Monday, September 29, 2008


Yesterday after the rally, I went up to Session Woods to go hiking with my cousin and of course, we brought our cameras. The rain was supposed to hold off until six or seven, but the skies opened up while we were hiking, when we got back to our cars, we looked like two drown rats.
Here are some of the photos that I took…

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Manic Monday

Lisa’s Manic Monday #136

What is the most useful gift you’ve ever been given?
The gift of being who I am. Because I look at as a gift, a gift that I can use to educate others and teach them love, acceptance and tolerance.

Name the most terrifying moment of your life so far.
When I thought that I was having a heart attack.

One hot summer afternoon, while walking through a parking lot at a large shopping center, you notice a dog suffering badly from the heat inside a locked car. What would you do?
I would call mall security.


I went up to the “Vote No” rally on the Capital south lawn today; we had a crowd of about hundred people. The opposition had a crowd of about ten times our size on the north side of the Capital. However, that was to be expected, they got up on their pulpits to tell their congregations to go on a holy mission to stop the homosexuals from gaining equality. They came by the busloads to answer the call of the jihad, one coach after another pulled in to discharge the crusaders. And they came by the van load that had the names of their church on the sides of the vans: the First Church of Christ, the Baptists, The Assembly of God and on and on it went. Rallying the crusaders on their holy war to amend the state Constitution to prevent those inferno Gays and Lesbian from marrying.

While we were wrapping up our rally, a man came up to the microphone and started to speak. He was quoting the Bible about homosexual sinners and he only left when the Capital police escorted him away. Something like that happen at the Marriage Equality rally a couple of years ago, someone left a bottle filled with liquid on the Capital steps and they had to call in the bomb squad. They arrested two kids from the anti-marriage rally that was being held on the other side of the Capital who came over to our side and left a bottle of holy water.

Why I Am Voting No On The Constitutional Convention Ballot Question Part 2

I am voting no, because we do not need to have legislator recall, we have elections every two years and if you do not like a legislator, you can vote them out of office within two years. How much will it cost to keep holding elections every time some person or group doesn’t like the way their legislator voted. Not only is there a cost involved to the state and towns in holding the elections, but the candidates will also have to raise more campaign contribution to defend their office. In addiction, when will the voting take place, will it be at a fixed time after a recall petition is accepted or in November? Does that mean that right in the middle of a legislative session we can have a recall? Do you really want your legislator worrying about re-election at that time? If it is only in November then are we going to have an election every year?

I also believe that having ballot initiative or a referendum is a bad idea; I believe that ballot initiatives pass bad laws. Just because a law is popular doesn’t make it right. One of the purposes of constitutions is to protect the rights of the minority from the tyranny of the majority. Over time, we have come to see the need to protect other segments of the population from the oppression of the majority, those that are based on race, color, religion, sex, and national origin with the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Where would we be now if the Civil Rights Act of 1964 were voted on by a ballot initiative? Or the 19th Amendment giving women the right to vote, would it have been recalled by a ballot initiative?

Many people are opposed to the state income tax and I think it would be overturned in an instant if it went to a popular vote, but what would replace it? A sale tax? Property tax? Would the voters overturn those taxes also and we would be plunged into a fiscal nightmare? Could we ever get a consensus? These topics are complex and will the voters take the time to research topics or go to hearings or will they just listen to the thirty-second ads on TV. I believe in the republican form of government where our elected officials to make the decisions on our behalf and if we do not like their votes, we can vote them out office on Election Day every two years.

I believe that voter initiated referendums makes it too easy to pass bad laws. Case in point, the “Three Strikes” law, I am not a lawyer but I have been told by lawyers that there is already on the books increasing penalties for repeat offenders. The problems are not enough prosecutors, not enough judges and not enough prison space, as a result the cases get plea bargained down to lesser offenses in order to get a guilty plea. This would not change with a “Three Strikes” law, the prosecutors will still plea bargain to a lesser offense. When I was testifying for the Anti-Discrimination bill there was only one person who spoke out in favor of the “Three Strikes” bill. If you feel strongly about the “Three Strikes” law, then I urge you to lobby your legislators, but do not to amend the Constitution.

In addiction, consider that once the Constitution Convention is convened, everything is on the table, they can even rewrite the state Constitution. Some of the laws that could be changed are:
Abortion Rights
Emergency Contraception for Rape Victims
To abolish no-fault divorce
Same-Sex Marriage and Civil Unions
Comprehensive Sex Education
Judicial Discretion in Sentencing
Affirmative Action
Anti-Poverty Programs
Public Education Funding
Human Rights to Housing & Employment for Transgender & Gender Non-conforming People
Healthcare, Social Services, & College Assistance for Immigrants
Collective Bargaining
Binding Arbitration
Healthcare & Retirement Benefits of Public Servants

Voting yes on the ballot would open a Pandora’s Box and throw the State into a financial crisis and a legislative nightmare.

Governor Rell said that she is in favor of a limited Constitutional Convention that cannot happen. The question on the ballot is “Shall there be a constitutional convention to amend or revise the Constitution of the State?” it is either yes or no, there is no “yes with limits.” The Connecticut League of Women Voters says…
The Connecticut General Assembly prescribes how delegates are selected and the timing of the convention. All issues are on the table and open for discussion. [Their emphasis] Proposals receiving the approval of the delegates are submitted to the voters.

There will be two questions about the Constitution on the ballot, the first one is to allow 17 year olds to register to vote if their 18th birthday is before Election Day and the other question is about the Constitutional Convention. The first Constitutional question was passed by the legislature by a two thirds vote and placed on the ballot for the electorate to vote on. I believe that is the way to amend the Constitution, not by having a Constitutional Convention where it can become a shootout of special interest groups.

I urge you all to go and support the “Vote No” rally today at 1:30 on the south side of the Capital (the Capital Ave. side)

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Saturday Six - Episode 233

Patrick’s Place Saturday Six - Episode 233

1. Overall, do you feel like you’re in better financial shape now than you were five years ago, worse shape, or roughly the same shape?
I am in worst shape, especially in the last couple of weeks

2. Of the debts you currently owe, what percentage of them would you say are unnecessary debts that were caused by not watching your money closely enough?

3. Are you worried about the economy’s effect on your job?
I am not worried about my job because I am retired, but I am worried about my retirement accounts

4. Take the quiz:
What’s Your Money Personality?

Your Money Personality is Tightwad

You don't spend money unless you absolutely have to.
And when you do spend, you try to go for the cheapest option possible.

You're not a penny pincher because you're poor. In fact, you may have the most cash of anyone you know.
You're a true saver. You feel safest when you can watch your bank account grow.

While more people should follow your lead, make sure you're not depriving yourself.
Spend enough money to take care of yourself in the short term, so you'll be healthy and happy for the long term.

5. Should the government bail out the struggling banks, or should the government divide the money they’re going to give the banks among taxpayers as a one-time “shot in the arm” for America’s workers?
I do not know. I do know that I invested in insured AAA bonds, trading lower returns for security. Unfortunately, some of them were with Lehman Brothers and guess who they were insured by… AIG. They are now worth nothing and I will be lucky that when all this dust settles in five or ten years they might be worth 30 or 40 cents on the dollar.

6. If a rich stranger were to hand you a check in an amount equal to a year’s salary, would that amount take care of all of your debt, make you feel financially stress-free, both or neither?
I would give me room to hopefully ride out this storm for a year.

Actor Paul Newman dead at age 83

Saturday: 9 You've Got a Friend

Crazy Sam’s Saturday: 9 You've Got a Friend

1. Who is your best friend?

My brother

2. How did you meet?

My mother introduced us when I was born

3. How long have you known each other?
All my life

4. Have you traveled anywhere together?


5. Did you ever have a problem over a romantic interest that you shared?
Naw, he is five years older than I am

6. Have you ever not liked your best friend’s choice of lovers?
He made good choice, some forty years ago.

7. How long since you have seen your best friend?

Since I grew up

8. Do you remember each other on birthdays and holidays?
I better

9. What is the biggest fight that you have ever had?
Oh, when we were kids, we had some real bang up fights.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Friday Fill-Ins #91

Janet’s Friday Fill-Ins #91 we go!

1. _My birthday and my annual weekend in Provincetown MA on Cape Cod_ are some of the things I'm most looking forward to in October.

2. Sometimes I _just space out_.

3. _I got into grad school_ and that's why there is a saying, "never say never"!

4. When I'm down, I _am really DOWN_.

5. _Looking into the refrigerator_ is where you'll find me most often.

6. A rainy day is good for _catching up on your reading_.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I’m looking forward to _going to a coffee shop to hear some folk singers_, tomorrow my plans include _doing homework (starting to lay out my papers that are do at the end of October)_ and Sunday, I want to _go to a rally on the Constitution Convention – Vote No and go walking with my cosusin_!

The Thrid Week

This is my third week of interning and I am starting to settle in to the routine. It’s hard getting back into the groove after a year and a half not working, now I have to be somewhere every day at a fixed time. I just can’t do what I want any time that I want any more.

It is also different working in an all women environment (and working as a woman), where I worked before (an engineering company) it was mostly a male environment. The dynamics are so much different, but I think part of that is the nature of the work so it is really hard to separate the cause of that difference; working in a non-profit vs. an engineering company

Yesterday, I went to a meeting in one of the insurance companies here in Hartford to go over some of the projects that I am working on as an intern. The woman that I met is the Director of CTAC and she works for the insurance company; we met in the cafeteria of the company for lunch, right in the heart of corporate America. As I was walking back to my office across the street and I could see the state Capital and all of the city of Hartford, the lyrics of the Grateful Dead song “Trukin’” came to mind, “Lately it occurs to me what a long, strange trip its been.”

Monday, September 22, 2008

Manic Monday

Lisa’s Manic Monday #135

Pick out the most important item you have in your purse/wallet and tell me why it's important to you.
My credit card, it lets me buy what ever I want.

What would you take from your house if you knew it would be flooded tomorrow?
My legal records and all the family photos

If you were stuck in a room for an hour with a chalk board, what would you draw on it?
I am not that good of an artist, so it would be more like doodles. I probably draw landscapes.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Saturday Six - Episode 232

Patrick Place’s Saturday Six - Episode 232

1. Do you think that capital punishment — as the system now operates — is a deterrent to crime on any level?
OK, you are asking a “Bleeding Heart Liberal” here, how do you think I will answer?
NO! It is not a determent, what criminal thinks he is going to be caught? They are thinking they are going to commit the perfect crime and never be caught. In addition, our legal system is not perfect, it makes mistakes and once you execute a person, you cannot go back and say “Ops, we made a mistake, sorry.”

2. With changes and/or improvements to the justice system designed to better enforce capital punishment, do you think it could be a better deterrent to crime?
No, in the states with the highest rate of executions, their crime rate has not gone down.

3. Should the punishment a man who kills a pregnant woman be worse than the punishment a man who kills a non-pregnant woman faces?
No, I do not see how you can make this work. Suppose the woman does not know she is pregnant and it is only found out during the autopsy, would the murder still get the harsher punishment? Or if the murder didn’t know that she was pregnant would the murder get the harsher punishment or would you have to prove that the murder knew that she was pregnant.
Also, I see this as a way the Right Wing Christian conservatives are trying to get the laws changed to say that life begins at conception.

4. Take the quiz:
What Felony Are You?

I didn’t take the quiz because none of the answers applied to me.

5. You stop by a post office to run in and mail a letter, knowing you’ll only be inside the building for 10 seconds. To park close to the door, there are only two options: you can either park in an open handicapped space (and assume you don’t have a handicapped permit) or park illegally in the fire lane. Would you take a handicapped space, park in the fire lane, or park in a legitimate, legal space and walk?
I park in the legal space and walk.
While we are on the subject of parking to run in for a quick errand – turn off you engine! Just the other day here in Connecticut, a guy ran in to get a cup of coffee. He left the car running; the car popped in to reverse and drove backward pinning a woman against a wall, putting her into the hospital.

6. Should police target people who use marijuana when there is no legitimate medicinal need for it?
No, I do not think possessing drug should be a criminal offense. I think that it should be treated as a medical problem and treated as such. Instead of jailing them, offer them drug treatment programs, but still make the sale of drug a criminal offense. I think that an addict should be able to get their fix from the government and they will always have the option to enter a free drug program.
I think that most of our violence in the cities is caused by drugs, take the profit motive out of drugs. If a pusher gets a person hooked on drugs and then the addict can get the drugs for free from the government, the profit motive would go out of the drug business. Look at what happened during Prohibition; gang wars and violence in the streets, once alcohol became legal again most of the violence went away.

OK, so much for my “Bleeding Heart Liberalism”

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Say It's Not True!

I found this on a number of blogs, but I could not find whoever did this, I want to thank them and give them credit, but alas they are lost in the web.

Transgender Veteran Wins Sex Discrimination

This is really unbelievable news about Diane Schroerthe, the buzz is all over the web. This is a ground breaking decision!

For those of who do not know who Diane Schroer is, she applied for a job at the Library of Congress for the position of a terrorism research analyst and in that positions she would be writing briefs on terrorism to Congress and the Executive Branch. She was offered the job but that offer was later rescinded when she told them she was about to transition. Here is a little bit about her qualifications as it was written in the courts decision…
Diane Schroer is a male-to-female transsexual. Although born male, Schroer has a female gender identity – an internal, psychological sense of herself as a woman. Tr. at 37.
In August 2004, before she changed her legal name or began presenting as a woman, Schroer applied for the position of Specialist in Terrorism and International Crime with the Congressional Research Service (CRS) at the Library of Congress. The terrorism specialist provides expert policy analysis to congressional committees, members of Congress and their staffs. Pl. Ex. 1. The position requires a security clearance. Case 1:05-cv-01090-JR Document 70 Filed 09/19/2008 Page 1 of 35 Schroer was well qualified for the job. She is a graduate of both the National War College and the Army Command and General Staff College, and she holds masters degrees in history and international relations. During Schroer’s twentyfive years of service in the U.S. Armed Forces, she held important command and staff positions in the Armored Calvary, Airborne, Special Forces and Special Operations Units, and in combat operations in Haiti and Rwanda. Tr. at 22-31. Pl. Ex. 9. Before her retirement from the military in January 2004, Schroer was a Colonel assigned to the U.S. Special Operations Command, serving as the director of a 120-person classified organization that tracked and targeted high-threat international terrorist organizations. In this position, Colonel Schroer analyzed sensitive intelligence reports, planned a range of classified and conventional operations, and regularly briefed senior military and government officials, including the Vice President, the Secretary of Defense, and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Tr. 32-33. At the time of her military retirement, Schroer held a Top Secret, Sensitive Compartmented Information security clearance, and had done so on a continuous basis since 1987. Tr. at 33. After her retirement, Schroer joined a private consulting firm, Benchmark International, where, then she applied for the CRS position, she was working as a program manager on an Case 1:05-cv-01090-JR Document 70 Filed 09/19/2008 Page 2 of 35 - 3 - infrastructure security project for the National Guard. Tr. at 36.(UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, Civil Action No. 05-1090 (JR))
Here are some of the legal reviews of the case…
Federal judge rules that refusal to hire based on gender identity is sex discrimination
After a full trial (described in previous posts here and here), the judge found that Schroer should prevail on both of the legal theories offered by her lawyers. First, the judge found that there was "compelling evidence that the Library's hiring decision was infected by sex stereotypes." On that basis, Schroer was entitled to relief under the line of cases beginning with Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins, 490 U.S. 228 (1989), which created the sex stereotyping doctine. In that case, the Court found that Title VII was violated when a woman was denied a job after being told to wear make-up and take a course at charm school. Evidence in the Schroer trial established that the negative reaction to Schroer grew out of her not fitting gender stereotypes by virtue of her decision to change genders.

More important was the second theory: that discrimination based on gender transition is literally discrimination based on sex. Schorer's lawyers argued, and the judge agreed, that gender identity is a component of sex and therefore discrimination based on gender identity is sex discrimination. This might sound like a simple proposition, but previous federal courts have "carved [transgender] persons out of the statute by concluding that 'transsexuality' is unprotected by Title VII."

The Schroer court held that just as discrimination against converts from one to faith to another is still discrimination based on religion, so too discrimination against transgender persons is still sex discrimination. Although doubtless Congress did not have transgender persons in mind when Title VII was enacted in 1964, the court found that the plain text of the statute covers this situation.(hunter of justice)
Federal Court Adopts Religious Conversion Analogy in Transgender Discrimination Case
Thus, Robertson presented his interpretation as rooted in the plain text of Title VII, as a way of escaping from the “legislative history” approach that prior courts have taken. Title VII was enacted by Congress in 1964, at a time when the issue of transsexual discrimination was not discussed, and a straightforward proposal to protect transsexuals from discrimination at that time would have been a political non-starter had it been placed before Congress. Based on this historical perspective, courts have routinely relied on “congressional intent” to deny protection to transsexuals. But, Robertson pointed out, the Supreme Court has itself disavowed this approach to interpreting federal statutes.

… He also quoted Scalia’s statement from a decision holding that Title VII could apply to same-sex harassment claims: “Male-on-male sexual harassment in the workplace was assuredly not the principal evil Congress was concerned with when it enacted Title VII. But statutory prohibitions often go beyond the principal evil to cover reasonably comparable evils, and it is ultimately the provisions of our laws rather than the principal concerns of our legislators by which we are governed.” Oncale v. Sundowner Offshore Services, Inc., 523 U.S. 75, 79 (1998).(Leonard Link)
This is a BIG decision in favor of equal rights and to end employment discrimination based on gender identity or expression!

Some of my other blog entries on Diane Schroer can be found here…
The Congressional "Examination of Discrimination Against Trangender Americans in the Workplace" Hearings

Congressional Hearing On Gender - Follow-up

Saturday 9: Would You Take Them Back?

Crazy Sam’s Saturday 9: Would You Take Them Back?

1. Think of all your exes. Would you take any of them back?
Yes, I think I would take back my second love (Not my first because one of the reasons we broke up was that she a nasty side that I didn’t like.)

2. What was the first car you drove? What happened to it?
A Corvair, I learned to drive in it and the second car I drove was my brother’s MGB and he taught me how to drive a standard.

3. What’s the longest amount of time you have driven a car non-stop?
To college in Rochester NY, which is a seven hour drive. The long time driving in a car (switching drives was 32 ½ hours from Connecticut to Bismarck ND and we only drove off the road once.)

4. Have you ever been stood up on a date? If yes, when?
Yes, in high school. I believed her hard luck story and then later that night I saw her with another boy.

5. What TV network do you watch the most?
Either TNT or USA.

6. Pick out a song you like that has special meaning to you. Share with us what song is it, and what’s the meaning to you.
Lola, it was when I found out I wasn’t along.

7. Who was your first celebrity crush on?
Barbra Eden

8. What is your favorite romantic comedy movie?
I don’t think that I have a favorite, a movie is a movie. Maybe if I had to pick one it would be “Fifty Firsts Dates”

9. It has been said, "First Loves Are Never Over." Is this true for you?
No, but second love isn’t. I still have crust on her.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Friday Fill-Ins #90

Janet’s Friday Fill-Ins #90

1. There is no need _to be rude_.

2. Where in the heck did the _summer go_?

3. _Reading_ is all I managed to do.

4. Prospects for _a speedy economic recovery are bleak_.

5. _Change_ is the message.

6. Simplicity and tranquility are _what I look forward to when I go up to the cottage_.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I’m looking forward to _studying_, tomorrow my plans include _studying_ and Sunday, I want to _study… and go walking_! (I can’t believe all the reading assignments that I have this semester!)

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Smoke And Mirrors

Over the course of years the Republicans has slowly been trying to privatize Social Security. Touting the virtues of 401k’s and Roth IRA’s how we should not have to give the government our hard earned money, only to have them give it back to us.

“Not only did Senator McCain support privatized Social Security in a March 3 interview with the Wall Street Journal, but in 2006 he voted to shift Social Security’s annual surpluses into a reserve account that would be converted into private accounts. [S. Con. Res., Vote #68, 3/16/06]. Earlier in his Senate career, McCain voted twice to replace Social Security’s guaranteed benefits with income from risk-based private investments. [S. Con. Res., Vote #56, 4/1/98; S. Con. Res., Vote #77, 4/1/98](Alliance for Retired Americans)
Now McCain says…
John McCain will fight to save the future of Social Security and believes that we may meet our obligations to the retirees of today and the future without raising taxes. John McCain supports supplementing the current Social Security system with personal accounts -- but not as a substitute for addressing benefit promises that cannot be kept… (John McCain for Prsident)
There are a lot of words there, but what does he actually mean? What does they mean by “John McCain supports supplementing the current Social Security system with personal accounts…” they has no details of what they mean by that. Does he still mean that he want to start privatizing Social Security? It is all smoke and mirrors.

I retired last year in June and have been living off my IRA’s and 401k’s, I had saved up enough to earn 2/3rd of my former pay and I figured that would be enough until I reached 66 1/2 to start receiving Social Security and my pension. However, this week I saw a 30% drop in my savings and I am to a point where I have to consider that I may have to go back to work. Who would want to hire a 60 year old tranny? I think my job prospects are near zero! Will it mean that I will have to drop out of college?

Obama web site says…
Obama does not support uncapping the full payroll tax of 12.4 percent rate. Instead, he is considering plans that would ask those making over $250,000 to pay in the range of 2 to 4 percent more in total (combined employer and employee). This change to Social Security would start a decade or more from now and is similar to the rate increases floated by John McCain’s close adviser Senator Lindsey Graham and that McCain has previously said he “could” support. (Barack Obama and Joe Biden: The Change We Need)
I support that plan, instead of forcing people to invest in personal savings accounts. I understand the different types of investments and I have one of the top rated brokers firms (so far it hasn’t going under, knock on wood), plus I only invested to highly rated investments and I still lost close to a third of my investments this week. How would the average person faired if their retirement rested on their ability to make sound investments?

Many people earn only enough to live on and to ask them to begin to save for their retirement when they came not live on what they are making now is ridiculous. They can’t afford to put a food on the table, they can’t afford to put a roof over their heads, they can’t afford medical insurance and then to ask them to save for the future is unrealistic.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Lies And Half Truths Part II

McCain wrong on Palin earmarks
By Tom Hamburger and Maeve Reston, Los Angeles Times Staff Writers
9:47 PM PDT, September 12, 2008

NEW YORK -- John McCain got it wrong Friday when he asserted that his running mate, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, had not requested any earmarks, the spending directives lawmakers insert in spending bills that McCain has vowed to eliminate.

Palin, in fact, requested $198 million in federal earmarks in February, including such expenses as $487,000 to fight obesity in Alaska and $4 million to develop recreational trails.

By day's end, the McCain campaign backed down from the claim the GOP presidential candidate made on the ABC television show "The View."

"Sen. McCain was in the throes of a discussion about her record of reforming government, which includes drastic cuts in wasteful spending in the Alaska state budget," said McCain spokesman Tucker Bounds. "If he gave viewers a mistaken impression, it certainly wasn't intentional or without some basis in fact." (LA Times)

It seems to me that he has been doing that a lot lately, coming out with statements on national television and then quietly correcting them. Another case in point…
When asked again by the interviewer for a specific example of Palin's foreign policy experience, McCain flubbed Palin's talking point on energy.

McCain: She knows more about energy than probably anybody else in the Unites States. She is governor of a state [pause] that 20 percent of America's energy supply comes from there.

Leave aside the wildly overstated assertion that Palin is America's top expert on energy. McCain also claimed that the state produces "20 percent of America's energy supply," which is just wrong.

In 2005, Alaska produced 3.5 percent of America's energy supply. Presumably McCain meant to say that Alaska is responsible for 20 percent of America's domestic oil production (which is true).(Huffington Post)
Another unforced error occurred last month when McCain tried to present an image of being tough on lobbyists by banning active lobbyists from working on his campaign.

The rule forced several top strategists to quit the McCain campaign and instead focused attention on all the lobbyists who were working for McCain.(ABC News)
Or that...
Following her selection last month as John McCain's running mate, aides said Palin had traveled to Ireland, Germany, Kuwait, and Iraq to meet with members of the Alaska National Guard. During that trip she was said to have visited a "military outpost" inside Iraq. The campaign has since repeated that Palin's foreign travel included an excursion into the Iraq battle zone.
But in reality…
Asked to clarify where she traveled in Iraq, Palin's spokeswoman, Maria Comella, confirmed that "She visited a military outpost on the other side of the Kuwait-Iraq border."

It was the second such clarification in as many weeks of the itinerary of what Palin has called "the trip of a lifetime." Earlier, the campaign acknowledged that Palin made only a refueling stop in Ireland.

Palin also told ABC that she had traveled to Mexico and Canada. Her campaign had previously mentioned a Canada visit, but not a trip to Mexico. Comella said yesterday that Palin had visited Mexico on vacation, and Canada once last year. (The Boston Globe)
Did she visit an “Outpost” in Iraq, yes; but I do not think it gave her much foreign policy experience or visiting Mexico on vacation did either.

New Evidence: Palin Had Direct Role In Charging Rape Victims For Exams
Despite denials by the Palin campaign, new evidence proves that as mayor of Wasilla, Alaska, Sarah Palin had a direct hand in imposing fees to pay for post-sexual assault medical exams conducted by the city to gather evidence.

Palin's role is now confirmed by Wasilla City budget documents available online.

Under Sarah Palin's administration, Wasilla cut funds that had previously paid for the medical exams and began charging victims or their health insurers the $500 to $1200 fees. Although Palin spokeswoman Maria Comella wrote USA Today earlier this week that the GOP vice presidential nominee "does not believe, nor has she ever believed, that rape victims should have to pay for an evidence-gathering test...To suggest otherwise is a deliberate misrepresentation of her commitment to supporting victims and bringing violent criminals to justice," Palin, as mayor, fired police chief Irl Stambaugh and replaced him with Charlie Fannon, who with Palin's knowledge, slashed the budget for the exams and began charging the city's victims of sexual assault. The city budget documents demonstrate Palin read and signed off on the new budget. A year later, alarmed Alaska lawmakers passed legislation outlawing the practice. (Huffington Post)
This all seems to me that this is part of their campaign strategy, makes all these grandiose statements and then they quietly retract them. The public remembers the first statement but never hears about or forgets the retraction. In addition, this is from a candidate who says he will change and reform Washington and from a candidate who voted 90% in favor of Bush’s policies.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Manic Monday

Lisa’s Manic Monday #134

What's worse, physical or mental cheating? Why?
I think physical cheating is worst because it is actual cheating, but mental cheating is a close second.

Do you think men and women can be just friends? Why or why not?
Yes, because everything is not always about sex. I was friends with a number of women at work (before I transitioned) and it was plutonic. And no, I am not attracted to men, I am attracted to women; just because a person is trans does not automatically mean they are attracted to men.

How do you feel about dating co-workers?

I think it is a bad idea, if the relationship goes sourer, you will still have to see each other every day.

Busted Again Fashion Show Photos

As promised, here are some of the photos of me from the fashion show…

My first outfit,

My other outfit,
Partying after the show,
Photo courtesy of Glenn Koetzne, for more of his photos…

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Saturday Six - Episode 231

Patrick’s Place Saturday Six - Episode 231

1. Take the quiz: What Is Your Name’s Hidden Meaning?

What Diana Means

You are balanced, orderly, and organized. You like your ducks in a row.
You are powerful and competent, especially in the workplace.
People can see you as stubborn and headstrong. You definitely have a dominant personality.

You tend to be pretty tightly wound. It's easy to get you excited... which can be a good or bad thing.
You have a lot of enthusiasm, but it fades rather quickly. You don't stick with any one thing for very long.
You have the drive to accomplish a lot in a short amount of time. Your biggest problem is making sure you finish the projects you start.

You are usually the best at everything ... you strive for perfection.
You are confident, authoritative, and aggressive.
You have the classic "Type A" personality.

You are very intuitive and wise. You understand the world better than most people.
You also have a very active imagination. You often get carried away with your thoughts.
You are prone to a little paranoia and jealousy. You sometimes go overboard in interpreting signals.

2. Which single sentence best describes your personality?
You have a lot of enthusiasm, but it fades rather quickly. You don't stick with any one thing for very long.

3. Of any negative traits listed in the results that you think are really true about your personality, which one do you most wish you could change?

You don't stick with any one thing for very long.

4. Take the quiz:
What Does Your Name Say About You?

What Your Name Says About You

Your name says that you are mostly:

Shrewd but overbearing

Your name also says you are:

Artistic but extreme
Ambitious but stubborn
Unconventional but unstable

5. Which of the two results describes you better, the first set or the second?

The first quiz.

6. What single word from the second set of questions best describes your personality?
None of them.

The "Busted Again" Fashion Show

The show was a fabulous hit; we had a great turn out despite the weather. We had maybe a 150 people attend the show and I believe all the models had fun as much as I did.
Thank you all for coming and once the photos are published on the web, I will post them here.

Over the last couple of months, I have been working on organizing the show and it feels so good to see it all come to together. Last year I modeled because we had a couple of models drop out, but I had so much fun that I modeled again this year and I had a BLAST! As I walked around the bar, all I could see was the flash from all the cameras. It was hard to hear what the MC was saying over the cheers from the crowd. And speaking about the MC, this year we had a comedian, JT Cotter, who performed in Provincetown MA this summer at Girl Splash, he warmed up the crowd for the models. I didn’t hear much of his act, but I could hear the crowd laughing at his jokes.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Saturday 9: Whistle While You Work

Crazy Sam’s Saturday 9: Whistle While You Work

1. Tell us which job your are telling us about, and when you had it.

My job was the Supervisor of an Electronic Test Department, which I had close to thirty year.

2. Where do/did you work?
In central Connecticut for an international company

3. Tell us about that boss.
He was a good boss; he stayed out of my hair and let me run the department.

4. Do/Did you find your work creative? If yes how?
Yes, I did until the last company bought us, then I became a paper pusher.

5. Tell us about your favorite co-worker.
I had a number of then, after thirty years in a company; you make many friends.

6. Tell us about the biggest jerk in that job.
This one guy was so fill of himself that it was pathetic.

7. Where do/did you see yourself with this job in five years?
I was happy to stay the department supervisor, I knew my job inside and out and we made every shipment on time and under budget, I had a great group of people working for me.

8. Tell us about your commute.
It was four miles, that was one reason I stayed at the job so long; I could be at work in ten minutes.

9. What hours of the day do/did you work?

7:00 – 3:30 with a half hour lunch.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Friday Fill-Ins #89

Janet’s Friday Fill-Ins #89

1. I enjoy _the sound of bacon frying on a Sunday morning_.

2. _Why me_ is something I wonder about often lately.

3. In your heart, you knew _I was right_.

4. Take _a little loving_, add a little _tender loving care_ and you end up with _the path to me heart_.

5. Life has gifted me with _with a unique perspective on life _.

6. _A lawn chair on the deck, a cold Margarita and mp3 player playing Jimmy Buffet_ is an instant vacation.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I’m looking forward to _”The Fashion Show”_, tomorrow my plans include _going to a support group meeting_ and Sunday, I want to _I would like to go walking, but instead I will probably study._!

Lies And Half Truths

I don’t know if you saw the McCain ad on TV about Obama’s educational policy where he accuses Obama of “one accomplishment legislation to teach a ‘comprehensive sex education’ for kindergartners.” In reality the legislation that “…Obama supported "age appropriate" sex-education for children as a means of teaching them what was proper or inproper touching, as well as to protect them against pedophiles…(Huffington Post)

McCain is using pure gutter politics!

The YouTube video highlights more of the lies McCain campaign has been spewing…

"It is shameful and downright perverse for the McCain campaign to use a bill that was written to protect young children from sexual predators as a recycled and discredited political attack against a father of two young girls - a position that his friend Mitt Romney also holds. Last week, John McCain told Time magazine he couldn't define what honor was. Now we know why,” said Obama campaign spokesman Bill Burton. (Huffington Post)

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

National Suicide Prevention Week

Crossed posted from MyHusbandBetty Forum
Hello friends,

This week is National Suicide Prevention Week, with World Suicide Prevention Day landing on September 10. In honor of the occasion, TransFaith Online has launched new InterSections on Suicide and Depression. Please spread the word!

The Transgender community faces incredible stigma and isolation. Transgender people, when faced with depression, are too often unsure where to turn for support. Fearing judgment from family, from friends, and from mental health providers, transgender people may not get the help that we need to manage depression. And untreated depression is the number one cause of suicide.

Suicide is yet another area where research and statistics are scarce. Studies generally report a pre-transition suicide attempt rate of 20% or more, with MTFs relatively more likely to attempt suicide than FTMs. But some studies indicate that the rate of attempted suicide for transgender youth is higher than 50%.

Please help us break the silence about depression and suicide. Don't be afraid to ask the question, "Are you thinking about suicide?" Educate yourself about suicide prevention and how you can help:

Suicide is not a solution. Don't be afraid to ask for help, if you need it. Don't try to journey through depression and/or suicidal thoughts alone. Help is available:

With isolation and stigma such important factors in the disproportionate suicide rate among the transgender community, we hope to further expand this new area of the website to include stories from suicide survivors, who can speak about what it means to have survived and found supportive community. If you would be willing to let your story be told through TransFaith, please contact Chris Paige (215-840-2858 or

Thank you,


TRANSFAITH ON-LINE ( is dedicated to supporting transgender folks in our faith journeys, while providing useful resources to help people of faith become better educated trans-allies.

From TransFaith Online:

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a 24-hour, toll-free suicide prevention service available to anyone in suicidal crisis.

Phone: 1-800-SUICIDE // 1-800-784-2433
Also: 1-800-273-TALK // 1-800-273-8255

Para obtener asistencia en español durante las 24 horas, llame al 1-888-628-9454

TTY: 1-800-799-4TTY (4889)


On MySpace:

The Trevor Project
The Trevor Project operates the only nationwide, around-the-clock crisis and suicide prevention helpline for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth. If you or a friend are feeling lost or alone call The Trevor Helpline. There is hope, there is help...

Phone: 1.866.4.U.TREVOR // 1.866.488.7386

I posted this last May, We Care

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Maryland: State's High Court Agrees that Opponents Failed in Collecting Valid Signatures for the Referendum Question to be on the Ballot

Equality Maryland Press Release:

Victory in Maryland: High Court Rules for Challengers to Illegal Referendum Petition That Attempted to Overturn a Transgender Anti-Discrimination Law

Annapolis, Md. – In a one paragraph order issued today, the Maryland Court of Appeals ruled in favor of a challenge to a referendum that attempted to block a unanimously enacted transgender protection law.

“We’re pleased with this victory. The court ruled in our favor in our challenge to this improper referendum,” said Natalie Chin, Staff Attorney at Lambda Legal. “Though the order was brief we feel confident that we’ve stopped this referendum from being on November’s ballot.”

The court indicated that they will be releasing an opinion at a later time.

On November 13, 2007, the Montgomery County Council unanimously passed an act adding gender identity to the county's civil rights law in order to address discrimination against transgender individuals. A group calling itself Citizens for Responsible Government (CRG) sought to collect enough signatures on a referendum petition to block the law from going into effect. Lambda Legal, together with counsel retained by Equality Maryland, represented concerned Montgomery County registered voters who opposed CRG's flawed referendum effort to set back the clock on civil rights in Montgomery County. Lambda Legal and Equality Maryland argued that the number of signatures needed to put the referendum petition on the November general election ballot was insufficient and that the Montgomery County Board of Elections over-counted purported signature entries in violation of detailed statutes that safeguard the referendum process.

"This long overdue, crucial law is all about assuring that unchecked bias is not allowed to inhibit our neighbors' abilities to make a living or rent a home, and as a Montgomery County resident, I breathe a sigh of relief that this campaign to roll back anti-discrimination protections is now over," said Dan Furmansky, Executive Director of Equality Maryland. "While we are confident the voters of Montgomery County would have voted against rolling back this law, , it is far better that our transgender brothers and sisters be spared the rhetoric that the referendum proponents have subjected them to over the past year. Equality Maryland thanks Lambda Legal, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, the law firm of Arnold and Porter, and the many volunteers who came together to assure that our laws in Montgomery County are on par with the 100 other jurisdictions nationally that protect residents from discrimination on the basis of gender identity."

Susan Sommer, Senior Counsel, and Natalie Chin, Staff Attorney, are on the case for Lambda Legal. Jonathan Shurberg, lead attorney for Equality Maryland, argued the case. The case is Doe et al. v. Montgomery County Board of Elections.

Monday, September 08, 2008

First Day Of My Internship

Today I began my indentured servitude internship at a local women’s non-profit agency and I already may have client that I can help. The day went by fast working on the final preparations for the Fashion Show which is this Friday and a grant for the Trans Health and Law Conference in April.

This is the view out my office window and you can see the state capital in the background.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Manic Monday

Lisa’s Manic Monday #133

If you could choose only two movies to watch ever again, what would they be?
They would be “Beaches” and “Love Story

What have you found to be the best way to relieve tension?
I take two aspirin, lie down in a dark room, put on a headset and listen to music (usually the Eagles)

If you went to a beach and it turned out to be a nude beach, would you stay and go swimming? Would you swim nude?
I would go, I would be too embarrassed.

Saturday Six - Episode 230

Patrick’s Place Saturday Six - Episode 230

1. What’s more important to you: being a recognized leader in what you do, or being a trusted “worker bee” in what you do?
A “worker bee”, I am more interested in results.

2. If you knew you had accomplished something that would make you “famous” by today’s standards, what would scare you most about such a prospect?
That I would be ‘famous” would scare me the most, with the lost of my personal life.

3. Should famous people’s families be “off limits” as some have suggested, or are such intrusions something that famous people should just “live with?”
Yes, we really do not have to know all the details of their personal lives.

4. Take the quiz:
What Are You Going to be Famous For?

You will be famous for eating the most hot dogs at Nathan’s Famous hot dog eating competition

You love life and enjoy doing what you feel like whenever. You are a free spirit and are not tied down by any social conventions.

Take this quiz at

5. How would you define “success?”
Being good at what you do and meeting your goals.

6. What’s more important to you, a career that could bring you financial security, or a career that could bring you emotional/spiritual security?
Oh, that is a hard question to answer and I am going to copout and say, with financial security you can achieve emotional/spiritual security. But emotional/spiritual security is more important for me.

Dinner and Hanna

The tropical storm blew through here last night while I was having dinner at my cousin’s restaurant. The storm brought a lot of rain (about 4” of rain) and some wind (around 30 mph) in the northwest part of the state were the restaurant is located, but nothing too bad.

It was nice to see my cousin’s family again; I hadn’t seen them since Christmas ’06. We had a classic lobster dinner (and you all know how I love lobster) with steamers clams, New England clam chowder, corn on the cob and lobster.

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Saturday 9: Out to Lunch (or Dinner)

Crazy Sam’s Saturday 9: Out to Lunch (or Dinner)

Mmm… my favorite topic!

1. When you go to a restaurant, do you usually order the same thing?
It depends on the restaurant, if they have something that is not that common of a dish then I will. When I go to Ogunquit this one restaurant has the most fantastic Lobster Ravioli, that is served with Lobster Meat in a Newberg Sauce, that I order all the time. (I just googled them (Impastable Dream) and I found out that they are closing :( ).

2. What is your favorite fish dish?
Stuffed haddock with crab or lobster stuffing (if you consider lobster as a fish, then it is lobster cooked any way)

3. What is your favorite meat dish?
Chicken Saltimbocca

4. What is you favorite vegetable?
Corn on the cob

5. How often to you eat out?
Maybe twice a month

6. Do you usual order dessert? If yes, what?
No, too fattening

7. Do you like a particular after dinner drink?
Tea or coffee

8. How far would you drive to go to a favorite restaurant?
About an hour, but it really depends on the restaurant

9. Do you like to dine with just one person or a group?

A group of about five or six.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Transphobia In Connecticut

Transgendered Singer Files Complaint Over Karaoke

Associated Press
11:50 AM EDT, September 4, 2008

WINDSOR LOCKS - A transgendered woman who says a Connecticut bar refused to allow her to sing on a karaoke night has filed a complaint with the state Liquor Commission.

Michelle Merrill says a manager at the Skyline Restaurant in Windsor Locks would not let her sing on Aug. 22 because she is a transsexual. The 35-year-old Enfield resident was born a male and began sex-change procedures 10 years ago.

Merrill says the manager told her other patrons complained that she used the women's bathroom and he didn't want people like her in the bar.

The restaurant's owner, Gina Pastula, denied the discrimination allegation. She declined to name the manager working that night.

A Liquor Commission official confirmed that a complaint has been filed but declined further comment.

Noticed what was not said, she didn’t cause a disturbance, she didn’t do anything in the bathroom except go to the bathroom, she did not break any laws.
She was barred from the bar because the customers and the owner “didn't want people like her in the bar”, it is bigotry and transphobia pure and simple.

The only thing is, I hope that Ms. Merrill will also fill a complaint with the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunity before the clock run out in 180 day from the incident.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Friday Fill-Ins #88

Janet’s Friday Fill-Ins #88

1. If I was to walk into your life, _you would be in for a BIG surprise_?

2. Catch a bright star and place it _on your pocket_. (The actual lyrics are, “Catch a falling star an’ place it in your pocket”. I can remember when it was on the radio)

3. And you can send me _a postcard when you get there_.

4. _I wish that I could forget your face_ but I'm dealing with a memory that never forgets.

5. I'm the innocent bystander / Somehow I got stuck _in jail_.

6. What's keeping us apart isn't selfishness, _its greed_.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I’m looking forward to _going to a coffee house to listen to some folk singers_, tomorrow my plans include _ watching Tropical Storm Hanna go by and at night going to my cousin’s Lobster Bake (if we don’t lose power)_ and Sunday, I want to _be studying and not cleaning up the damage Tropical Storm Hanna caused_!

The Birthday Party At Devil’s Hopyard

On Labor Day, I went to a friend’s birthday party at Devil’s Hopyard State Park and when I got home, I found out that I left my camera there. OMG! PANIC CITY! I called her right away as soon as I found out and they had already found it and was wondering whose it was. WHEW! What must have happen was while I was picking up all stuff as I was getting ready to leave the park, a friend who was leaving hugged me and had to put everything back on the picnic table to hug her. It was then I must have forgotten to pick it back up. Then when I was putting everything in my trunk of my car another friend drove by and honked their honk, I turned around and waved, closing the trunk.
Her mother had a surprise party for her, the family normally celebrates her birthday with a picnic there, but her mother invited all her friends to come and join them. I drove down from New Hampshire that morning so that I could join them. There were about seven or eight of her friends and came in an 50’s Studebaker.

I picked up my camera from her last night and here are a couple of the photos that I took…

The first is of the upper falls, in the top right of the picture you can see some of the round kettle potholes, that the park is famous for. The state park web-site says,
“Another tale focuses on the potholes near the falls, which are some of the finest examples of pothole stone formations in this section of the country. Perfectly cylindrical, they range from inches to several feet in diameter and depth. These potholes were formed by stones moved downstream by the current and trapped in an eddy where the stone was spun around and around, wearing a depression in the rock. When the rock wore itself down, another would catch in the same hole and enlarge it. We know this now, but to the early settlers the potholes were a great mystery that they tried to explain with references to the supernatural. They thought that the Devil has passed by the falls, accidentally getting his tail wet. This made him so mad he burned holes in the stones with his hooves as he bounded away.”

The other photograph is of the whole falls looking up from the bottom of falls. I had to crop the picture because half of the photograph was in the shade and the other half in the sun. I wish I had Photoshop CS because I think could had adjusted the sunny side of the photo.
The water coming over the falls was low because we have not had much rainfall in the past couple of weeks, I can just imagine what the falls must be like in the spring.


Last night when I went to pick up my camera, I went to a LGBT bar down in New London. The bar was mostly empty when I arrive and met my friend, she was sitting with a lesbian and I joined them. Later we were joined by a guy and I sat there quietly as normally, after about a half hour the guy asked me a question. When I answered the question, he looked at me and said you have a deep voice, leaned forward, sat back in his chair, leaned forward again and got up and left.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

First Day of Classes

I got through the first day of classes. My first class is in the undergraduate building and it’s a tiny room that we all barely fit in. The professor went over by fifteen minutes and I hope that is not typical, the class is suppose to end at 12:15 but we got out at 12:30. Once I start my internship, I will have to be in Hartford for a weekly intern meeting at 1:00.

Because of all the books I have to carry, I went out between my classes and bought a book bag. I was hoping I didn’t need a book bag since I think I look dorky using it, I guess I am from the old school and think I should carry my books in my arms, but it was just too much to carry.

I started my afternoon class off with a bang by going to the wrong room! I didn’t find out until we went around the room introducing ourselves and the professor said that my name was not on her lists…Ops.

I think that I will have problems with my 4:15 – 6:15 class, the professor is going to take grammar into account when grading the two papers we have to write. Anyone who is a regular reader of my blog knows that grammar is not one of my strong points – “I are a ingineer”

Well, back to my reading…


Fashion show, music, dancing, cash bar, and general merriment.

MCed by Comedian JT Cotter

JT Cotter is a 32yr old Transman from Arizona, and he is just back from Girl Splash!!! in P-town where he was the opening act for "Mimi Gonzalez"

Date: 9/12/08

Doors open at 8 PM

Tickets $10, (No one will be turned away for lack of funds)

Tommy's Restaurant

825 Saybrook Road

Middletown, CT

BUSTED AGAIN! is the second annual fashion show organized by and for the trans and gender non-conforming community to give ourselves and our allies the opportunity to come together and celebrate how much beauty there is in our community. Get ready to have a great time surrounded by wonderful people!

All proceeds go to the Connecticut TransAdvocacy Coalition Need directions: Call 860 983 8139 or visit our web-site at or email

Yes, I will be modeling again this year.

Links to last years fashion show;

Monday, September 01, 2008

Cindy McCain on Palin: she's qualified because 'Alaska is close to Russia'

I found this on Pam’s House Blend

I cannot believe that Mrs. McCain thinks that living close to Russia qualifies Gov. Palin for foreign policy experience.

Manic Monday

Lisa’s Manic Monday #132

If you were to name the one thing you have the most compassion for, what would it be?
I could state the obvious and say babies or the homeless, but I will say the people who have lost everything because they had to be true to themselves.

It's been said that, "The best things in life are free." Do you think this is true?
Yes, your family and friends. Without them there will no one to share your happiness

What is the most valuable thing you own?

My house and in another year or two it will be all mine!