Who Will Speak Up?

November 21, 2007

I don’t have words to adequately describe how sick this makes me feel. A 19-year-old woman was raped by seven men, and because she was with an “unrelated male” at the time, she’s being whipped and sent to jail. Initially, she was sentenced to 90 lashes, but because she spoke out, it’s been upped to 200.

And our state department has “expressed astonishment” but nothing stronger, and their “astonishment” wasn’t even expressed to Saudi officials. So, wait, it’s okay for politicians to go into a frenzy when Barack Obama doesn’t wear an American flag on his lapel, as though that proves that he hates America, yet this elicits… the equivalent of shaking a finger in admonishment – “Naughty, naughty!”

The only person I can see who’s gone on record so far with anything stronger is leaving her job in 2008.

Moveon.org takes out an ad about Gen. David Petraeus, and we get a Congressional resolution to denounce it.

It will be interesting to see if any of our current candidates or leaders have anything to say about this as the day goes on. Somehow, I’m guessing it’ll be pretty much ignored, and will fall off of the news sites in lieu of celebrity scandals and Thanksgiving travel stories.

Aside from writing letters to my representatives, I’m not sure what else I can do, aside from a donation to Amnesty International. Suggestions welcome.

I found the pin thing and the Betray Us kerfluffle idiotic and time-wasting enough as it was. Set beside this – which (dear god, I hope they prove me wrong here) I think will get downplayed because we want Saudi Arabia to co-sponsor a conference aimed at getting Israel and Palestine to have peace talks – those past things are all the more stupid.

This is something to get angry about.

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This is my buddy Nikkos’ blog–my pal from my Metroblogging days. Way back in the day (2005) we got into a number of political debates with a variety of people. Some of them even operated with a modicum of respect and diligence.

Most of us here at the Finger have a left of Center view. William, in Nikkos’ blog, does not. My typical reaction is one of this
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Today, I am trying this:
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Lets see how it turns out, okay?

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The the Daily Mail has an article on this Debra Cagan, pictured below,
Counselor2909Mos 468X365 that states Ms. Cagan was clear about her hatred of “All Iranians.”

Given her position in the Pentagon (Deputy Assistant Secretary for Coalition Affairs ), and the current war footing the administration has towards Iran, these comments are terrifying and completely inappropriate.

War mongering bigots get the finger. The also should be fired.
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If They Actually Do It

August 16, 2007

(Yes, I’m lazy and cross-posting.  Shut up.)

 OJ’s getting published after all.  Ugh.

Although, it seems like we might be able to put published in quotes.  Like this: “published.” 

When Sharlene Martin, the agent, announced that a New York publisher was interested and a deal had been reached, I wondered who on earth would pick it up, after all the hell that was raised when Harper tried putting it out late last year.  I couldn’t imagine, even in these days where any sensational news story seems to lead to a book being crashed into the list, that any of the big five would go anywhere near it.

Turns out none of them did.  The book is being published by Beaufort Books, a small press who, up until this book at least, splits the cost of publishing with the authors. 

Splitting the cost is a pretty way of saying the authors pay to be published.  Yog’s Law: Money flows toward the writer.  (Yog is author James D. MacDonald, who is always watching out for new writers in danger of being scammed over on the Absolute Write forums.)

It seems pretty shady – they took the splitting-the-cost blurb off of their website.  The publisher, Eric Kampmann, won’t even throw out a ballpark number for the announced first printing when asked in an interview with Publishers Weekly.   Something like this, I’d expect at least 100,000.  I don’t know how many Harper pulped, but it was at least that.

I have immense respect for Denise Brown.  How Kampmann could sit beside her on The Today Show and not be horribly ashamed, I can’t even begin to fathom.

The next question is, what are booksellers going to do with it?  It’s a tough question for all of them – whether or not to carry it, and if they do, how many copies?  Should it stay behind the counter or be put on display?  If they choose not to bring it into the store initially, will they be willing to special order it for customers?

There is absolutely a morbid curiosity factor to the whole thing.  I’d imagine there would be a good chunk of customers who would come into the store, flip through to the chapter where he describes the murder, and put it back on the shelf without buying it.  I also wonder how many people who would normally buy books from their local indie would instead order it through Amazon or B&N rather than be seen purchasing it.

This book was a bad idea.  It’s still a bad idea, no matter how much they’re trying to spin it as benefitting charities and becoming the Goldmans’ book.  Personally, I wouldn’t bring it into my store, if I had one.  I think I l would special order it for interested customers, simply because I hate the idea of telling people what they can and can’t read, but I’d be uncomfortable doing it.