Filed under: Comment, media, Uncategorized | Tags: Election, Middle East, Politics, UK
Happy Election Day to the UK. Most recent exit polls have the Tories (Dave Cameron’s Conservatives) romping home with little less than a majority, but hey, I’ve got a wager on at work that they’ll take out 330 seats – so who am I to wish them ill? K’ARN TORIES!
Four your procrastinating pleasure, a few odds and ends on the game-changing British elections:
Who said the BBC were old fuddies without a clue? Turns out they have concocted the coolest way to track and tally votes EVER. Right. Hurr.
Thanks to Foreign Policy, a break down of the implications for the Middle East.
And because if it ain’t on the front page of a tabloid, it didn’t really happen – here is a little diddy about the two major tabs in the Kingdom, and just how they work their objective, unaffiliated, non-partisan magic.
Can’t wait for the official results? Click right thurr for The Guardian’s live blog of the results.
It’s going to be a tight race. The only thing that is certain is the demise of Gordon “The Bigot Machine” Brown. The King is Dead. Long Live the King.
Filed under: media | Tags: Anti-Semitism, Israel, Middle East, Palestine, Politics, Racism, USA, War
I’m still not quite sure what the relevance of the joke was, why he had to reference the tale as “true”, or how it “set the stage for [Jones’] remarks” but whatever, everyone’s a little bit racist. And besides, nothing like a little latent anti-Semitism to liven up the party. Am I right? Jim? Am I right? Har-di-har-har cause Jews sell stuff see? Har Har.
Judge the joke for yourselves after the jump.
Filed under: Comment | Tags: Feminism, Food, Gender, Identity, Modern Women, SNAG, Tradition, Youth
Thanks a lot Poh. You too Nigella, Kylie, Myrna – hell, even those women from Better Homes & Gardens are making me feel like a pariah, with their easy-as-1-2-3 bread and butter spectaculars and feed-the-poor-tired-and-hungry enthusiasm for kneading bread and basting flesh.
Personally, I’d rather pop a Coopers and watch someone do it for me. And most nights, I do.
See, I suffer the unusual and glorious ailment of living with a Kitchen God. That’s right, a God. Masculine. Dexterous. Full-flavoured. Talented. Gentle. Often sans shirt. And possessed of a natural ability to turn the most banal of canned items into culinary gold. It’s a delicious predicament. The only downside is this: It means I don’t cook. I can’t cook. I have no desire to learn to cook. My mother learned to cook because her mother-in-law is a domestic goddess. My sister learned to cook because her mother-in-law is a domestic goddess. And without a husband or mother-in-law to inspire/shame/berate me into kitchen up-skilling, why bother?
I mean sure, I can boil an egg and put together a pasta – if I really tried I could probably marinade a chicken breast and not burn it – but with little or no reason to put myself out (thanks to Kitchen God), I will forever remain a Lady of Lunchtime (and dinner-time) Leisure.
When I first moved out of home, there was a mad-scramble to accumulate recipes. It was clear that I would not be mastering complex french cuisine, and so I collected easy, 1 pot standards that would see me through the week and remove the temptation of an ever-rising tab at the local Thai take-away. And they were pretty outstanding. On paper. Likewise, these days, the slow cooker is still tucked away in its cupboard, gathering dust and derision from generations of women who loved nothing more than feeding their loved ones. The carefully removed Food and Wine pages of the Sunday papers are dutifully tucked in and amongst the unopened pages of recipes books, which proudly proclaim simple satisfaction in ten minutes or less. That is, if they were used properly. Or at all.
I was brought up in a family where women were confined by their gender to traditional roles of domesticity. My father brought us up to become financially independent, educated and self-reliant. Professional fulfillment was ours to take. Except that as well as career achievement and happiness, there was an another hope for three daughters – personal fulfillment, families, yes – but futures filled with more possibilities than just a variety of baked goods.
It’s tough being a woman these days. Body surfing in a bikini is hazardous. Body-scaping for a bikini too. Toddlers are promotion-kryptonite, and nannies are a definite no-no. The higher we climb, the less able we are to manoeuvre between a precarious stacked ladder and a double-glazed 3 inch thick glass ceiling – and now? The competition is only going to become more fierce, as men suddenly realise that the kitchen is not just a place to “mix it up”, and that the nutella isn’t actually a welcome addition to the bedroom, but more like a welcome addition to a batch of brownies.
But never fear. For every sharply dressed and confident SNAG who grows his own herbs, strawberries and chilli, and who knows the difference between a heavy based saucepan and a large tin bucket, there are still a few sharply dressed, confident and spoiled mummy’s boys who can’t boil the kettle without alerting the fire department.
Making sure the one you find supplements your skills – that’s personal happiness ladies. And at least one of you will use that damn slow cooker.
Filed under: Comment, Identity, Israel, Zionism | Tags: History, Ideology, Israel, Jew, media, Politics, self-determination, Top Ten, Zionism
This week marks the 62nd year of independence of the modern State of Israel. So let’s explore the ‘ism‘ that inspired, and facilitated the path towards a state for the Jewish people of the world.
If you will it, it is no dream — Teddy Herzl
There is certainly an element of pride associated with Zionism, but it is not to be confused with nationalism (a pride-filled ideology though it may be). In fact, Zionism at its origin is more about the expression of self-determination, and self-determination is about feeling worthy as a nation of the elements of nationhood that others enjoy. Elements of nationhood can include common language, culture, traditions, symbols and of course geography – the latter being the uniquely absent component when one of the first Zionists, Theodore Herzl, cooked up this hair-brained scheme to get Jewish nationhood back on the menu.
However, Zionism at its origins was not widely accepted as a national movement – most Jews lived as ‘guests’ in countries in Eastern Europe and the Middle East. Despite the threat and implications of violence, discrimination and expulsion (see England in 1290 CE, Spain, 1492 CE, Kiev, 1886 – click here for a full list of Jewish ‘Fugees) many didn’t appreciate the necessity of a national homeland. Unfortunately, it took a hundred years and millions of lives for the international community to realise this as a requirement for the safety and continuity of the Jewish people.
Currently, the image of Zionism is bound up in the current politics of the State of Israel. Perhaps it should be. But there are many forms, and many understandings of this ideology, and it’s important to see them not as a homogenous belief, but as focused manifestations of our identity as Jewish people – members of the tribe, individuals who identify as Jews, children born of Jewish parents, and people who subscribe to the tenants of faith, cultural norms and traditions of a 3000 year old history of a people – a people dispersed, and then, through the hope of Zionism, brought back together again..
So who is a Zionist? Check this out for the full list of wannabes, willneverbes and wildebeest that make up the Zionist colour palette.