Sunday night links.
* The flag at right (via MeFi) is the marriage equality flag, which only includes those states which allow gays and lesbians to marry.
* Return of a meme I haven't seen since the 1990s: the end of science.
* Krugman spills the beans on Al Franken's secret wonkitude. A reader of his books and an infrequent listener to his radio show, I can confirm this is true: he has a much sharper and more wide-ranging intellect than the press gives him credit for.
* The Nation gets excited about the rediscovery of Secular America.
Obama agreed and remained true to his word. And then came the moment approximately 50 million Americans-- who identify themselves with terms like agnostic, atheist, materialist, humanist, nontheist, skeptic, bright, freethinker, agnostic, naturalist, or non-believer -- will never forget. In his inauguration speech, Obama said, "…Our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness. We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus, and non-believers."Like 50 million other Americans I tell my nonexistent children about the Great Inclusion every night. And then, together as one all across the nation, we weep from joy.
* Lev Milman, a Duke undergrad, has been named a chess grandmaster.
* Grant Morrison is apparently working on a comic that will highlight the undisguised bondage imagery that makes up to the Wonder Woman mythos. (More here and here.)
“Tell me anybody's preference in story strips and I'll tell you his subconscious desires... Superman and the army of male comics characters who resemble him satisfy the simple desire to be stronger and more powerful than anybody else. Wonder Woman satisfies the subconscious, elaborately disguised desire of males to be mastered by a woman who loves them.”* Also on the "comics and sex" beat: X-Men Rictor and Shatterstar are out and proud, prompting a promise from Shatterstar creator Rob Liefeld to "someday undo this."
—Dr. William Moulton Marston, creator of Wonder Woman
And why not another?
But Marston was intent on more than merely fulfilling the fantasies of his male readers. In a letter to comics historian Coulton Waugh, he wrote, "Frankly, Wonder Woman is psychological propaganda for the new type of woman who should, I believe, rule the world." Marston believed that submission to "loving authority" was the key to overcoming mankind's violent urges, and that strong, self-realized women were the hope for a better future. Wonder Woman was very consciously Marston's means of spreading these notions to impressionable young minds. As he said to Olive Richard, "I tell you, my inquiring friend, there's great hope for this world. Women will win!" He then goes on, "When women rule, there won't be any more [war] because the girls won't want to waste time killing men...I regard that as the greatest - no, even more - as the only hope for permanent peace.”