Archive for CHURCH

It Ain’t Necessarily So…

Posted in FLICKR, history, politics, religion, Sexy with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on March 29, 2013 by cliffmichaels

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boobs

It’s official. Same sex marriage (a/k/a marriage equality) is  surefire winner. Rush says so. No, really, that Rush. El Limbo. Inevitable, he says. Gonna happen. Doesn’t matter what the Supremes do. A done deal. He gives  up.

All us soft hearted (soft headed?) elitist, condescending liberals are, of course, smugly, “feeling on the right side of history” dee-lighted. Now that our cause is nearly won and our foes at the edge of defeat we may turn to the really fun part: playing a gotcha game of Who were the Good guys & the Bad guys. On our side! Oh, all those hideous right-wingers, Baptists, Republican politicians, and assorted hangers-on were vile, venomous villains. That goes without saying (alhough I just said it). But there were quislings on our team as well;  some of those who have alleged  allegiance to to all  things blue were, in truth,  too purple in the past.

Andrew Sullivan, who for a time was an heroic voice in the wilderness, recently excoriated Bill and Hillary Clinton for their abandonment of gay issues and embrace of DOMA during his term as President. I understand his reasoning. I think his attack largely unfair.  He wrote:

I find the opportunism of the Clintons – who did more substantive harm to gay people in eight years than any other administration – more disgusting than the fundamentalist hostility. At least the Christianists were sincere. The Clintons have always been phonies and opportunists and for Bill Clinton to proclaim the sanctity of marriage and sign DOMA while cigar-fucking his intern tells you a lot about him. On no issue were they as shameless as on this one – portraying themselves as civil rights advocates while kicking those of us fighting for equality squarely in the groin.

This  is clearly over the top. Were the Clintons heroes, standing against the then wave of homophobia? No. But it does not seem to count for Sullivan that Bill tried to end the ban on gays in the military. He botched it badly and ran into a hail of right wing fire that resulted in the infamous DADT policy reversed just last year by the Obama administration. Clinton’s appointment of gays likewise doesn’t seem to count.

Worse than the Christianists? Those who would gladly have put gays back in the closet, criminalized gay sex, banned gay teachers, etc. were better than the Clintons because they were sincere? Really??

clinton

Bill Clinton was a politician. Politics is the art of  the possible. The early nineties were a much darker time for gay rights than the bright sunshine existing now – twenty years later.  What Sullivan was advocating then was simply not possible any more than abolition was possible in the 1840’s (remember, even Lincoln did  not advocate abolition  until well into the Civil War).

Was Clinton “insincere”. Of course. Good politicians frequently are. Was Obama sincere when he fully “evolved” to his embrace of same sex marriage last year? I haven’t a clue. It doesn’t matter to me. Sincerity doesn’t count. Results count. No amount of  sincere support for gay marriage rights by any president was going to change results in 1993.

Does any one honestly think Obama would have endorsed marriage equality five years ago? I supported Barrack in both 2008 and last years. There are lots of things I’d like him to do (prosecute those approving torture in the Bush years), Some of what I want simply isn’t possible right now. I’d love to see significant gun control. It won’t happen. There is nothing Obama can do to change that. Five or ten years from now things might be different.

The art of the possible… Of course  reasonable minds may differ on whether the possibilityo f whatever exists in the present. I was aghast when the prop 8 and DOMA opponents sought Supreme Court rulings. My fear was what was essentially a political move would backfire and set gay rights back a decade or more. After oral argument I’m not quite so fearful (particularly on DOMA).

Same sex marriage is clearly possible today. A la Senator Portman’s endorsement of equality, those politicians jumping on the big pink bus risk little to belatedly join the rainbow parade. But we need to remember the future course of history was darkly unsure twenty plus years ago. The homophobic winds behind opponents of gay rights backs was nearly gale force.  I wouldn’t have believed in 1993 that a mere twenty years later marriage would be within spitting distance of the finish line.

It ain’t necessarily so that the Clintons – or anyone else – should have known that back then…
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FLICKR GROUP: Gay Marriage/USA

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You’re Kidding Me, Right!?

Posted in FLICKR, history, photographers, PHOTOGRAPHY, politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 12, 2013 by cliffmichaels

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Idiocy on Parade


tea

If only we’d known… Slavery could have been avoided in America if blacks had possessed firearms in 1776.

“We are looking for a peaceful protest,” Ward said. Continuing, “I think Martin Luther King, Jr. would agree with me if he were alive today that if African Americans had been given the right to keep and bear arms from day one of the country’s founding, perhaps slavery might not have been a chapter in our history.”  Larry Ward, gun nut

guns

Does Hobby Lobby go to church?

Hobby Lobby founder contests Obamacare contraception mandate claiming it violates he religious convictions. Somehow I doubt the company is a sole proprietorship or partnership. If I’m right then I’m at a loss to understand what the religious beliefs of  mere officers or stockholders have to do with the corporate “person” (hat tip to Mitt). On the other hand, the Supreme Court has ruled corporations have the First Amendment right to free speech so maybe they can have the right of religious liberty too.

Obama nixes Death Star

In yet another sign Obama is dangerously soft on national defense, his administration announced it would not build a Death Star despite the popular clamor. Even more shocking was the President’s rejection of destroying enemy planets, giving our other worldly enemies aid and comfort.

darth

Gun nut loses right to carry concealed weapon after exercising his right to free speech.

I don’t like gun nuts and I believe in strict regulation of firearms, including banning assault rifles and oversixed magazines. Despite those beliefs, I find it outrageous that my home state of Tennessee revoked James Yeager’s permit to cary a concealed weapon because of  his statement calling for other gun nuts to lcck & load to be ready to combat federal gun control. Its fashionable these days for gun advocates to claim one of the justifications for the Second Amendment is for citizens to be able to go to war with a tyrannical government. Tennessee has more than its share of such true believers. What Yeager said, while ugly, surely falls under the First Amendment’s protection. If I’m right then I don’t see how his right to carry can be curbed.

Update: It appears, from this blog post, that Yeager violated Tennessee’s constitutional ban on dueling.

Libertarian promises to have no contact with traitors who voted for Obama.

Eric Dondero, a passionate libertarian and Obama hater, is promising to shun forever all Democrats and Obama voters, even those who are part of his family:

  I’m choosing another rather unique path; a personal boycott, if you will. Starting early this morning, I am going to un-friend every single individual on Facebook who voted for Obama, or I even suspect may have Democrat leanings. I will do the same in person. All family and friends, even close family and friends, who I know to be Democrats are hereby dead to me. I vow never to speak to them again for the rest of my life, or have any communications with them. They are in short, the enemies of liberty. They deserve nothing less than hatred and utter contempt.

If only every wingnut would follow the same policy I wouldn’t be forced to listen to their harangues against Obama’s attempt to destroy America with Sharia law, gun bans, or the destruction of  Christianity.

obama

The rich are getting richer and the poor poorer – even in Monopoly. 

The iconic game is dumping one of its working class tokens – thimble, iron, boot or the wheelbarrow. The upper crust tokens – battleship, top hat, scottie dog, and the race car are untouchable. Next thing you know players will have to pass a credit check to get in the game.

boot

For photo credit click on each image – all subject to this creative commons license

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THE SHOCKING TRUTH ABOUT MITT ROMNEY!!

Posted in FLICKR, history, photographers, PHOTOGRAPHY, religion, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 22, 2012 by cliffmichaels

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There’s a new Obama conspiracy making the rounds of  the right wing nutter websites. Yes, it goes, Obama was born in America – but his real father was a communist! This indisputable fact of course explains why the President is a secret socialist muslim…

Well, its time to tell some shocking truths about Willard Mitt Romney. We all know the lamestream media is beholden to the Koch brothers and the Mormon church – they will never tell you the truth.

But I will.

Romney is a closet polygamist. Aave you ever heard him deny it? Where are his other wives, you ask? All of Romney’s boys are gay – their wives really belong to Romney! Doubt it? You never see these women kissing their “husbands” on TV (or if they do there’s obviously no passion; its all for show). The family has never agreed to DNA testing of any of Mitt’s supposed “grandchildren”. The Mormon church embraced polygamy from its foundation; it only disclaimed the practice so Utah would be admitted to Union. Mitt’s a big time Mormon bishop and he traces his family’s Mormon roots back to a time when polygamy was not only accepted but was mandated by the sect.

Romney takes orders from the ghost of Joseph Smith. His mission is to mandate Mormonism as the established religion of the entire world and thereby destroy the coffee, tea, liquor and bear industries. It’s a little known fact Romney has a huge investment in the sacred underwear trade. When the church controls the world his investment will grow ten thousand fold!

Romney is not eligible for the presidency. He wasn’t born in America – he wasn’t even born on this planet  but on Kolob, a distant Mormon planet whose location has never been revealed (why not – what do they have to hide?)

Romney may not even be human. There are rumors – which we are investigating – claiming Mitt is some kind of cyborg programmed to say or do anything to become overlord of  the world.

Is Romney a zombie? Why has he never submitted to a physical by an independent doctor? Why has he never appeared shirtless in public? Why are his facial expressions so off?

I assure you each of the above statements are absolutely true and completely factual. Visions is not afraid to stand up against the Mormon mafia! America deserves the TRUTH!! 

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Is this the secret Mormon manufacturing plant for Mormon cyborgs? Was Willard born here?? Why have we never seen his long form birth certificate???

MORMONS

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Photos to Die For…

Posted in art, FLICKR, photographers, PHOTOGRAPHY, religion, tennessee with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 1, 2012 by cliffmichaels

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Back in the day (whatever that means) I was a relatively industrious photographer. I’d climb out of bed on Saturday or Sunday mornings – sometimes on both – before the sun rode over the Smokies and set out to some picturesque destination or other to click madly away with my trusty and beloved Nikon D50. From January of 2007 through the end of 2008 there were twelve months in each of which I posted more than 200 photos.  The high water mark was June of 2007 when I posted 386 shots on Flickr (an average of 12.87 a day).

Now I’m a slacker. Since January 1, 2009, there have been only seven months I’ve surpassed 200 posts and only one with three hundred plus (April of 2011). There have been 21 months since the start of 2009 when my posts have numbered less than a hundred; the low point was December of ’09 when I uploaded a grand total of three photographs (and average of .097 per day).

To make up for my lack of vigor, I cheat by posting old photos, many from the set of my most popular images on Flickr. Isn’t recycling a good thing? Sometimes I just re-edit an old shot from months or years ago. I’ve got well north of 12,000 shots on Flickr. Who’s gonna notice a photo I post today was originally posted back in ’06? I tell myself if I re-process an old image – do a tighter crop, convert it to black and white, or use use photoshop to recompose it – it counts as a brand new shot, one I didn’t have to rise at dawn or leave the house to capture!

When I do shoot new stuff it’s often been on Friday afternoons after I escape  my office. I rationalize shooting in the harsh afternoon sun by telling myself I’ll only shoot in shade or post process the harshness away. Yeah, whatever… These Friday forays usually only last a couple of hours. In the past I’d often be out hunting for that one great capture for five or six hours.

Here’s a set of photos I  took yesterday afternoon. For reasons I’d rather not explore, I enjoy photographing in cemeteries. Sadly, I enjoy shooting there more than people enjoy looking at my photos. I don’t care. Yesterday I had fun driving slowly around a large Maryville cemetery shooting fake gravestone flowers, well manicured lawns, religious, guano stained statuary and old, majestic trees.

FLICKR GROUPS

Cemeteries of the United StatesCemeteries and SensualityCemeteries and Girls Cemetery Animals

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Sunday Sacrilege

Posted in erotic, FLICKR, photographers, PHOTOGRAPHY, Sexy, women with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 8, 2012 by cliffmichaels

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Professor Bop’s Set Legs

Dark Angels

Sexy Girls with Wings

Transexual Heaven

Erotic Demons and Angels

Photo credit: foreground Professor Bop; background by Kevin Dooly. both subject to this creative commons license 

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Hickory Dickory Dock….

Posted in art, photographers, PHOTOGRAPHY with tags , , , , , , , , on July 8, 2012 by cliffmichaels

FLICKR GROUPS

Clocks from the StreetsClock Works Clocks & Watches With LettersAntique Clocks – National Clock and Watch Museum  

For each photo credit click on image, all photos subject to this creative commons license

One of my own…

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Creepy Cake

Posted in FLICKR, photographers, PHOTOGRAPHY, religion, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on May 12, 2012 by cliffmichaels

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“Hey Cliff – come look at this,” my secretary yelled. Our offices are about twenty-five feet apart, but when she gets excited she forgets about the intercom.

“What?” I yelled back, annoyed by her interruption of my work.

“Come here!” Thinking there must be something wrong I left my desk and walked quickly to her office. “You won’t believe this”, she said, not looking up from her computer monitor. I squeezed behind her and peered down at the small screen. “It’s a coffin cake,” she said as I was trying to puzzle out what I was seeing.

So it was. A large, long cake, made in the shape of a an open coffin with the body of a man inside. The icing on the cake was colored to make the image of the deceased (and flowers around him in the coffin as well). Around the life sized coffin cake sat a few mourners waiting in grey metal folding chairs, I suppose, for this creepy pastry of poor dead Mortimer to be sliced and served to them on somber paper plates.

Unbelievable. The Internet reflects a very odd world…

FLICKR GROUPS

Coffins Undertakers, Funeral Parlors, etc.Funerals  – Cake, Have it and Eat it TooCakes in Black & White  

Photo by Zimpenfish, subject to this creative commons license
One of his sets

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