Week-long Welcomings from Moosylvania: March 27th through April 2nd

Welcome to The Moose Pond! The Welcomings posts give the Moose, old and new, a place to visit and share words about the weather, life, the world at large and the small parts of Moosylvania that we each inhabit.

Welcomings will be posted at the start of each week (every Sunday morning). To find the posts, just bookmark this link and Voila! (which is Moose for “I found everyone!!”).

The format is simple: each day, the first moose to arrive on-line will post a comment welcoming the new day and complaining (or bragging!) about their weather. Or mentioning an interesting or thought provoking news item. Or simply checking in.

So … what’s going on in your part of Moosylvania?

NOTE: The comments page will now split off after 20 or so left margin comments with the most recent comments on the current page. To see the older comments, scroll to the bottom of the page and use the link.



  1. Morning all! Beautiful spring day here, sunny and not too warm yet.

    Both speeches – Obama’s and Clinton’s – were wonderful – I think rugbymom linked Clinton’s speech at the HNV this morning at GOS, the sound might be better on it.

    The Sanders campaign really seems to be imploding before our eyes, although I’ve seen most of it on social media, not yet that much in the papers or tv. But a conference call with the press from Devine and Weaver yesterday was just terrible for them – they basically said they’ve only lost states where they didn’t try to win. Even Rachel Maddow, who’s been in the tank for Bernie for ages, called them out on that crap. And then Susan Sarandon on Chris Hayes’ show last night saying Trump would be better than Clinton because a Trump victory would bring about a revolution faster. OMG.

    But eyes on the prize – Hillary continues to impress with her command of a vast array of subjects – watching her take questions from the audience after her Madison talk on the SC was just wonderful and made me proud to support her. She’s got this.

    Have a great day everyone!

    • That was rugbymom’s link – but possibly it would have been better for those who have FB accounts. For me, it finally stopped at the end of the speech so I didn’t see the Q&A afterwards – but she’s always great with those.

  2. Good morning, 38 and mostly sunny in Bellingham. My thoughts are with our grandson today as his recovery from the hip injury is still a bit bumpy and he’s very discouraged. His mom has a challenging work week so grandpa has his bags packed and I’ll be phone support.

    A thoughtful piece from Nancy LeTourneau……

    A Feminist Democratic Agenda

    Prior to reading this article, it had actually never occurred to me that much of the agenda of the Democratic Party today is so profoundly feminist. That is a remarkable change that has gone largely unnoticed. It is also important to note that this agenda was not put on the table by our current presidential candidates. It was there for them to embrace long before they announced their intentions to enter this race.

  3. Glad to see that Susan Sarandon’s idiocy has made an impression even at the orange place. Chris Hayes was completely flummoxed. It was fantastic.

    • Campaign surrogates are always going to do and say things that the candidate wished they hadn’t or in a cringe-inducing way. The key is to jump on it quickly and disavow it and have the surrogate walk it back in a credible way. Hillary’s campaign did that with the Madeleine Albright quote that was taken out of context (her life’s context) and Secretary Albright’s response in her NY Times editorial was not only healing but brilliant. I think that Sarandon eventually tweeted “LOL. I didn’t meant you should vote for Trump”. The contrast could not be more stark.

      Voting for the party that has vowed to destroy everything we care about will not make the revolution come more quickly. That has been the frustrati pipe dream for years and it is no more true in 2016 than it was in 2004. The stakes are just higher right now because that party is on the verge of nominating a man who is, frankly, dangerous. Four years of Trump will not accelerate any sort of revolution, it will kill us.

  4. Good morning, meese! Wednesday …

    It is 45 degrees in Madison on its way up to 54. Showers are in the forecast.

    I am suffering whiplash from following the political news on Twitter yesterday. Election year is no longer the “silly season” but the “bat guano insane season”. All three GOP candidates are now saying that they won’t agree to support the eventual nominee because, it turns out that the eventual nominee is probably going to destroy their party or their country – or both! Took you long enough to figure it out, guys, we knew that when we saw the 17 candidates you fielded back in 2015. There was not one suitable candidate because your party is out of gas and has been running on the fumes of hatred and bigotry for about 40 years. It took a while (the SCOTUS gift in 2000 delayed the inevitable by 8 years) but the chickens have all come home to roost. RIP GOP – good f-ing riddance.

    Secretary Clinton finished her swing through Wisconsin and heads back to New York to campaign there. Today the Marquette poll comes out and we will get an idea of how Wisconsin might vote next Tuesday. I was laughing at an article I read yesterday saying that the Sanders campaign is claiming that anything less than a 60% win in New York by Hillary will be a victory for Sen. Sanders. Huh? Actually, he needs landslide wins in CA, NY, PA, NJ and MD where polls favor Hillary. Anyway, I look forward to seeing Hillary campaign in her adopted home state.

    See all y’all later!

  5. Another restless night, and it was too foggy/rainy this morning, I didn’t ride my bike. Got to log in & write thank yous to all my donors — yesterday went well. As soon as I have some caffeine. Brain is working in fits & starts. Tea is strong & sweet. Yay for tea. And brain is playing dancy, poppy Called Out In The Dark which is helping me stay awake.

  6. Good morning, Moosekind! Another sunny, blue-skied day here in NoVa, 33 F. now, going up to 66 F. later.

    Popped in to have a look at the APR on GOS and emerged mystified. Why does anyone try to put a long piece on Twitter? If you have to mark your tweets 1/ 2/ 3/ and so on, what’s the point? Why not just publish a blog somewhere else? And what on earth is “Storify”? This just confirms my feeling that Twitter is a waste of time when you have a lot to say. It seems best suited to short comments back and forth on a trending story.

    Now that’s out of the way, I have to say I didn’t get much done on my story yesterday. BookBaby sent the proof of the cover for my forthcoming book. I liked the cover but not the font used for the title and author name. Sent it back and asked for a different font. We’ll see what they say.

    Meanwhile, April 1 approaches, so I have to—for the very first time all by myself—upload a story to my new website. The TaskRabbit told me to go into “Portfolio” to do that. We’ll see what happens!

    Wishing all at the Pond a good day!

    • I think that Twitter is becoming the new Blog of Choice, Diana. It is easy to send off a Tweet quickly … no need to create a blog post, just tweet a thought, maybe link to an article or quote someone else’s Tweet. The Storify is a way to assemble the stream of consciousness Tweet into a pseudo-blog post. If you don’t, often your Tweets get interrupted, as you know Twitter comes at you in real time making it difficult to follow a story line. Sometimes I will go into the Tweeter’s profile to follow a story but the Storify makes it more permanent and better organized.

      The advantage, besides not needing to have a blog home, is that you can mute people you don’t want to read. I do that from time to time when a person is becoming obnoxious.

      You can reply to people’s Tweets, direct message them, quote, retweet, or favorite. Lots of the same sorts of things that blog posts and comments and private messages provide but you more in control of what you see. That means you are not dependent on blog moderators (who often bring their own biases) to clean out the flotsam and jetsam.

      I still have on my to-do list to put together a How It Works post, kind of an inservice, on Twitter. I expect to have more time to write this summer.

      Good luck with your inaugural post!! Bring us links, please.

      • Thank you, Jan, for clarifying Twitter. I have two Twitter handles, one for politics, and one for GoddessFiction—not that I ever use them. If I were serious, I’d be Tweeting a Great Thought about Writing every day, but gad, I’d rather spend my time on my next project.

        Thanks for inviting me to bring a link—will see what I can do. :)

        • One would not want to Tweet a Great Thought about Writing because it would likely get drowned out by the noise of 100 million cheeps … you can share those here where they will be admired by the meese.

  7. Good morning Meeses. It’s 64 in Fay., AR heading for 70 and overcast. We’re supposed to get rain starting around noon, but the forecast has moved the rain percentage and icon around so much, goddess only knows if we’ll actually get any. I generated just over 21 KWHs yesterday and am just over 5 KWHs shy of hitting 400 for the month. If we get any sun today – or even just a lessening of the cloud cover – I should get there today. Then one last day to finish out March (420 KWHs for the month would be nice, but I’m not going to bank on it as tomorrow is forecast to be partly cloudy).

    I checked in over at GOS for Hillary-safe diaries posted after I left work. The below link (lots of comments so takes a while to load) has embedded the PBS coverage of Hillary’s SCOTUS speech at UW-Madison. I also tried to copy the link to the speech itself (below the link to the diary) but I’m not sure if it will work (or take you where it’s supposed to). It was a great speech.


    Need to get some stuff cleared off my desk for end of month/end of quarter. Half of what I thought I was going to get covered yesterday had some sort of “no, you can’t do that until you update this” hang up – but I hope today I’ll get it covered. I hope. Anyway, have a lovely Woden’s/Woozle’s Day. {{{HUGS}}}

      • The YouTube was part of what you grabbed. I right-sized it for our blog page.

        Thanks for finding it, Bfitz. It is a great speech and I want to save it in Pocket.

        • You’re welcome – but I have to give credit to phenry over at Orange who found it and diaried it. :) And it really was a great speech – and great Q&A afterwards. Even though I’d listened to it at the FB link yesterday morning, I enjoyed it even more the 2nd time (and much better sound quality as well).

        • OMG! Is this yet another social media thing I don’t know about? What’s Pocket, exactly?

          In the short story I’m writing, I was planning to have someone make a speech on YouTube because the subject is a very old one (an urban legend, in fact), and no one is discussing it much. That’s why I think the protagonist couldn’t use Twitter or Storify.

          • Pocket is not social media – it is a read-later service: GetPocket.com. If I find something I want to read and don’t have time or I am on a different device like my Kindle or my smartphone, I can send the link there using the App and it will show up on a nice list for me. You can add keywords, which I do, to help organize them.

            It is built into Firefox and my TweetCaster app, it is a separate app on the Kindle, smartphone, and iPad. You can also open the list directly via a browser and add links manually.

            I used to use a service called Readability but it stopped working with Tweetcaster and so it became useless to me.

      • Here is an excellent writeup on the event from CMD’s PRWatch blog:

        Hillary Clinton came to campaign for votes in Madison, Wisconsin today, a city that most here put in the Bernie Sanders column. But, Clinton made it clear she loves Madison and the University of Wisconsin and wants to compete for every vote.

        In a small venue on the UW campus, Clinton brought the message that the courts are important to democracy and that Wisconsin voters should study up on the growing fight over the vacancy left by Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court.

        “The court shapes every aspect of life in the United States,” said Clinton. “If we are serious about fighting for progressive causes, we need to focus on the courts.”

    • I saw that he was speaking there. I imagine he will have something to say about McCrory’s Folly, the anti-LGBT law that will be an economic disaster for North Carolina. Maybe this will finally be the Republican Party’s bridge too far and they can get a new governor there.

  8. Good morning, 43 and partly sunny in Bellingham. I want to work in the garden today, but my messy desk needs attention and my 2 x’s a month housekeeper will be here so I had best keep my focus indoors. I will go to the pool this morning regardless.

    Danny Westneat, at The Seattle Times….

    Democrats’ caucuses aren’t very democratic

    Maybe the state Democratic Party should change its name. Because it isn’t at all democratic how they’re choosing a presidential nominee.

    The caucuses held here last weekend were described in media reports as “packed” and “bursting at the seams.” Lines around the block were reported, as well as crowds in overflow rooms. It gave the feeling of massive civic engagement.

    But in reality, only 5.8 percent of the state’s registered voters showed up. That means 94 percent of voters didn’t. Even the most moribund municipal election for, say, water commissioner, gets turnout rates five times that amount.

    This also means that Bernie Sanders’ landslide win was earned with the backing of just 4 percent of our 4 million registered voters.

    Can you call something a peoples’ revolution with that few people?

    • Well, it is foolish to ask a group of people who have been voting completely by mail to all of a sudden set aside their busy lives and go spend hours with a bunch of strangers who might be inclined to yell at them.

      They should go back to a primary.

  9. Morning all! Beautiful morning here, cool and sunny! Days like these, I can reconcile myself to living in Florida – alas, it’s not like this all the time lol.

    GOS has been in kind of a meltdown since Kos basically confronted OnePissedOffLiberal/OPOL last night and put him in timeout. Oy vey, the wailing and gnashing of teeth! Long overdue that TO in my view, and several others could join him easily, but perhaps the most zealous ‘Bernie or bust’ folks will migrate from the site completely.

    Stuff to do today, need to go send a wire transfer to pay off my mortage – I’m going to see if I can do that with my on line banking but I may have to actually go to the bank to do it. Have a great day everyone!

    • Congratulation Geordie! Paying off our mortgage isn’t possible, but how I wish it were. We’re looking into a refinance with a lower interest rate. I don’t want to, but the new rates will probably mean we will recoup the costs soon and the lower payments will be better for us.

      • Well, it now appears I’m already mortage free! I was sorting through the pile of mail on my side table looking for the mortgage payoff amount letter I had gotten from Chase so I could go make the wire transfer, when I found, tucked into an advertising flyer, another envelope from Chase that I hadn’t opened. And in it was their notice of ‘congratulations on paying off your mortgage”!! dated March 3rd. They noticed I was close making the final payment and so just used what was in the escrow account to pay it off – I had gotten, last week, a check for what was left in escrow, but I hadn’t put two and two together. So yay! No having to send a wire transfer.

        I’m sure refinancing will make sense for you, given how low rates have gotten. I know financially it might have made better sense for me to invest the extra money I’ve spent over the last 3 years to pay off the mortgage faster, but psychologically, it just makes me feel more secure in retirement, knowing that big chunk doesn’t have to go out each month now. Woot!

        • I made my last mortgage payment in December 2010. It was and still is a great feeling. Congratulations. (As to investing the money instead – you’d be hard put to find something to invest in that pays a better rate than what you were being charged for the mortgage. Paying off the debt was a very wise choice.)

        • Ha! It pays to open your mail. :)

          Refinancing does make a lot of sense in most cases. I did last fall and timed it before the Fed changed their interest rates so I was able to lock in a good rate that saves me a lot of money each month. The depressing thing is looking at the term on it and realizing that if you pay to the end, you will be in your 90s!! Of course, that won’t happen, at least for me. I will sell and downsize when the time is right and be, I hope, mortgage free at that time.

    • Oh, what a lovely feeling, paying off your mortgage! Congratulations!

      We did it, but then we turned right around and got a home equity line of credit. And used it. Bummer.

      • Chase has been trying to get interest off me for years. They keep sending me credit card checks with zero interest for up to a year at a 3% fee. (So yeah, they sort of get interest off me in the form of the flat-rate 3% fee.) I’ve used those instead of getting a home equity line of credit. Just have to keep my projects small enough that I can pay it off in a year or less. My last project (upgrade to the solar panel system) will be paid off next month. My next credit card check will be to pay for NN so if I want to do anything else on the house it will have to be after I pay off NN. And if I don’t, I may write myself a check anyway and stick into a savings account – that way I’ll have the funds stashed back after I retire and will no longer have the income to pay off credit card checks. heh.

  10. Good morning, meese! Thursday …

    It is 45 degrees in Madison on its way up to 47. Storms are rumbling through the area but it appears that the worst of it is over.

    The Donald said that women seeking abortions should be punished. I am not sure why there was a hue and cry – that is the Republican Party platform. Their ultimate goal is a personhood amendment, declaring that life begins at conception, actually begins at sexual intercourse since denying access to birth control is also part of their platform. The punishment is built in: forced birth and, in some cases death, followed by trying to raise a child that the family can’t afford or is otherwise not equipped to handle.

    Neither Ted Cruz nor John Kasich, phony compassionate conservative, have abortion exceptions for rape, incest or the life of the mother. Period.

    This election is about getting a 5th Supreme Court justice who believes that Roe v Wade is settled law and who doesn’t have a Catholic filter over their eyes when it comes to interpreting “undue burden”. It is an undue burden to have to drive hundreds of miles, and maybe out of state, to get a legal abortion. It is an undue burden to have to take multiple days off from work for a single procedure, oftentimes just a pill. It is an undue burden for a pregnant woman to have to submit to anesthesia so that the fetal tissue in her uterus does not feel pain. It is an undue burden to have to pay for a funeral for that tissue after it is ejected from her body.

    This election is also about “dispelling the notion” that the Republican Party would be anything but a disaster for women, working families, people of color, justice, and world peace.

    Today President Obama is hosting the Nuclear Security Summit. Yesterday, he wrote an op-ed that was also published in the Washington Post:

    Of all the threats to global security and peace, the most dangerous is the proliferation and potential use of nuclear weapons. That’s why, seven years ago in Prague, I committed the United States to stopping the spread of nuclear weapons and to seeking a world without them. This vision builds on the policies of presidents before me, Democrat and Republican, including Ronald Reagan, who said “we seek the total elimination one day of nuclear weapons from the face of the Earth.”

    Thursday in Washington, I’ll welcome more than 50 world leaders to our fourth Nuclear Security Summit to advance a central pillar of our Prague Agenda: preventing terrorists from obtaining and using a nuclear weapon. We’ll review our progress, such as successfully ridding more than a dozen countries of highly enriched uranium and plutonium. Nations, including the United States, will make new commitments, and we’ll continue strengthening the international treaties and institutions that underpin nuclear security.

    That is also what is at stake. Now, how can we get people to vote?

    See all y’all later.

    • We can make it less difficult for people to vote by holding elections on weekends, allowing voting by mail, and not requiring registration. But we won’t. That would not serve the interests of our corporate overlords.

  11. President Obama commuted the sentences of 61 drug offenders on Wednesday. After a lunch with some of those pardoned in the past, he made a statement and had a press availability:

    Transcript: Remarks by the President on Commutations of Prison Sentences

    As all of you know, it has been one of my top priorities for us to bring about a more sensible, more effective approach to our criminal justice system, particularly when it comes to drug crimes. And part of that has been to try to make sure that we have, on the front end, sensible sentencing, rehabilitation, education and training in prison to prepare people so that they’re not going back to the old mistakes that they made before.

    Part of it has been to really reinvigorate our commutations and pardons process, because it is my strong belief that by exercising these presidential powers, I have the chance to show people what a second chance can look like, that I can highlight the individuals who are getting these second chances and doing extraordinary things with their lives.

  12. Secretary Clinton’s speech in Harlem:

    By the way, apparently “pie in the sky” is an insult but “corrupted by Wall Street money” is not. Also this is rude, I guess:

    Hillary Clinton ‏@HillaryClinton 19h 19 hours ago
    Some folks may have the luxury to hold out for “the perfect.” But a lot of Americans are hurting right now and they can’t wait for that.


  13. My neighbors were so loud, repeatedly, in the parking lot last night…. after the 3rd time I pounded on my window & screamed at them, I didn’t think I’d ever sleep. I think I did though, from maybe 12:30 to 4. And I wouldn’t get out of bed till 5. Tea isn’t going to be strong enough, because I’m not just eating it out of the jar. Ugh. Playing City of Blinding Lights in my head to help stay awake.

  14. Good morning, Moosylvania! Sunny and 55 F. here in NoVa, going up to 74 F. today.

    Well, Trump trumpeted that women should be punished for having abortions (but the men who caused the situation should get off scot-free), and then walked back his statement. However, the Rethugs have always believed that, so why are people shocked? Perhaps because he openly admits it instead of hiding behind a wall of bland words.

    Kasich was on Good Morning Merrycar just now and seemed deceptively rational. Honestly, if you didn’t know about his terrible track record in Ohio you’d think he was fit to be POTUS—he seems so calm and moderate. Dearly Beloved thinks Trump doesn’t really want to be POTUS (it would interfere with his fun too much), and is making these verbal bloopers to obviate that possibility. Dartagnan over at GOS says corporate sponsors of the Rethug convention are so dismayed by the shenanigans they’re downsizing their participation.

    In other news, BookBaby sent a revised proof of the cover, which STILL has a horrible-looking font! The first one looked like a first grader’s unsteady attempt to make letters. The second looks as if a kindergartener had got hold of a box of colored chalk and used it on the sidewalk. I “approved” it for the simple reason that BB might charge me if I demand any more changes. However, I sent them an email to that effect so there will be no doubt as to my real, depressed feelings.

    Wishing a good day to all at the Pond and Beyond!

    • Wonkette (WARNING: Bad Words):

      We’re supposed to think people who want to criminalize abortions and the ladies who have them are just some kindly grandmas calmly handing out cookies and brochures about how you’re gonna burn in hell, dearie. However, Trump, who is quite new to this whole “pro-life” sham, isn’t up to date on his lifey lingo. So oops, he stated the obvious and made “pro-lifers” look like heartless bastards.

      THAT was his sin, in their eyes. Lifting the lid on their lies and exposing them for being, you know, heartless bastards.

  15. Good mornin’ Meese. Can’t believe the weather – going up to 70 today – yay!

    Sleepy, cause got home late from going to see Rev Barber last night. It was a packed house – standing room only and he rocked the place to the rafters. Elated to see this.
    Got writing to do – seeya later.

      • He really slammed the new NC law – and was very clear that it isn’t just about anti-transgender – the bill attacks a wide variety of rights – and will help pull together an even stronger fusion coalition in response to it.

        • The Mississippi law is even worse but sadly they don’t have a progressive movement or liberal pushback or blue-state-based corporations to write Stern Letters.

          The bill does not pretend to be neutral; it only protects people with anti-LGBT religious beliefs and nobody else:

          The sincerely held religious beliefs or moral convictions protected by this act are the belief or conviction that:

          (a) Marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman;
          (b) Sexual relations are properly reserved to such a marriage; and
          (c) Male (man) or female (woman) refer to an individual’s immutable biological sex as objectively determined by anatomy and genetics at time of birth.

          Assessing what kind of discriminatory situations this would enable is easy, because the bill spells those out as well. So long as individuals are motivated by “a sincerely held religious belief or moral conviction,” any of the following behaviors would have the endorsement of the government:

          – Religious organizations can decline to solemnize any marriage or provide any services related to recognizing that marriage.
          – Religious organizations can refuse to hire, fire, and discipline employees for violating the organization’s religious beliefs.
          – Religious organizations can choose not to sell, rent, or otherwise provide shelter.
          – Religious organizations that provide foster or adoptive services can decline service without risking their state subsidies.
          – Any foster or adoptive parent can impose their religious beliefs on their children.
          – Any person can choose not to provide treatment, counseling, or surgery related to gender transition or same-sex parenting.
          – Any person (including any business) can choose not to provide services for any marriage ceremony or occasion that involves recognizing a marriage, including:
          Disc-Jockey Services
          Wedding Planning
          Floral Arrangements
          Dress Making
          Cake or Pastry Artistry
          Assembly-Hall or Other Wedding-Venue Rentals
          Limousine or Other Car-Service Rentals
          Jewelry Sales And Services
          – Any person can establish “sex-specific standards or policies concerning employee or student dress or grooming,” and can manage the access of restrooms and other sex-segregated facilities.
          – Any state employee can openly express their beliefs without consequence.
          – Any state employee can choose not to authorize or license legal marriages by recusing themselves from those duties.

          The bolded one is particularly confusing. Only long hair for women? Only skirts? Yikes!!

  16. 60 heading for 70 and partly cloudy at the moment in Fay., AR this Thor’s Day – better night than anotherdemocrat but that’s not saying much – groggy with the kind of headache that suggests an apneic episode (as described to me by someone who actually has tested as having sleep apnea). Hopefully coffee will help. On my first cup now.

    Saw Hillary at the Apollo – she was great, as usual. Will track down her Maddow interview when I get a chance. I’m sure one of the Hillary supporters at Orange has it somewhere and a link to it or that diary will be in the HNV. The Rs are dangerous sociopaths – all of them currently in office and then some anyway – and we need to get rid of them. If this situation doesn’t bring people out to vote, nothing will. Although I’m not really worried about this election. The one I’m worried about is 2018.

    Need to do some actual work today but I’m stuck until the Chair approves previous steps. (Poor woman, her 90 y.o. mother has cancer – just had surgery and will start chemo next week – so she’s been wrapped up with that and just “checking in” with us. I try not to worry her and these things aren’t urgent urgent, just easier if processed in the same month they occurred.) Reached 401 KWHs for the month yesterday so depending on just how much cloud cover we get today could max for the month at 423 (under 420 is more likely though). Hope everyone has a lovely day. {{{HUGS}}}

      • Hmmmm…..I thought I was just posting the link, not the over sized video. Jan, I’ve forgotten now to re size YT videos for posting on the Moose, sorry!

        • Got it! You have to use the Embed code. If you just paste it, WordPress “helpfully” just posts with the defaults. No problem, though, I don’t mind tending comments and fixing the videos later.

      • Thank you. She did absolutely beautifully – as I expected her to – but it was nice to actually hear it.

  17. Good morning, 43 and partly cloudy in Bellingham today. I’m completely out of sorts this morning, and the continued assault on women’s health and rights is just one of the reasons.

    Women’s rights must be protected in Catholic hospitals

    Denying women reproductive healthcare violates Washington’s 1991 voter- approved Reproductive Privacy Act (RPA), which protects women’s access to reproductive healthcare, including family planning services. In other words, access to abortion is protected. But the RPA and other state laws do not explicitly define these denials as discrimination, although that’s exactly what it is: denying women access to health services that only women need.

    This definition of discrimination comes from international human rights treaty law, specifically the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) and its interpretive United Nations General Recommendation 24. The U.S. (along with Sudan, Iran, the Vatican and several other nations) is an outlier in the world in not ratifying CEDAW. One hundred eighty-nine countries recognize these rights and agree that denying women access to family planning services is a form of discrimination. If Washington state expanded the legal definition of discrimination to include this form of discrimination, women would have greater protection for their right to reproductive health. Ultimately, though, it would depend on how the law was written.
    It is time for Washington state to adopt the CEDAW definition of discrimination that treats any denial of family planning services for women as discrimination. This can be done without U.S. ratification of CEDAW. More accountability is necessary to assure that women are not denied access to health services that only they need. The Washington Legislature and courts can make this possible. Voters could start a ballot initiative to jumpstart the process — just as they did with Initiative 120 for the RPA. If we don’t act, women will suffer and they may even die. It’s that important.

    Wa State has tax supported health care systems, but hospital mergers and a creeping influence of religious doctrine are influencing medical standards of care for women in this state.

  18. Morning all! was up late last night trying to get my modem to reset as my landline runs thru it, and I didn’t want to go to bed without phone service. I’ll have to call the cable company and see if they can check the modem remotely.

    Wow, what a day yesterday in the campaign – the Donald causes a firestorm for saying out loud what the rest of the Republican party only thinks and believes and will act on. Hillary was terrific yesterday both in the Harlem speech and with Maddow, who actually pushed Sanders a bit in her interview with him. BTW, stuff about Sanders’ life before becoming mayor of Burlington keeps cropping up now online – it’s all in line with rumors I heard when I lived in Vermont, but I don’t know if any of it is true. For sure we’d hear ALL about it if he got the nomination. Also, I STILL want to see Sanders’ tax returns! It’s outrageous that he hasn’t released them and is getting NO pressure from the press to do so. Esp since Al Giordano posted on Twitter this morning a picture of someone who I guess he thinks is Sanders driving a $175,000 Audi R8 – red with black trim no less. Now, it’s not disqualifying except Sanders has said he drives a 4 year old Chevy. Oh well, it’s all fun and games I guess.

    Hillary is now behind in the polls in Wisconsin, so I may look into doing some phone banking for her – I hate, hate, hate talking to strangers on the phone, and it doesn’t really matter if she loses Wisconsin as long as the margin is not more than 5 or 10, but I do think the margin needs to be kept close.

    Oh, and anotherdem, I’m at the farm in WD – well, actually, I’m on the last episode of season 2, I don’t know how long they stay at the farm at this point. I’m well and truly hooked on this show!

    have a great day everyone!

    • Sanders is ahead in Wisconsin by the margin of error, about 4 points. But based on what I am hearing and seeing, that is the likely outcome. However, his path to the nomination requires a double digit win – he won’t get that. Hillary did a nice pass through the state – she was in Madison, Milwaukee, La Crosse and Green Bay and got good press.

      I hear you on phone-banking! I did some in 2010 and in the 90s for NARAL. Even when you are calling people who are supposedly on our side, you can get some really angry people – people sick of being bugged on what is likely to be their cell phone. I am looking for something else I can do for the campaign.

  19. Good morning, meese! Friday …

    It is 35 degrees in Madison, on its way up to 46. Thunderstorms and high winds are in the forecast. I can see them in Iowa, headed this way.

    Thank goodness the focus is now on New York! There were quite a few doings there: boos, confrontations. Al Giordano was sad to see the Sen. Sanders helicoptered into the Bronx and missed a lot of the history of the politics there. He did a Tweet-story (numbered 1 to 17) with this one as the centerpiece:

    AlGiordano @AlGiordano
    10. I watched that entire #BernieInTheBronx live stream from here in Mexico, and not a single word about local pride or organizing history.

    Confirmed Berner John Nichols wrote a very nice piece about Hillary Clinton’s speech about SCOTUS. It was a remarkable speech and John is right – the media should focus on important things like that instead of the length of Republican men’s fingers.

    Madison, Wisconsin—Hillary Clinton delivered the strongest speech of her 2016 campaign in Wisconsin this week, and the media barely noticed.

    In this absurd campaign season, when media outlets devote hours of time to arguments about which Republican candidate insulted which wife, about violent and irresponsible campaign aides, about whatever soap-opera scenario comes to mind, thoughtful discussions of issues get little attention. And deep and detailed discussions of issues get even less coverage.

    Clinton’s speech on the importance of filling Supreme Court vacancies, and on the values and ideals that should guide judicial nominations, was a deep and detailed discussion of a fundamental responsibility of presidents. What she said impressed not just her own supporters, who gathered Monday to hear her speak on the University of Wisconsin campus, but also Wisconsinites who are undecided or inclined to vote for someone else in the state’s April 5 primary.

    Can’t stay – busy day to get March wrapped up and April started. PLEASE watch out for April Fools Day stunts! (not from me, I don’t particulary care for them)

    See all y’all later!

    p.s. RIP Ace

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