Clarissa's Blog

An academic's opinions on feminism, politics, literature, philosophy, teaching, academia, and a lot more.

Archive for the category “Uncategorized”

Burying the Intellectually Dead

I understand why lifelong conservatives (like reader Dreidel, for example) need to indulge in “Hillary and Trump are the same” narratives. I even feel sympathy because seeing your party become what the GOP has become can’t be easy. 

But I can’t accept Liberals who promote this narrative. Their complete intellectual and moral collapse is painful to observe. It’s like looking at putrefying corpses of people I used to like. 

Which is why I have deleted such folks (total number: 16) from my Facebook and blog roll It’s easier to pretend they emigrated to Mongolia than to keep seeing their degradation. 

I’m better than anybody I know at having good relationships with people of opposing political views. But observing the agony of formerly vibrant intellects is intolerable. 

It’s Clear

I was a political blank slate when I came to the continent. Unlike most people, I wasn’t made a Democrat or a Republican by my parents, friends, or college buddies. None of the political issues that are important here were even comprehensible to me. Where I grew up, abortion rights, gun rights, gay rights, taxes, budget deficits, racism, welfare, school prayer, unions, college debt, creationism, immigration, etc were as relevant as the weather in a neighboring galaxy.

I only started reading an American newspaper regularly a year ago and watching news on TV more often than once a month 2 years ago. I’m unsociable and don’t discuss US politics with anybody on an even semi-regular basis So my political preferences are as untainted as one can hope for. It’s like I came from another planet, looked at things, and made a choice. 

The choice is clear, people. And I don’t mean just today. If you look at evidence from an entirely unbiased position, it’s absolutely clear. 

A Good Competition 

The problem with all these sensational speeches we’ve been hearing at the DNC is that Hillary still has to speak. And it won’t be easy after so much brilliant oratory. The stakes get higher with every great speech. This will be a challenge for her tomorrow. 

But hey, to borrow Michelle Obama’s phrase, it’s better to have to go really high in order to impress than to have to think of endless ways to go even lower. The lineup we’ve seen in Philadelphia is a good competition to be in. 

Why Bloomberg?

I have no idea why we are supposed to be listening to Bloomberg. I’m afraid of turning on the convention because I don’t want to see his smug face. Such great speakers except for this one useless fellow.

The MO Race

Democrats are not even advertising in the gubernatorial race in Missouri. Republicans, in the meanwhile, are carpet-bombing us with ads. I know the names and the life stories of all Republican contenders but I have no idea who even runs on the Dem side. Unless the goal is to lose this governorship as well, I have no idea what the Democrats are trying to achieve. 


So guess what I just did. I ordered at a drive-through. For the first time ever! Not only had I never done it before, but I’ve never seen anybody do it in real life. It was very scary but it went well. I feel sophisticated and accomplished.

Of course, since drive-through ordering is such a quintessentially American activity, I had to order something very American. So I got a burger and Wisconsin cheese curds (I have no idea what they are but they sound extremely American.) I also got something called “a malt.” Which also sounds very American. Now I have to figure out what people do with a malt: drink it, eat it, inhale it, something else? But it was a fun all-American experience. I had my little American in the backseat with me for inspiration.

I wonder which other American activities I can try out.

Sticker Sleuthing

Another fun thing I do during my walks around the neighborhood is try to guess who owns vehicles based on their bumper stickers. For instance, there is a car with one of those “Abortion no; adoption yes” stickers in front of one of the $800,000 houses (in our region that’s extremely expensive, by the way.)

I was absolutely certain the owner had to be an older rich man because who else would be clueless enough about pregnancy not to figure out that there are women who want to avoid being pregnant because of possible health complications, physical hardship and loss of work productivity? One of those idiots who earnestly say crap like, “Well, if she doesn’t want a baby, why not just give birth and put it up for adoption?” The word “just” is especially endearing in a creature who is physiologically incapable of the state he so carelessly dismisses as trivial.

Today I finally saw the car’s owner, and what do you think? Yes, of course, it’s a sixtyish fellow with a paunch and a handlebar mustache.

The Downtrodden 

A huge house with a 4-car garage in the neighborhood has a “Hillary for prison” sticker in every window. My heart bleeds for the poor downtrodden folks who have been impoverished by trade deals and ended up in this mansion. 

Intrusion of the Private

I’m as opposed to the institution of First Gentleman as I am to that of the First Lady. I believe in the separation between the public and the private and don’t want politicians’ relatives to be forced upon my notice. It’s way too easy to use cute kids, attractive spouses, heroic parents and inspiring grandparents to distract us from what a politician is actually doing. 

Of course, I understand that people’s appetite for who sleeps with whom is unquenchable and we are doomed to see the private colonize the public until it’s completely obliterated. But I don’t want any part of it. Which is why I didn’t watch Bill Clinton’s speech. And it’s just as well because it’s being discussed by everybody in terms of the most outlandish sexist stereotypes. It’s like everybody has gone dumb as a result of hearing the speech. 


The DNC is phenomenally organized. I’m very impressed. All the more of a shame it is that the person who did all the organizing had to be ousted over a ridiculous prejudice against her. 

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