of these items are little better than the pests they purport to defeat, homing in on your desperation like a female skeeter chasing carbon dioxide.

We asked some of the nation's foremost mosquito experts to evaluate the claims of popular products now available. You may be surprised at what truly delivers relief.

First, give yourself a fighting chance

When it comes to dealing with mosquitoes, the best defense is a good offense, experts say. That means removing mosquito-friendly habitat from your yard. Here's what to do:

Tip and toss. Mosquito larvae need to float atop still water in order to grow and hatch. So don't let water pool in flowerpot saucers or pet dishes for more than two days, advises the American Mosquito Control Association. Toss tin cans, old tires, buckets, unused plastic swimming pools and other containers that collect and hold water. Clean rain gutters. Change the water in birdbaths and wading pools at least once a week.

Think like a mosquito. After the obvious spots, look for random places that hold water: plastic or canvas tarps used to cover boats or pools, and even places like broad-leaf plants. Got wet spots in your yard? Plant vegetation that likes "wet feet," advises Marina D'Abreau, horticulture agent for the Hillsborough County (Fla.) Cooperative Extension Service.

Check the deck. The dark area under backyard decks is often moist -- perfect for growing skeeters. Dry it out by putting sand under the deck.

Attack! Finally, take the fight to the little buggers. Stock ornamental pools with small, top-feeding minnows called mosquito fish, advises the AMCA. Another effective and perfectly safe option is to sprinkle BT (bacillus thuringiensus) in standing water, such as swimming pools or fish ponds. "Basically, it's a naturally occurring bacteria that attacks mosquito larvae," says D'Abreau. BT can be bought at home-and-garden stores in granule form or as so-called "dunks," which look like "spoiled little rotten green doughnuts," D'Abreau says. Best of all, she says, it's not toxic to humans or animals.

Or, try a new method of larval control: the LarvaSonic, which transmits sound waves into water at the resonant frequency of the mosquito larvae air bladders, rupturing the internal tissue and causing death, according to the company.

If you've taken these steps and you're still being swarmed, you'll likely want reinforcements. Just be careful which products you turn to, as they vary from completely benign (both to you and the mosquitoes) to potentially harmful for humans.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Granny said...

We've had our first case of West Nile here (at least for this year - there may have been others).

Sunday, July 29, 2007 10:40:00 AM

WA:Every year we have cases of St.Louis Encephalitis and warnings about West Nile. There were even a few cases of Dengue Fever. Astonished everyone but people are so mobile these days and carriers come here for the mosquitoes to bite and pick up the virus and pass it on.
Progressive Traditionalist said...

Hello, Worried.
I had read something just yesterday about how some household ingredient could be used as an effective means of controlling mosquitos. I can't quite remember what it is, though. Sorry about that.

I do know from good experience that the citronella candles work.
Still, work best with some type of wind block, like a car port or a porch.

Monday, July 30, 2007 1:42:00 AM

Welcome PT! If you recall or run across that article, please pass the info on. Mosquitoes are not merely annoying, some people - especially children- are allergic to their bites, but the major factor is the danger from diseases they carry.


Friday, July 27, 2007

How Many Fundies Can Dance on the Head of a Pin?

Dekani Monastery-Ikon

"What does it matter how many of us there are on the head of this pin, as long as we are here and as long as we are dancing?"-Angel to Orthodoxy

And they (the Fundies) are dancing, dancing tirelessly to the tune of their clarion call to remake the world in their image.

This post and the 2 following go together.

Granny and I have been focussing on domestic issues this past week, primarily Child Health Care and Hate Crimes. The next two posts are more drum beats concerning the Children's Health Care bill and a riff about the Fundies.

The President kisses up to two of his favorite influence peddlers - Big Business and the extreme Christian Right, the Fundies. Everyone knows how this administration panders to Big Business and is devoted to making the rich even richer, so I will address the Fundie subject. They represent a huge voting bloc and a huge membership to bombard the Hill about current issues.

How many fundies are there in the US? Click on to Fundie Numbers in US for information. Published numbers vary but high or low it is a heckuva lot.

A major Fundie organization is Dobson's Focus on the Family (FoF). An offshoot that he created that was designed to be a lobbying force in Washington is the Family Research Council (FRC), headed up by Tony Perkins, and a formidable force it is indeed. To name only two of Dobson's outreach programs, his FOF Family Radio Theatre boasts an audience of 220 million; he publishes 10 monthly magazine for 2.3 million subscribers. I do not have stats on the number of FRC's subscribers. Both Granny and I subscribe to Fundie newsies in order to "know thine enemy" and keep track of what they are up to and how they distort the facts to brainwash the faithful. We are not even going into the Pat Robertson crapola; I can only stand so much.

In the past couple of months FRC has sent emails no less than 9 times with anti-homosexual news and included tidbits in other posts, pushed the anti-Hate Crimes bill twice because it included "sexual orientation" as one of the protectees. He teaches against abortion, contraception, funding for any other than abstinence-only sex ed., gay marriage, Planned Parenthood (Spence is pushing a bill to cut off funding to PP), separation of Church and State ( the two should be in lockstep), etc.. He echoes Bush and the Neocon rhetoric and lies to further deceive the faithful - who think that Bush is a "godly man". It would take up too much room to post all their b.s. but they are masters of deceit, distortion ( sins of "commission"), and leaving out facts (sins of "omission") in order to bolster their claims. According to my spiritual beliefs, that is un-Christian behavior.

Any way you cut the numbers, there is a multitude of Americans being brainwashed to follow these dorks and they have a strong voice in Washington.
ThomasLB said...

It's all about power. They aren't trying to change my heart or save my soul, all they care about is controlling my behavior.

There was a time when school prayer was compulsory, abortion was illegal, and gays were persecuted; God rewarded us with World War II, the Great Depression, and polio. I think we can honestly say that we've already tried it their way, and it failed.

Saturday, July 28, 2007 6:18:00 AM

Nvisiblewmn said...

I just finished a class focusing on behavior management, and I want to say I think James Dobson promotes child abuse. I think a better name for his group would be "Focus on Beating the Family"? I really find him disturbing.

Saturday, July 28, 2007 9:50:00 AM

Worried American said...

Dobson promotes many viewpoints, teachings and practises that are VERY disturbing.

ALL of the fundies promote their beliefs and goals that are frightening, especially as they gain more and more power and as our government also promotes their beliefs and practises.

Personally, I find this group to actually be anti-Christian as they fail in so many ways to follow the teachings of the Christ.

Sunday, July 29, 2007 2:18:00 AM

WA: the people who call the Fundies "the Christian Taliban" are really correct!
The Future Was Yesterday said...

How Many Fundies Can Dance on the Head of a Pin?
All of them - with room left over to build a subdivision! My record's pretty clear on your subject, so I won't take up your space. Keep at them!

Sunday, July 29, 2007 2:22:00 AM

WA: Apparently Granny and I aren't the only night owls! Thank both of you for comments.


Thursday, July 26, 2007

Proudly Blocking Children's Health Care

This from Tom Paine, Commonsense.Our Future. I was unable to get the url to work for a link

Proudly Blocking Children's Health Care

Republican leaders apparently like to lose.

Top GOP senators Mitch McConnell and Trent Lott are opposing the bipartisan deal to cover more kids with health insurance, siding with President Bush over other Republicans like Senators Orrin Hatch and Charles Grassley.

The bill to invest $7 billion a year to cover an additional 3 to 4 million children probably can still overcome a conservative filibuster. But with the Senate minority leadership fighting against it, it has less of a chance to override a presidential veto.

With Republican and Democratic voters expressing huge support for children's health insurance, what are these guys thinking?

Bush is refreshingly candid:

If their proposal becomes law ... many of these people would give up the private health insurance they have now as they move to government health care ... Their goal is to take incremental steps down the path to government-run health care for every American.

[WA: You ignorant dork! Most of the children this program addresses HAVE NO PRIVATE HEALTH INSURANCE! Their parents CANNOT AFFORD IT!]

Let's put aside the facts that the Senate bill would primarily reach uninsured kids and not those already covered; that the children's program relies on private health plans, just with decent standards so taxpayer funds are spent efficiently; and that Bush and allied conservatives are defending another program that inefficiently funnels Medicare dollars to private plans. [WA: But it helps the rich corporations get richer - with taxpayer dollars]

What Bush said is he doesn't want people to "give up" private insurance. [WA: They can't give up what they don't have.]

He's not afraid of a government plan being imposed on people. He's afraid that given a fair choice, people would choose a public plan over a private plan.

But this is not a question of government versus no government.

This is a question of good government versus bad government.

Bush and fellow conservatives are just fine with government subsidies to prop up Medicare Advantage private plans, even though they cost taxpayers more than the traditional Medicare public plan.

They are just fine keeping the children's insurance program, so long as we underfund it and millions remain uninsured.

As Robert Borosage commented earlier: "faced with a choice of providing children with health care or protecting the profits of private insurance companies, the president chooses the latter."

[WA: MUST help Big Businesses increase their profits!]

They are afraid of how good government can undermine their conservative goals, their special interest backers and their own political careers.

Just as they did in 1993, when they decided they had to kill universal health care, because "[i]ts passage will give the Democrats a lock on the crucial middle-class vote and revive the reputation of the party."

Lott recently said "the strategy of being obstructionist can work or fail. So far it’s working for us.” But McConnell's approval ratings in his home state are at 48%, their lowest point in two years.

We'll see if that trend will continue, after he leads the charge against health insurance for kids.

More from Matthew Yglesias, Brendan Nyhan and Dean Baker


Fundies Fight State Children's Health Insurance Program

Fundamentalists are rigid and inflexible, one-way (our way or no way), and absolutely determined that they and they alone are right. They tolerate no differences of opinions and any opposition is to be fought tooth and nail. They are descrived as " 'authoritarian, intolerant, and compulsive about imposing itself upon the rest of society. It is a mindset which sees everything in black and white and for which compromise is alien.'"

Tony Perkins writes daily emails to members and all know that his condemnation of any subject is their signal to bombard representatives in Washington. They believe they are fighting a holy war against forces of evil. Fundies are very cozy with our government officials in Washington.
Note Perkins' use of psychological hot button words in his text. The fundies would rather have America's children go without health insurance than to have their favorite no-nos be included in a bill - abortion, contraception, funding for any but abstinence-only sex education.
July 25, 2007 Family Research Council

CHAMP Act or Chumps Act?

Reauthorization of the popular State Children's Health Insurance Program (S-CHIP), which provides little-or no-cost coverage for kids in families with moderately low-incomes, up to 200% of poverty, which is about $40,000 for a family of four (about 18 states go higher than 200% of poverty for subsidized child health care, including New York, whose program subsidizes families up to $82,600 in annual income for a family of four), is quickly winding its way through Congress.

Unfortunately, both the House and the Senate versions would expand spending on the program (at an added cost of $50 billion to taxpayers over five years in the House version). The House version, dubiously titled the CHAMP Act, not only takes taxpayers for chumps but also declares war on pro-life Americans. One reason that S-CHIP has been embraced by some pro-life organizations was that it offered states flexibility on services, allowing them, if they so choose, to exclude controversial "procedures" like abortion or sterilization from the taxpayer-funded program.

The Democrats have offered new language that would force states to pay for "family planning services," meaning abortion and contraceptives for what is billed as a children's health program. To add insult to injury, the House bill also removes abstinence funding. Over on the Senate side the Democrats consciously weakened the existing federal guidelines that defined "child" as beginning at conception. States applying for prenatal services use this regulation to secure vital services for the unborn child. Senate Democrats would rather states avoid the obvious, that the unborn child is in fact a human being, when developing their applications for prenatal care. The increase in dollars and the decrease in pro-life sense put this program at risk. Additional Resources Health insurance program for children at a crossroads in Congress

WA:You generation of vipers. You would put religiosity and political considerations above innocent children imprisoned in poverty and ill health, deny sick little ones health care. Jesus said, "Suffer (allow) the little children to come unto me for of such is the Kingdom of Heaven."
He also said, "whatsoever you have done unto the least of have done it unto Me."

The following excerpted from:

So Bono keeps Walking On and very much following Jesus Of Nazareth as he goes. Some will damn him to hell because he swears but when Jesus was separating sheep from goats it was not our language that condemned us; it was what we did with the homeless, the sick and the poor.

'Nursery school' in Thailand. Picture by Andy Baldwin/TearfundStarving Palestinian child. Picture by Andy Baldwin/Tearfund

Granny said...

I read this morning that Mitch McConnell and Trent Lott are leading the charge.

Saturday, July 28, 2007 4:37:00 AM


Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Oh For Crying Out Loud! What Next?

A New Type of Gay Bashing? Puh-leez

Is there no end to the depths to which he/they will sink? No sewage too foul? No stench too unbearable? No shame about the endless lies? Well, we ARE speaking of O'Reilly, Fox Faux News, and those who shall be temporarily nameless.

SPL Center-Oh Really,O'Reilly

Pistol Packing Mama
The Andrews Sisters(1946)
Lay that pistol down, babe
Lay that pistol down
Pistol packin' mama
Lay that pistol down]

The Oh-Really Factor
Fox News' Bill O'Reilly offers up an 'expert' to claim that pink pistol-packing lesbian gangs are terrorizing the nation
By Susy Buchanan and David Holthouse

pink pistol

A "national underground network" of pink pistol-packing lesbians is terrorizing America. "All across the country," they are raping young girls, attacking heterosexual males at random, and forcibly indoctrinating children as young as 10 into the homosexual lifestyle, according to a shocking June 21 segment on the popular Fox News Channel program, "The O'Reilly Factor."

Titled "Violent Lesbian Gangs a Growing Problem," the segment began with host Bill O'Reilly briefly referencing for his roughly 3 million viewers the case of Wayne Buckle, a DVD bootlegger who was attacked by seven lesbians in New York City last August. Deploying swift, broad strokes, O'Reilly painted a graphic picture of lesbian gangs running amok. "In Tennessee, authorities say a lesbian gang called GTO, Gays Taking Over, are involved in raping young girls," he reported. "And in Philadelphia, a lesbian gang called DTO, Dykes Taking Over, are allegedly terrorizing people as well."

After this introduction, O'Reilly went to a split-screen live interview with "Fox News crime analyst" Rod Wheeler.

"Tell me what's going on," O'Reilly said.

Wheeler, a Washington, D.C., Metropolitan Police Department officer-turned-paid Fox News commentator, launched right in: "Well, you know, there is this national underground network, if you will, Bill, of women that's lesbians and also some men groups that's actually recruiting kids as young as 10 years old in a lot of the schools in the communities all across the country," he reported. "And they actually carry a number of weapons. And they commit a number of crimes."

Wheeler asserted that "we've actually counted, just in the Washington D.C. area alone, that's Washington D.C., Maryland, and Virginia, well over 150 of these crews. … And they — like I said, they recruit these kids to be members of these gangs."

O'Reilly asked, "Now, when they recruit the kids, are they indoctrinating them into homosexuality?"

"Yes," Wheeler answered. "As a matter of fact, some of the kids have actually reported that they were forced into, you know, performing sex acts and doing sex acts with some of these people."

Flabbergasted by the sheer depravity of it all, O'Reilly nevertheless forged ahead. "I never thought of this," said the host of the "no-spin zone." "It makes sense that, if you had lawless gay people, they would do this kind of thing. You associate homosexuality more with a social movement, not a criminal movement. But you're saying this is all over the country, detective?"

"It's all over the country," Wheeler replied. "I mean, you go from New York to California to wherever you want to name, you can see these organizations." Next came the pink guns. "Now, the other thing, too, that our viewers are going to find very, very interesting, is the fact that they actually carry—some of these groups carry pink pistols," Wheeler said. "They call themselves the pink-pistol-packing group. And these are lesbians that actually carry pistols. That's 9-millimeter Glocks. They use these. They commit crimes, and they cause a lot of hurt to a lot of people."

The Authorities Disagree
Nine-millimeter Glocks painted pink? Dykes taking over? More than 150 lesbian gangs in the Washington, D.C., area alone? These claims are, as Wheeler suggested, "very, very interesting." They're also very, very flimsy. Gaithersburg, Md., Detective Patrick Word, president of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Gang Investigators Network, an intelligence-sharing organization of 400 criminal justice professionals in Maryland, Washington, D.C., and Virginia, said there is no evidence whatsoever of a lesbian gang epidemic in his region. "Our membership reports only one lesbian gang," Word told the Intelligence Report.

Sgt. Brett Parson, a member and former commander of the D.C. Metropolitan Police Department's Gay and Lesbian Liaison Uni, also questioned Wheeler's numbers. "We have 150 to 175 total gangs in the D.C. area, and out of those only nine where the predominance of members are female," he said. "You simply can't make the jump that they are lesbians. I think it is fair to talk about violence and female gangs. But to sensationalize or marginalize a community by making a statement like that seems irresponsible."

Confronted by the Intelligence Report, Wheeler was unable, in several phone and E-mail exchanges over a two-day period, to specify a single law enforcement agency or officer, police report, media account or any other source he relied upon for his D.C. area lesbian gangs claim. But he insisted that his report was accurate and that any law enforcement officer who disagrees is "out of touch." "For some reason or other, these organizations don't lay it on the line because they don't know what is going on on the streets," said Wheeler. "This is a serious crisis and the so-called experts are missing it."

[WA: Hmmm! All the experts are out of touch but him. He's the only one that knows what's going on? The experts are missing it? Maybe it's because none of the experts are a "paid Fox News Commentator", the Faux News pet poodle media of the Administration. Now, aside from O'Reilly, who could possibly want to discredit gays in this manner? Couldn't possibly be certain opponents of the Hate Crime Bills, could it? Read the next paragraph for your first clue.]

According to Wheeler's personal website, he is a member of Jericho City of Praise, a conservative Christian megachurch in Landover, Md., whose leadership publicly advocates against equal rights for gays and lesbians. The website details Wheeler's 500-plus appearances on MSNBC, Court TV and Fox News Channel shows including "The O'Reilly Factor," "On the Record With Greta Van Sustern," and "Hannity & Colmes."

Fox News officials and Bill O'Reilly did not return E-mails seeking comment for this story. O'Reilly is quoted on Wheeler's website heralding Wheeler as "America's most recognized and trusted authority on crime analysis and law enforcement."

Another ringing celebrity endorsement on the site is attributed to White House Press Secretary Tony Snow: "We turn to Rod Wheeler to help us better understand and solve some of these terrible crimes in America."

[WA: Aha! The plot thickens! The White House endorses this dork!]

Wheeler told the Report that he spent seven years in professional law enforcement before going to work as a corporate security officer for McDonald's Corp., a job he has since left. These days, Wheeler is a "food defense specialist" for the American Institute of Baking. Just this spring, he publicly warned that the Big Mac is vulnerable to bioterrorist attacks at "250 points" during production.

Viewers left wondering what, exactly, Wheeler was smoking before he went on "The O'Reilly Factor" might find a 1994 Washington Times article intriguing. The paper reported that Wheeler was suspended from the Metro D.C. police force after testing positive for marijuana in a random drug test. Wheeler told the Report that samples were mixed up and that he was eventually "exonerated."

Facts and Fiction
The only specific instance of actual violent lesbian gang activity that Wheeler cited on "The O'Reilly Factor" was a May 19 attack on a 15-year-old boy who was stabbed near a transit station in Prince George's County, Md. "And the police found out that it was a group of six women who identified themselves as being members of a lesbian gang that actually attacked this young man," Wheeler told O'Reilly.

According to a June 15 article in The Washington Post, however, two of the three individuals arrested in that assault were teenage males, though the article did note that, "Metro officials said the fight was between two gay and lesbian gangs that operate in Maryland."

An extensive Internet search seeking to verify O'Reilly's assertion in the introduction to Wheeler's interview that a lesbian gang called Dykes Taking Over is "terrorizing people" in Philadelphia turned up only one possible source. WCAU-TV, a local NBC affiliate in that city, reported in 2004 that a small group of 8th-grade girls at a West Philadelphia middle school were allegedly "bullying, groping and harassing" other girls in gym class with "gay remarks." The report made no mention of the 8th-graders using pink pistols or other weapons.

Similarly, O'Reilly's introductory mention of a Tennessee lesbian gang called Gays Taking Over that is "involved in raping young girls" appears to have been based solely on a highly dubious Feb. 28 television report from WPTY-TV, an ABC affiliate in Memphis, Tenn. Featuring dramatic "reenactments" of high school bathroom rape scenes shot in grainy black-and-white footage, the lengthy segment's vaguely salacious claims about local high school girls being raped and "sodomized" with "sex toys bought on the Internet" was based almost entirely on the lurid musings of a single Shelby County gang officer. [WA: verbalizing his fantasies?]

Titled "Violent Femmes," the sweeps-week segment was so thinly sourced and grotesquely sensationalized that it's difficult to believe that any professional journalist found it to be credible. And it wasn't. Under intense pressure from local gay and lesbian activists, the affiliate's station manager finally admitted that WPTY-TV's reporters had neither independently verified the gang officer's overheated claims nor obtained any documentary evidence such as arrest records or written police reports to substantiate their tale. As the station grudgingly conceded, "Our investigation did not turn up widespread violence in schools due to this."

Rashad Robinson, the senior director of media programs for the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), said that while he wasn't pleased to see the inflammatory "Violent Femmes" segment used as a source for a national television "report" on Fox News, "I wasn't startled." [WA: where else but Faux News]

"The sad truth is that sensationalized, undocumented, fear-driven reports about [gays and lesbians] preying on children are proven to be a ratings winner, and the station managers and news producers know that because they're reporting about gays and lesbians they don't have to be as concerned about backing up their sensationalism with actual facts and figures," Robinson told the Report. "The O'Reilly segment essentially reported a national epidemic of lesbian gangs preying on young girls without offering up one solid figure or one credible source. This type of reporting creates a **climate of homophobia and fear and perpetuates dangerous stereotypes of gay people and definitely helps feed into a climate of anti-gay discrimination and violence, which is a true national epidemic, but not one you're likely to see reported with such zeal by Bill O'Reilly."

The third case O'Reilly referenced, the assault on 29-year-old Wayne Buckle in New York City last August, did actually occur. Buckle was whipped with belts and stabbed by women who identified themselves as lesbians. But there is no evidence the women are members of a criminal gang, and O'Reilly failed to report that the attack was prompted, according to the New York Daily News, by Buckle spitting, cursing, and flicking a cigarette at the women after one of them rebuffed his sidewalk sexual advances.

And then there are the pink Glocks.

There have been no media reports at all of lesbian gangs committing violence while armed with pink-painted 9-millimeter pistols or calling themselves, as Wheeler colorfully described it, "the pink pistol-packing group." Several law enforcement officers contacted by the Report found the idea laughable. There is, however, a well-known national organization of gay and lesbian firearms owners called the Pink Pistols. This group has never been implicated in any gang activity. Asked by the Intelligence Report if he'd perhaps confused the Pink Pistols with a criminal organization, Wheeler denied it. "I wasn't referring to their pink pistols," Wheeler said. "These [lesbian] crews, these gangs, they buy a Glock 9-millimeter and you can paint them pink."

Pink Pistols spokesperson Gwen Patton said the pistols the group's members carry are, by and large, not actually colored pink. The Pink Pistols are now demanding an on-air apology from Wheeler, O'Reilly and Fox News.

"A lot of people are confusing these imaginary, lesbian, gun-carrying gangs with our organization," said Patton. "We would appreciate it if Mr. O'Reilly would invite Mr. Wheeler back onto his show to clear up this nonsense in the same arena it started — on national TV."

Janet Smith contributed to this report.

[**WA:Irresponsible lies such as this can lead to more gay bashing and violence against individuals perceived as gay or lesbian and promote hysterical accusations of molestations of minors by gays. Since the Fundies advocate execution of homosexuals when they gain governmental power, false reports like this lay the groundwork for citizen acceptance of "destroying an evil in their midst". Nothing arouses parental wrath and protectiveness as much as harm/molestation threatening their children. Guaranteed to get the citizens aroused.

Negative words create a mental image in the mind of those who hear them. They plant a seed that, once laid, is difficult to uproot. They can indeed destroy others."

Actually, some stats report that the majority of child molestations and sex crimes are perpetrated by heterosexual pedophilia-orientated individuals - not homosexuals.

What's Next? Raging Rifle-toting Rangers in cut-off shorts?

Tongue-in-cheek, folks. Not serious.

ThomasLB said...

Lesbian Gangs with little pink pistols would make a fantastic John Waters movie!

Thursday, July 26, 2007 5:42:00 AM

Nvisiblewmn said...

Great post, WA. Is anyone really taking O'Reilly seriously any more?

Thursday, July 26, 2007 7:49:00 AM

Worried said...

John Waters movie? :-)

nvisiblewmn: I hope not but sadly there are many who do.

Thursday, July 26, 2007 8:12:00 AM

Gadfly said...

Hey Old Woman, you're up! I'm coming over for coffee; put on a fresh pot.

ROTFL when I first read this post. I thought it was some kind of spoof. Then I laughed even harder in derision when I found out these two jerkwads were serious. And Fox allowed such lying stupidity? Oh yeah, it is Faux News, ain't it.

About that Buckle guy that the ladies whipped with belts and stabbed him with something - the pen from their checkbook? Hooray for the ladies,served the mf-er right.
Let some jerk make sex advances to your gals, Old Woman, and then spit on them, curse them and flick a butt on them. Hoowee! Jo might beat a shocked retreat but she is getting more assertive in her old age. Little J would probably light into him with her little hard fists like a wildcat (fingernails too). Dot would tell his beads like they'd never been told before and get in her licks. But Oh God! the Wild Child! In spite of her health problems that have slowed her down, rage pumps up her adrenalin and the old Wild Child comes out. The air would be so full of 'purple prose' it'd be almost black and she'd be onto him like a Amazon Warrior-ess. That purse of hers should be registered as a deadly weapon and she can swing it like a medieeval Mace. KWhack! He'd be praying for nothing more than a belt and screaming Help! Police! Those gals would tear him a new one in no uncertain terms. I'd pay $100 for a ticket to see that fight!

Thursday, July 26, 2007 8:54:00 AM

ThomasLB said...

I added your blog to the sidebar on my blog. That only seems fair, since half the topics you uncover end up over there.

(If you'd rather not be associated with such weirdness- and believe me, I can understand that- just let me know and I'll take you back off.)

Thursday, July 26, 2007 1:04:00 PM

WA: I know that Granny joins me in saying we are delighted and honored to be added to your sidebar. Thank you very much!
Granny said...

I'll be back later. Net's been down since about midnight last night and now I have to leave.

Can't wait to read the whole post!!

Thursday, July 26, 2007 1:20:00 PM

WA: You and I have certainly had our Dastardly Duo, Computer, Internet woes of late. In addition to my all-nighter fighting the Duo, my modem went down and I had the hassle of getting it back up. As if dealing with my slow-poke ancient Compaq wasn't enough...!
The Future Was Yesterday said...

Gadfly, I wish you'd just say what you mean for once, instead of dancing all over the place!:) ROTFL!! Girl, you should charge admission to read you!

I'm not too up to date on the intimate details of Lesbians. They go their way, I go mine. It seems to work fine. But something has long confused me, so I'll just throw my ignorance out for public display:

Assuming no external "devices" is involved, how in the hell does a Lesbian rape a girl? Oral sex is rape now too, or what? It that how they "rape" them? I'm not making fun: I really am clueless in this area.

There are many female gangs. But pink pistol packin' Lezzies? ROTFL!! That image will be in my mind for a while.:)

Thursday, July 26, 2007 11:09:00 PM

WA:TFWY: In spite of the fact that I've known a number of gays and lesbians I never enquired into their sexual methodology. We had a mutual, unspoken agreement: "you don't pry into my sex life and I won't pry into yours". That worked fine for us. I am clueless also regarding Lesbian rape unless "devices" are used and/or unless oral sex is rape. I suppose any sexual activity against someone's will would be rape or sexual assault. Allegations of Lesbian rape of 10 year olds will create a fine dust-up for hate mongers.
betmo said...

ladies- come on. if you are talking about o'reilly- you know he is an asshat of magnitudinal proportions (i can make up my own words if i want- bush does). he is currently on a 'daily kos is a nazi propaganda blog' kick.

Friday, July 27, 2007 7:16:00 AM

WA:Hello Betmo. You know the best defense is offense. Little chiuldren learn that at an early age. Junior kypes a cookie before dinner so runs and tells Mommy that Sissy stole a cookie! The Bushies follow much of the Nazi patterns so claim someone else is the guilty ones. But then, The Shrub IS rather juvenile, isn't he? Cheney is the grand master and knows how to exploit the media and public, and devil take the hindmost.
Daniel said...

Do you know if these groups are planning to invade Australia? Would you send me advance warning? Do they vote Republican? Isn't Bill Reilly a comedian who sends up the news?

Hasn't America stuffed up the world enough without Bill and the Pink Ladies adding to the list?

Cheers from DownUnder!

Saturday, July 28, 2007 1:12:00 AM

WA: Hi, Daniel! Yes, I promise to send you advance notice if a planned invasion comes to my attention. Since the Repubs (and many of the Dems) pander to the Fundies, I doubt that these ladies vote Repub. I refuse to take responsibility for O'Reilly!! That sleazeball. Cheers from Texas and the USA!
Granny said...

Hi Daniel. I emailed you about O'Reilly. He's more of a farce than a comedian; unfortunately he still draws an audience. He claims there are no lies or liars on his show; that makes him delusional as well.

He retracted his statement about the lesbian gangs once it has been refuted, line by line. It was great fun to read.

Saturday, July 28, 2007 4:49:00 AM

Granny said...


John Waters did the original Hair Spray film.

Saturday, July 28, 2007 4:50:00 AM

Granny said...

Here's the link to the film. He did many others but this was his best known I think.

Saturday, July 28, 2007 4:54:00 AM

Daniel said...

Hey, Granny, I've put the O'Reilly gaffe on my website too. I think it's an issue that should be spread around the world. Hope you don't mind!

Cheers from DownUnder!

Saturday, July 28, 2007 7:45:00 PM

WA: Daniel, Granny and I not only don't mind, we are glad to have the word spread about the lying haters of this worl!