Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear

The whole family watched this for the last couple of hours, and I just wanted to register my opinion. I was skeptical, I’ll admit. I was a fan of the Daily Show for years, but I haven’t watched much since 2008. I just couldn’t really support the twerpy frat-boy appeal of Comedy Central overall, and I thought Stewart took some unfair shots at Hillary, so I stopped watching altogether. I wasn’t sure what he was up to with this rally.

I’ll admit I was surprised. And entertained. Not just by the entertainment, either. It was actually kind of fun to watch the crowd as it became clear this was not going to be another liberal smugfest, and they were one of the intended targets too. I thought Stewart was pretty fair in his treatment of our political landscape and its effects on our behavior.

Which is why I find it so interesting that there hasn’t been much media attention paid to his closing remarks. It appeared to be a real call for everyone to put away their negativity and view each other as what we are–our fellow Americans. That’s the message I’ve been trying to get out for a couple of years now. My guess is that it will be ignored coming from him too. The vitriol train rolls on.

Speaking of trains, the Train song sequence was the highlight of the show as far as I’m concerned. I lost it when Ozzy came out and was blown away by both Yusef and The OJays. Pretty hilarious. Mr. Peacock, of course, suggested that a *ahem* less reasonable, funnier ending would have been to have Yusef and Ozzy do a duet of Highway to Hell. Heh.

Did you see it? What do you think?

Why It’s Not Just “Vagina Voting”

This article has been cross-posted from The New Agenda.

I will never forget the night in 2008 when I was accused of being a “Vagina Warrior.” This accusation came from a young female writer who patronized the same beer joint I did, and who I had previously understood to be a thoughtful politically interested party.

Not in the heat of 2008. Gone was our friendly familiarity as she and her young group of friends discussed their liberal politics. After announcing snidely to her friends that I was voting for McCain/Palin, (which she knew based on previous conversations) she exclaimed, “She’s a bona fide Vagina Warrior!” I can still see the backward tilt of her head and hear the ugly peal of laughter that escaped her lips.

A year earlier I might have shrunk from it. I’d have felt the sting and walked away, getting over it by the next time we met. That night I walked away angry and we have not had a decent conversation since, which I very much regret. This is not a winning strategy. We have to find a way to talk about how we can support women with people who have different political perspectives.

See, I want more women in office, period. I don’t care if they are corrupt or crazy, or even unqualified, considering the current slate of mostly male corrupt, crazy, unqualified office holders. We can work out the content later. This is what I have come to after 20 years of political activity and working for women’s progress.

In order to get those women in office, we need young women like the one who called me a “Vagina Warrior.” They don’t have 20 years of experience to show them the way, and we don’t have 20 years to wait while they gain it. We’re going to have to take the time to convince these young women that it’s not just “vagina voting,” that there are sound reasons for an electoral strategy that puts women first. Equality in the negatives will not be enough. We need a bridge, and the bridge is reason.

What are the reasons we need to vote for women? What talking points should we use to convince others? After a few years of ruminating on the topic and trying out different approaches, three arguments seem more persuasive than others, what I’m calling “the three Ps:” Percentages, Policy, & Patriotism. Each has a corresponding talking point. These talking points are not only effective on young feminists. They work on just about anyone who sees the disparity and wants parity for women. Use them anywhere and everywhere! Continue reading

Jerry Brown’s Contempt for Women (& CA-NOW’s Endorsement)

George Allen’s “macaca moment.” Howard Dean’s scream. Jerry Brown’s campaign using the w-word against Meg Whitman. This is the stuff campaign meltdowns are made of, and Governor Moonbeam has stepped in it big-time.

It started with a recording that came to light in which Jerry Brown’s campaign called Meg Whitman a “whore.” The use of such sexually derogatory terminology on the campaign trail, even in private, is beyond the pale of what is acceptable discourse. Inexplicably, the day after the story broke the National Organization for Women’s California chapter offered Brown its endorsement.  This is an astounding and confounding turn of events in the eyes of many women.

There are two issues here: Jerry Brown’s demonstrable contempt for women and CA-NOW’s endorsement.  We’ll get to both of them, but Brown’s record is far and away the real story here, and it hasn’t been covered in the media, so we’ll start there. Jerry Brown’s issues with women go much deeper than his use of “salty language,” which he addressed in his apology to Meg Whitman, issued via a campaign spokesperson. His record throughout his career shows a lack of support for women and their issues, and he has been at times downright hostile to them.

For example, in his first stint as Governor of California, he showed contempt for mothers across the board. Not only did he threaten to starve poor women and children when he said “welfare mothers” would have to “tighten their belts,” he showed contempt for working mothers with this quote:

More women should be in the home, taking care of their children. Then we’d have fewer social problems. (Source)

Are there any such statements in Meg Whitman’s past? No, her life story demonstrates that she believes in working mothers. She is a working mother.

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Click here to read the rest of this article at The New Agenda. Tweet it, reddit, stumble it when you get there. This info needs to get out!

The Tide is Turning for Meg Whitman

This article has been revised and cross-posted to The New Agenda.

Thank you, Greta Van Susteren (via TooCynThia). Here’s the video making the rounds today, from last night’s On the Record, all nine and a half glorious minutes of it:

The usual folks you’d expect are promoting the video, including Hot Air, but even Jeralyn of TalkLeft has posted it, along with positive comments. Yes, Jeralyn, not BTD, for those who follow there, or used to.

The California Press, the press that actually matters, is weighing in as well.

Here’s a summation of the talking points gleaned from these sources (feel free to copy and paste around the web):

  • According to the San Fransisco Chronicle’s legal research, Meg Whitman and her husband acted legally and ethically with regard to Diaz’s illegal status under the law.
  • IF a member of the Whitman family received a letter, they could neither have questioned nor fired Diaz under the law. To do either would have put them at risk for lawsuits.
  • Gloria Allred has a long history with Jerry Brown and used to work for him, has donated to his various campaigns on multiple occasions, and has a clear history of financially supporting only Democrats. She is clearly a partisan and known for partisan media stunts.
  • Allred put Diaz’s freedom and safety at risk for a case she herself claims she can’t win and will never see the inside of a courtroom. She also put Diaz’s American-born children at risk for losing their mother to deportation. Thus what Allred is doing is a vicious exploitation of a powerless person by a wealthy partisan for partisan gain.

So this is much ado about nothing, and all of the moral turpitude belongs on the side of Allred and her poor, exploited client. But there’s one more talking point to consider. Continue reading