Wednesday, July 30, 2014

“I dreamed I read a blog in my Maidenform Bra”

I don’t know who came up with the Maidenform Bra ads of the mid-twentieth century, but they were a genius. It was one of the most successful advertising campaigns ever. We have all had dreams where we’re in public semi-dressed, and these ads tapped into that. They also tapped into the forbidden thrill of exhibitionism. There were undoubtedly women who looked at these ads and thought, “I dreamed I drove men wild in my Maidenform Bra.”

These examples are a good representation of those that were familiar fifty years ago.

Maidenform had such success with the ads that there was a contest: the best dream suggestion could win $10,000, a fortune in 1955.

The ads were so popular they became a natural inspiration for the folks at Mad. This spoof looks so close to the original you could almost be fooled into thinking it was part of the campaign. It was the kind of thing that advertisers loved; when they were lampooned by Mad they knew their ads were successful.

Artist Wallace Wood even used Jayne Mansfield in his two-page “Far Out Fables” for Cavalcade, a men’s magazine.

Of course, women weren’t the only people who noticed the Maidenform ads. They also got the attention of some wide-eyed males, including me.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Girls, you too can have a shapely bum like Jen Selter!

Yes, ladies, the “look” is callipygian. That word, which is Greek and means “shapely bottom,” is all the rage nowadays. Having a booty that makes you hurry to get through a door so it doesn’t hit your butt is back again. You can see it in the extraordinary tailgate of fitness model Jen Selter.

Our great-great-great-great grandmothers got what nature did not provide by wearing a bustle.

You need not go to that much trouble. No bustles are can go to Frederick’s of Hollywood online and buy a Four Pad Girdle Panty for $44.50 (left photo), or if you are more economy minded and don’t need so much padding, you can get the Contoured Foam Booty Panty for a mere $29.50 (right picture).

Recently in going through some storage boxes I came across a tearsheet from a 1973 issue of Esquire magazine. Frederick’s of Hollywood once offered this little backless number for only $10.00. I don’t see it in today’s online catalog from Frederick’s, and it is too bad, because it is a stunner.

You can find more lovely bubble-butts by clicking on this picture:

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Man arrested twice for having sex with dog, both times caught on camera

Melvin Parley Pace must have some real attraction for a dog. He has been caught twice having sex with the same animal, and both times he was caught on camera. The 65-year-old Pace was first caught having sex with the animal in December, and was released after a plea deal was reached. He was charged in the first instance with two counts each of bestiality, lewdness and criminal trespass, but got off with a year’s probation after pleading guilty to two counts of lewdness.

According to police, in the spring the dog’s owner opened the dog run again, and the camera was reactivated. Pace was again caught on camera having sex with the dog. This time the man faces five counts of lewdness with prior convictions, a third-degree felony, as well as five counts of bestiality and seven counts of criminal trespass. Is it fair to say that Melvin will be spending some time behind bars to consider his chosen attraction?

The dog is a kangal, a large Turkish breed. It looks like it could get to a size where it could handle itself while being violated, and would be capable of discouraging an attacker. One is left to wonder: was the sex consensual? It was in Melvin’s mind, anyway.

 A kangal and a man having a tender moment in a stock photo found on the Internet. The man is not the man charged with a sex crime.

I don’t understand such a perversion as human-animal sex. On the other hand, I saw a cable television program just the other day that featured a man masturbating a hog. I don’t know the program or the cable network, but it was one of those informational programs, a how-they-do-it type documentary I stopped on while channel flipping. They didn’t actually show the manipulation, but an isolated look at the hog showed him laying with a languid look on his pig-face while letting it happen. The host of the program was presented with a large bag of hog semen, which looked to be a pint or more. The owner of the animal proudly said the semen was worth about $45,000. I wonder if I would be willing to perform such an act on an animal for that kind of money? It makes me think. And what I think is I’m glad I’m not in the hog business, regardless of the financial reward.

So was what the hog farmer doing considered bestiality? When it is done for business it isn’t. The idea of it gave me the shudders, though, just like the story of a man raping a large dog.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Where are those nuts of yesteryear?

I saw some tea party rally on television a couple of years ago. There were more than a few of what I would call the Honey Boo-Boo and Duck Dynasty crowd: people who are entertained watching television programs about crackers who live in the swamps and clout alligators. I’m sure what I saw was not the image the tea party was trying to project. They want the rest of America to look at them as patriots, standing on the ramparts of freedom. They wish to appear as taking America back from the Satanic liberals and their abortions, “entitlements” like Social Security and Medicare, gun control and soft-headed views on immigration.

No, by god, these real Americans want to keep women from having any rights over their own bodies, make old people suffer and die when they are too old to work and too poor to live, make sure guns get into the hands of maniacs and murderers, and turn back all attempts by non-Americans to get across our borders so they can be exploited by employers and do the shitty jobs real Americans won’t do at the shitty wages the exploiters will pay.

The tea party didn’t just appear. They have been here for a long time under various names and guises long before I was born, and I imagine they will still be here long after I am ashes in an urn. They are the kinds of malcontents, racists and obstructionists who use ignorance as their beacon and prejudice as a shining light. They are the kind of people who can quote to you the Second Amendment to the Constitution, but cannot tell you what the Third or Fourth Amendments are. (Look them up if you don’t know. What? You want me to do all your work for you?)

Somebody’s granny makes a fashion statement with the Stars and Stripes.

”Wrap a flag around anything and it looks good.” — Joe Simon, co-creator of Captain America.  “Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel.” — Dr. Samuel Johnson, 1775.

During protest marches against the Vietnam war some protesters were criticized for sewing flags onto the seats of their jeans. In that case it was considered desecration of the flag. In the case of the tea party it is patriotic to have flags sticking out of their hats or to use as a wrap.

When I was in high school in the years 1962-65 the John Birch Society was making its own notoriety. In their case it wasn’t the internal struggle that has put our nation into political gridlock, it was their personal war on communism, and the people they saw as fellow travelers. A couple of my high school teachers were called on the carpet for preaching Bircher dogma to their classes.

The Birch Society was so adamant in its beliefs they even went so far as to accuse President Dwight D. Eisenhower of being a commie dupe. The Birchers are still around, even though communism isn’t the hot topic it was during those Cold War years. They had their day, and now they are way behind those tea party types in getting any press or publicity.

I saw this billboard on State Street in Salt Lake City in the mid-‘60s; it didn’t go without some sort of challenge, which I recall from newspaper editorials of the day. The chief criticism, and rightly so, of its claims to “Martin Luther King at communist training school” was the lack of any other information. Where was the school? Who ran the school? When was the photo taken? Was the photo real?  But the Birchers used an old propaganda tactic. Just the accusation was enough.

Another group we don’t hear much about nowadays is the Ku Klux Klan. In reading some current information about the Klan I see it is estimated there are about 5,000-8,000 of them in the U.S. That’s far from their glory days of the 1920s when they were very powerful. I think it had something to do with how silly they all looked in those costumes and hoods. And they look even sillier now, many of them out of the hoods, but walking around with swastikas on their arms, immature and defective brains, playing at being Nazis.

 Welcome to the town from the Ku Klux Klown.

A few years before the ascendency of the tea party I was interested in right-wing nut groups like Posse Comitatus* and Sovereign Citizens. Sovereign Citizens (or as I call them, “Slobberin’ Citizens”) have a really arcane belief system. They believe, for one, that when we are born the U.S. borrows money on us. So if a Slobberin’ Citizen gets a traffic ticket or a court judgment, they are likely to write on the ticket, “Take it out of my account.”

That’s not to mention the much vaunted freedom of religion that Americans enjoy, at times much to the detriment of society in general. When you have groups who use religion as the basis for their bigotry then how much of that is freedom for them and repression for others? (The recent Hobby Lobby decision by the Supreme Court is interpreted by many to be just that.)

Unfortunately, when it comes to screwball beliefs and oddball ideas the United States of America has more than its share. My theory is that because of the large territory of the U.S., the number of states and their varying geographical locations, many different ideas and values evolved from each area. As a nation it makes for some polarization, since people from the Deep South might have quite different viewpoints from those in the Northeast or even the West Coast. It has been painfully obvious during the Obama presidency that the bigots are going insane with lust to get a black man out of office…and if that means the whole United States suffers because of congressional intransigence and prejudice well then, tough teats.

That old mentality, spontaneously combusting into fires of rebellion to the detriment of fellow citizens, is alive and well in the United States.  I can answer my own question of “where are those nuts of yesteryear?” by saying that they are still here. They never went away. They just have their own spokespeople who spout their inflammatory talk on radio, and fool the bigoted and simple-minded into doing their bidding, which is their personal war on America and its real patriots. They have their own agenda, to burn down the house and everyone in it, and then rebuild using their sinister plans. They are the true enemies of Americans and those folks that are working for the good of the country, not its downfall.

Here are three of those tea party enemies of America all together. Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas by way of Canada), and Sarah Palin, one-time unsuccessful candidate for Vice President, one short-term governor of Alaska (when the going got tough, she got going and quit), and all-around shrill voice of unreason. (It doesn’t matter what happens in the world, for Sarah Palin it’s all Barack Obama’s fault.) Of course Lee and Cruz are the two hammerheads who shut down the government in 2013. Did it do any good? No. Did these guys think it did? What I see in this picture is Lee with a smirking face and Cruz with his head hanging. I don’t think Cruz’s head hanging low means he feels shame, more like the weight of his ego is hard to hold up.

*Posse Comitatus named itself after a law passed during the Reconstruction period after the Civil War, which kept federal officials from having powers over the local officials. It was ostensibly because of Northern troops having been quartered in the South after the end of the rebellion, but it probably had more to do with keeping ex-slaves from ever having any rights or privileges as citizens of the U.S. It worked for about a hundred years.

Saturday, July 05, 2014

Same sex marriage: the new Civil Rights issues and images

A few weeks ago the 10th Circuit Court ruled on an appeal by Utah that sought to overturn a federal judge's decision in December, 2013. At that time Judge Robert Shelby ruled that Utah's laws against same sex marriage were unconstitutional. The state appealed. The three-judge panel of the 10th Circuit Court recently voted 2-to-1 to uphold the original judge’s ruling. No big surprise there. Utah just didn’t have much of a case to present. What I’m seeing in the arguments against same sex marriage are mostly personal, not lawful. “Children should be with mothers and fathers.” “Marriage is for procreation.” “Same sex marriage is wrong because homosexuality is a sin. The Bible says so!”

Lost in the moral hubbub is that marriage is also a legal contract between consenting individuals. In case one of us is incapacitated or dies, my wife and I have rights of survivorship, power of attorney, bank accounts, and all of the rest of the accoutrements of a legal marriage. When we married no one said anything like the sole reason for our union was for procreation, or that both of us had to raise our child. It worked out that way, but it wasn’t in any contract I saw. We had a civil ceremony in front of a judge. There were no religious overtones at all, nor should there have been. I cannot think of a solitary reason that a same sex couple should not be able to marry and  make a legal contract like ours.

But just as with the original December ruling by Judge Shelby against Utah's discriminatory law, the 10th Circuit Court’s decision affirming Shelby as correct, the State of Utah, in the persons of Governor Gary Herbert and Attorney General Sean Reyes, have vowed to fight all the way to the Supreme Court. In the months since Shelby’s ruling 18 other states have had federal judges give the same answer to those states with laws that discriminate. The Fourteenth Amendment trumps all. No state can pass and enforce a law that picks out a particular group for legal discrimination.

My bet is that the Supreme Court will have to affirm what so many federal judges have already ruled. Or if the high court wants to chicken out, they can choose not to hear the case, but to let the lower court judges’ rulings stand.

I have spoken of governors who fight against this tide of the twenty-first century’s civil rights battle as being on the wrong side of history. Yesterday a columnist for the Salt Lake Tribune, Scott D. Pierce, wrote a column with a similar theme.

In harkening back to the sixties’ civil rights fights, Pierce quotes former Mississippi governor Ross Barnett as saying, “God was the original segregationist. He made the white man white and the black man black, and he did not intend for them to mix.” (I am always amazed at how many governors imply they have God on their speed-dial so God can tell the governor exactly what he wants to hear.)

Pierce goes on to include Governor Herbert as someone who reacts like Barnett. From Pierce’s column:
       The tone may have been different, but the message was the same five decades later when Herbert responded to a federal court striking Utah's ban on same-sex marriage.
       “Decades from now, clips of his public statements will be part of documentaries about his fight for gay rights. Viewers’ jaws will drop when they hear him say that governors and attorneys general who choose not to defend their state's same sex marriage bans were taking ‘the next step toward anarchy.’ Future documentarians will salivate when they come across the clip of Herbert saying, ‘What you choose to do with your sexual orientation is different in my mind than what you’re born with as far as your race.’
     “Viewers will cringe, Herbert’s children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren will be embarrassed. In those future documentaries, Utah will play the part of Mississippi in the 1960s — a backward state whose elected officals fought to deny many of its citizens basic rights.
       “Herbert will be remembered, but not in the way he hopes.
Because his round head reminds me of Charlie Brown, I could not resist tinkering with an actual Charlie Brown comic strip. It came about when Herbert announced he would run again for governor in 2016 because he thinks his approval ratings are up. Well, Governor, you can believe what you want, but if or when you are reelected it will be because people around here don’t know you from Shinola.