Browsing Archives for March 2010

The Texas State School Board continues to be a potent force for the far right which dominates so many public policy decisions in American.  As a huge state with a large population, they wield ultimate control over the content of public school textbooks (not just for their own students, but for students in many states) because of their immense purchasing power.  Most of the members of the Texas BOE are conservative Christian Republicans and they have decided to give American History a re-write so that it conforms to their personal religious beliefs.

And the first thing to go?

Why, the unholy value of “separation of church and state” of course!

If the Texas BOE succeeds in their march around the public school curriculum, blowing their horns loudly enough to get god’s attention – the wall of separation between church and state is destined to come a tumbling down

And Thomas Jefferson will be buried underneath it.

These quotes are from a NY times article on the subject…

“I reject the notion by the left of a constitutional separation of church and state,” said David Bradley, a conservative from Beaumont who works in real estate. “I have $1,000 for the charity of your choice if you can find it in the Constitution.”

Cynthia Dunbar, a lawyer from Richmond who is a strict constitutionalist and thinks the nation was founded on Christian beliefs, managed to cut Thomas Jefferson from a list of figures whose writings inspired revolutions in the late 18th century and 19th century, replacing him with St. Thomas Aquinas, John Calvin and William Blackstone. (Jefferson is not well liked among conservatives on the board because he coined the term “separation between church and state.”)”

The Enlightenment was not the only philosophy on which these revolutions were based,” Ms. Dunbar said.


So it’s out with Jefferson and down with the ‘wall of separation between church and state’ that our country has held as a sacred value and a vital way to live at peace with our fellow countrymen who may worship a different version of the deity than the one the Texas BOE prefers.  (You know the one… the Anglo Saxon, blonde, blue eyed, Jesus with the soft southern accent.)

What does the Texas BOE really hope to accomplish by allowing religion to have more influence in public education?

An increase in pogroms, lynchings and public burnings for heresy?

Let’s compare a few quotes of Thomas Jefferson – the horrifying infidel who first coined the phrase ‘separation of church and state’ – with the Texas BOE’s suggested replacement heroes (Aquinas, Calvin and Blackstone)


From Thomas Jefferson…

“Educate and inform the whole mass of the people… They are the only sure reliance for the preservation of our liberty.”

“Enlighten the people generally, and tyranny and oppressions of body and mind will vanish like evil spirits at the dawn of day.”

“He who knows best knows how little he knows.”

“He who knows nothing is closer to the truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods and errors.”

“Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom.”

“I abhor war and view it as the greatest scourge of mankind.”

“I am mortified to be told that, in the United States of America, the sale of a book can become a subject of inquiry, and of criminal inquiry too.”

“I believe that every human mind feels pleasure in doing good to another.”

“I cannot live without books.”

“I do not find in orthodox Christianity one redeeming feature.”

“I find that the harder I work, the more luck I seem to have.”


Now let’s move onto the hero of the Texas BOE – Thomas Aquinas…

“Since the Jews are the slaves of the Church, she can dispose of their possessions”

“If forgers and malefactors are put to death by the secular power, there is much more reason for excommunicating and even putting to death one convicted of heresy”

“As regards the individual nature, woman is defective and misbegotten, for the active power of the male seed tends to the production of a perfect likeness in the masculine sex; while the production of a woman comes from defect in the active power.”

“Clearly the person who accepts the Church as an infallible guide will believe whatever the Church teaches.”

And how about a hefty dose of that great proponent of human liberty  – John Calvin…

“Yet consider now, whether women are not quite past sense and reason, when they want to rule over men.”

“Knowledge of the sciences is so much smoke apart from the heavenly science of Christ.”

“There is no worse screen to block out the Spirit than confidence in our own intelligence.”

“Build a man a fire and he will be warm for a day; set him on fire and he will be warm for the rest of his life.”

John Calvin was responsible for setting many men and women on fire – literally -  for acts of heresy. Including the Michael Servetus an early scientist who discovered the workings of circulatory system in the human body.


And finally a few quotes from that inspired forward thinker, William Blackstone…

“The husband and wife are one, and that one is the husband.”
“That the king can do no wrong is a necessary and fundamental principle of the English constitution.”

“Man…must necessarily be subject to the laws of his Creator, for he is entirely a dependent being…And, consequently, as man depends absolutely upon his Maker for everything, it is necessary that he should in all points conform to his Maker’s will.”

“No enactment of man can be considered law unless it conforms to the law of God.”


HOLY (and I do mean Holy) SHIT!

Is it really any wonder that American education has fallen so far behind the rest of the first world?

Texas seems intent on sending our country straight back to the dark ages!


I anticipate someone bringing up Jefferson’s views on slavery and women’s rights in the comments.  Jefferson did own slaves and it is possible that he produced six children with one of them (Sally Hemings).  As a young man he was an abolitionist and may have freed his own slaves if he had owned them free and clear – but like the rest of his ‘property’ – Jefferson was mortgaged to the hilt and deeply in debt making it impossible for him to free his slaves.  He did educate his slaves and treat them well and devoted much of his time and writings to finding a solution to the American problem of slavery.

Jefferson was not a proponent for women’s rights.  On the other hand, he also did not blame women for the ‘fall of mankind’ or ‘original sin’ nor did he ever burn a single woman at the stake for ‘witchcraft’.  In this regard, Jefferson was light years ahead of both Aquinas and Calvin.

Pioneer Woman – The Movie!

March 18th, 2010

It looks as if Pioneer Woman is going to be made into a movie starring Reese Witherspoon….













.as Ree Drummond..

Columbia pictures is developing the movie based on Ree’s laborious “Black Heels to Tractor Wheels’ chronicle in which she minutely combs over every dating detail that led up to her wedding and marriage to ranching tycoon, Ladd Drummond.  Columbia also has the rights to the book by the same name which is due to be released on Valentine’s Day 2011.

Hopefully the screen play writers will be relentless in their editing of Ree’s tedious tale, as her habit of stretching a two minute event into an epic monologue won’t translate well to film.  From what I have read, the press has already cut out her entire childhood –  which took place in Bartlesville, Oklahoma –  and have permanently relocated Ree’s back story to LA thereby creating a hardcore city girl…

who falls helplessly in love with an Oklahoma rancher…

and gives up everything….

for even more of everything!!!

The things we do for LOVE!




On a more serious (yet rhyming) note…

If Reese is Ree.

Who should Ladd be?

I found this photo yesterday when I was looking for images that might work for a blog re-design. The above picture was quickly placed on top of the ‘Oh Hell Yes’ pile because it just seems to perfectly describe a certain episode that occurred in my married life like nothing else can.  I call it the “Can This Marriage Survive The World’s Most Wretched European Vacation Of Your Worst Nightmares Episode“.  In the above photo, the Country Doctor and I are seated in my friend Liz’s parent’s garden in England at a lovely tea party and we are CLEARLY NOT SPEAKING, LOOKING OR EVEN ALLOWING OUR INVISIBLE AURA FORCE FIELDS TO COME INTO CONTACT WITH EACH OTHER.

Can two people exude more palpable disgust with each other than is being exhibited in the above photo?


I think not.

We did manage to survive the above episode as well as the subsequent  ”Wife Becomes a Raving Lunatic Atheist Blogger Psychotic Implosion Episode” that followed quickly on it’s heels.

As you might surmise…

I married a very resilient man.  


But back to the point of this post.

Which was about getting a new blog design.

First I had to find a designer.

Because my last designer – although very sweet and very easy to work with – sent me an evangelical Christmas card this year with sincere wishes that the Christ child would reign in my heart (or something like that) and I just wasn’t sure that she would want much to do with my blog now that I have yanked the Christ child out of my heart and claimed that territory for my uh… for my um… well.. for my heart.

So I went in search of a new designer.  And you are not going to believe this!  But I found one! And her name was MARGOT!



Some of the long time readers of this blog might remember that Margot was the name of my imaginary assistant back when my imaginary assistant was my kitchen hutch.


Margot the kitchen hutch who did the funny cowboy dance?

Margot with the clicking heels and the neckercheif who laughed at all my jokes.

Margot who wore trim navy suits, always had a clipboard in her hand and didn’t mind cleaning out my refrigerator?

Once I had an imaginary interview with an imaginary assistant whose name was NOT Margot and I asked her to change her name TO Margot because… well… just because.  But the imaginary assistant candidate refused to change her name to Margot so I refused to hire her! And I went back to using my kitchen hutch as my imaginary assistant who didn’t mind seem to mind being called Margot at all!

So when I found a web designer named Margot I was very excited!  I was going to hire her just because her name was MARGOT, but it turned out that Margot was not available which is just as well because it would have been very hard to keep my imaginary Margot from getting mixed up with the real Margot.  I mean, what if I asked the wrong Margot to clean out my refrigerator? 

So instead, I hired a designer named Shaz.




Shaz is not imaginary!

At least I don’t think she’s imaginary.

I hope she’s not imaginary!

Because if she is, then I am about to enter into a brand new psychotic episode called the “Imaginary Assistant Margot Who Was Neither Imaginary Nor an Assistant, But Rather a Web Designer Named Shaz Who Refused to do a Funny Cowboy Dance Or Clean Out My Refrigerator”.  

And it will be a doozy!