President Obama: On Helping the Midwest, and Mozambique



Elizabeth Warren’s CNN Town Hall


Thanks to commentor ‘David Koch’. Since at least one commentor asked about embedding a link, during last night’s not-livestreamed thread…
 
And this probably deserves its own post, except news moves too fast these days (& I read too slow.) Looks like Sen. Warren’s take on reparations is aligned with at least one Balloon Juice favorite:

NYMag, “Ta-Nehisi Coates Is an Optimist Now”:

When I say I am for reparations, I’m saying that I am for the idea that this country and its major institutions has had an extractive relationship with black people for much of our history; that this fact explains basically all of the socioeconomic gap between black and white America, and thus, the way to close that gap is to pay it back. In terms of political candidates, and how this should be talked about, and how this should be dealt with, it seems like it would be a very easy solution. It’s actually the policy recommendation that I gave in the piece, and that is to support HR 40. That’s the bill that says you form a commission. You study what damage was done from slavery, and the legacy of slavery, and then you try to figure out the best ways to remedy it. It’s pretty simple. I think that’s Nancy Pelosi’s position at this point.

… When I wrote “The Case for Reparations,” my notion wasn’t that you could actually get reparations passed, even in my lifetime. My notion was that you could get people to stop laughing. My notion was you could actually have people say, “Oh, shit. This actually isn’t a crazy idea. This actually isn’t insane.” And then, once you got them to stop laughing, you could get them to start fighting…



Wednesday Morning Open Thread: An Overnight Sensation (After Decades of Hard Work)


 

A record number of women ran — and won — in the 2018 midterms, and the same dynamics that led to this boost could be contributing to the increase in women presidential candidates as well.

Clinton, the first woman to secure a major-party nomination for the presidency, carved out a path that other women could follow. Research has found that women in leadership positions can serve as key role models for younger women in their field, and help improve their performance. Additionally, one person’s efforts to break a barrier can make a position seem more accessible to others in the future.

“I think that Hillary did help, but also I think the victories in 2018 helped. It proved that women can mobilize women voters,” says Democratic pollster Celinda Lake, who runs Lake Research Partners…

The surge in Democratic women candidates can also be attributed, in part, to longtime investments the party has made in building a bench.

“The filling of the pipeline was a 35-year project or longer,” says Lake, who adds that Barbara Mikulski, one of the first women to join the Senate, used to joke that she was a 30-year overnight success. Emily’s List, one of the organizations that have led recruitment for women and training for women candidates, most recently heard from more than 42,000 women interested in running during the 2018 midterms…

Another ‘Hillary Effect’, IMO, is that women considering running for office could see what happened after the Worst Possible Outcome. Clinton was abused, threatened, sneered at — she had her popular-vote win stolen by Republican traitors and their foreign purchasers — and she went right on with her work. She’s not happy about what happened, but she’s still publicly modeling a good and happy life. The nuns used to tell us: Half of courage is knowing what you’re attempting has been done before. Sometimes failure is an option… but, if you work hard, you can still return safely to Earth.



But Seriously… (International Women’s Day)

In 2018, the #MeToo hashtag on sexual harassment was one of the top 10 censored topics on China’s popular messaging app, WeChat, according to the University of Hong Kong’s WeChatscope.

Weibo and WeChat also banned China’s most influential feminist social media account, Feminist Voices. Authorities have closed down prominent women’s rights centres. They have also detained students and recent graduates advocating for #MeToo and workers’ rights.

Just as China’s crackdown on women’s rights activism is growing, the global backlash against feminism is likely to intensify, as misogynistic autocrats have been emboldened everywhere, in part by a US president who openly expresses admiration for “strongman” rulers…

Why are authoritarian rulers so threatened by feminism? The subjugation of women is a common feature in virtually all authoritarian regimes.

Putin signed a law in 2017 that partially decriminalised domestic violence in Russia, making it much more difficult for women to report abuse.

In Hungary, the autocratic Prime Minister Viktor Orban has banned gender studies programmes at universities. Putin, Orban and Xi, among others, are fixated on pushing women into more traditional roles in the home and having more babies for the state…

Far too often, women in resistance movements are overlooked by journalists and the narrative revolves around male opposition figures.

Yet more young women in authoritarian states have become fed up with the misogyny in their daily lives, demanding equality, dignity and an end to pervasive gender-based violence.

Young women standing up for their rights pose a growing challenge to male autocrats everywhere – not just in China – which is why authoritarian rulers are so threatened by the prospect of any large-scale women’s movement developing.

Male autocrats see patriarchal authoritarianism as crucial for their political survival, but one of the core demands of feminism – that women should be free to control our own bodies and reproductive lives – is in direct conflict with the coercive, often pronatalist policies of authoritarian states, which see declining birth rates as an existential crisis. And that is exactly what is happening in China…



Late Night SJW Open Thread: Women Aren’t *Supposed* to Be the Heroes

As always, click on any of these tweets to follow the whole thread…


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