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The Public Blogging of Pomosexuality, Homotextuality, Homophobiaphilia, and Drear Theory (aka Career Theory) [aka Gay4Pay]. We also read the Corner and OpJournal so the right buttock will be punished as well. All comments subject to publication. Or dismissal. Or Both.


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Agenda Bender
Saturday, December 14, 2002  

Memoirs of Diaries

I've been reading the Jim Carroll journals found in the garbage that I mentioned below. Very enjoyable tales of junkie degradation played out against the road company painted canvas backdrops of the Factory and Max's. I'm tempted just to retell the stories here. But that would be like writing a diary made up of excerpts from other people's diaries you happened to be reading. Not a bad idea per se just a dizzying one. I was impressed that one entry from 1971 included the word "eurotrash". It seems to me this must be one of the earliest uses of that word, it's very possible Carroll coined it with that entry. Especially since these journals weren't published until 1987 which seems closer to the time the word actually entered then language. Such a valuable and necessary word.

12:45 AM


A Crow of a Different Color

In the last two days Andrew Sullivan and Virginia Postrel have both quoted and recommended Thomas Sowell's column on Trent Lott's blindness to the reality of Jim Crow. I found this odd for a couple reasons. First because Sowell's column is an uninspired turn on an intrinsically powerful topic. Even the anecdote it's built around falls flat. Sowell was an American soldier in the uniform of his country unsure whether his use of a public bathroom "for whites" would lead to a confrontation or even violence. But in the event "it so happened that nobody said or did anything." Sowell's indisputable point is that even his hesitation and concerns about what might happen was indignity enough but when the actuality of Jim Crow routinely dwarfed Sowell's encounter with it he would have been wiser to resist the columnists' default hook--the world and how it finds me--and use a less personal but more powerful story from someone else.

But really what bothers me about Sowell's column is that a week before reading his Jim Crow piece I read an older column of his deriding the concept of gay marriage, a column that was the equal of Jim Crow apologetics in its disgraceful illogic and debased rhetoric. And that column was hardly alone of its kind from Sowell. Arthur Silber performed a very able autopsy of it and I meant at the time to add to Arthur's anger and disappointment in Sowell my observations as a longtime reader of Sowell. But it wasn't till I read Virginia and Andrew's approving quotes from the new piece that I got angry enough myself to finally do it.

Thomas Sowell has written about gay men and women with disdain and to my mind open hatred for years. But I am not surprised that Sowell's column came as a shock to Arthur or that Sowell's shameful history here is probably unknown to Andrew and Virginia (well, I am a little surprised Mr. Sullivan wasn't a little more clued in to it.) Sowell's vicious ramblings on the topic are, as far as I have seen, entirely relegated to his opinion columns and so anyone who knows Sowell only or mostly from his books probably has no idea of his long history of cheap and repeated insult to the lives and dignity of gay people. Indeed Sowell's anti-gay marriage column was far from his worst. He's inspired to his lowest nature by AIDS. The anti gay marriage piece does give a glimpse of Sowell in his diseased homo mode:

"The only reward for giving in to unreasonable demands are more unreasonable demands. Having gotten far more money spent for AIDS than has been spent on other fatal diseases affecting far more people, gay activists are now demanding federal research on the kinds of recreational drugs used in night clubs by homosexuals, so as to make them safer. Imagine if alcoholics were to demand that the feds spend tax dollars to make drunkenness safer!"

I have to repeat this: "gay activists are now demanding federal research on the kinds of recreational drugs used in night clubs by homosexuals, so as to make them safer." That line is so demented it its extrapolations that it can only reveal the mind of a hater. I'm even giving Sowell the benefit of the doubt here that it is in fact an extrapolation (however grotesque) from a verifiable anecdote. The world is certainly large enough that somewhere, sometime some gay human beings might have expressed the wish that the feds help make club drugs safer with NIH dollars or some similar formulation. I must say though as someone who has read the gay press regularly and widely for years I can't remember ever reading anything like it. And certainly Sowell's retailing of this as the latest in the ever escalating series of outrageous demands by "gay activists" is a lie (there is NO other word) by category legerdemain. The kind of sham thinking Sowell spends much of his life pointing out and ridiculing in others.

And that was only a passing riff, consult the collected columns of Tom S. (in it's 4th volume I believe) for more and worse of the same. The paragraph quoted above is to me at least as discreditable as Trent Lott's words at the Thurmond birthday/wake. Honestly I find it even less defensible, Lott at least has the excuse that he was tickling the vanity of a 100 year old man and that his comment came amidst a series of weak tea jibes. Lott also had to share the stage with such titans of comedy as Bob Dole and Strom Thurmond Jr. so he was probably a little addled by the company. Who wouldn't be? Sowell has none of these excuses. He slanders gays with the due consideration of the written word and he duly writes variations on those slanders time and again.

And now for the kind of surprise ending that makes Agenda Bender the O'Henry of the fagosphere. (Or does that just make me into Saki? Or back into O'Henry?)

I like Thomas Sowell. I even admire him--just not wholly. I know about Sowell's grievous failing here because I've been a faithful reader for years. I admire him so much and have learned so many important things from him that I follow him even to his often execrable opinion column journalism and that's why I know about Sowell the hater. I wish I knew only Sowell the thinker and Sowell truth teller or I should say I wish that was all there was to know and that I didn't know the other part because the other part didn't exist. That he didn't shame himself with his lies and distortions about gay people. But since he does and since that issue is as personally important to me as the Jim Crow is to Sowell I need to know it. I can read, enjoy and profit from Sowell's books with no thought about Sowell the reckless sledgehammer columnist, the dumbed down propagandist. (And I should say even in the columns he's not always horrible. The columns are usually horribly written--so unlike his books--but there are often good ideas and analysis mixed in with the lamentable prose. I sometimes cringe when I see the nuance-free zone Sowell clear cuts with his hatchet in the middle of an opinion page but I still always read what's there. Call me a completist.)

Maybe it's compartmentalization (something I think gay people are necessarily good at) or denial or just taking the good and leaving the rest but I'll continue reading Sowell as long as the gems outweigh the gimcrack. I can read his autobiography and recognize a human being that I know I would like if I ever met. I can even laugh out loud (several times) to that same book (an autobiography!) ( of an economist!). But then inevitably I encounter the Sowell I don't want to know, the one who trades in his subtlety and sense of humor for shoddy, bigoted certitudes. I can live with the contradiction. I just wish I didn't have to.

12:06 AM

Wednesday, December 11, 2002

Head Like A Hole

The m i c controllers face off! Trent versus Trent

5:11 PM


I Know It When I See It

The always filthy Slate answering the question What is Sodomy? A real Beavis and Butthead moment at the end too when they give us that final Bonus Explainer paragraph. I never feel the need to explain mine, seems self-evident to me.

4:08 PM


I Can Apologize Too!

I want to apologize for calling Sen. Trent Lott a "gazebo haired tie rack" in the comment section over at Eschaton the other day. Thinking back on it I should have called him a "gazebo haired talking tie rack" and I should have called him that here. I should also have pointed out that Trent Lott has a definite gay porn actor ring to it. I apologize for that oversight as well. Trent Load would have been better of course but Lott has subliminal size queen reverberations so it works too.

Atrios points to the transcript of that beloved classic of church basement socials and anti-gay tea dances Gay Rights / Special Rights: Inside the Homosexual Agenda. Inside Daisy Clover it is not. And for that we can be grateful.

Trent acquits himself with typical grace in G.R./S.R. and I think gives definitive proof that his retroactive endorsement of Strom Thurmond's presidential run was a witticism and that his committtment to racial equality is abiding.

Trent Lott: It's an effort, ah, by homosexual; and lesbians to promote their lifestyle. (CUT TO A SCENE OF WOMEN IN THE PARK, AS PART OF THE MARCH, KISSING) They don't want, ah, equal treatment, they wanna be able (CUT TO A SCENE OF TWO MEN IN DRAG, LABELLED AS MALE TRANSVESTITES) to push their ideas, to get acceptance of their lifestyle, and then get special benefits as a result of it.

Trent Lott :Minorities have come in and said,(CUT TO THREE WHITE MEN BLOWING KISSES TO THE CAMERA) we resent the homosexual community comparing, ah, skin colour to that kind of lifestyle. (CUT TO TRENT LOTT) Skin colour is not something we can control.

Trent Lott: [But homosexuality is a preference. It is something that can be dealt with. It can be controlled.]

Trent Lott (voice over):I think [that] it [flaunts] {is really, ah, false} (CUT TO A PERSON DRESSED AS THE STATUE OF LIBERTY HOLDING A SIGN SAYING "GAY IN THE U.S.A.") and makes a mockery of other legitimate Civil Rights, ah, that people have worked for, for years. (CUT TO SEN. TRENT LOTT) And to give this, kind of recognition is going to undermine all kinds of laws that are already on the books, and it's gonna hurt a lot of people that deserve these protections.

Trent Lott :If you have, um, in some small town in Mississippi, a person that comes in that's homosexual and says "I wanna job", and for, ah, whatever reason, you don't hire that person, you run the risk of being sued and put outta business. It is a mistake, ah, for lots of reasons, including the additional burden on small business men and women.

"Skin colour is not something we can control." Truer words. I believe this is known as The Girl Can't Help It theory of racial equality.

Obviously, any talk of Lott harboring doubts about the benefits of racial equality is spurious. He clearly understands that the principle of full racial equality is essential. Essentially a rhetorical club for beating down gay equality. He speaks with such passion and authority on this that the makers of Gay Rights/Special Rights knew enough to step back and give Trent the movie's final words:


Trent Lott:I don't know what you're gonna call it. Call it family values, moral values; but values are very important. (CUT TO A SHOT OF THE CAPITOL) I think that's what made America great, and, ah, this will be one further degradation of our great country, and, ah, (FADE TO A SLOW MOTION SHOT OF A CHILD IN A STROLLER IN THE MARCH) we, ah, cannot allow that to happen It's important that, ah, people in America rise up and (FADE TO ANOTHER SLOW MOTION SHOT OF OTHER CHILDREN IN THE MARCH) express their indignation, and, and make it clear they're not gonna [tolerate] {follow} it, because what is at stake, ah, is the (FADE TO ANOTHER SLOW MOTION SHOT OF ANOTHER CHILD IN THE MARCH WAVING AT THE CAMERA) future of our boys, boys and girls, but also what's at stake is the (FADE TO ANOTHER SLOW MOTION SHOT OF THE MARCH, WITH A CHILD BEING LED BY ITS MOTHER AND A WOMAN IN FRONT HOLDING A PLACARD SAYING "LEGALISE SEXUALITY") future of America.


3:56 PM


Blush Proof

Jeff from Alphecca .com wrote yesterday saying he was linking Agenda B. and he was sorry for any embarrassment that might cause us. Alphecca's meta tags are "blog, weblog, politics, libertarian, guns, gay, sci-fi, StarCraft, opinion, Fairlee, Vermont, Vermont blog, conservative, Libertarian, gay-rights, second amendment." We aren't embarrassed. We are reminded however of the very funny novel Fag Hag by Robert Rodi, the first book to really get the whole gay libertarian gun nut thing right. Sure, many had tried before but it took Rodi to put it all together. It also had a nice tough-cop-who-swoons-for-young-black-dudes subplot, so it was a mass market double threat, combining all the popular themes and genres. I recommend the book to everyone but most especially to Jeff if he hasn't read it yet.

And speaking of literature I found the following books on top of the neighbor's trash this morning: A 1955 first edition hardback copy of I.B. Singer's Satan in Goray which bears the markings of The Queens Borough Public Library, Flushing Branch--the card sleeve in the back is intact and it informs us that overdue books will be charged at the rate of 5 cents daily, also that no books may be renewed--which I thought odd. A Peoples Book Club Edition of Lloyd C Douglas's The Robe from 1943. A trade paperback of Jim Carroll's 70's diaries, Forced Entries with the front cover torn off--very appropriate. And finally a Pocketbook original paperback entitled The Hell Candidate from 1980, flotsam from The Exorcist's pop cultural floodtide washing up on the icy shores of my front curb 20 years later. A novel about a minion of Satan elected president of the United States. Very excellent cover graphic of a stars and striped screaming satanic skull. Unfortunately the last couple pages are gone but the cover makes it a keeper anyway. They were all keepers. Trash picking doesn't embarrass us either.

Back to Alphecca and staying with literature here is a selection that seems to me as enjoyable as any short story I've ever read. Particularly as it touches on a theme dear to me but too seldom explored in great literature, the wretched stupidity of people who drive right on your ass with their high beams frying your eyeballs. The snow squall is what makes it art. The ending is what makes its art sublime.

You can always tell someone who's new to the area. Driving home tonight in my little car I hit a snow-squall. U.S. Rt. 5 is (like all of Vermont roads) unlit by streetlamps except right in the middle of larger towns. Entering Rt. 5, I hit a huge white-out snow-squall. High beam headlights are of course useless. You have to go with low beams. There are no lights on Rt. 5. All you can see are huge flakes of snow coming at your windshield. On a weekday, Rt. 5 is rarely travelled ever since Interstate 91 opened up 30 years or so ago (not that that is much travelled. This is a rural area of a rural state.) The road is covered with snow so you can't see any painted lines and there are no tire tracks to follow. And like most of Vermont, there are no guard-rails except by the steepest of fall-offs. All you see is white. You have no idea of direction to go and can't see 20 feet in front of you.

Of course an SUV with NY plates zooms up behind me because my tail-lights are easy to follow. He sits about 5 feet behind my rear bumper. As the front runner (front-door?) I can only go 10-15 miles per hour. By the way his high-beams are blinding me in my rear-view mirror and the way he keeps trying to pass me, I can tell he's impatient, obnoxious, a typical arrogant flat-lander. I pull over when I can and he zooms past. And there goes his brake lights. His high beams go off. He can't see and has to slow down to -- what do you know -- the speed I was going. But like most jerks in SUVs, he speeds up again. If I couldn't see, he can't possibly see either. He spins out and goes into a ditch.

4:40 AM

Monday, December 09, 2002

Imaginary Cowboys Who Love Imaginary Cowboys

Reason mag's blog is born today. A pre-planned caesarian apparently since everyone's been saying it would be born today. (And by the way where did I read that the latest thing for Hollywood moms is to have the kid a month early via caesarian to avoid that last body blasting month and get a headstart on rebuilding the pre-baby body? Or is it an induced premature birth? Probably don't want the scar either.)

Rawhide Kid is coming out a Reason poster tells us. Yeah, I never heard of the Kid either but if you'd asked me last week about the Rawhide Kid my first instinct would have been to say "What is he, a gay cowboy?" Kind of like naming a comicbook Fabulous Boy. There's also a link to a small archive of old Rawhide Kid covers. I'm always in the mood to browse old graphics. Check out the perspective on this RK cover. But more tellingly check out the June 1970 cover which is obviously the Rawhide Kid's tip of the cowboy hat to the first anniversary of Stonewall. Though honestly it looks like he's wearing a foreshortened chefs cap or a nun's hat from one of the lesser orders, Sisters of ths Blessed Lariat perhaps.

Your holy drag headquarters.

7:18 PM


All Toughed Up and No Ass to Kick!

Agenda Bender, the blog they forgot to give the rule book to! Walls--they're for smashing through! Out on a limb but NOT LOOKING BACK! Dares don't scare us, snares don't snare us! You think you're Big and Bad? We drink your Big and Bad AND SPIT IT BACK AT YOU! We are cat house rats! Crack house cats! We are the ones your drag mother warned you about! We are the ones your worthless daddy ran off with! End a sentence with a preposition? Hell Yaa!

Link to a pop up ad? If we effing want to!

Dass right! We clicked the ad and we got TOUGHED UP! Jess look at us! Mess with our hair and we give you the HOODED GLARE OF DEATH!

3:00 PM