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Archive for the ‘Women in the Media’ Category

MSNBC finally heard the cries of her fans, and Karen Finney starts hosting her show there today at 4 p.m. EST.  Not to be missed!  Check her out and “like” Disrupt’s page on Facebook!

 

Welcome to the Disrupt with Karen Finney facebook page! This is your place for exclusive content and conversation. You can also stay up to date when you follow us on twitter at @msnbcDisrupt http://bit.ly/12wOKzI

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A friend and former colleague of Huma Abedin (profiled here last week)  my favorite political analyst, Karen Finney  at The Hill,  has taken on Michele Bachmann and her crazy allegations.  Karen correctly points out the dangerous direct impact Bachmann & Co. are having on our fragile relationships with newly democratic Arab states.  Those who pelted Hillary Clinton’s car with tomatoes and shoes in Egypt believed allegations they read on blogs by Frank Gaffney and Lucianne Goldberg.  Michele Bachmann and her minions have endangered our Head Homegirl, Hillary Rodham Clinton, and Karen Finney rightly and justifiably calls for her to be removed from her post on the Intelligence Committee.  We applaud Karen’s strong defense of Huma, her loyal concern for  Hillary Clinton, and her firm demand for Bachmann to answer for her dangerous claims. (I am filing this under “violence against women” among other categories because of the true physical danger this insanity poses to our hard-working Secretary of State and her Deputy Chief of Staff.)

So!  Once again the homegirls and boys here in the  Hillaryhood say “Go Karen!  You rock!”

Punish Bachmann

By Karen Finney – 07/23/12 06:51 PM ET
During Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s recent trip to Egypt, protesters threw shoes and tomatoes at the motorcade because they believe the Obama administration rigged recent elections to ensure the Muslim Brotherhood’s candidate, Mohammed Morsi (now elected president), would win, all part of a secret pro-Islamist agenda. Reports indicated protesters cited American blogs like Lucianne.com (founded by conservative Lucianne Goldberg, who played a role in the Monica Lewinsky scandal); former Reagan administration official Frank Gaffney, known for his theory that the Muslim Brotherhood is trying to impose Islamic Shariah Law and infiltrate the American government; as well as recent claims by Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) that the Obama administration has been infiltrated by loyalists to the Muslim Brotherhood, specifically naming Huma Abedin, deputy chief of staff to Secretary Clinton, and that billions of American dollars had been paid to the Muslim Brotherhood rather than aid to the Egyptian military.
SNIP
Bachmann and the others who signed on to her call for an investigation have abused their position as members of the House of Representatives, making baseless accusations that recklessly jeopardize an already tense situation in the Middle East, and endangering the life of an American secretary of State and Americans in the region by stoking anti-American sentiment.

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While everyone is paying attention to Greece and Spain, Italy is teetering  on the brink.  Some pundits say that the real  fate of the Eurozone lies in Italy’s ability to weather the current economic winds. It occurred to me that I did not know whether the Vatican was part of the EU.  It is not, but, oddly, its currency is the Vatican Euro which is made in Rome.

With brand names like Prada, Ferrari, and Armani continuing to do well, Italy may come through just fine.  That is not why I raised the subject.  It is pretty clear to anyone who knows anything about the Vatican why that sovereign state would eschew EU membership.  Legendary accumulated wealth and perennially resurfacing Vatican Bank scandals hint at roiling financial and economic storms beneath the serene surface.  A two thousand year history of borderline incestuous relations with European royalty may have established much of the Vatican’s wealth, but a side effect might be the belief that the tiny city-state gets to dictate what happens politically in other countries.  When Vatican officials tried to bitch-slap American nuns recently, the nuns not only stood their ground, but, in an all-American huff, decided to take their message on the road.

Nuns, Rebuked by Rome, Plan Road Trip to Spotlight Social Issues

By
Published: June 5, 2012

In a spirited retort to the Vatican, a group of Roman Catholic nuns is planning a bus trip across nine states this month, stopping at homeless shelters, food pantries, schools and health care facilities run by nuns to highlight their work with the nation’s poor and disenfranchised.

Doug Mills/The New York Times

Sister Simone Campbell is organizing a bus tour to draw attention to nuns’ work with the poor and to protest planned aid cuts.

Doug Mills/The New York Times

The bus’s decal.

The bus tour is a response to a blistering critique of American nuns released in April by the Vatican’s doctrinal office, which included the accusation that the nuns are outspoken on issues of social justice, but silent on other issues the church considers crucial: abortion and gay marriage.

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I am reminded of this incident.

5 Nuns in New Jersey Break Away Over Break With Tradition

By ROBERT HANLEY, Special to the New York Times
Published: October 08, 1988

Five cloistered nuns are protesting at their monastery here over the relaxation of rigid monastic lifestyles rooted in the 16th century.

Since Tuesday, the five have secluded themselves in the monastery’s second-floor infirmary, fearful they face eviction from the monastery because of their opposition to the recent introduction of a television, classical music and brighter lighting in the prayer chapel.

To the five sisters, these 20th-century society elements are distractions to their dedication to solitude, silence and daily contemplative prayer, and the abandonment of the reclusive principles of their order, the Discalced Carmelite Nuns, founded in 1562.

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A brilliant friend, mentor, and colleague of mine, a naturalized American able to see our culture through eyes more objective than our own and trained in anthropology,  and I were driving past that cloister a few years later.  “I wish I could have spoken to the Pope during that stand-off,” she said.  “He didn’t realize he was dealing with protestant nuns.”  Her larger thesis was that all Americans, regardless of the religious tradition in which we are raised, are essentially protestants.  It’s what we do.  We protest.  Our nation was born in protest and the founders enshrined that right in the very first amendment to our constitution.  That is the importance they lent to the role of protest in our infant culture.

Sister Simone Campbell and her bus mates along with Sister Margaret Farley (whom the Vatican officials appear to regard as a ring leader in all of this disruption to their traditional message of vilification for the practices of birth control and gay marital union) stand with the grand majority of Roman Catholic American nuns who have not missed the connections between these practices and the economic health of the greater society.  Gay marriage more than affords equal rights to gay couples.  It permits medical coverage,  pension and social security benefits to dependents of those marriages – benefits that parties to straight marriage accept without the blink of an eye – to which, in fact, they feel entitled.  Birth control permits reproductive responsibility in families that calculate their fiscal ability to support a family at $235,000 per child per year 0 – 17 years (not including post secondary education).

The nuns are very much part of the fabric of American life.  Their long tradition of working on the ground with children and families allows them insights that men isolated in Vatican enclaves cannot possibly appreciate.  The Nuns on the Bus are out to educate Americans – voting citizens (which Vatican officials are not) – as to the dangers inherent in the proposed Ryan budget.  Les eminences grises could learn a thing or two from them as well.  American nuns have been educating Americans for more than two hundred years.  We applaud this effort by our all-American protestant Catholic nuns.  Go Sisters!!!!!!

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Perhaps Adam and Stacy closed down Texts to Hillary a  day too soon.  While many would agree that, indeed, they closed it at its absolutely unforeseeable pinnacle, events over the past two days resulted in a situation that simply cries out for one of their meme texts.

Unless you live under a rock, you know that for many weeks Republicans in a variety of positions: Congress,  presidential campaigns, state governments, have waged a brutal war on women, specifically our right to have access to and make decisions about our own health care.  One presidential candidate has maintained that according to his wife, who regularly meets with women on the campaign trail, the economy is of concern to women and birth control … not so much.

This position ignores the elephant in the room that women’s health care is in the context of the economy, but let’s not worry about that little wrinkle.  Mitt Romney believes that this is not an issue because his wife,  Ann,  has told him so.

Yesterday, CNN consultant  Hilary Rosen  remarked on the air  that Ann Romney had never worked a day in her life igniting the age-old (it seems) battle between working moms and stay-at-home moms.  So now we have a war within a war.  Now we have a war among women – again.

The meme I was thinking of had Ann texting HRC for advice on how to answer the other Hilary based on this National Journal article.

Ann Romney Tweets; What Would Hillary Do?

April 12, 2012 | 8:59 AM

You’ve come a long way, baby? Somehow the 2012 campaign has regressed  back to 1992 (some would say even decades earlier) when Hillary Clinton kicked up a storm for saying “I suppose I could have stayed home and baked cookies and had teas but what I decided to do was to fulfill my profession which I entered before my husband was in public life.”

The perceived knock on homemakers by the Yale-trained lawyer who went on to become First Lady came to mind when Democratic strategist Hilary Rosen scoffed on CNN Wednesday that the wife of presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney “has never actually worked a day in her life.” It was an insulting comment that revealed a lesson still unlearned from 1992. Work is work, whether it’s a paid office job or unpaid and generally thankless child-rearing. In a move clearly aimed at ginning up outrage among stay-at-home moms, Ann Romney joined Twitter to shoot back: “I made a choice to stay home and raise five boys. Believe me, it was hard work.”

Reinhard makes excellent points.  In the course of the war on women, many have cited our preponderance in the population and pointed out that this majority is under the control of the minority faction, that this 52% of the populace should pull together and grab the controls.  Why should we not have a larger voice?   Well, my sisters, that is never going to happen while there is division in the ranks.  She may not have meant to, but Hilary Rosen opened an old wound.  She has countered that her remark was not about Ann Romney but about single, working moms.

So, on second thought, perhaps it is fortunate that the meme site closed.   The last thing we need is gasoline poured on this fire.  Women need to get past this false division and focus on what unites us and is in our best interests.   We will never prevail and have control over our own destinies if we do not.

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I found tweets from here on Karen Finney’s Twitter feed.  Do you have clothes you have grown or shrunk out of hanging around in your attic?  Here is a great way to share while you do your Spring cleaning!

CharltiesNSN

@CharltiesNSN

Power of 140 Characters chance 2 help local Women’s Shelter donating 1 pair of jeans or spring dress. Tweet back 4 info

North America · http://NoStressNews.com

I almost asked for more info, but the whole point seems to be the use of Twitter.

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Cross-posted  from Uppity Woman  per her request.

 March 27, 2012 by Anita Finlay (“Ani”)

In her WaPo article, Twenty Years On, ‘Year of the Woman’ Fades, Karen Tumulty offers many reasons why women have not attained anything approaching parity in political representation, after female membership in the House and Senate doubled in 1992:

“…They made their presence felt beyond Capitol Hill, with the passage of legislation that made the workplace more family-friendly, that directed more medical research to women’s health issues and that made the criminal justice system more responsive to domestic violence.”

Women now represent 16.8% of Congress.  We have now hit a plateau, Tumulty says.  Another way of putting it is stagnation.  The treatment received by Hillary Clinton, who won more votes than any candidate in Primary history, and Sarah Palin, only the second woman to get on a presidential ticket, served as horrifying cautionary tales rather than encouragement.  Why would more qualified women run for higher office when a misogynist gauntlet awaits them?  What I witnessed in 2008 made the bile rise in my throat from such a deep place that I had to get off the sidelines and take action.  The sum total of that action follows:

Ms. Tumulty notes Democrats have declared that Republicans are waging a “war on women.” But the current “war” is being confined once again to a cynical and controlled narrative designed to benefit the President’s re-election bid rather than addressing the underbelly of woman-hate that still seems to permeate all levels of society.

Dirty Words On Clean Skin is a shocking exposé about the real war on women….who’s buying, who’s selling – and why they get away with it.

That war is waged daily by mainstream media, party backstabbers, opposing politicians, advertisers and lowbrow comedians of high powered television shows – all of whom miss no opportunity to degrade and marginalize; reducing women to body parts, wardrobe choices and vocal tics.

The quality and preparedness of Hillary Clinton was continually obscured by the bread and circuses of distraction and character assassination.  To a greater or lesser degree, these are tactics with which all females running for office have become acquainted.  We say the sky’s the limit for women in this country, but the reality was quite different when we were presented with a test case.

I am so proud to share my work with all of you and will be doing a pre-launch of Dirty Words on Clean Skin for all my kind blogger buddies and readers.  The book will be available on Amazon as of April 3rd…The book’s main launch will be April 24th and it will also be available on Kindle at that time.

Your encouragement has both fed me, and taught me to think critically, to make an argument, to stand my ground.

I am grateful to you all.

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Fans of the lovely and lively Ms. Finney were overjoyed to  see her finally have a go at guest-hosting on Thursday and Friday of  last week when she filled in for Martin Bashir.  We hoped she would make a big splash and capture the attention of execs at MSNBC who might consider giving her a show of her own.  I doubt that any of us ever dreamed that we would see her attacked unfairly, misquoted, and abused the way we have for the past few days on Twitter.

Like some warped version of The Telephone Game,  Hate-Tweeters have twisted her words and worse claimed she said things that she did not. People whose attention spans do not exceed 140 characters retweet without checking to see what she really said.  The videos and transcripts are all available at  the Bashir Live homepage, but let us not waste valuable retweeting time looking for the truth!

Ms. Finney organized and presented some compelling programming.  Of  course she covered the story of the week, the Trayvon Martin case.  The language used by the accused perpetrator, George Zimmerman on 911 record,  not Ms. Finney, is what brought race into the discussion.   She along with her panel presented the facts as they found them.  So what did Karen do to precipitate this hailstorm of hate on Twitter?

There is a “B” word that I have yet to hear in connection with the Trayvon Martin case.  With all of the attention being paid in this country to bullying, I have not heard the suggestion that as a self-identified authority figure, George Zimmerman may have bullied Trayvon Martin.  We do not like thinking about that kind of bullying.  We do not want kids bullying other kids, but I notice a resistance to suggestions that authority figures also bully.  Some teachers do, coaches do, and yes, security and police personnel also do.   Karen did not raise this issue, but if the latest Zimmerman information, that he is injured, is true, it could be consistent with Trayvon fighting back – against a bully.

Having raised that “B” word, I find what is happening to Karen on the Twitter feed also a form of bullying.  The attacks are merciless,and the “quotes”  have no basis in fact.  It is hate talk and very dangerous.  I still cannot fathom why it is Karen who receives this treatment.  I hope it is not rooted  in sexism, racism or both,  and I certainly hope it is not because she is beautiful and brilliant.  We have seen enough of that!  Thanks to Ryan Olsen for the picture.

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If there were a reality show called “Who’s the REAL Feminist?” Andrew Sullivan evidently considers himself a candidate for judge.  He, predictably,  had the unmitigated gall to assume the role of “feminist maven”on an “Overtime” segment of HBO’s Bill Maher Show.  How appropriate!

He debated the issue with Wendy Schiller, associate professor at Brown University on the segment.  Talk about picking your opponent!  Sullivan, once again, has shown himself to be the good old misogynist we have all come to know and despise.  There is a video in the article. WordPress would not accept the code, so I could not post it here.  You can watch it when you click into The Daily Caller article.

Andrew Sullivan slams Hillary Clinton: ‘Not a feminist’

Published: 6:26 PM 03/24/2012

On Friday’s “Overtime” segment of HBO’s “Real Time with Bill Maher,” Newsweek columnist and The Daily Beast’s “The Dish” blogger Andrew Sullivan made a comparison between Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.

According to Sullivan, Thatcher’s legacy was “amazing” because she never played the sex card.

“Thatcher was amazing to me because … she never allowed another woman in her own cabinet, by the way, ever, in 11 years,” Sullivan said. “She’s also a woman in the 50s, got educated in chemistry and had a family and ran as a single woman, and never once in her entire life played the sex card. Never, never played it.”

“… she never allowed another woman in her own cabinet.”  What a testament!  These women would probably disagree with Judge Sullivan.

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There are many, many more like them.  Hillary Clinton has worked for 40 years for women, children, and families.  As Secretary of State,  her signature issue has been the empowerment of women and girls.   Meryl Streep stated,  introducing this amazing woman,  a hero to so many of us,  at the Women in the World Summit this month, that there are women in the world who are still alive today only because they had their pictures taken with Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Comparing her unfavorably with the woman who showed not an ounce of empathy with the mothers of the Long Kesh hunger strikers, defies reason and serves to disqualify Sullivan as any kind of judge of feminism.

How dare you, Andrew Sullivan!  You crossed the line, and we are watching you!

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As you know, our homegirl Karen has spent the past two afternoons filling in as host on Bashir Live at MSNBC.  Fans hailed the choice.  Some live-tweeted which was helpful to folks like me who were stuck at work.  It provided a chance to take an occasional peek.  Fortunately, I long ago set my DVR to record this show (and others) in case Karen might be on a panel.  So I have spent two evenings watching my favorite commentator running two shows on her own and found her impressive.  More than impressive.  By mid-way through today’s show the word “expert” kept leaping into my mind.

Tweets during and after the first show on Thursday were largely encouraging.   The “Finney Fans”  were high-fiving her in all of their genius 140 or < character ways.  When I came home from an extra-long day today to look at the Twitter feed, I saw something quite different.  It looked like someone had taken a rake and knocked a wasp’s nest off of a tree branch.  Negativity rained down like someone had opened a faucet.  It may be that this Politico article had something to do with the gathering of the haters.

Democratic strategists as MSNBC anchors

By DYLAN BYERS|

3/22/12 3:55 PM EDT

MSNBC has no problem letting viewers know where its political ideologies lie, but I think it’s worth noting that Karen Finney, Democratic strategist and network contributor, is currently filling in as anchor on the Martin Bashir program.

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Since I am not the resident “wingnut site snoop” (Jen holds that post), I do not know if there were other, similar articles or whether Byers simply shot around the interwebs like buckshot.   Whatever it was,  that swarm on her Twitter feed today came as a shock to me as well as to the many homegirls and homeboys who regularly visit there and encourage her efforts.

Somewhere along the line I saw the term “race-baiter” used.   Really?  Are they talking about this Karen Finney?   Race-baiter?    I can think of no term less appropriate.

I watched yesterday’s Bashir Live twice.  I have watched today’s show only once,  but is this the Karen Finney who has so angered so many?  Seriously?

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Stand Your Ground Laws, posted with vodpod

As is her wont, she gave Rick Santorum credit for something well done.  She is not a Santorum supporter, but she always gives credit where it is due.   She asked an honest question on every decent person’s mind: “Where is Zimmerman?”  It is a fair question.  I just wonder what, in this segment, angered so many and where was the race-baiting?

In my book, Karen has done an extraordinary job over these two days and well deserves her own show.  Her research is deep and broad, her views are circumspect, and her presentation is clear.  She has a lot of charisma.

In the end what does an anchor do?  It holds fast while the currents swirl around it.  Karen held strong for two days while the tides built around her.  She was genial,  courteous, artful, and fair.  I say. “Give her a forum of her own!”  Five Stars, Karen.  Wonderful!   (Oh!  Wait! the code won’t give stars.  Well then I think you deserve diamonds!)  ♦♦♦♦♦

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For those who might have missed Karen Finney filling in for Martin Bashir yesterday, here is her exceptional “Clearing the Air” segment.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Karen Finney, posted with vodpod

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