The Stinque Guide to Royal Protocol

One of these leads to geopolitical anal sex.

1. The Reacharound.

Pros: Universal human gesture of warmth.

Cons: Old-lady cooties.

2. The Kowtow.

Pros: Gesture of respect common to Asian cultures.

Cons: Saudis aren’t Asian.

3. The Grip.

Pros: Gesture of friendship common to Arab cultures.

Cons: That photo.

Obama bows down to Saudi King [American Thinker]

Michelle hugs Queen and starts new British tradition [Christian Science Monitor]


Did Hopey (a) vomit in anyone’s lap, (b) provide inappropriate neck massages or (c) comically depart stage left through a door that was locked?

No? Then mission fucking accomplished.

Yes, It’s a breach of protocol. But isn’t that the fuquing point? Our president represents a republic committed to the idea that all men and women are created equal. We don’t do titles. So our president’s wife treated Mrs. Windsor as if she were an equal. And about fuquing time. And please note, Betty’s arm is about Mrs. Obama’s waist too. So she didn’t seem to mind. What, like HRM isn’t aware of the historic nature of her meeting with America’s first black first lady? You think she didn’t get a fuquing kick out of it?

And how fuquing witty and appropriate to give HRM an iPod. It represents the best thinking and design in the US. A little whatsit that has gone round the world giving pleasure to millions. What else should he give her? A bottle of gin? She gets it delivered by Fortnum’s.

Big fucking deal. Note to hyperventilating MSM. The vapors act is really getting petty and shallow considering the way you guys bent over backwards cheerleading for Operation Iraqi Freedumb, Fizkal Deregulation and Taxcuts without thinking of the actual consequences.

But I’d like to mention one thing. The more you act like the inbred dipshit twits of royal courts gone past, the faster you lose your younger, smarter and/or aware viewers. You know, the guys who your ADVERTISERS get chubbies and sell what’s left of their souls to snag and keep.

Heh. You know that Windsor is just an alias.

Don’t you mean the veddy English sounding Saxe-Coburg and Gothas?

@ManchuCandidate: Changed at outbreak of WW1. Ditto, Battenberg became Mountbatten. And Scumsuckingscheisenhauser became Princess Di.

Perhaps I’ve gone too far.

They make a big deal out that? Wow, if only there were pictures of W sucking off the saudis. They have a special helmet fitted with bicyle handlebars that they apparently made him wear for those occassions.

@FlyingChainSaw: I was just going to make a comment about Bush giving the Saudi king blowjobs, but I was too late.

People will come, homofascist. People will most definitely come.

[/james earl jones]

P.S.: I would imagine that — for all of you who (a) remember the film and (b) have the ghey — it is generally accepted that the young Moonlight Graham (before he went all Burt Lancaster on us in the last scene) was a nice little boi.

@homofascist: I know, right? Also, to a lesser extent, Utah.

This is why the truth is stranger than fiction.

Somewhere a fundy farmer is crying tears of rage while screwing his favorite milk cow.

@chicago bureau: @ManchuCandidate: @mellbell: As I said in a comment on one of my gay lawyer friend’s Facebook wall, Iowa really IS for cornholin’!

And the rage is building, ManchuCandidate. Iowa, being a sensible state, does not permit constitutional amendments by petition. The amendment has to pass the State Legislature in two consecutive sessions, and then go to a vote.

Word on the street is that the Iowa Legislature goes home until a few weeks (unless they are called into special session or somesuch), which means that gay marriage could, potentially, be on the books until 2012. And thus the wingers can’t rewrite the constitution within the space of months, as they could in some golden states we could mention.

And, hey lookee here: the decision. Seven-nil in favor of the gheys. That’s new.

I’ve just read the first paragraph of the opinion. If this isn’t a middle finger to the winger community, I don’t know what is:

This lawsuit is a civil rights action by twelve individuals who reside in six communities across Iowa. Like most Iowans, they are responsible, caring, and productive individuals. They maintain important jobs, or are retired, and are contributing, benevolent members of their communities. They include a nurse, business manager, insurance analyst, bank agent, stay-at-home parent, church organist and piano teacher, museum director, federal employee, social worker, teacher, and two retired teachers. Like many Iowans, some have children and others hope to have children. Some are foster parents. Like all Iowans, they prize their liberties and live within the borders of this state with the expectation that their rights will be maintained and protected—a belief embraced by our state motto.

Anybody reading this opinion (instead of going apeshit about the result) has to confront this, on page one.

(Actually, it’s not page one. Everybody in the Midwest knows a lawyer who filed an amici brief in this one. They take up about five or six pages of dead tree before you get to the actual opinion.)

Page 30 unleashed further pwnage:

It is true the marriage statute does not expressly prohibit gay and
lesbian persons from marrying; it does, however, require that if they marry, it must be to someone of the opposite sex. Viewed in the complete context of marriage, including intimacy, civil marriage with a person of the opposite sex is as unappealing to a gay or lesbian person as civil marriage with a person of the same sex is to a heterosexual. Thus, the right of a gay or lesbian person under the marriage statute to enter into a civil marriage only with a person of the opposite sex is no right at all. Under such a law, gay or lesbian individuals cannot simultaneously fulfill their deeply felt need for a committed personal relationship, as influenced by their sexual orientation, and gain the civil status and attendant benefits granted by the statute.

Justice Cady is on fire. Playa in the house!

Ha! I saw all the Iowa talk on FB and here and thought “ugh, Sport, isn’t March Madness over yet?” Nice to know it’s ground-breaking civil rights news instead! Aren’t my Stinquey gay friends happy to learn that they can finally, finally visit the Corn Palace without worrying about problems at the hospital should their spouse get run over by a cow?

BTW: The Polk County Registrar had an asshole for a lawyer. They actually argued that, under the equal protection / “suspect class” analysis, which includes considering whether “the characteristic at issue — sexual orientation — is related to the person’s ability to contribute to society,” that the inability to procreate was a good reason for banning gay marriage. The smackdown on this bullshit came in a footnote. Like, ouch, dudes:

The County references plaintiffs’ inability to procreate “naturally,” presumably pointing out each couple’s inability to procreate without assistance. Plaintiffs’ inability to contribute children to society by procreation through sexual intercourse with each other does not dictate the outcome of our consideration under this factor. The inquiry into gay and lesbian people’s ability to contribute to society is a general one, designed to signal whether such classifications routinely risk elevating stereotype over ability. A person’s ability to procreate is merely one of many ways in which the person can contribute to society….

Furthermore: there was argument over whether people could be cured of the gay. The Iowa Supreme Court didn’t rule on that, but said this:

we agree with those courts that have held the immutability “prong of the suspectness inquiry surely is satisfied when… the identifying trait is ‘so central to a person’s identity that it would be abhorrent for government to penalize a person for refusing to change [it].’”

20:1 against that this gives the wingers an awful idea. I can see it now: wingers banging fists on tables asking state governments to set up re-education happy camps. (It is not abhorrent if a majority says it isn’t, you know. The majority fucking rules!)

Finally — the Court actually went there and addressed the religious objections to gay marraige head on. After three pages of navel gazing, they up and said it: secular government, yo. Result! From Pages 66-67:

In the final analysis, we give respect to the views of all Iowans on the issue of same-sex marriage — religious or otherwise — by giving respect to our constitutional principles. These principles require that the state recognize both opposite-sex and same-sex civil marriage. Religious doctrine and views contrary to this principle of law are unaffected, and people can continue to associate with the religion that best reflects their views. A religious denomination can still define marriage as a union between a man and a woman, and a marriage ceremony performed by a minister, priest, rabbi, or other person ordained or designated as a leader of the person’s religious faith does not lose its meaning as a sacrament or other religious institution. The sanctity of all religious marriages celebrated in the future will have the same meaning as those celebrated in the past. The only difference is civil marriage will now take on a new meaning that reflects a more complete understanding of equal protection of the law. This result is what our constitution requires.

@chicago bureau: Thanks for your interesting explication.

@ManchuCandidate: The Times of London noted that it was really the American media who was going apeshit. The Times didn’t seem to think it was a big deal, neither did the Palace:

“This was a mutual and spontaneous display of affection and appreciation between The Queen and Michelle Obama,” said a Palace spokeswoman.

@chicago bureau: Standing O. Nice to see someone demonstrate the good sense the Midwest was once known for. May the California Supremes be inspired to show similar spine and sense.

@chicago bureau: There’s nothing better than a smackdown in a footnote.

Yeaaa Iowa!

@Mistress Cynica: Yes, the American media is such an expert on all things royal. Could we get input from Steve Doocy?

I’m so ashamed I even know that name that I will now go and hide in the cellar.

@Mistress Cynica: Great point. Obvs. a decision from Iowa has no binding precedent but it can bolster the case for the Calif Supremes who want to show that they’re not being crazy wack-a-doodle types.

@chicago bureau: Can the Supreme Court judges in Iowa be recalled through popular vote? The wingers are already saying they’ll recall Justice George and the others who vote to strike down Prop. 8.

@chicago bureau: I have no problem being turned away at a church for wanting to get gay-married-for-the-insurance, but don’t turn me away at the clerk of court’s office.

@SanFranLefty: If the CaSCT has already made its decision, is it pointless to point to Iowa?

@rptrcub: Decision has to come out w/in 90 days of oral arguments (which was March 5, and puts decision deadline at June 5). So they’re in the writing and arguing amongst themselves and their clerks phase right now.

@SanFranLefty: My impression was that they’ve already made up their minds; we just have to wait until a written decision to confirm it.

STINQUE DISTANT EARLY WARNING: It took about an hour, but a guy in the office muttered the words “Iowa caucus” with respect to today’s events. You’d think that we could have a few months away from Decision 2012, but… oh God, let it not be so… it’s on like Donkey Kong. First winger politician out of the box with a “legislating from the bench” blast gets a cookie!

SanFranLefty: For real — “your argument doesn’t merit conversation in the portion of the opinion that actually means anything to anyone, so we are just going to dispose of your bullshit argument in a small little corner.” Footnotes are the “oh, honey, no” of the judicial world.

In re recalling judges — I’m not sure. But the vote was seven-nothing. If there was a recall movement, do you think that the people of Iowa would really want to throw out the WHOLE court? They could move to take out four judges, perhaps. But if they fail to do so and, say, remove one or two, the remaining five or six would hold fast.

Nope — barring an amendment, this will be a permanent thing.

@chicago bureau: The state legislator who sponsored the original bill already said “legislating from the bench.”

Footnotes are indeed the “oh honey no” way to dispose of bullshit arguments. I enjoy using them in briefs almost as much as quoting the opposing brief and [sic]ing it.

SanFranLefty: Lawyers who don’t spell check are so best. I love them.

Incidentally — anybody want to take bets on what Michael Steele’s gonna say about all this? “It’s an issue that is best left to the states. Nobody… shit! Are you recording this? Can we roll the tape back and do this again?”

SanFranLefty: And it’s going up the ladder, slowly but surely. Next up: Sucka MC from Iowa Steve King, per Politico:

This is an unconstitutional ruling and another example of activist judges molding the Constitution to achieve their personal political ends. Iowa law says that marriage is between one man and one woman. If judges believe the Iowa legislature should grant same sex marriage, they should resign from their positions and run for office, not legislate from the bench.

Now it is the Iowa legislature’s responsibility to pass the Marriage Amendment to the Iowa Constitution, clarifying that marriage is between one man and one woman, to give the power that the Supreme Court has arrogated to itself back to the people of Iowa. Along with a constitutional amendment, the legislature must also enact marriage license residency requirements so that Iowa does not become the gay marriage Mecca due to the Supreme Court’s latest experiment in social engineering.

One: “Iowa law says that marriage is between one man and one woman.” No, it doesn’t.

This is a Stinque Newsbrief… The Iowa Constitution is a law. This has been a Stinque Newsbrief.

Two: “The gay marriage Mecca?” Well… I guess he’s right, if you squint. The original Mecca has people bending over towards it, after all.

[ADD: one Politico commenter refers to “Democrap Socialists” four times in a single (albeit run-on) sentence. Interesting turn-of-phrase! I actually like that one!]

But also: I haven’t checked, but there are probably scores of topical send-ups of Wood’s American Gothic out there on the political sites by now. Devil holding pitchfork, or studly young man in overalls with no shirt — observed by either the prudish woman with a look of slight disapproval, or the same woman wearing a suit and tie, or the same woman wearing a flannel shirt.

It’s coming. You know it is.

@Tommmcatt the Wet Sprocket: Now don’t be hasty. I was on tour in Iowa City years ago with a big old gay-gay-gay musical with tap-dancing and everything (yes I tapped, you wanna make something of it?) and we played some kind of Sport structure (round, big, concrete, ugh) on a split-week with Toledo (or somewhere like it). And they hired the local football team to be dressers for the men. Let me tell you, our boys showed their boys a thing or two before the week was out.


I was actually thinking of the food. I’ve eaten in Iowa.

@Tommmcatt the Wet Sprocket: You have something against the Bucket o’ Spaghetti special out by the interstate? You some kinda elitist?

In my brief visits to middle states, I seem to remember that all the food items included all of the below:

1) Deep Fried
2) Meat
3) Cheeze
4) Huge
5) Deep Fried
6) Pan Fried


All you can eat shrimp and corn. I swear to God. It is seared in my memory like a brand. It was cold and rubbery. You had to take the shell and tail off yourself.

Forgot that one. I must admit that I have a weakness for the artery and colon clogging meal of Texas Chicken Fried Steak with biscuits and gravy (and an Exlax for desert…)

Oh yeah. Extra Cheeze.

Tommmcatt the Wet Sprocket: While volunteering with Hope, in order to bring about Change We Can Believe In last fall, I basically did a tour of the Midwest and, in the process, truck stops for “food.”

A Stinque Travel Tip: At Midwest truck stop buffets, eggs and meats are serviceable enough, though (yes) rubbery in consistency. Biscuits and sausage gravy are actually OK, and it is very hard to screw up oatmeal, so you do have actual options. But never, under any circumstances, select pancakes that have been under a heat lamp for an hour. It’s like eating mini-frisbees. And also note the fact that the butter on offer is under the same heat lamp. Seriously, kids. It looked very unsavory. At the very least: if you can avoid a buffet line, do so and go to Denny’s, where the food is actually cooked and prepared at some reasonable period after the order is made, and not hours before.

Or: pack a freaking lunch, or a few apples, and plow through until you get to an honest-to-God restaurant.

@chicago bureau: My dining tip based upon numerous cross-country moves and work trips to states not known for their cuisine: Look for the closest university. I’ve had excellent meals in Lincoln, Iowa City, and Cheyenne at cafes across the street from the universities. Also college towns are the best way to get good coffee, although $tarbuck$ are now as ubiquitous as Micky D’s.

@ManchuCandidate: @Benedick: @Tommmcatt the Wet Sprocket: On your next drive through Wisconsin (the long way), don’t miss the deep fried cheese curds. Or the broasted chicken, and no, I don’t know what “broasted” means. It might be deep fried after roasting. I am afraid to find out. Both of these culinary delights are ubiquitous above the Spice Line (bisects the state, roughly at the lattitude of Green Bay) – no flavor is permitted above the line.

@Hose Manikin: Remember that long Hopey weekend in late January? I met up with an old Iowan friend of mine, a current resident of Wisconsin. We were at a party in Arlington and he brought his own cheese. Fried it up right there and then, too.

@Nabisco, @Hose Manikin: Mmm, fried cheese. Every stoner’s wet dream.

ADD: Bacon would make it even better.

@Nabisco: Fried cheese prepared at home is just not as good as what you can get when pulling off of higway 41 into a small one room diner under a giant sign that says “EAT”.

I’m a purist. Bacon on the side.

@Hose Manikin: Unless it’s bacon bits. Real bacon bits. Chopped up and sprinkled on top of the cheese before rolling in the breading and frying. aaaaaahhhh

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