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December 08, 2005

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These people are not just worse than we imagine they are worse than we can imagine.

"Once upon a time, the Northern Marianas were a small, sleepy group of islands, also known by the name of their capital, Saipan. They formally became a commonwealth ruled by the US during the Reagan administration,"

This seems to leave out a tad of relevant history. I trust, though, that no one will read this to be saying that Ronald Reagan conquered the Marianas for us, although one might conceivably read it that way.

Or that Reagan found them, or traded for them, or otherwise just stumbled across them, sleepy as they were, out of the blue one day (a bottle city?).

Otherwise, good job of calling this to the attention of those who haven't been following along.

(I'm probably also reacting to seeing the Marianas and Saipan mentioned with no context while it's still almost December 7th.)

Wow! Talk about a wedgie. . . nice!
Ironically, isn't Delay's nickname "Bug"? Taht makes sense in the "Petri dish" context. We're all just ciphers to this crowd.

Err, there are a lot of ways that bits of land can become commonwealths, or colonies or whatevers. New Zealand and Texas are two that were not discovered/claimed or conquered. However, the Marianas were originally Spanish posessions and were then sold to Germany. Japan took them as part of the 1919 League of Nations mandate, and they became UN trust territories after WWII and the US was given the exclusive right to maintain them. From the early 60's, the governments of Saipan and Rota petitioned every year to be integrated with Guam, which was finally put to a vote by the Guamians, who turned it down, partially because of bad feelings from the war (some Saipanese worked with the Japanese as translators during the occupation of Guam). In 1979, the Northern Marianas voted to be made a commonwealth of the US, in '86, under Reagan, residents were granted US citizenship. HTH

Ai yi yi. This just came up over on Making Light. Here's my comment from over there.

* * *

Patrick, it's a bit more complicated than that.

The Northern Marianas Islands (NMI) are a a US Commonwealth, like Puerto Rico. The people there are US citizens, but they control their own immigration and local laws, including the minimum wage.

It's also one of the few parts of Micronesia that isn't a Third World hellhole. Life expectancy in the Northern Marianas is 71 years, per capita income is around $10,000, and infant mortality is about 5 per 1000. By way of comparison, on the island of Chuuk -- part of independent Micronesia, and just next door by Pacific standards -- life expectancy is 50 years, and infant mortality is 18 per 1000.

Part of the reason for this is the garment industry. It provides about a third of the Northern Marianas' GDP, and is their only export of any significance.

To be clear: there were real abuses in the industry in the 1990s, and some of them were horrific. Most of the garment workers are indeed guest workers (not immigrants... temporary workers, usually staying for between one and three years.) However, by the late 1990s the NMI had embarked on a serious effort to clean up the industry. Reform was halting and piecemeal, but it was happening.

Then the US garment industry decided that the NMI was unfair competition. The NMI sets its own minimum wage, and in the 1990s it was around $2.40 an hour. In a labor-intensive industry, this gave them a significant advantage. So, garment industry lobbyists began asking Congress to shut the NMI industry down. The (very real) human rights violations were a convenient club to beat the NMI with.

I know about this because I lived in the NMI in the 1990s. And we were asking Washington for help. "Help us clean up our act. It's hard to do with local actors alone, because the islands are small, the talent pool is limited, and too many people are deeply in hock to the dominant industry. Send us inspectors to train our inspectors; send us FBI agents and federal prosecutors to help bust offenders; give a firm federal backbone to our struggling reform efforts."

Answer came there none. No ambitious federal bureacrat wants to go to the Northern Marianas Islands; it's a dead-end posting, a trash barge, a Siberia. We had an FBI agent who had a gambling addiction. A federal prosecutor who liked sleeping until noon. And Congress was moving closer and closer to "we'll cure the disease by shooting the patient in the head... take away local control over immigration, send all the Chinese and Filipino guest workers home, and shut down the industry." The fact that this would have destroyed the islands' economy was simply ignored; the NMI has no vote in Congress, and who really cares about 50,000 US citizens twelve hours flight west of LA?

So, in desperation, we turned to Jack Abramoff and Tom DeLay. It was an alliance of convenience; the alternative was having the islands' only industry shut down.

Unsurprisingly, once it was clear that DeLay and friends could defend the NMI, the impetus for local reform slowed way down. Today the NMI is a lot better than it was in the 1990s, but yeah, there are still abuses. It's really hard to run herd on a dominant local industry without outside help. Which it's the federal government's job to give... but that never happened, in the NMI.

But when the alternative was to turn the NMI back into Chuuk...

You can paint Tom DeLay as Satan, and I won't argue with you. But do remember that desperate people make deals with the devil for many reasons, not all of them bad.


Doug M.


Yeah, the connection to Reagan is pretty tenuous. Sorry, Hilzoy, but commonwealth status for the NMI was firmly bipartisan at all times. It got started under Kennedy, and both Johnson and Carter firmly supported it. It's just an accident that the last piece of paper was signed by Reagan.

Further to my last: if you go back and look at those articles, you'll notice that every single one of those horror stories dates from the 1990s. There isn't one from the last six years.

This isn't because the NMI has become a happy shiny paradise of worker rights in the last six years. Far from it. But things have gotten a lot better. In fact, they started getting better in the 1990s.

The abuses described in those articles were real, but, you know, some people tried to do things about them. And they had some success. But you'd never, never know that from any of the articles you linked to.

I'm afraid that the latest burst of publicity will cause the Democrats, once they regain office, to immediately strip the NMI of local control over immigration and minimum wage. Which will shoot the islands' economy in the head and dump it into a landfill.

No offense, Hilzoy, but this was a pretty one-sided post. And it's likely to contribute to that bad outcome.


Doug M.

Sure, Doug. Because it's a tragic fact of economics that beautiful, subtropical island nations, fringed with white sand beaches and coral reefs, with English widely spoken by the local population, low crime rates and lots of golf courses, are doomed to poverty unless they get into the burgeoning bonded labour market.
It's so tragic! If only there were some way of getting rich people to go there and spend money! But what could that be? I'm drawing a complete blank.

Doug M.
Not to be nit picky, but I don't think that a one phrase mention of the fact that it took place during Reagan's administration should be taken as Hilzoy trying to link it to Reagan. In fact, I think that it was Carter who was responsible for getting the Marianas question moving. It was he who signed the proclamation accepting their constitution.

Here's a link with the timeline of the various non-state territories.

As for the question of whether Hilzoy is not accentuating the positive, I will have to consider your points and do more reading. If you have any links that give more info (this is not demanding a cite, just asking for more info), please share them. Thanx


Ajay, I said the garment industry was 1/3 of the local economy. Tourism is the other 2/3.

And the tourism industry, too, will implode if US immigration and minimum wage laws are imposed on the NMI.

I note in passing that Chuuk has white sand beaches and coral reefs. More so than the NMI. But strangely, this has not lifted Chuuk out of Third World poverty.


Doug M.

Life expectancy in the Northern Marianas is 71 years, per capita income is around $10,000, and infant mortality is about 5 per 1000.

Do these statistics apply to all people residing in NMI (including guest workers) or only to NMI citizens? If the latter it is utterly disingenuous to bring them to the table.

Liberal japonicus, here are a few links from the last few years. A bit random, so let me know if you're looking for something else.

Some recent successful prosecutionshttp://www.dol.gov/esa/media/press/whd/whdpressVB2.asp?pressdoc=sanfrancisco/20042298.xml">prosecutions href> of violators. Sako Corp is an old troublemaker.

This court case was a major milestone in the reform effort. Brought in 1999 IMS, but not resolved until 2002.

Happy shiny tale of one garment worker making good.

The industry under economic pressure, already undergoing a contraction.

Some testimony before the House of Representatives from 2004.

Key grafs:

In the years since the height of the controversy, the CNMI government, the Federal Government and the garment industry itself have all taken major steps to improve labor conditions in the CNMI and to protect the rights of workers. The CNMI government has enacted several reforms since the mid-1990s and has, especially in recent years, established a very good working relationship with Federal authorities. Last September I was pleased to sign, along with Governor Juan Babauta, an historic agreement whereby the CNMI agreed to cooperate with Federal authorities to combat human trafficking and to establish asylum procedures to protect foreign workers.

The garment industry has also made very substantial improvements. In 2000, the Saipan Garment Manufacturers Association entered into a partnership with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to improve working conditions in the garment industry. OSHA’s Regional Administrator recently reported to me the following: “We believe through our joint efforts with the industry, there has been a marked improvement in the safety and health and living conditions of the workers in Saipan..."

Another factor contributing to the improvement of labor conditions in the CNMI is the increased Federal presence in the islands, initiated largely by Congress through the CNMI Initiative on Immigration, Labor and Law Enforcement. That initiative provided the initial funding for several key Federal agencies, such as OSHA, the Department of Justice and the Department of Labor, to establish a presence in the CNMI, where they work cooperatively with the CNMI government and the business community to address problems. Prior to receiving funding under the initiative, none of these agencies had a major presence in the CNMI... The CNMI Initiative has also funded the Federal Ombudsman, a Federal employee who works with Federal and local authorities to ensure that the rights of foreign workers are protected...

We are heartened by the progress that the CNMI has made in recent years.

-- I note in passing that the "CNMI Initiative" has the NMI paying for federal personnel to come out to the islands. The implicit bargain here was, "Fine -- we'll send some people to Siberia, but don't expect us to find a line in our department's budget. You want the help, you find the money."


Doug M.


thanks Doug M. Just wanted some more things to read. thanx

Hmm. Chuuk has probably managed not to have a third of its economy dependent on bonded labour, either.

But I think, in your rush to defend the plantations of the Marianas, you have missed the point of the post: it's not saying "isn't it dreadful what's happening in the Marianas", it's saying "look! back in the nineties there was all this dreadful stuff happening in the Marianas, and that nice man Tom DeLay was helping it happen, and now it looks like the chickens are coming home to roost." So posting material about "how dreadful the Marianas were in the 1990s" is entirely germane.

And the tourism industry, too, will implode if US immigration and minimum wage laws are imposed on the NMI

why?

Hawaii's tourist industry seems to be doing well under US laws.

I was wondering who would defend this; I figured that it'd be Charles. Or Slart, playing slippery eel with words. Maybe Sebastian, discussing the horrors of labor standards or lawsuits. Probably not Von.

I guess that we have a totally new devil's advocate.

Welcome, Doug.

Or Slart, playing slippery eel with words.

On most days I'm far too busy pretending that I haven't earned this sort of slur, so: sorry, no time for eeliness.

Given my ongoing desire to turn all frowns upside-down, Barry's post did remind me of some other swell debating tactics, so here you go.

Chuuk has probably managed not to have a third of its economy dependent on bonded labour, either.

Chuuk has 34% unemployment. Per capita income is about $1500 -- between North Korea and Togo, not quite as good as Haiti. 2/3 of households don't have electricity; 82% don't have running water. Most children suffer from vitamin deficiencies. Cholera is endemic.

This is unlikely to get better very soon, because Chuuk also has a terrible brain drain: any young person with any brains or ambition gets the hell out. Usually to Guam or Saipan.

It's probably too late for Chuuk to go the growth-through-guest-workers route. They control their own immigration -- they're not part of the US -- and they actually have a few thousand guest workers. But the islands are so crowded, poor and miserable that they can't jump-start a tourist industry. Even garment factories won't open on Chuuk; there's not enough infrastructure.

Anyway. Point is, if you live on Saipan -- or any other small island in Micronesia -- Chuuk is the abyss that gapes beneath you.


posting material about "how dreadful the Marianas were in the 1990s" is entirely germane.

Then she should at least include a postscript noting that things have changed. A casual read of the post will give the strong impression that this is happening now, and that this island of Bad People is colluding with DeLay and his ilk to keep the workers enslaved. And that's just not so.


Doug M.

Cleek, obviously the minimum wage isn't the only factor in the success of a tourist industry. New York and California have the highest minimum wages in the nation, yet people continue to visit Hollywood and Manhattan.

That said, tourism is a service industry, and labor-intensive. So labor costs are significant.

The NMI isn't competing with Hawaii. They're competing with Guam and with Southeast Asia -- Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam. Those are places with low labor costs /and/ a lot more to offer. Saipan has beaches, the lagoon, golf and a little shopping; they can't compete on product with Bali or the Cameron Highlands.

Guam is Saipan's biggest and closest rival. The two islands are in direct competition for the Japanese and Korean tourist trades. They're only 120 miles apart, and are basically identical in terms of climate and native culture.

But Guam is about four times bigger in terms of area and US citizen population. Because it's bigger, Guam has much more to offer a tourist than Saipan does... more beaches, more hotels, more dive sites, plus hiking and rafting in the interior. And Guam is serviced by more flights, since it's Continental Airline's Pacific hub.

You'd reasonably expect Guam to get, not four, but five or six or seven times as many tourists as Saipan. However, Guam only gets about 1.8 times as many -- 1.1 million vs. 580,000 in 2004. Per capita, Guam gets less than half as many tourists as Saipan. This is very striking, given Guam's relative advantages.

The biggest difference seems to be that Guam is more expensive. And the biggest single factor there is that Guam has the US minimum wage.

Saipan is just cheaper. The hotel room that costs $120 a night on Guam costs maybe $95 on Saipan; the nice dinner costs $20 instead of $30. And this make Saipan very competitive for (for instance) college students, young married couples, and working-class families.

If raising Saipan's minimum wage up to Guam's would cause Saipan's tourism industry to contract down to Guam's per capita level... then Saipan would lose more than half of its tourist industry. Since that industry is about 2/3 of the island's economy, this would be no small thing.


Doug M.

Barry, I hold no brief for Tom DeLay. But I lived in the NMI for seven years, and I got tired of seeing my home turned into a political caricature. The "island of slaves" thing is just as nonsensical as DeLay's "petri dish of capitalism".

If you find this interesting, feel free to surf on over to my hhome blog. It's mostly about the Balkans rather than the Pacific -- we moved -- but I'm probably just as much a tool of evil there as here.


Doug M.

Doug M: you're right, I should absolutely have said that things are better now. I somehow thought that I had, somewhere, but I should absolutely have made sure.

I was most interested in what it was that DeLay was defending, and thus in conditions in the Northern Marianas at the time he was most involved in defending them. As I understand it, this was the mid- and late 90s. But I should have made it clear that things have gotten better, and have updated accordingly.

I did not mean to say that Reagan was responsible for any of this -- I just wanted to include enough background to give some indication of (roughly) why the odd legal status of the Northern Marianas came about, and why it was not a nutty thing to do, if you weren't thinking about the possibility of sweatshops.

Nor (Gary this time) was I trying to give a comprehensive history of the Northern Marianas.

Short version: Doug M is absolutely right to say that I should have made it clearer that things have improved. I have updated accordingly. I stand by the description of the Northern Marianas at the time DeLay was most involved in protecting their status. This was what I meant to be talking about, but intentions aren't enough. Thus, my update.

I'm just waiting for someone to call hilzoy a Delay (and Reagan!) apologist, now. C'mon, bring it.

I seem to remember that Dick Armey was Delay's wingman on the Marianas deal.

Get him, too.

The two of them wanted to use the islands as a kind of Ayn Randian paradise of unfettered capitalism -- no regulation, no taxes, etc. They bragged that the islands would serve as a model for how the Republican Party would transform the entire United States. Progress has been slower than they thought, but if you look at the numbers of folks not covered by medical insurance, the disintegration of unions, etc, strides have been made.

I like the kidney angle. Time to test the DNA provenance of Delay's and Armey's kidneys, so they can give them back.



Dick Armey, and Dana Rohrbacher too. Among others.

Hilzoy, thank you very much. This is the difference between you and, say, Patrick Nielsen Hayden. Kudos.


Doug M.

Doug M: thanks.

I should also say: I don't really know enough to have a definitive view on this, but I'm not at all sure that I would have had a problem with exempting the islands from US minimum wage rules. I mean: I think there should be some minimum wage rules, but I'm completely open to the claim that the cost of living is lower in Saipan, etc.

What I think was the really bad part of the exemption from US laws was allowing guest workers in, and also whatever it was that allowed people to sell positions in the Northern Marianas to poor people in the rest of Asia, and also also any provisions that contributed to workers' lack of effective recourse once there.

but if you look at the numbers of folks not covered by medical insurance, the disintegration of unions, etc, strides have been made

In a pristine tropical paradise, everyone has medical insurance?

I think the petri dish of capitalism comment is spot on: ditch labor laws, minimize regulation, and you end up with abuses. Leaving aside the obviously illegal like rape, there is still debt peonage, which in radical capitalist utopia is just hunky-dory. Given the existence of debt peonage things like forced prostitution are much more likely. There's only so much power one person can have over another before at least some will give in to the temptation to view people as means rather than ends.

In a pristine tropical paradise, everyone has medical insurance?

Depends - do you classify Cuba as 'pristine'?

;-)

Backward strides as opposed to progressive strides --- on the U. S. mainland -- obviously, all that can happen to you in the Marianas is sun-burn and the occasional jellyfish sting.

That and accidentally poking sticking yourself in the eye with those umbrella thingies in the fruity drinks.

You don't want to stand under a coconut palm on a windy day either. Head injuries, perhaps death, and then Tom Delay rushes in and steals a kidney.

"poking sticking"

Choose one and move on.

On most days I'm far too busy pretending that I haven't earned this sort of slur, so: sorry, no time for eeliness.

But unagi is so delicious!

"Err, there are a lot of ways that bits of land can become commonwealths, or colonies or whatevers."

How could it be otherwise?

"New Zealand and Texas are two that were not discovered/claimed or conquered."

I'm fairly sure that New Zealand has never been a commonwealth of the United States, nor acquired by it at all; I suppose we could discuss the meaning history of commonwealths throughout the world, but I'm not sure what relevance this has to anything either Hilzoy or I said.

On Texas, though, one might look into the connection between Tyler's last days in office, Polk's acquiesence to annexation, and the Mexican reaction; it's possible there might be some disagreement over the whole "conquering" thing. It's not as if Mexico fully accepted the Treaty of Velasco as legitimate, after all. I'm just saying, since you bring it up. :-) Not that this led to Texas being a commonwealth, nor did the Texas Declaration of Independence claim it to be one. Pennsylvania is a state that springs to mind as asserting itself to be a commonwealth, as does Massachusetts and Virginia and Kentucky, and perhaps others, but did Texas ever? If so, I'm still unclear what any connection might be to the unmentioned history of how the U.S. acquired the Marianas, but, hey, thread drift happens.

"Pennsylvania is a state that springs to mind as asserting itself to be a commonwealth, as does Massachusetts and Virginia and Kentucky"

Those are the only 4.

ObNameSpelling: Who is this "Tom Delay" people keep talking about? He doesn't seem to be any relation to Tom DeLay, Majority-Leader-In-Exile. Not that I'd call him a capital fellow, myself.

"Dana Rohrbacher" Yes?

After all, he has famously said of Jack Abramoff:

"I don't remember it, but I would certainly have been happy to give him a good recommendation," Rohrabacher said. "He's a very honest man."
So it must be true.

"Barry's post did remind me of some other swell debating tactics, so here you go."

This would be a better cite if Adams hadn't worked so damned hard since he recently started his blog to prove that, in fact, he is just that damned stupid. In context, the cited post was a version of "aaah! Stop showing me up for being an ignorant moron!"

"Those are the only 4."

Ah, well, I was just working from those that sprang to memory, and feeling lazy about looking for a list, so thanks.

I think Conrad Burns said the other day that he wouldn't know Abramoff if he walked through the doorway of his office.

They didn't check under the desk.

Tom DeLay received the capital "L", one kidney, and a sizable bile gland as part of the Marianas set-up.

This would be a better cite if Adams hadn't worked so damned hard since he recently started his blog to prove that, in fact, he is just that damned stupid. In context, the cited post was a version of "aaah! Stop showing me up for being an ignorant moron!"

OTOH, that could just make the cite that much more tasty. More than that, I really should not say.

"Err, there are a lot of ways that bits of land can become commonwealths, or colonies or whatevers."

How could it be otherwise?

If there were only one. HTH.

Or none, but that's the trivial case.

Slart, I do owe you an apology. I feel that you are slippery (especially with the last thing about Charles and 'will'), but I shouldn't use this as a debating tactic.

Doug, I was shocked to find out that this was you. I was wondering, with the Doug M, and Saipan, and all.

especially with the last thing about Charles and 'will'

Link, please? I thought I was being extraordinarily grippy, considering my brief involvement in that conversation. My apologies if I missed cries of eeliness on the thread in question, and I'll attempt to coat myself with nuklear paint. Deal?

Barry: why shocked? "Not everyone who dealt with Tom DeLay was evil" doesn't seem all that diabolical a position to me. Am I missing something?

And, um, do I know you? There are a lot of guys named "Barry" out there. No offense.


Doug M.

Deal, but I don't want you to fake it with oldclear paint:

http://obsidianwings.blogs.com/obsidian_wings/2005/12/this_redstater_.html#comment-11861691

This thread refers back to a previous post, where Charles says "Improvements to our strategy and tactics can surely be made, but success ultimately depends on our will to prevail, nothing more." He also talks about the 'No End But Victory' site as intended to shore up our will.

People in the later post were ragging on Charles for that, and you denied that his statement said what it said. You claimed miscommunication over a very clear statement.

People in the later post were ragging on Charles for that, and you denied that his statement said what it said. You claimed miscommunication over a very clear statement.

I suggest you reread, throwing aside preconceived notions. In the interest of traction, though: I hadn't actually read Charles' previous posts on the topic, and was asking a question. Because, see, I didn't know.

"I hadn't actually read Charles' previous posts on the topic,"

I'm suddenly flashing on the notion of ObWings going to a gladatorial-style format for people attempting to gain posting privileges, in which a contest of knowledge of things said on the actual blog grants the winner posting rights stripped from the loser who doesn't read his/her own damn blog.

I have an active fantasy life.

I'd suggesting trying to work Giant Robots into the concept before attempting implementation, though. a) this will preserve the status quo; and b) everything is better with Giant Robots. This is simply irrefutable, save for loser-defeatists.

Why don't we have Giant Robots fighting and winning in Iraq, anyway? I suspect leftist anti-Halliburton conspiracy.

Can we have Gingerbread Robots instead?

Hey, engineers out there - could you design me a gingerbread bridge? Like, say, for foot traffic by overfed children crossing a small stream? I'd like some details for a poem.

I have a great tradition of breaking up with people when it is immensely in my material interests not to. I broke up with someone who had got us tickets to Pink Floyd's The Wall concert, for instance. I broke up with someone who, when I was desperately broke, owned not only the parka I had been using (and it was January), and the umbrella (it was raining), but also the only set of sheets I had, and in a fit of something or other I gave them all back when I broke up with him, and then I walked home, halfway across the city, soaked and freezing, back to my denuded mattress.

But even worse than giving back the parka, the umbrella, and the sheets was breaking up with the guy (a very good engineer) who was making me, for my birthday, an alarm clock that would, at the time I'd set the alarm for, take its mechanical hand and squeeze a particularly ornate bicycle horn repeatedly until I woke up.

I thought that was the coolest thing. Naturally, though, by breaking up with him I ensured that it would not be MY coolest thing.

Darn.

I'm imagining this bicycle horn going off at 5 a.m. the morning after he gave it to you.

I'm imagining the sound of the telephone ringing at his place at 5:15 a.m. as you call to break up with him.

He lost two weeks max.

A better engineer than I, probably. I've been pretty much confined to death machines for the last couple of decades (although I've done some moderately cool things involving no death at all, or at least no death of vertebrate life forms. I know: speciesist!). If I could figure out how to design a clock that would wake one up happy every morning (first idea: the wakeup orgasm), I'd be a very, very wealthy man.

Plus, I'd have done mankind a service, and might even be remembered fondly for a while at least.

"If I could figure out how to design a clock that would wake one up happy every morning (first idea: the wakeup orgasm), I'd be a very, very wealthy man. "

Posted by: Slartibartfast

I don't understand - aren't you married?

H:
an alarm clock that would, at the time I'd set the alarm for, take its mechanical hand and squeeze a particularly

S:
If I could figure out how to design a clock that would wake one up happy every morning (first idea: the wakeup orgasm)

I pressed post instead of preview...

I wanted to add "if only I could draw... and of course picture 3 would be situated in the ER."

That depends on the calibration of the squeezing, of course.

And also of course, I'll let somebody braver be the test subject.

I don't understand - aren't you married?

If she wants one, I'll be happy to...err...fill her order.

This particular boyfriend was making me an alarm clock because he had himself been my alarm clock for the better part of a year.

I say no more.

Hilzoy: I sleep very deeply and frequently overslept in my bachelor days (as in: workmen sanding down the hallway trying to turn off the radio that was making too much noise - and discovering that it was my alarmclock with me still sleeping soundly next to it).
The general practitioner recommended a boyfriend but didn't have them on prescription, so I had to go alternative. Hypnotherapie finally did the trick for me :)

Well, as it turns out, Tom DeLay really is an asshole.

I've been purusing what some of my fellow bloggers thing about Tom DeLay. I was simply appalled when I read about what a staunch supporter of human rights violations Tom DeLay is. Seriously, beyond his ethical dilemmas here at home, he seems to be an even greater prick for supporting forced labor, prositution, and abortion in Saipan.

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Whatnot


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