Meeting Maddow – Third Time’s The Charm!

Meeting Maddow – Third Time’s The Charm!

Well, my fellow Politicos, if you are any sort of follower of my blog, in either of its incantations, you’ll know that I’ve always been a huge supporter of the lovely and brilliant Rachel Maddow. Wickedly smart, Our Gal Rachel brings into our home every evening the stories that I follow here and elsewhere in the blogosphere. While TRMS isn’t the only place I get my news,  it is usually the place I start, and the excellent Maddow Blog is a great place to check at lunch to check out the latest developments. She’s smart, funny, gets the big picture and covers the news that matters in a smart and understandable way. She never dumbs down the stories of the day; Rachel and her team expect that we’ll keep up and “get it.” And we do. But never did I imagine, living in my little burg here in Southern Cal, that I’d get the opportunity to ever meet Rachel in person, let alone twice, or get the chance to tell her about my show. I’ve always said she’d be my top “get,” and on Tuesday and Wednesday, I got the chance to speak with her briefly. You know how genuine, how humble and how generous of spirit she seems with her guests on TRMS? Well, she’s exactly the same way, toward everyone, when you meet her. So, my story. That’s why you’re  here, right? Okay. About two months ago, I got wind of the fact that Rachel would be doing a stop on her book tour at Barnes & Noble at The Grove, an L.A. mall not horribly far from my town. Immediately, I checked the calendar, and, miracle of miracles, it was during Spring Break. (Ah, the perks of a career in education!) So I was thrilled – I could go and get a copy of Rachel’s new book, Drift, and maybe get an autograph and a handshake. Awesome. Then I came across a Writer’s Bloc event scheduled for the next day at the Saban Theatre in L.A., billed as “A Conversation with Bill Maher and Rachel Maddow.” Y’know, I’ve been to the filming of Real Time with Bill Maher a couple of times, which is always a blast. But the last time The Hubby and I went with friends, when Rachel was on the show, I came out saying, “Damn, I could listen to the two of them talk for another two hours!” Needless to say, I snapped up a pair of tickets online, marked the date in my iPhone, and told The Hubby we had a date. Yes, those were my entirely nerdy/geeky/wonky plans for Spring Break, and I couldn’t have been happier. The date of the show...

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Political Hilarity

Political Hilarity

Nothing deep here today, my Fellow Politicos. It’s a gorgeous, sunny Spring Break day here in Southern California, and the kids and I are off to the pool in a few. But while they are getting ready, I just had to share this brilliantly hilarious new Tumblr blog with you: Texts from Hillary. Nearly every one of them has made me laugh out loud. Nearly every one! It’s smart, funny, snarky humor with a wonky bent. What’s not to love? And, get this: they are smart and savvy, using lower case for the “from” in their title. Warms my grammatically nerdy little heart. It doesn’t get any better than this, folks. More later on the Michigan GOP Mess. Oh, they think they’re so sneaky. Not when Maddow’s on the case!!! Get out and enjoy the day, my fellow Politicos! Share...

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“You Just Have To Close Your Eyes”: GOP’s Legalized Rape of American Women

“You Just Have To Close Your Eyes”: GOP’s Legalized Rape of American Women

Well, my fellow Politicos, it seems the GOP has reached yet another all-time low. They keep doing that – just when you think they’ve scratched the bottom of the barrel with their misogynistic remarks and hate-filled, unconstitutional laws, they out-do themselves again. Impressive. Earlier this week, Pennsylvanian GOP Governor Tom Corbett did the Democrats one big, gnarley favor. When asked about whether women should be made to watch ultrasound images during their forced pre-abortion procedure (should the invasive PA law go into effect), he simply replied, “I don’t know how you make anybody watch, OK? Because you just have to close your eyes.” Upon hearing this crass, highly-offensive remark, the turn of phrase, “Close your eyes and think of England,” immediately came to mind. For those of you who might be too young to have heard your parents joke about this quote, allow me to give you a brief history lesson. The original line is thought to be this one: “When I hear his steps outside my door I lie down on my bed, open my legs and think of England.” It was found in the diary of Lady Hillingdon in 1912.  The meaning, of course, was that an unwilling wife should simply do what was considered her wifely duty, submitting to her husband’s sexual advances, no matter how unwanted. And, yes, there was a time in this country, not all that long ago, (even into the 50’s and 60’s in some areas) when it was still considered one’s wifely duties to do so. If you were married, which was one of the very few ways to gain any financial resources or live independently from your family, and your husband decided he was ready for sex, then your duty was clear. Just close your eyes and think of England. Rape did not exist within marriage. Legalized rape with no recourse for the victim. So along comes the Republican Party in modern times, working hard to keep women barefoot and pregnant, and to codify that into law. First, they attacked Roe v. Wade, trying to eliminate it: stir up the base, get fringe groups to encourage harassment, intimidation and even assassination of providers; then, the “Kill The Pill” movement is encouraged and funded; next, they bring about “Personhood” amendments that will attack safe and legal abortions, but will outlaw hormonal birth control. And the icing on the cake? The internal vaginal probe laws. The GOP gives the state not just the option, but the right to invade the vagina and uterus of women seeking a longstanding, legal procedure. The GOP has legalized State-sanctioned rape. And to reinforce that idea, along comes Tom Corbett. He actually said what all the others were...

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GOP Sez Women Are “Meaningless…Worthless…Irrelevant” – Issa Wants Women Barefoot And Pregnant

GOP Sez Women Are “Meaningless…Worthless…Irrelevant” – Issa Wants Women Barefoot And Pregnant

When I was 19 0r 20, I had a shirt that stated, in big neon letters, U.S. OUT OF MY UTERUS, across a picture of the womb. I went with friends to Pro-Choice rallies that celebrated the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, granting women the right to choose – we couldn’t fathom a time when free and safe access to abortion was illegal. We never had to worry about whether we would have access to women’s reproductive care. My husband and I were able to choose when we had our children, when we could  afford to raise our amazing kids. The bumper sticker on my car for years has been “Pro-Child, Pro-Family, Pro-Choice,” and I keep extras in the glove box to give out to anyone who would like one. We had no doubt that my daughter, and my son, would grow up in a world that respected the reproductive rights and, more important, the reproductive privacy of women (Grizwold v. Connecticut). Now here we are, in 2012. The rallies I attended have become a thing of the past as a generation of us grew up and had our own daughters and sons, all of us never having to worry about the right to choose, the right to plan our families, and living in a world where we and our daughters and sons have never had to worry about access to birth control and reproductive services. A generation has grown up with choice, health care and even, if not complete, fair access to Plan B. Then, over the last year or two, the tendrils of the Religious Right began to creep into our political landscape. Right wing religious zealots began assaults and assassinations of abortion providers. Personhood amendments started to appear. “Kill The Pill” movements sprouted up. And of course, Dr. Tiller was killed http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qqw-3NHGXvI The GOP was uncharisteristically silent on this one. And then our President passed Health Care Reform, and its benefits slowly came into play. People began to benefit from it, the whole “Obamacare” line became old as people were affected positively by the effects of the Health Care Reform Act. Most recently, provisions of the act required that insurance companies cover birth control in the same way they cover Viagra. And the GOP went ballistic. Why now? Because the Republicans haven’t got a leg to stand on in order to win this race, especially when it comes to the economy. Stay with me here…I know it seems a bit obscure, but give me a chance here. With 23 months of growth in jobs and unemployment shrinking, the Republicans have changed gears. They started the year with the economy, with the old “Are you better off now…”...

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Underwater? Help Is On The Way! Mortgage Relief from Fed

Underwater? Help Is On The Way! Mortgage Relief from Fed

  Well, my fellow Politicos, it’s been a wild week – so much to talk about! So many things that I have included a couple of links at the bottom of the post for you because there won’t be time to discuss them together here this week. But the main thrust of my post this week is the issue that could affect your kitchen table politics the most.  Right now, 10.7 million homeowners in the U.S. are “underwater” in their loans, meaning that their homes are worth far less than when they purchased them. That’s one in every four families. The crisis is worst in Nevada, Arizona, Florida and here in California, where 30% of borrowers owe 50% or more of their home’s value. There are over a million California families who are upside-down, and ove a hundred thousand in New York alone. With such a large number of families in crisis, it puts any economic recovery at risk. What choices do families who are underwater in their home loans have? Very few. You can’t afford to sell it at a loss because you’d still be deeply in debt; You can walk away from the home, like 588,000 homeowners did last year, even though they could still afford to pay the mortgage – just stop paying and let the bank foreclose. Or, like 40% of folks,  you can stay and keep paying your mortgage, if you can still make the payments, and continue to hope against hope that someday housing prices will rise to at least the level they were when you bought the house – if you got in at the early end of the bubble, your chances are better that if you ought at the peak. That’s where we are now, hoping against hope that something’s gotta give, having been taught all our lives that you don’t walk away from your debt, you keep your commitments. It is simply the integrity of the middle class homeowner that keeps the housing market even afloat right now. So when The President came out in his State of The Union and said that he’d be uniting the State Attorneys General and the U.S. Attorney General to prosecute the responsible parties that caused this mess, prosecuting the banks that bundled our loans and used them as chips in their high-stakes game of Texas Hold-’em, I saw a glimmer of hope on the horizon. Then, within a matter of days, I heard that there was a $25 billion settlement with the banks – turns out it’s been six months in the making. Finally, someone addressing these abuses. And that’s what they are, abuses. But I also thought, “Hey, that was happening way too fast,”...

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Komen: Fighting for A Cure, or Pandering to The Right? Americans Stand for Planned Parenthood

Komen: Fighting for A Cure, or Pandering to The Right? Americans Stand for Planned Parenthood

The vast majority of women in this country have, in one way or another, donated to the Susan G. Komen Foundation, if not by sending them a check, then by buying pink-capped yogurt and mailing in the lids, or buying a pink T-shirt, or a pink bracelet,  or by walking in or sponsoring a friend in the famous “Race for The Cure.” If Komen was considered a brand name, it’d be right up there at the top of the most pro-women companies. Hey, they fight against breast cancer, right? And what woman’s life hasn’t been affected in one way or another by breast cancer? It touches all of us. And then last week came the news that Komen has decided to suspend their funding of Planned Parenthood, to the tune of $680,000, with the reason given that Planned Parenthood was under investigation by a House subcommittee that implied that Federal dollars were used to fund abortions. Komen’s new policy forbids those under investigation from receiving funds now or in the future. That $600,000 dollars goes toward breast cancer care, screenings and referrals, toward 170,000 breast exams and 6.400 mammogram referrals that under-served populations of women would have had to do without. A real blow to women’s health in America, especially those in areas where Planned Parenthood is one of the few, if not the only, place available for women’s reproductive health care. But within twenty-four hours, something truly amazing happened. If we didn’t already know where women’s loyalties lies, we do now. NYC’s Mayor Bloomberg donated $250,000 in matching funds, which was matched almost immediately. Women and the men who care about them, from all over the country, in this difficult economic time, sent hard-earned cash to Planned Parenthood. The twitterverse lit up like a Christmas tree with links at which to donate, strong statements of support. Friends called and sent texts to sisters, mothers, daughters and friends. Coworkers pooled their cash and made donations together. Within 48 hours, the impact of the Komen cut was completely wiped out – any losses had been made up completely by donors to Planned Partenthood.  Cecile Richards, President of Planned Parenthood stated in Friday: …During the last week, millions spontaneously joined a national conversation about lifesaving breast cancer prevention care and reinforced shared values about access to health care for all. This compassionate outcry in support of those most in need rose above political, ideological, and cultural divides, and will surely be recognized as one of our nation’s better moments during a contentious political time. Planned Parenthood thanks each and every person who has contributed to elevating the importance of breast cancer prevention for so many women in need… The miraculous thing...

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Welcome to Our New Home! Momma Politico Joins A World Of Progress

Hey, there, my fellow Politicos! I have exciting news! Momma Politico has a new home, as part of the A World of Progress family. Please change your reader or rss feed to our new address, http://mommapolitico.com so you won’t miss a single juicy political morsel! In addition to a bold new look, the facelift for the blog involves a slight shift. The longer I’ve been writing, the more I have become concerned with how the national news and actions of the political elite affect families like yours and mine, and my outlook has become more focused on putting the spotlight on how those issues affect all of us, particularly on my Kitchen Table Politics feature on AWOP Radio. The blog will have a new title, Kitchen Table Politics with Momma Politico, but it’s the same political commentary you’ve come to expect from your humble politico. I hope you’ll join me in the new leg of my online adventure! Thanks much to Kim G., great pal and publisher of A World of Progress and A World of Progress Radio. And my gratitude to Nunzia Rider, our amazing technical wizard, who designed the new page and archived everything, putting up with my non-techie questions along the way. She’s a terrific writer and Politico as well, so click the link and check out her political voice. And thanks, to you, my fellow Politicos, for sticking with me and supporting my efforts here and on the online radio machine. Your comments, support and enthusiasm have kept this Momma writing and tossing her political opinions into the world. My enduring gratitude to you. And as always, you can also find me in the twitterverse @mommapolitico, and Sundays at 3:30 Pacific/6:30 Eastern on A World of Progress Radio. Share...

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Welcome

I refuse to cave to a minivan. I am still a tomboy - comfortable in Levi's, my Yankees cap and Converse. And I always have a political opinion...hell, I always have an opinion, period. The hubby, my kids and my friends think I should run for office. Maybe one day. But for now, Momma Politico blogs. Peruse, enjoy, and know that our busy lives are as significant as those in The Washington Post. Cheers, Heidi Haines AKA Perry MacNeil Momma Politico

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