Rich Pretty

Disclaimer: This is an extremely shallow little post, unlike all my other posts. Haha.

Gwynnie is only pretty because she’s rich. She can afford the best beauty treatments, clothing, accessories and personal trainer (someone to take the food out of her mouth so she doesn’t eat.) She can afford rest and rest accoutrement (Hästens Vividus, vacation home in The Seychelles, plastic surgery…). Rich people can also afford inner beauty because they can experience more and pay to learn anything they want. Rich people have soft feet, perfect teeth and Michelin Stars.

The Kardashians are rich pretty and so were all the girls on The Hills. When I google “rich pretty” I get a lot of results related to rich men with pretty women like Donald and Melania Trump. I guess that make Mr. Trump “rich handsome.”

I would be much prettier right now if I wasn’t saving up to buy an ankle MRI and could afford an eyebrow wax. As woman in the sauna of a private tennis club once told me as she was slathering her naked body in EVO, “It’s all about natural beauty.” Right.

Rich Pretty

I Voted For Hillary Clinton. Why Do I feel So Guilty?

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I walked into a polling place in Berkeley, California today and voted for Hilary Clinton instead of Bernie Sanders. When my ballot was spat back out of the scanner, rejected I imagined all my friends shaking their Sanders loving slender fingers at me. My girlfriends dressed as Bernie Sanders for Bay to Breakers and waited on line for hours to cheer him on at his Oakland rally. Why do I feel as defective as my ballot voting for Hilary Clinton?

Here’s where you’re really going to shun me. I also voted for Hilary Clinton instead of Barack Obama in the 2008 California primary. I’m sorry that it’s been my dream to see a woman elected president since I watched Geraldine Ferraro at the Democratic National Convention as a little girl and was later called a lesbian after proudly displaying a Newsweek photo of Clinton in her Wellesley College days in my high school locker.

I have good and bad reasons for wanting to see Hilary Clinton elected president of the United States. A bad reason is that the wealthiest I’ve ever been was working as a first year public school teacher when Bill Clinton was president. I think the Clintons know what they’re doing. A good reason is that Hilary Clinton has the foreign policy experience necessary to lead this country.

Women are still treated like shit in the United Sates (we have like the worst parental leave policy in the entire world?). I’d like to see a woman president represent my interests in the White House. I care about reproductive rights, gun violence and equal pay. My friend A says that he will only vote for someone he’d want to play poker with. That statement just fucking sucks as he means he’d rather vote for Donald Trump. More snarky vitriol that Clinton will overcome.

I Voted For Hillary Clinton. Why Do I feel So Guilty?

Great Progress? Fuck Kaiser and Donald Trump

This is a guest post written by my smarty pants friend Patrick Glenn. It’s very serious.Bet you have to look up at least one word. Learn something people! 

Advertising isn’t a place anyone should turn to for wisdom.  After all, ads exist to sell you on a product or service, not make you think critically about the world.  However, every once in a while, an ad is so amazingly dumb that it becomes worth talking about.

“Great progress comes from doing the right thing,” so this advertisement tells me in its opening line.  The ad is for Kaiser Permanente (the health program to which I already belong, incidentally).  Putting aside what “doing the right thing” has to do with a company that looks at the sick, injured, and dying and says, “I think we can make money there,” it is a profoundly stupid statement.  If you were to actually think about the statement for two seconds you realize the absurdity of it, so it is uttered in an assured, soothing tone by a professional voice artist, making it seem reflexively true and not worth thinking too hard about.

Another important reason people can easily gloss over the line in question is that many people actually believe some variation of it.  People tend to think of history is an upward progression, with things constantly getting better.  Every year gets us more civilized, more democratic, better educated, more free.  With this thinking, it stands to reason that since the history of the world is constantly getting better, only “doing the right thing” moves history.

The truth is, of course, that “great change” comes from a number of different sources.  Ideas and movements come and go, and sometimes return.  However, the upward-trajectory view of history leaves blind spots in many peoples’ understanding of the world.  For instance, historian James Loewen has detailed how race relations in America were actually worse in the late 19th and early 20th century than they were in the years immediately following the abolition of slavery.   Few Americans understand this, as we tend to think that America was super racist in 1865 and has grown steadily, if slowly, less racist ever since.

The problem with this thinking is not only that it’s inaccurate, but also that it leaves people flummoxed at phenomena like the rise of Donald Trump.  How can such a person have so much political traction in 2016?  Aren’t we a better society than that?  Well, no.  We just needed circumstances to give fertile soil to his type of demagoguery.  More troublingly, America is only getting Diet Fascism in Trump’s authoritarian populist schtick.  Europe, the birthplace of true fascism, has seen recent political victories by overtly and explicitly fascist, nationalist, and racist parties.  People can’t understand how this is possible in societies that are supposed to be getting ever more progressive, tolerant, and empowered with each passing year and each right thing done.

The rise and triumph of Donald Trump and his supporters within the Republican Party certainly qualifies as a “great change.”  Did it come from doing the right thing?  Actually, if you want to pinpoint when the GOP could have saved itself, look at the rise of the Birther movement in 2011-2012, which Trump spearheaded.  The right thing for Republicans to have done would have been to say, “We dislike the President for 100 policy reasons, but this idea that he is a secret foreigner is a silly waste of time.  He was born in the USA, end of story.”  But the GOP decided they needed to keep the racist vote, so while the establishment leadership at the time didn’t fully jump on board with the conspiracy theories, they didn’t dismiss them either.  Instead, they gave tacit approval by saying things like, “It’s not my job to tell people what to think.”  They decided to keep the fringe elements that have now subsumed them.

So please, don’t buy into the pablum that history is a great forward-moving force always giving victory to the forces of light.  And don’t forget, even when the Kaiser ad is right and a great change does occur because someone did the right thing, “the right thing” doesn’t always look like what we expect.  Rosa Parks wasn’t just some woman who didn’t want to move to the back of the bus; she was a radical activist who intentionally broke the law to make a statement.  She’s a hero to us today, but in her day she was a criminal.

P.S.: Yes, if you want to be super pedantic about it, you could argue that they didn’t say that great change only comes from doing the right thing, but that’s the implication given the order of elements in the sentence (if they had said that doing the right thing results in great change, it wouldn’t be as exclusively defined).

Great Progress? Fuck Kaiser and Donald Trump

I Heart Stats

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Pretty As A Peanut has been viewed in 1/3 of the countries in the world

My blog Pretty As A Peanut is now 2 months old. Here are a few more fun stats that WordPress provides for me.

Top 10 Countries (I’m huge in Nepal, haha)

#10 Mexico
#9 Germany
#8 India
#7 Japan
#6 France
#5 Nepal
#4 Australia
#3 United Kingdom
#2 Canada
#1 United States

Top 10 Tags

#10 Bay Area
#9 Disney Princesses
#8 Tina Belcher & Bob’s Burgers
#7 Ghosting
#6 Beer
#5 Text
#4 Adventure Time
#3 Sexy
#2 Oakland
#1 Donald Trump

Party time!


I Heart Stats

Pretty As A Peanut Party

My fucking talented friend Diana Clock designed this beautiful invitation

100 posts
1/3 of the world (including Iraq)

Today is a big day for my blog. Pretty As A Peanut is two months old and has hit some exciting milestones. Pretty Pnuts everywhere are invited to join me in celebrating.

Here are the top 10 most popular posts (which prove that my friends are much cooler than me since 40% of these are guest posts).

#10 What To Do In Berkeley On A Friday Night

#9 Why The Sandwich Spot Is The Only Place I Want To Eat Lunch Outside My Apartment

#8 The Good Part

#7 Still Boycotting Game Of Thrones

#6 Most Dateable

#5 Least Dateable

#4 He Couldn’t Say It To My Face, But He Could Say It to Facebook

#3 What To Do In Oakland On Friday Night

#2 The Simpsons On A Date

#1 Donald Trump In Conversation With Tina Belcher

Pretty As A Peanut Party

Ted Cruz, Family Guy

Ted Cruz scares me. I don’t like Family Guy. Match. Family Guy (FG) quotes are an amalgam of several characters (mostly Peter Griffin) and Ted Cruz (TC) just says this shit of his own accord.

On condoms

TC: Last I checked, we don’t have a rubber shortage in America. Look, when I was in college, we had a machine in the bathroom, you put 50 cents in and voila.

FG: Oh look Chris, here’s your costume from the year you went as a condom.

On end of days

TC (shouted at 3 year old girl): The world is on fire! Yes! Your world is on fire!

FG: Well, I guess that’s it then. Jesus is gone.

On board games

TC: Twenty years from now if there is some obscure Trivial Pursuit question, I am confident I will be the answer.

FG: Aww man! I hate Trivial Pursuit, it always makes me feel so stupid.

On Muslims

TC: We saw the ugly face of radical Islam in Garland, Texas. Thankfully, one police officer helped those terrorists meet their virgins.

FG: No way! That’s awesome! So wait, let me get this straight: Sweet hat, obedient wife, and I get to shout “Admiral Akbar” when I do stuff? You, sir, have got yourself a Muslim.

On the legalization of marijuana

TC: I’ll buy you a tequila. Or even some famous Colorado brownies.

FG: I’m sorry Lois, we all had some pot brownies on the plane.

On marriage equality

TC: Instead of a federal government that works to undermine our values, imagine a federal government that works to defend the sanctity of human life and to uphold the sacrament of marriage.

FG: Did you hear that Meg? Guys can marry other guys now. So…this is awkward, but I mean, if they can do that, that is pretty much it for you, isn’t it? I mean you as well pack it in. Game over.

On racism

TC: It’s every bit as true now as it was then. We need 100 more like Jesse Helms in the U.S. Senate.

FG: The police are gone? Oh my god, we’re finally safe.

On crazy

TC: If standing for liberty and standing for the Constitution make you a wacko bird, then you can count me a very proud wacko bird.

FG: Oh my god, Brian, there’s a message in my Alphabits. It says, ‘Oooooo.’ No, those are Cheerios.

On religion

TC: I kind of thought it was the job of a chaplain to be insensitive to atheists.

FG: Good morning, Hebrews and She-brews. What a glorious Jewish day. Hey, how about all those coupons in the Sunday paper, huh? Some good deals there. Hey, y’know, I went into a store last week and they wanted 800 bucks for a TV, but I ussed them down to 500.

On their wives

TC (ripping off the movie American President): If you want a character fight, stick with me because Heidi is way out of your league.

FG: I walked into the kitchen and sat down at the table. I looked with a grimace at the questionable meal Lois had placed in front of me.

On abortion

TC: I intend to lead the fight in the United States Senate to defund Planned Parenthood, even while investigations continue. The time for show votes is over.  Funding the federal government does not require funding Planned Parenthood.  But basic decency and our commitment to the right to life does require that we stop taxpayer funding of abortions and any trade in baby parts.

FG: I’m here to save the unborn Brian. After they’re born they can go fuck themselves.

This is fun?

Please check out other posts in this series:

Barney on Barney on Bernie

Donald Trump and Bob’s Burgers’ Tina Belcher

Donald Trump and Adventure Time’s Lumpy Space Princess

Hillary Clinton and Disney’s Princesses

Ted Cruz, Family Guy

Barney on Barney on Bernie

Former Massachusetts congressman Barney Frank believes democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders can’t win with mostly white liberal supporters and platform of isle crossing condemnation. But what would Barney (the big purple dinosaur) have to say to Barney Frank on Bernie Sanders?

On criticizing Washington insiders

Bernie Sanders: Do the elected officials in Washington stand with ordinary Americans – working families, children, the elderly, the poor – or will the extraordinary power of billionaire campaign contributors and Big Money prevail? The American people, by the millions, must send Congress the answer to that question.

Barney Frank: When he leads his audience in the chant that Wall Street regulates Congress, he draws no distinction between Democrats who enacted crucial financial regulations like the Volcker rule, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and the regulation of derivatives and the Republicans who fought all three and are now working to undermine them.

Barney the Dinosaur: I love you, you love me. We’re a happy family.

On political experience

Bernie Sanders: What the American people want to see in their president is somebody who not necessarily can win every fight, but they want to see him stand up and fight for what he believes, take his case to the American people.

Barney Frank: I don’t personally remember his playing a meaningful role in moving either health care or financial regulation in the direction he favored when we were considering them. This isn’t a criticism of his work at the time, but it’s definitely an example of the scrutiny that should be given to his legislative work on the issues he’s campaigning on now.

Barney the Dinosaur: The dreams you see most clearly are most likely to come true.

With him or against him in blowing up the establishment

Bernie Sanders: We need new thinking to address the enormous crises facing our country. It is too late for establishment policies, politics and economics.

Barney Frank: No, Planned Parenthood and the Human Rights Campaign are not resisters of change. Neither is John Lewis, or the other Congressional Black Caucus members who are campaigning for Clinton, nor Tom Harkin, the leader in fighting for the rights of those with disabilities, nor Henry Waxman and Sandy Levin, who chaired the committees that wrote the ACA in the House and who have written an article defending their work against Sanders.

Barney the Dinosaur: Hello again to all my friends. I’m glad you came to play. Our fun and learning never ends.

On moving forward in the campaign

Bernie Sanders: I think the idea that we are the campaign that has the energy, that can create large voter turnouts, and can beat Trump, will be a convincing argument to many superdelegates.

Barney Frank: As more attention is paid to his record, and as the silence of his colleagues perhaps turns into active skepticism and uneasiness, Sanders is likely to face headwinds he so far has managed to avoid.

Barney the Dinosaur: Then fasten your seat belts, and away we’ll gooooo!

Please check out other posts in this series:

Donald Trump and Bob’s Burgers’ Tina Belcher

Donald Trump and Adventure Time’s Lumpy Space Princess

Hilary Clinton and Disney’s Princesses

I didn’t write this but I wish I did:

Bernie Sanders and Austin Powers

Barney on Barney on Bernie