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I’m Louise. Blogger. Wife. Designer of TruLu Couture Veils + Accessories.  If you’d like to know more, check out my bio.

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Entries in Politics (5)

Tuesday
Sep042012

Tips for Moving Newlyweds

You know how you’ve registered for all the Crate & Barrel Staccato china and stemless wine glasses? You know how they come to you in all that weird, accordion-style paper? Keep that paper.

KEEP IT.

And the individual bubble sleeves that your plates come in? Keep that too. All of it. I did. The Candyman thought I was bonkers. Guess who eating the words “looney tunes” now?

So keep all that bubble wrap. Shove it in some big 40 gallon trash bags and shove it in the attic. Or the basement. Or wherever you can find a space. Just keep it because when you move (and if you’re young, you WILL move) you will love me forever. You will come back to this blog and say, “Louise, you were so right!”

And I will nod knowingly.

Seriously? Keep the shit.

That being said, we are officially in the new house. We are not technically out of the old house yet. There are pieces of furniture that were put together in the house that now cannot make it out of the house without being dismantled and that just hasn’t happened yet. Next weekend.

But fuck all the house stuff. There’s plenty of time for all that. Because guess what? The house stuff is never ever going to end. Good thing we have a lifetime together. That is if we don’t kill each other over what to do with the fourth bedroom. Or what’s going to happen with the area next to the pool pump.

The coolest most important thing EVER? Me and The Candyman? You know we live in Charlotte, right? You know what’s going on here this week, right? My kick-ass husband, through his firm, got us tickets to the to the DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL CONVENTION, BITCHES!!!

Whether Democratic or Republican, you have to admit it’s an opportunity of a lifetime. Right? We’re so excited. I am so excited. I can’t wait to hear our President speak. I can’t wait to hear CLINTON speak. And Pelosi. And The FOO FIGHTERS are playing and so is MARY J. BLIGE. At Panthers Stadium! The DNC ROCKS!

Now, the biggest question: What does one WEAR to a Democratic National Convention that is being held outside, all day, in The South with the ever possibility of rain? I mean, it’s the fucking DNC! How can I even think of wearing my comfy shoes when all the cool kids will be backstage? Cool kids like Michelle Obama. A tall lady, like me.

What does one wear with zero time to shop and zero budget – as the clothing budget all been spent up on the aforementioned home?

Help.

Wednesday
May092012

Amendment One

I voted today.  I voted solely on Amendment One. The amendment states:

Marriage between one man and one woman is the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognized.

Valid or recognized. Not just by you or me or the neighbors, but by the state. This doesn’t just mean you can’t have a big gay wedding or a small civil union at City Hall. It means that domestic partners aren’t recognized either. By the state. This, most disturbingly to me, means that children belonging to domestic partners who have health care coverage under a ‘domestic partner’ clause can actually lose that coverage. Why? Because that partnership isn’t recognized by the state.

The stupidity of this amendment isn’t even worth discussing, is it?

Is it?

It is. And the amendment could pass, just like it did in a crap load of other very disappointing states. I was hopeful at first…I saw the Against tab at 57%. And then I realized I was watching my county and not my state. Boo. It’s looking bad. Really, really bad for same sex partners. And I’m really really sad.

Shame on you, North Carolina.

Friday
Dec092011

{Friday Rant} Wedding Blogs and Politics Go Hand-in-Hand? Naturally.

For those of you who are Facebook friends with me on my personal account (all 3 of you) you’ll have seen this already. For the rest of you (the other 3), take a listen here.

This really resonates with me. And it’s not just because I can appreciate a good rant. I mean, it’s one thing to blog-rant, but this was live freakin’ TV. Most awesome.

The guy has a point. A good point.

Right before the last election my dad, historically a conservative both in politics and life, was doing some weird stuff. Writing congressman. Writing intellectuals  and noted academics at multiple institutions and universities. He even read the Qur’an. Yeah, the whole thing. He started to come to some personal political conclusions that were starting to sound, well….a little banancakes. He sent these political conclusions to newspapers. He was even published a few times. I’m totally convinced he’s on some government watch list.

We’d start talking about something: immigration, congress, the national debt and he’d go off on a soliloquy of sorts, almost like he’d rehearsed the conversation. I’d turn and look at my mother, eyebrow cocked and she’d shake her head, waive her hand, snap the newspaper she was reading in disgust and completely ignore him. I asked her once, “Has Dad gone off the deep end?” And she replied, “Completely, but it keeps him busy.”

I guess that’s what nearly 50 years of marriage comes to: a little complacency and a lot of acceptance.

So that was about 4 or 5 years ago when all this was happening. He’s still writing letters and reading all sorts of things, but he’s less intense about it all now, partly because he’s completely torn up his back yard to lay a new brick patio. He’s involved in other projects.  I think at the time he was caught up in the excitement of figuring some stuff out. The really weird thing now? What he said was going to happen is happening. The crash of the economy, the rioting in the streets over financial institutions both at home and abroad. It’s a little creepy.

One of the things he believes is that we should have is a new amendment to the Constitution that limits terms of congress. Here’s why:

  • Term limits would lessen the probability of corruption by power.  Representatives who spend too many years in office, living in DC and away from their constituents, surrounded by lobbyists, easily become part of a professional governing class, remote from the concerns of normal people. Term limits would recreate a class of citizen-legislators, who see politics as a brief chance to make their country better, rather than as a long-term comfortable career for themselves.
  • Term limits would remove the advantages that incumbents have in a re-election campaign, regardless of the strength their opponents. These advantages stem from name recognition and from the greater access to funding that incumbent candidates have from businesses and lobbying groups.
  • Elected representative judgment  and honesty can be damaged by the on-going and costly need to campaign. This forces them to do the popular thing rather than the right one, to act in the narrow interest of their constituents rather than in the national one, and to pander to big business or other lobby groups in order to score funding.
  • Term limits would bring fresh faces, talents and experiences into the political process, including those of many people who might now have previously considered a political career. It would ensure that most law and policy makers would have “real world” experience outside of the political machine and bring more first-hand knowledge of business and industry into government.

There are down sides to this notion.

  • Experience counts. Every new job has a learning curve. It could  take months or even years to get a handle on the job. Policy issues and legislative bills are complicated and the public is best served by some continuity of service.
  • Term limits are an insult to the intelligence of voters, who in a democratic system are perfectly at liberty to get rid of an unsatisfactory politician.
  • Corruption can happen here too. There’s no incentive for a representative to do their best for the voters, whom they will not need to face again. They may try to reap as many financial benefits as possible before their term ends. They may lay with big businesses in order to land a cushy job post-term.
  • Amateur politicians are likely to be naïve and easily exploited by lobbyists.

I’m starting to think term limits might be the first, correct step to right a country gone horribly wrong. Since the Bush administration (heck, it goes back to Reagan really, as he raised the debt ceiling 17 TIMES!), we’ve made it easier and easier for banks and giant companies to rule the roost. I mean, for crissakes, they bullied not one but TWO Presidents into financial bailouts. Are you fucking kidding me? I love how Felonious Munk says it here (WORK PLACE WARNING: turn your volume WAY down):

The absolute corruption at the financial institution level is blinding apparent. It simply cannot be ignored. If you don’t believe it I’d call you simple. A nincompoop. Sadly disillusioned.

The race for the presidency has become yet another media exploit. The Republican party is desperate for a candidate. I can’t believe Michelle Bachman is still talking. Is Newt the best they’ve got right now? Are you kidding me? Besides his issues with women (he’s on his third wife, one of them was a prior mistress), he’s was a part of the House Banking Scandal in 1992 and wrote 22 bad checks on government money. In an act of incredible hypocrisy, Newt a “crusader” against taxes, obtained taxpayer subsidies for his personal and political goals by misusing tax-exempt groups. Using tax-exempt educational or charitable donations for partisan purposes is illegal, and several ethics complaints were filed against Gingrich. He agreed to pay a $300,000 fine for misleading the committee during the investigation, narrowly avoiding conviction. There were also the shady books deals in 1984 and again in 1995 involving millions of dollars and the use of taxpayer dollars for personal funding. Rupert Murdoch has Newt in his back pocket. This? THIS is the man running against Obama? And Romney? No way. I honestly don’t believe a Mormon will be elected in this country any time soon. I think the religion has too many associations with cult-like membership for liberals to fully accept. I'm not saying it IS a cult. I'm saying shit like Sister Wives and the zealots of the religion leave a bad taste in the mouths of other Christian religions. Conservatives want a different kind of Christian.  Besides, he’s too squeaky clean. It’s ALWAYS those who look the brightest and shiniest who end up being total deviants in some way, shape or form. I don’t buy it and would never vote for the guy.

The nightly news depresses me. I watch Brian Williams on NBC because he’s dreamy. Hearing the doom and gloom from a pretty talking head makes swallowing the horse pill of daily politics slightly more palatable.

Term limits. Let’s go back to term limits. What do we think about them? In my mind, it seems like one of the quickest and most succinct ways of turning this ship. And this is a BIG DAMN SHIP. We are going to have to lean hard on the rudder to turn it. It won’t be easy or fast, but we HAVE GOT TO START SOMETIME. How ‘bout NOW?

Tuesday
Sep202011

Vaccinations Cause Mental Retardation!

Apparently vaccinations cause mental retardation. What? You didn’t hear?

Just for the record, here are some real things that can cause mental retardation (Source: World Health Organization)

Chromosomal disorders: Downs syndrome, Fragile X syndrome, Prader Wili syndrome, Klinefelters syndrome

Single gene disorders: Inborn errors of metabolism, such as galactosemia, phenylketonuria, mucopolysaccaridoses

Hypothyroidism, Tay- Sachs disease, Neuro-cutaneous syndromes such as tuberous sclerosis, and neurofibromatosis.
Brain malformations such as genetic microcephaly, hydrocephalus and myelo-meningocele.
Other dysmorphic syndromes, such as Laurence Moon Biedl syndrome

Other conditions of genetic origin: Rubistein Tabi syndrome De Lange syndrome

Adverse material / environmental influences: Deficiencies, such as iodine deficiency and folic acid deficiency
Severe malnutrition in pregnancy
Using substances such as alcohol (maternal alcohol syndrome), nicotine, and cocaine during early pregnancy
Exposure to other harmful chemicals such as pollutants, heavy metals, abortifacients, and harmful medications such as thalidomide, phenytoin and warfarin sodium in early pregnancy.
Maternal infections such as rubella, syphillis, toxoplasmosis, cytomegalovirus and HIV others such as excessive exposure to radiation, and Rh incompatibility.

Complications of pregnancy, Diseases in mother such as heart and kidney disease and diabetes and Placental dysfunction.

Severe prematurity, very low birth weight, birth asphyxia, Difficult and/or complicated delivery, Birth trauma

Septicemia, severe jaundice, hypoglycemia  

Brain infections such as tuberculosis, Japanese encephalitis, and bacterial meningitis
Head injury
Chronic lead exposure
Severe and prolonged malnutrition
Gross under-stimulation

Now, if you do a little research before you decide to shoot your kid up with a new vaccine, you might find yourself here – where you can read all about the testing and side effects for Gardasil (made by Merck, who Bachmann is saying paid into Perry’s political campaign – A WHOLE OTHER ARGUMENT for a later date). Nowhere does mental retardation fall into the side effect categories. Now, they do say that fainting can occur. If you faint, you could whack your noggin and according to the World Health Organization, head injury can cause mental retardation.

So, a possible side effect is fainting – which could lead to mental retardation – but only if you knock the hell outta yer head.  Hm. Yeah, I guess we can take that leap, can’t we? I mean, Michele Bachmann feels super-free to do so. I mean, with her VAST medical knowledge from the BA she received at Winona State University (uh, where?) – or it might have been from the law degree she got at Oral Roberts University. Maybe it was the advanced Master of Laws degree at William & Mary where she really spread her wings in the medical field? It’s really hard to pinpoint, I know.

I mean, really people. Is there anyone with any semblance of intelligence who is taking this woman for real? The gross irresponsibility of this retardation statement is astounding. This, my friends, is how urban legends, gossip and misinformation spreads like wildfire. Some woman at her Florida debate told her about her daughter suddenly being mentally retarded? From a vaccine that thousands of young women have been receiving now for several years? A vaccine that has proved to prevent certain types of cervical cancer? CANCER, Michele. CANCER! REALLY??? Can we please do a little research before we go spouting off about the crazy women who show up at your debate?

And these “innocent” little girls? Yeah, guess what Michele? They are having sex. They are giving blow jobs. They are dry humping in the backseat of their parent’s cars. I’ll bet $800 billion dollars that even YOUR 16 year-old daughter has done more than she’s told you (if she’s said anything). And guess what? You don’t even actually have to have sex to catch HPV, you know why? Because men carry it on their balls. You could just lay naked on top of someone and catch it if your little bits and pieces go touchy-touchy. And condoms don’t always help either, that is unless you know of a condom that fits over the ball sack. Now that I’d like to see.

HPV can lay dormant for years. My last OB/GYN told me she had to tell a 72 year old woman she had it. The woman had all of 2 sexual partners (slut!), both of whom were her husbands (she was widowed, twice).  The woman had children and regular pelvic check-ups her whole life (clearly, at 72!). Happily, the woman’s strain did not progress after a cervical scrape. The facts are that approximately 20 million Americans are currently infected with HPV. Another 6 million people become newly infected each year. HPV is so common that at least 50% of sexually active men and women get it at some point in their lives (Source: The Center for Disease Control). I personally might go so far as to call that pandemic.

Receiving a vaccine doesn’t mean that a 12 year old girl recipient is going to go out and start screwing irresponsibly. Who in their right minds would even consider that? There’s this thing called education. It’s called parenting. It’s called opening your mouth and sharing facts about a potentially life-saving drug with pre-teen girls and boys. It’s explaining the risks we are all responsible for these days. It may require some reading. It may require some time spent in an actual conversation with your kids, your partner and yes, your spouse. *gasp*

As a non-HPV side bar? It really bums me out that the Republican party can’t produce better female candidates than Palin (what happened to all the “Just you wait for 2012!” rhetoric of 2008?) and Bachmann. It’s a sad reflection of their party and of  women in general.

I’ve said it before. I’ll say it again. Michele Bachmann? Please stop talking.

Oh, and on a more happy note...there are still TWO MORE DAYS to enter to win the Pre-Love Melissa Sweet Gown! All ya gotta do is leave a comment! Easy-peasy!

Friday
Jul082011

Dear President Obama

As most of you know, The Candyman and I moved to North Carolina as an immediate reaction to the “displacement” of my position in Nashville. While I work from home every day either on this blog, or TruLu Couture or hunting for the ever-elusive home décor product development position, I do work. As a part of the elusive job hunting scenario, I am an active member on LinkedIn and am a part of different groups that help inspire, lead, promote and guide. I belong to groups such as the Gift & Home Trade Association, Home Furnishings Industry Professionals as well as Wedding Industry Professionals. I get email updates on comments and articles and such that I try to breeze through each day. I was recently browsing a thread on one of my groups called Future Trends. Generally topics include things like why the sense of smell is not fully integrated into product design, bringing passion back to corporate planning and infographics on why people follow certain brands. It may not be the most riveting material, but it applies to my worlds, so I read. This particular thread was in response to the article 50 Things Every America Should Know About the Collapse of the Economy. Two men were going back and forth, not unkindly or with malice, but in a very professional way (surprisingly), bouncing statements and facts and links to articles back and forth, back and forth. I got tired of the rhetoric after a bit and scanned down to the bottom of the thread and found this:

This is a chilling letter from Lou Pritchett who use to be an executive to the president of Proctor and Gamble. The last sentence is the most chilling.
Lou Pritchett is one of corporate America's true living legends. He is an acclaimed author, dynamic teacher and one of the world's highest rated speakers. Successful corporate executives everywhere recognize him as the foremost leader in change management. Lou changed the way America does business by creating an audacious concept that came to be known as "partnering." Pritchett rose from soap salesman to Vice-President, Sales and Customer Development for Procter and Gamble and over the course of 36 years, made corporate history. Here's his take on the state of things today.
AN OPEN LETTER TO PRESIDENT OBAMA
Dear President Obama:
You are the thirteenth President under whom I have lived and unlike any of the others, you truly scare me.
You scare me because after months of exposure, I know nothing about you.
You scare me because I do not know how you paid for your expensive Ivy League education and your upscale lifestyle and housing with no visible means of support.
You scare me because you did not spend the formative years of youth growing up in America and culturally you are not an American.
You scare me because you have never run a company or met a payroll.
You scare me because you have never had military experience, thus don't understand it at its core.
You scare me because you lack humility and 'class', always blaming others.
You scare me because for over half your life you have aligned yourself with radical extremists who hate America and you refuse to publicly denounce these radicals who wish to see America fail..
You scare me because you are a cheerleader for the 'blame America ' crowd and deliver this message abroad.
You scare me because you want to change America to a European style country where the government sector dominates instead of the private sector.
You scare me because you want to replace our health care system with a government controlled one.
You scare me because you prefer 'wind mills' to responsibly capitalizing on our own vast oil, coal and shale reserves.
You scare me because you want to kill the American capitalist goose that lays the golden egg which provides the highest standard of living in the world.
You scare me because you have begun to use 'extortion' tactics against certain banks and corporations.
You scare me because your own political party shrinks from challenging you on your wild and irresponsible spending proposals.
You scare me because you will not openly listen to or even consider opposing points of view from intelligent people.
You scare me because you falsely believe that you are both omnipotent and omniscient.
You scare me because the media gives you a free pass on everything you do.
You scare me because you demonize and want to silence the Limbaugh's, Hannity's, O'Reillys and Becks who offer opposing, conservative points of view.
You scare me because you prefer controlling over governing.
Finally, you scare me because if you serve a second term I will probably not feel safe in writing a similar letter in 8 years
Lou Pritchett
NOTE: This letter was sent to the NY Times but they never acknowledged it. Big surprise. Snopes validates its authenticity, but you can check it out at this link: http://www.snopes.com/politics/soapbox/youscareme.asp By Mike Fromowitz, Partner, President, Chief Brand Officer- MANTRA PARTNERS INC.

It’s probably no surprise to anyone (maybe it is), that I am a screaming liberal. OK, maybe not screaming, but liberal I am. The Candyman and I have recently talked quite a bit about what we see as the fear-based mentality of the conservative parties in this country. It’s all doom and gloom. It’s all pointing of fingers and clutching of monies and stamping of feet and hatred towards our President. While I do NOT consider myself well versed in all the political facts that I should in order to write the following (in response, in bold), it’s what I believe as a regular ol’ unemployed citizen of this country.

AN OPEN LETTER TO PRESIDENT OBAMA
Dear President Obama:
You are the thirteenth President under whom I have lived and unlike any of the others, you truly scare me.

You are the ninth President under whom I have lived and unlike all but President Carter, you continue to inspire me and give me hope that you are indeed, looking out for the best interests of this country and that you’re not blowing smoke up my bum.

You scare me because after months of exposure, I know nothing about you.

After several years, so far, you’ve impressed me with your ability to remain faithful to your wife, a good father to your children and have not shown up on YouTube or Twitter with information or pictures about your private life that I do not wish to see or know.

You scare me because I do not know how you paid for your expensive Ivy League education and your upscale lifestyle and housing with no visible means of support.

I’m impressed that an intelligent Africa American and his wife can work hard, educate themselves, work as lawyers and pay for what they have. I also respect your right to privacy on how those were funded, as long as those means were legal and fair, which I assume is true, given no  reason to think otherwise.

You scare me because you did not spend the formative years of youth growing up in America and culturally you are not an American.

Mr. President, I spent my formative years being dragged from one state to the next and from one country to the next. I do not consider myself any less American having lived and traveled elsewhere in this world. I believe you feel the same.

You scare me because you have never run a company or met a payroll.

President Obama, many of our most successful leaders and presidents were farmers, businessmen and soldiers. Running this country as our largest companies do their own? No thank you. I’m okay with your lawyer, non-CEO status. 

You scare me because you have never had military experience, thus don't understand it at its core.

Simply because our country no longer has a draft and because you’ve been either too young/too old to serve in a war or because you simply chose a different career path doesn’t mean you aren’t capable of leading troops or this country.

You scare me because you lack humility and 'class', always blaming others.

Mr. President, I believe you are the coolest cucumber behind the podium. I also believe that sometimes the truth is ugly and hurts.

 You scare me because for over half your life you have aligned yourself with radical extremists who hate America and you refuse to publicly denounce these radicals who wish to see America fail.

Mr. President, I see you as an ambassador to all, listening without reproach and making sound judgments after careful consideration. I wish I could always do the same.

You scare me because you are a cheerleader for the 'blame America ' crowd and deliver this message abroad.

Mr. President, taking responsibilities for ones actions and admitting fault is courageous.

You scare me because you want to change America to a European style country where the government sector dominates instead of the private sector.

President Obama, the private sector of our country has taken it’s liberties to the extreme, creating self-entitled loop holes. As a country we must be responsible. If that includes government sanctions to control and teach until we learn, I’m all for it.

You scare me because you want to replace our health care system with a government controlled one.

The population of our country is obese, sedentary and sick. Health care costs continue to rise. Again, company controlled entities make it harder and harder to get healthy, stay healthy and keep costs to a minimum. If we can’t do it alone, then we need help.

You scare me because you prefer 'wind mills' to responsibly capitalizing on our own vast oil, coal and shale reserves.

Mr. President, please continue to fund research to encourage alternate forms of energy before we completely deplete the earth of its natural resources.

You scare me because you want to kill the American capitalist goose that lays the golden egg which provides the highest standard of living in the world.

 Mr. President, please kill that goose. The highest standard of living is now relegated to the top percentage of people in this country, not the country as a whole.

You scare me because you have begun to use 'extortion' tactics against certain banks and corporations.

President Obama? Do what you’ve got to do to get our money back from banks and corporations who have mismanaged funds for decades in order to line their own pockets.

You scare me because your own political party shrinks from challenging you on your wild and irresponsible spending proposals.

Mr. President, there are party members who are scared of the challenge you have laid on the table to step up, shut up and get to work on new ideas and proposals. Fear is a strong emotion and some find it easier to not  do than to do. I’m sure you can handle those people appropriately.

You scare me because you will not openly listen to or even consider opposing points of view from intelligent people.

"Opposing views from intelligent people" have been running this country into the ground for the last decade. Perhaps, Mr. President, those intelligent people will shut up and listen themselves? Let’s hope so. 

You scare me because you falsely believe that you are both omnipotent and omniscient.

Mr. President? You are the President. You probably know a lot. I’ll have faith that you do unless proven otherwise.

You scare me because the media gives you a free pass on everything you do.

President Obama, I have no idea what the media gives you or takes away from you. What is a media free pass?

You scare me because you demonize and want to silence the Limbaugh's, Hannity's, O'Reillys and Becks who offer opposing, conservative points of view.

I am not sure how, Mr. President, you are silencing anyone. However, if you are able to remove Limbaugh, Hannity, O'Reilly and Becks as doomsday, naysaying talking heads? I’d sure appreciate it.

You scare me because you prefer controlling over governing.

Verb

govern (third-person singular simple present governs, present participle governing, simple past and past participle governed)

  1. (transitive) To make and administer the public policy and affairs of; to exercise sovereign authority in.
  2. (transitive) To control the actions or behavior of; to keep under control; to restrain.
    Govern yourselves like civilized people.
    a student who could not govern his impulses.
  3. (transitive) To exercise a deciding or determining influence on.
    Chance usually governs the outcome of the game.
  4. (transitive) To control the speed, flow etc. of; to regulate.
    a valve that governs fuel intake.
  5. (intransitive) To exercise political authority; to run a government.
  6. (intransitive) To have or exercise a determining influence.
  7. (transitive) To require that a certain preposition, grammatical case, etc. be used with a word; sometimes used synonymously with collocate.

Sometimes governing IS controlling. Someone needs to be in charge, no?

Finally, you scare me because if you serve a second term I will probably not feel safe in writing a similar letter in 8 years.

Mr. President, we all know that unless we change, truly change, as a country we could fail ourselves. On your watch, I don’t think you’d let that happen despite what others say against you. It is my hope that a second term will lengthen the stride of our baby steps towards a new, better and repaired county.

Sincerely,

The Thirty-Something Bride

*Note: Commentary, political views, comments, opposing or otherwise- all are welcome here. Name calling will not be tolerated and any comments doing so will be deleted.