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pnwmom's Journal
pnwmom's Journal
December 1, 2015

Adolph Trump says of Bernie, after his hernia surgery: "May he rest in peace."

This is supposed to be a joke? What an evil man.


“May he rest in peace,” Mr. Trump said of Mr. Sanders, who had a medical procedure on Monday to repair a hernia. “You know he had an operation today. I think it was a hernia operation. You know? You know why? Carrying around too much tax problems,” he said, referring to Mr. Sanders’s proposals to raise taxes.

December 1, 2015

Protected by UN peacekeepers, Pope Francis plunges into central African war zone,

bringing a call for peace between Christians and Muslims.

Has a Pope ever done something like this before? He continues to amaze me.


BANGUI, Central African Republic — The popemobile rolled into the center of this country’s civil war Monday, crossing the dangerous border between Christian and Muslim neighborhoods as Pope Francis launched what may be his boldest diplomatic effort yet.

Hundreds of U.N. peacekeepers patrolled the streets, AK-47 assault rifles slung over their shoulders, while residents waved white flags symbolizing peace — and their hopes for an end to a two-year conflict that has been fought mostly along religious lines and has killed more than 6,000 people.

It was the first time in recent memory that a pope has plunged into the middle of an armed conflict. When Francis arrived at the city’s Koudoukou central mosque, a group of community leaders and schoolchildren were waiting for him. During a ceremony inside, Francis bowed toward the Muslim holy city of Mecca and sat on a plush white sofa next to the imam.

“Christians and Muslims are brothers and sisters,” he said in a speech, his voice filling the mosque and booming from an outdoor speaker to the overflow crowd. “We must therefore consider ourselves and conduct ourselves as such.”

For weeks, the visit had been in doubt. Foreign peacekeeping troops said they could not guarantee Francis’s safety. Violence continued until the morning the popemobile took off for PK-5, the city’s Muslim enclave, which has dwindled from 122,000 to 15,000 inhabitants in two years because of militia assaults.


November 29, 2015

Letter from 100 black religious leaders asking black clergy

not to meet with Donald Trump.


We write to you as fellow clergy, community organizers, scholars, socially aware Christians, and/or concerned voters who are deeply confounded by your decision to participate in an upcoming telecast meeting with Presidential contender Donald Trump.

Mr. Trump routinely uses overtly divisive and racist language on the campaign trail. Most recently, he admitted his supporters were justified for punching and kicking a Black protester who had attended a Trump rally with the intent to remind the crowd that “Black Lives Matter.” Trump followed this action by tweeting inaccurate statistics about crime prevalence rates in Black communities — insinuating that Black people are more violent than other groups. Those statistics did not reflect the fact that most crimes are intraracial, meaning that most people do harm to people of their own race. They also did not speak to the crime of neoliberalism, capitalism, and white supremacy which kill thousands of black and nonblack people each day.

Trump’s racially inaccurate, insensitive and incendiary rhetoric should give those charged with the care of the spirits and souls of Black people great pause. As people of God, you are surely aware of the emotional, spiritual, and physical toll continued structural and state violence takes on Black people. Being continually reminded of reckless police disregard for Black life through the circulation of videos that show them murdering our young people, like 12-year old Tamir Rice, 7-year old Ayanna Stanley Jones, and 17-year old Laquan McDonald are both heartbreaking and stress-inducing.

Moreover as people of God, you know that our theology shapes our politics, and politics are a great indicator of our theology. What theology do you believe Mr. Trump possesses when his politics are so clearly anti-Black? He routinely engages in the kind of rhetoric that brings out the worst sorts of white racist aggression, not only toward Black people, but also toward Mexican-Americans and Muslim-Americans, too. Surely, we can agree that this kind of unloving and violent language does not reflect the politics of the Christ we profess?


November 28, 2015

What if Bernie were Bernice?

And everything was the same except gender.

Would a loud, finger-jabbing, arm-waving Bernice, a Senator from a tiny state, a non-practicing Jew, a 74 year old white female, ever have had Bernie’s success?

Bernice, whose son was born out of wedlock to a man she never married.

Bernice, who divorced her first husband and remarried a man nine years younger.

Bernice, who had been repeatedly arrested for demonstrating.

Bernice, who, at the age of 30, had written an essay that discussed male and female rape fantasies.

Bernice, who for decades proudly called herself a socialist before announcing a run in the Democratic primary.

The answer is NO.
No matter how righteous her anger or her cause.
A furious Bernice with an unconventional past wouldn’t have had a chance.

Women have a decorum they are required to uphold. Bernice Sanders would have been labeled hysterical, and a harpy, and laughed off the national stage.

Until you can imagine a Bernice Sanders being as successful as a Bernie Sanders has been, please don’t tell me that gender is not a factor in this race.

And this argument holds for an African American Bernie, also. An African-American Bernie wouldn’t have a chance of being elected President. Not in 2016.

In the US women and African Americans are still held to a higher standard than white men. Acknowledging this isn’t playing the gender card or the race card. It’s the simple truth.

November 28, 2015

If President Obama had been previously divorced

and had a son born to a third woman (to whom he was never married), would he have ever been a serious contender for President?

If Hillary had been previously divorced and had a baby born out of wedlock, would she be at the top of the polls?

Somehow I doubt it.

Black people and women are treated differently and acknowledging this isn't playing the race or gender card.

November 28, 2015

Are movement politicians like Bernie tone deaf?


That's the problem with movement politics, no matter what end of the political spectrum they occupy. Movement politics tend to be narcissistic and dictatorial. They allow dissent only within a narrow philosophical band. That constrains the ability to hear through others' ears.


Sanders has much mellowed since then, but he still inhabits a self-righteous cocoon that has made him an ineffective and marginal figure in the Senate.

Even Democrats express frustration at working with Sanders, an independent who caucuses with them. Moderates bristle at his moralizing and refusal to make compromises required to pass needed legislation. The undeniably liberal Barney Frank, former rep from Massachusetts, complained of Sanders' "holier-than-thou attitude."

Bernie's positions on civil rights have been close to impeccable, but his history with nonwhites is more complicated.

Back in 1960s New York, black radicals weren't keen to sit at the knees of white intellectuals and be told what's what. The ensuing tensions prompted many white radicals to flee to the more accommodating hills of Vermont. Sanders was one. There's no gentler way to put this, but they were part of the era's white flight.
November 28, 2015

Think your vote doesn't matter? Bernie won his first election by TEN votes.

After years of failing to win office, he finally decided to run for Mayor of Burlington. That was the beginning of his long career in elective office.

Ten votes.


Sanders believed he was finished with electoral politics – until in late 1980, when his friend Richard Sugarman, a religion professor at the University of Vermont, showed him a breakdown of his Liberty Union vote tallies. As a whole, they were scant, but Sanders had done better in Burlington than anywhere else — and especially in the city’s poorest wards. Sanders decided to run for mayor — and then, by 10 votes, he won. It was March of 1981. It was a big story. The irritant activist was an elected official, now making $33,800 a year, more than he ever had. Reporters started showing up in Vermont.

November 28, 2015

The overwhelmingly female press corps on the HRC campaign trail.


At least 18 national media outlets have female reporters on the Clinton beat, across print, online, radio and TV, according to a POLITICO survey. Some, such as NBC, have as many as three. Local outlets in Iowa and New Hampshire have female reporters on Clinton, as well. No one can remember a political press corps this heavily female.


"In 2008, I was one of the only women in [Clinton's] traveling press corps," recalled Amy Chozick of The New York Times, ticking off names of the reporters covering Clinton's first presidential race. "Wow, it was pretty male then. So what's changed?"

The change seems to be a combination of more women doing political reporting in general, and many more being drawn to Clinton's potentially historic candidacy. It's made for an unusual atmosphere, with a female candidate sparring with a nearly all-female corps of reporters. It hasn’t brought Clinton more positive coverage, according to those both inside the campaign and outside it. But reporters and press aides alike note that there’s a different vibe nonetheless, punctuated by occasional expressions by the candidate herself of camaraderie for fellow pioneers.


BuzzFeed’s Ruby Cramer recalled one press gaggle at which Clinton encouraged her to “liberate herself” and ask what she really wanted to ask. Cramer had planned to ask a lighthearted question but explained that she felt obligated to ask about a former Clinton tech staffer, Bryan Pagliano, who took the Fifth Amendment rather than testify before Congress about Clinton’s email practice. (Cramer ended up asking both questions.)


"One, a younger generation of talented women reporters is coming of age just as Clinton pursues the presidency,” Ryan said. "Two, while I don't think editors are choosing reporters to cover Clinton because of their gender, women are drawn to this story journalistically, given its sweep, history-making potential and the way the Clinton story intersects with the broader discussion about gender, power and culture in this country."

Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2015/10/hillary-clinton-women-press-214891#ixzz3sjyrRUs6
November 25, 2015

Do you want your state to try single-payer, like Colorado???? I DO. Absolutely.


So in my state I'm pushing for a state single-payer plan, like they're going for in Colorado. AND I'm doing everything I can to support the ACA for now, because ANY state can use ACA funds to institute single-payer instead.

If we lose the ACA because a new Rethug administration comes in with a Congress similar to what we have now, then that's the end not only of the exchanges, the Medicaid expansion, the subsidies, and the Essential Benefits, but also of any Federal funds helping states work out single-payer.

What do we get by constantly highlighting the flaws of the ACA? We increase the public perception that we should listen to the Rethugs and toss the whole law out.

Don't delude yourself that if that happens, we'll get single-payer instead. We won't. Not a chance in hell if the Rethugs take control.

And it will be hell.

P.S. And if you don't believe single-payer could happen state by state, then you haven't been paying attention. Ten years ago a single state approved gay marriage. Now it's the law everywhere in the country. I believe the process of change could be much quicker if a handful of states had successful single-payer programs. Please let this happen. Don't help the Rethugs tear down this chance.

November 25, 2015

Force feeding: cruel at Guantanomo, but fine for our parents.

Something to remember if you ever have a loved one whose doctor or nursing home is recommending tube feeding. It's usually not to the patient's benefit.

Why is it done, even when it's not medically necessary? Because it saves time for the nursing staff and is reimbursed at a higher rate than hand-feeding.


THE practice of forced feeding has been highlighted by its use on hunger strikers in Guantánamo Bay and, more recently, in Israel, where a vigorous debate about the ethics of such a practice is taking place. But you don’t have to be in prison to have a feeding tube jammed up your nose. Millions of elderly Americans are fed through tubes despite a lack of substantial evidence pointing to any clinical benefit.

Tube feeding was developed to provide nutrition for patients — increasingly patients with dementia — who are unable to eat on their own. Most of them, especially as they approach the terminal end of the disease, develop difficulties in swallowing and frequently aspirate food or other stomach contents into their lungs, developing pneumonia.

Study after study, however, has shown that tube feeding doesn’t provide any benefit compared with feeding these patients by hand, which is more labor-intensive but much better for the patients. It doesn’t improve survival, reduce infections, reduce the incidence of aspiration pneumonia or improve patients’ nutritional status over those who are hand fed or even over patients not fed at all.

If anything, feeding tubes can be harmful. One study showed that patients with feeding tubes had a higher incidence of pressure ulcers in their backs from being immobilized and lying in bed. Feeding tubes also have frequent complications of their own like being dislodged or being clogged. (Feeding tubes are a necessary evil in some cases, such as after surgery or after a serious accident.)


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