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Jon Stewart and the Best Effing News Team know what's up in Texas. They recognize, though others ignore, that whether or not Texas turns blue in November, the election here will be historical. Wendy Davis and her running mate, Leticia Van De Putte, are icons and heroines (truly), standing for Texas women and their allies. Anyone who watched the State House floor that summer night when a filibuster made history, knows of their valor. I still get chills thinking about it.

Beyond that, though, is the bigger, future picture for Democrats. Not just Texas Dems, mind you. I say, as I have said before: in both 2008/2012, the large cities in Texas went blue for President Obama. There is a robust progressive attitude that has been simmering in Texas. Wendy and Leticia (and a super roster of downticket Dems, too) have been turning up the heat for some time. We all are truly 'fired up and ready to go!'

Women and their allies, people of color (both Hispanic/Black), and the LGBTQ community are all out there voting, right now, for Democrats. We may not turn blue this time, thanks to the last-minute Supreme Court ruling. But then again...

See, I think that the possibility of a blue Texas in November is real. It's palpable, almost. Why? Because my parents, lovers of Reagan and Bush(x2), are voting for Wendy and Leticia. (That's a big f@#$ing deal, Joe!) They are bothered by the scandals of our current administration and are ready for change. They also are thinking about the health of their granddaughters. And, finally, they are trusting the political knowledge of their own daughter.

So, despite the disenfranchisement of likely Democratic voters here, I see another viable voting pool: Republicans and Independents voting for Wendy and Leticia

An interview with The Daily Show's Jon Stewart, live in Austin tonight, will add to Wendy's exposure in a big way. Too bad I can't just flip the channel and watch. So watch it for me, please? And fill me in on the juicy details!

If you're interested in why I can't watch, jump over the juicy orange curlique.

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Wendy Davis, the Democratic nominee for Texas governor, will sit down with Rachel Maddow tonight-(MSNBC-8pm central).

Maddow has spotlighted Davis before, when she had her more famous filibuster in the pink shoes. Davis stood up for the reproductive rights of Texas women, and as anyone who saw the pictures from Austin last year can attest, Texas women (and men, too!) stood with her.

We all had no idea of the burden Wendy Davis carried. She spoke for all of us, but for herself, too. She shares her deeply personal experiences with abortion in her newly-released memoir, 'Forgetting To Be Afraid.' No, we had no idea of the burden.

Rachel will, of course, talk to her about the book, and about the upcoming election. There might even be a question or two about Rick Perry, our indicted governor.

I'll be tuning in. Rachel and Wendy together-two of my favorite women!


Wed Sep 03, 2014 at 03:15 PM PDT

I...(gulp) am a Pagan Agnostic Taoist

by shesaid

There, I said it. Feels good to get it out...


What's your favorite kind of Girl Scout Cookie?

79%23 votes
20%6 votes

| 29 votes | Vote | Results

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In many ways, it was a big fucking deal for me, but maybe it should be a BFD for the rest of you Kossacks, too. Or for the next lurker, like me.

I live deep in the red clay heart of west Texas, far from the metropolitan centers that went for President Obama in 2008/2012. Like most everyone around here, I was raised on religion, racism and guns (not necessarily in that order), but early on, I strayed from the 'compassionate conservative' path of my parents. At 20, my first vote was for Mondale/Ferraro. I wasn't always a regular, nor a well-informed voter in the years that followed, but eventually, that changed. I suppose I can thank George W. Bush for that.  

And Dkos. I lurked a couple years before I registered.  Even as I lurked, both before and after I signed up, I was impressed, yet intimidated by the vast swath of knowledge and activism surrounding me. (And not a little disgusted at the pie.) Still, I learned to be more socially and politically aware. Beyond that, though, I was also inspired to become more involved in the process. There are a number of Texas Kossacks along the way that have led by example. For example, hanging with my GUS (Giving Up Smoking) group one day, my friend Wordsinthewind was chatting about the upcoming local convention. I wasn't sure if I was ready to take another step and become a delegate, but it did sound interesting. She encouraged me to go to the local convention (held a few weeks ago), and, whaddya know!? I'm a delegate.

The local convention, held a few weeks ago, was, um, interesting...

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I've never had an abortion. Never had to make that heart-wrenching decision. Never had to sneak down a back alley into a dirty, makeshift operating room. Never had to desperately try coathangers and elixirs to self-abort. Never had to fear how others would judge me for my choice. Never had to lie to protect that secret. Never had to keep that secret down, deep inside.

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'Rick Perry in negotiations to accept medicaid expansion-Turning Texas Blue' proclaimed a diary that shot to the Rec List yesterday and was shared on facebook/twitter. No surprise on the response! We Texans are long overdue for progress in this red state. (Go, Wendy Davis!)

But it wasn't true. There was confusion...the diarist had not put on a snark tag. Granted, there were warning signs that the 'article' quoted was false. Big giveaway was a non-existent Texas newspaper. Some commenters tried to educate others on this tell. A look at the comments, though, and it's clear: many believed it.

Meanwhile, Trusted Users began adding tags reflecting the true nature of the diary. They also took their tags away, only for them to be added again later, by someone else (per the comments, the diarist never took part in the tagging).

Over the course of a few hours, the diary tipjar morphed. As more began to realize they had been duped, they retracted their recs. And the hide-rates rose. At my last count, the tipjar had 126 recs and 125 hides.

It was a fascinating, yet disappointing turn of events. As I watched the list fluctuate, I knew that some were not doing their due diligence (checking the validity of the article, questioning the hide-rates through comments). IndieGuy wrote a diary about it, informing Kossacks:

What really bothered me was the fact that the diary had (as of this am) been shared on twitter 64 times, and on facebook, 1000 times. Did you get that? 1000 times. And I wondered how many of those recs were based on what they thought was a true story? Comments in the diary bore that out. Some were furious when they realized they had shared something untrue.

So I wrote a diary last night, with a poll, hoping to get an idea of how many were reccing and sharing believing it to be true versus a snark story. Results beyond the orange.

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A quick diary to let fellow Kossacks know: there is a diary currently on the Rec list about Turning Texas Blue/Rick Perry which has a checkered Tipjar. Diarist did not add a snark tag, and some recommended it, believing the story about Rick Perry/medicaid expansion to be true because it quoted a Texas newspaper (which doesn't exist).

Later, some commenters added tags, such as snark, hoax, spam, fantasy. Some tags were taken away and added again. This further confused the community.

My argument is not whether or not the diary was meant to be snark (better critics than I have answered that), but since it was not consistently tagged, there is a real possibility that some recommended a diary that was misleading.

Sorry for the meta. I hate meta. But, unfortunately, I think people trying to adjust tags, however well-meaning, can sometimes have this exact result.


PS: Sorry, my fellow Texans. Perry isn't coming around, yet.


If you Recc'd the diary, is it because you believe:

65%29 votes
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Fri Nov 22, 2013 at 01:49 PM PST

On That Day: A Young Mother's Loss

by shesaid

When the news came in, she was sitting with her mother at a diner somewhere in south Texas, a lonely lunch on the way to the Methodist Home in San Antonio. They'd both cried too many tears that day, and knew more would be shed that night when her mother left her and her swollen, unspoken-of belly at the Home.

Too many tears. But now this. A crackling news report, and suddenly the loss the two privately shared was subsumed by strangers around them, gasping and crying for the loss of a president. No, nothing would ever be the same, for any of us.

Exactly two months later I was born. When she gave me up, she dressed me in a lovely yellow crocheted outfit that she had picked out, and packed for this occasion of her loss, a farewell gift.

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As I watch live coverage of the 50-year anniversary of the March on Washington, it occurs to me that some others may be watching also. It's just so incredible that we all are still fighting for the dream of equality. Hence, a liveblog...

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Near this time tomorrow I will be attending my high school’s reunion, milling around at the local country club. Instead of being thrilled to reunite with my classmates, I’m dreading it. I keep asking myself-Who in the bloody hell ARE these people?  So, I’ve decided that the only way I can cope is to get blind, stinkin’ drunk...(kidding)!

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Mon Jan 23, 2012 at 01:59 AM PST

Kind: a four-letter word

by shesaid

i will freely admit that i am hypersensitive today (i look at the clock and correct-yesterday) was my birthday, and memorable only because it was so miserable...friends and family forgot, mom baked a rum cake (which i don't like, but she doesn't remember that anymore), and i've got cramps. and we're broke, and unemployed, and, dammit, i didn't get that diary on roe v. wade done.

with that admission out of the way, i would like to offer a bit of sage advice from a not-so-old-but-getting-there-quick chick...

be kind...ya get it? kind. be aware of the fact that your life's journey is different from that of the person next to you or whose name you click on. you may read a diary that has nothing to do with electing better democrats, or pooties or ows. it may be brutal and personal. it may push a button for you. maybe a diary about molestation and abuse, and death and survival.  i speak from experience...the voice we find after tragedy is imperfect, and often crude (but necessary).

so, if you can't be kind, or at least indifferently respectful, walk away silently, please. don't respond with a fuck you, or you're a loser or a retard or any number of the awful names i've seen spewed the last few hours by some kossacks to each other.

a quick story...after my brother died, my nieces were in one hell of a fight with their mother, who is not a very kind person, to say the least. she screamed, 'fuck you. i hate you!' to two very sad, very mixed-up girls, her own children. it made me queasy. it made my head and my heart hurt.

that's something like how i've felt the past few hours...

be kind...


this could be considered a Holiday story, given that santa (or a somewhat dadaist version) plays prominently in this account. i wouldn't consider it so-ho, ho, ho-only on its face. a tribute to e.e. cummings, true, but only in part. beyond that, it is an explanation (not an apology, you'll note) of how my quirky writing style is the way it is.

?? questions of who we are where we come from why am i the way i life is a question mark.  i've wondered which of those unknown progenitors gave me my love of language, words, poetry, (music, too, since it was a language itself).

until recently, i had not known about cummings' christmas play, nor his familial turmoil. i had only known him as a poet taught in snippets from school textbooks. things come in their appointed time, however. as much as my rational mind tells me there is no fate, no karma or kismet that dangles our lives on invisible strings, some events in life just can't be explained or reasoned away...

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