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4 Beautiful Plants From the Tropics Oct. 10, 2013

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Wednesday
Oct172012

Anne Enke Says 'Sign the Bill of Reproductive Rights', So Do Meryl Streep, Caroline Kennedy, Lisa Kudrow, Amy Poehler, Kevin Bacon & Many A-List Celebrities

The Center for Reproductive Rights, a global legal advocacy organization, launched a new kind of campaign Tuesday that asks American voters to sign a “Bill of Reproductive Rights” in support of legal access to abortion and contraception. The campaign, called “Draw The Line,” has attracted a long list of high-profile celebrity participants, including Meryl Streep, Kevin Bacon, Amy Poehler, Lisa Kudrow, Sarah Silverman, Billy Crudup, and Caroline Kennedy.

We the people of the United States hereby assert the following as fundamental human rights that no government may deny, and that our governments at every level must guarantee and safeguard for all.

1.The right to make our own decisions about our reproductive health and future, free from intrusion or coercion by any government, group, or individual.

2.The right to a full range of safe, affordable, and readily accessible reproductive health care—including pregnancy care, preventive services, contraception, abortion, and fertility treatment—and accurate information about all of the above.

3.The right to be free from discrimination in access to reproductive health care or on the basis of our reproductive decisions.

Read, then sign the Bill of Reproductive Rights.

Related Reading: Woman As Beans | Republicans Romney & Ryan Make Chili of American Women

Tuesday
Oct162012

Women As Beans | Republicans Romney & Ryan Make Chili of American Women

I Am Not A Bean

This is an election about choice; surely you have no doubt in your mind about that. Do you choose to believe that the Republican War on Women is real? Or do you just vote for the stud muffins because they make you feel like Cinderella and you have a closet desire to be taken care of?

Don’t be seduced American women. Paul Ryan may have great abs, but he told you at the vice presidential debate that your rights are no more important than those of a bean — a baby bean that is.

You are not anti-life because you believe you are not a bean, and that as a grown woman with or without children, you have a brain — one that hopefully comes with backbone.

Absolutely no one is suggesting that you should use birth control if it causes you a religious conflict. But to support the right of any employer — ANY employer to deny you birth control as part of your insurance package because he finds it morally objectionable is an assault on ALL American women.

Romney & Ryan Believe Women Have NO Rights Under the US Constitution

Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan — and the entire Republican party wants to return women to the 1950s, stripping away every right women have won in the workplace and in our rights to control our own reproduction.

Mitt Romney’s adviser on future Supreme Court appointments is Robert Bork. When Ronald Reagan appointed the defeated Robert Bork to the US Supreme Court in 1987, it was widely known that Bork not only opposed Roe v. Wade, but Griswold v. Connecticut, the decision by a Republican Court that granted women access to birth control as a right under the 14th amendment.

Paul Ryan flatly stated at last week’s debate that he doesn’t support 14th amendment Supreme Court decisions that given women expanded rights under the Constitution. His views are the same as Bork’s:

Throughout his career Bork was highly critical of the judicial activism practiced by the Supreme Court in milestone cases involving abortion, affirmative action and civil rights. Bork claimed he was a strict constructionist who would exercise “judicial restraint.” In his view, too many judges (and Supreme Court justices) had been interpreting the intent of the Constitution much too broadly. He opposed the 1965 Supreme Court decision in Griswold v. Connecticut, which established a broad right of privacy that was not stated in the Constitution.  Bork was also a foe of Roe v. Wade, the 1973 Supreme Court decision that gave women the right to have an abortion, calling the decision “a serious and wholly unjustifiable usurpation of state legislative authority.” The courts, he felt, should not thwart the will of the popularly-elected lawmakers, and judges ought not to substitute their values for the “original intent” of the Constitution’s framers. What made Bork dangerous from the liberal perspective was the undeniable fact that he was one of the most astute legal scholars in the country; the American Bar Association (ABA) had given him its highest rating: “exceptionally well-qualified.”

Click to read more ...

Monday
Oct152012

Huge Crowds for Malala in Karachi | Will Candy Crowley Shake Up Presidential Debate? | Romney Tax Plan Flawed

United Nations Special Envoy for Global Education Gordon Brown has launched yesterday an “unwavering campaign to put Education First” for the world’s 61 million and growing children not receiving an education. In particular, Anne of Carversville stands for the education of girls in every country.

French Roast News

Anne is reading …Huge crowds rallied in Pakistan’s largest city of Karachi on Sunday, expressing their support for the recovery of 14-year-old schoolgirl Malala Yousufzai. The young activist was shot in the head last Tuesday by a Taliban gunman determined to end the education of young girls in Pakistan.

Protests had been small until yesterday when tens of thousands of people turned out, reports The Christian Science Monitor.

Right-wing Islamic parties and organizations in Pakistan that regularly pull thousands of supporters into the streets to protest against the US have less of an incentive to speak out against the Taliban. The two share a desire to impose Islamic law in the country – even if they may disagree over the Taliban’s violent tactics.

The protest was organized by the Muttahida Quami Movement, whose party chief Aitaf Hussain spoke to the Karachi crowds from his self-imposed exile in London.

“May I ask where are Pakistan’s armed forces and its high-ranking (military) personnel who utilise up to 80 per cent of the country’s resources?” Hussain said while addressing a rally in Karachi on phone from London, where he is in self-imposed exile. via Economic Times

Malala Yousufzai was flown out of Pakistan Monday morning on an air ambulance donated by the UAE headed for long-term medical treatment and rehabilitation in Birmingham, England.

Former British Prime Minister and U.N. Special Envoy for Global Education Gordon Brown said in a statement today that he is launching a worldwide petition in support of Yousufzai and every child in Pakistan to receive an education. (See video above)

Tuesday’s Debate

Candy Crowley Wild Card

All media report that Candy Crowley, the host of CNN’s ‘State of the Union’ has unnerved both political campaigns to fear that she will insert herself into an active role in what is proposed to be a town hall meeting between undecided independent voters and the presidential candidates in Tuesday night’s debate.

“In a rare example of political unity,” Mark Halperin reports for TIME magazine, “both the Romney and the Obama campaigns have expressed concern to the Commission on Presidential Debates about how the moderator of the Tuesday town hall has publicly described her role.”

In another interview, on Oct. 11,  Politico writes that Crowley told CNN, “The nice thing will be, if the town hall person asks about apples, and they answer oranges, I get to say, ‘Wait a second, the question was about apples — let’s talk about that.”

Given the great propensity of both candidates to not answer questions directly but instead, use the podium to say what they want to say — oranges in response to apples — it seems that most viewers would like to hear the voters’ questions answered directly.

Crowley’s role as moderator follows last week’s generally applauded moderator role of ABC’s Martha Raddatz in the vice presidential debate. Many believe that Crowley will choose to follow in Raddatz’s footsteps and not those of Jim Lehrer who was powerless and almost not present for the first presidential debate.

Republican David Stockman on Romney and Jobs

Ronald Reagan’s budget director and outspoken Republican David Stockman refutes claims that Mitt Romney is a job creator. Stockman writes:

Bain Capital is a product of the Great Deformation. It has garnered fabulous winnings through leveraged speculation in financial markets that have been perverted …  So Bain’s billions of profits were not rewards for capitalist creation; they were mainly windfalls collected from gambling in markets that were rigged to rise.

Romney Tax Plan

Does the math add up?

The Romney-Ryan team has refused to lay out any real details of their tax plan, beyond closing loopholes and then cutting taxes by 20 percent. This is a problem for salivating voters who have a strong appetite for lower taxes.

Reason magazine — hardly a pro-Obama publicaton — writes that “even if the politics work, it’s not clear that the simple math behind the plan does … “

A letter to Congress last week from the congressional Joint Center on Taxation reported that ditching a slew of tax carve outs – by getting rid of most deductions, and adding new taxes and fees on muni bonds and some other investments would only raise enough additional tax revenue to cut rates by 4 percent and remain revenue neutral. The JCT report didn’t look at Romney’s plan specifically. But it does highlight how hard it will be to make it work.

Writing for Bloomberg, Josh Barro has gone one step further, saying that “Romney’s tax plan is mathematically impossible. he can’t simultaneously keep his pledges to cut tax rates 20 percent and repeal the estate tax and alternative minimum tax; broaden the tax base enough to avoid growing the deficit; and not raise taxes on the middle class.”

In last week’s vice presidential debate Martha Raddatz directly asked vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan: “Do you actually have the specifics, or are you still working on it, and that’s why you won’t tell voters?”

The Romney campaign says they have six studies that support their conclusions, leaving FOX News host Chris Wallce to question the sources as credible in an interview with Ed Gillespie, Romney campaign adviser.

“These are very credible sources,” Gillespie pushed back.  

“One of these is from a guy — is a blog from a guy who was a top adviser to George W. Bush,” Wallace countered. “These are hardly non-partisan studies.”

Mark Zandi, a former John McCain campaign adviser and Chief Economist at Moody’s Economy said on CNN’s ‘Starting Point’: “Yeah, I think the Tax Policy Center study is the definitive study. They’re non-partisan, they’re very good. They say given the numbers that they’ve been provided by the Romney campaign, no, it will not add up.”