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Saturday
Mar312012

HBO's Girls Is "Raw, Bruised & Aspirational" | Aung San Suu Kyi Victory in Myanmar | Women Flock to Obama

President Obama promises support for Planned Parenthood.

DFR Daily French Roast

Anne is reading …

Photograph by Autumn De WildeHBO’s new show Girls doesn’t pick up where Sex and the City left off. Writing for New York Magazine Emily Nussbaum describes Lena Dunham’s new series airing on April 15 with gratitude.

I was a goner, a convert. In an office at HBO, my heart sped up. I laughed out loud; I “got” the characters—four friends, adrift in a modern New York of unpaid internships and bad sex on dirty sofas. But the show also spoke to me in another way. As a person who has followed, for more than twenty years, recurrent, maddening ­debates about the lives of young women, the series felt to me like a gift. Girls was a bold defense (and a searing critique) of the so-called Millennial Generation by a person still in her twenties. It was a sex comedy from the female POV, taking on subjects like STDs and abortion with a radical savoir-faire as well as a visual grubbiness that was a statement in itself. It embraced digital culture, and daily confession, as a default setting. Even before the Republican candidates adopted The Handmaid’s Tale as a platform, Dunham’s sly, brazen, graphic comedy, with its stress on female friendships, its pleasure in the sick punch line, its compassion for the necessity of making mistakes, felt like a retort to a culture that pathologizes feminine adventure. As my younger colleague Willa Paskin put it, the show felt, to her peers, FUBU: “for us by us.”

The world of Girls is no Sarah Jessica Parker wish list for Mr Big. Instead the show posseses an aesthetic that’s “raw and bruised, not aspirational”.  For starters, the girls live in Brooklyn, not Manhattan.

More DFR

What Do Men Really Want Psychology Today

I want to be alone: the rise of solo living The Guardian

Facebook may amplify eating disorders and poor body image CSMonitor

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Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi, who spent 22 years under house arrest was voted into office in a political landslide in Myanmar (Burma). The Guardian writes:

Swarms of chanting Burmese flocked to National League for Democracy’s (NLD) Rangoon headquarters as the sun set over the crumbling city, calling for the fall of “a sham democracy” and the return of “our fair leader, our beloved leader, Mother Suu”.

Estimates are that Suu Kyi won 65% of the vote in 82 polling stations. Local observers say the numbers are higher for her National League for Democracy party. It’s reported that the NLD won a minimum of 40 of the 44 seats it contest in the 664 parliamentary seats up for grabs. The Guardian continues:

All along the winding road to Wa Thin Ka, an ethnic-Karen village where Suu Kyi and her convoy spent Saturday night, supporters gathered in the hot afternoon sun to glimpse the so-called “living saint” as she drove past. Though just 40 miles from Rangoon, the village is a four-hour drive along unpaved, bumpy roads, either side of which villagers in red bandanas and Suu Kyi-emblazoned T-shirts clutched red and white roses – symbols of purity and bravery – and cried out as the motorcade wove slowly through the crowds.

War on Women

Dear Pro-Choice Women of Means The Nation

The faith factor: Religion’s new prominence in campaign 2012 Christian Science Monitor

Bishop Geoffrey Robinson: Total Re-examination of Catholic Faith, Culture Needed Huffington Post

Swing States Poll: A shift by women puts Obama in lead USA Today

The gender gap widens to a chasm in the USA TODAY poll of 12 swing states. By 41%-24%, women call themselves Democrats; men by 27%-25% say they’re Republicans.

The biggest change came among women under 50. In mid-February, just under half of those voters supported Obama. Now more than six in 10 do while Romney’s support among them has dropped by 14 points, to 30%.

Saturday
Mar312012

The World Observes Earth Hour | Eliot Spitzer Replaces Olbermann | Contraception & Women's Earnings

Daily French Roast

Anne is reading …

Keith Olbermann Fired!

Current TV would never have Anne at 8pm, because she has never been a fan of Keith Olbermann’s style of journalism. Disliking Olbermann so much, we never knew that Jennifer Granholm had a show after the loudmouth, confrontational guy who can’t seem to get along with anyone on TV.

In an accidental interception last night, we had the pleasure of watching former New York Governor/former CNN show anchor Eliot Spitzer, who replaced the fired Olbermann Friday night in his new home on Current TV. Learning about Granholm is a real problem for we who actually own the url RachelMaddowWomen.com.

It appears that Olbermann has had nothing but problems with Current’s low-rent startup culture.

Current TV founders Al Gore and Joel Hyatt said in a letter to viewers that they decided to cut bait because the relationship no longer represented “the values of respect, openness, collegiality, and loyalty to our viewers.” via Washington Post

Eliot Spitzer is one of the finest minds on television. Anne was truly bereft when his information-rich CNN shoe ‘In the Arena’ was cancelled. Sorry Ed Show, we’re outta here.

As for Olbermann, The Hollywood Reporter reports that Olbermann is scheduled to appear on ‘The Late Show with David Letterman’ Tuesday, April 3.

More DFR

Mitt Romney Secretly Supported Anti-Gay-Marriage Group The Daily Beast

Mitt Romney Was A Mormon Bishop Before He Became A Politician Huffington Post

Political ‘Science”: The Ongoing Battle Over Emergency Contraception RH Reality Check

For Asian-American Couples, a Tie That Binds New York Times

How Access to the Pill Boosted Women’s Wages Live Science

“As the pill provided younger women the expectation of greater control over childbearing, women invested more in their human capital and careers,” study researcher Martha Bailey, an economist at the University of Michigan, said in a statement. “Most affected were women with some college, who benefitted from these investments through remarkable wage gains over their lifetimes.”

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Earth Hour

The year’s Earth Hour will be the largest ever, with 5,411 cities and towns, and 147 countries taking part. Earth Hour, the environmentally symbolic annual switch-off of lights for one hour this Saturday night, is to extend into space this year, with the International Space Station taking part for the first time, writes The Guardian.

Launched in 2007 only in Sydney, initially as an energy-saving measure, the hour has spread internationally and become a symbolic event to encourage environmental action and awareness. It is a rolling hour at 8.30-9.30pm across the world on 31 March. Despite the event’s high profile, it has also drawn criticism, including from green campaigners. George Marshall, founder of the Climate Outreach Information Network, has previously written in the Guardian that it sends out the wrong message. “Asking people to sit in the dark plays very well to a widely held prejudice that “the greens” want us all to go back to living in caves,” he said.

Hundreds gather to mark Earth Hour across country GulfNews.com

ReutersClimate Change Comes to GM

Atlantic Wire reports that General Motors has pulled its $15,000 annual funding from the climate-change-skeptical Heartland Institute. The gesture is largely symbolic given the institute’s multiple billions, writes The Guardian. Former vice-chairman Bob Lutz once called the scientific arguments around climate change “a total crock of shit.”

To clarify, The Guardian writes that the GM donation of 20 years wasn’t earmarked for advocacy against climate change. But the connections have become too complex to explain to the general public.

Pesticides & Bees

Scientists have discovered ways in which even low doses of widely-used pesticides can harm bumblebees and honeybees. The pesticides interfere with the bees’ homing abilities, causing them to lose their way reports Reuters.

Sensuality News

Masha P & Anna I | Amber Gray | Marie Claire China February 2012 | ‘Lil’ Bakeshop’

SN Living

Damon Baker | Jalouse April 2012 | Pin-up Boyish

Erin Heatherton & Pehati Prinsloo | Victoria’s Secret Fabulous Collection

Camila Mingori | André Passos | Vogue Brazil March 2012 | Decorou

Viktoria Winge | Meinke Klein | Elle Netherlands March 2012 | ‘Hello My Name Is Viktoria’

Megan Fox | Alexei Hay | Jalouse April 2012

Hailey Clauson | Daniel Kincaid | LF Stores Spring 2012 Collection Part 1

Tara, Emma, John, Tracy, Jr, Xan & Eleanore | Bjarne Jonasson | Jalouse April 2012 | Cry Baby

Mason Poole | Jalouse April 2012 | Decades

Ina Jang | Jalouse April 2012 | Object Femme

Hannah Holman | Simon Burstall | Elle France March 2012 | Pop Power Part 1

Beegee Margenyte | Giuseppe Gasparin | iO Donna March 2012 | Bella (s)Coperta

Chloe Lecareux | Gregor Collienne | Elle Belgique April 2012 | Fashion Police

Tiiu Kuik | Alexo Wandael | Amica April 2012 | ‘Gamour on the Road’

Katie Fogarty | Jason Kim | Blackbook April/May 2012 | ‘Tattooed Lady

Candice Swanepoel | Terry Richardson | GQ UK May 2012

Hailey Clauson | Horst Diekgerdes | Vogue Germany March 2012

Auguste Abeliunaite | Hunter & Gatti | Vogue Spain April 2012

Anne of Carversville

AOC Private Studio

Saskia de Brauw | Patrick Demarchelier | Vogue Japan May 2012 | The Mermaid’s Holiday

Anja Konstantinova | Henrique Gendre | Vogue Japan May 2012 | Pearls are a Girls Best Friend

Natasha Poly | Daniele + Iango | Vogue Japan May 2012 | Melancholy was the Mood

Friday
Mar302012

Dramatic Drop in Conservatives Belief in Science | Research: Too Much Religion in Politics | Women & Obama

Daily French Roast

Anne is reading …

Conservative Drop In Trust in Science

Just 35 percent of self-identified conservatives reported having “a great deal of trust in science” in a new report published in the journal American Sociological Review. The find marks a precipitous drop of 28 percent since the first survey was taken in 1974. At that time 48 percent of conservatives — about the same percentage as liberals — had significant trust in science. Moderates and liberals have remained flat. Liberals, most likely due to the fact that they are better educated, are more likely to believe in science than either moderates or conservatives. via Think Progress

Voter Gender Gap

Barack Obama’s advantages among women voters over his GOP rivals remain substantial. Obama led Mitt Romney by 20 points (58% to 38%) among women voters and Rick Santorum by 26 points (61% to 35%) in the Pew Research Center’s most recent national survey, conducted March 7-11. Obama runs about even with Romney among men and leads Santorum.

In surveys of registered voters this year, 52% of women identify with the Democratic Party or lean Democratic, compared to 43% of men. This gender gap dates back to 1990. In 2008 even more women — 56% — called themselves Democrats.

Obama has a massive lead of 30 points over Romney among women 18-49; 18 points ages 50-64 and a 1 point 48/49 tie with women 65+.

With so few women in Congress and most Republican women representing the conservative forces and more ‘male’ viewpoint, the statistically prevalent views among women voters are rarely heard when Republican men especially say “the people want” or “the people believe”.

More DFR

Religion in Politics

Also from PEW Research is a new survey saying the public is at an all-time high in unease over how much talk of religion is mixed with politics.

A decade ago when PEW first tracked the question 60 percent of respondents were comfortable that the right amount of talk about religion was heard in politics.  That number plunged in 2003 to 29 percent, a few years into the Bush administration and sank to 24/25 percent in 2010/2012.

With a 35 point plunge in people saying politicians spent the right amount of time talking about religion, those who said they heard too much talk of religion in politics rose 26 points from 12 to 38 percent. After a dramatic increase from 22 to 41 percent of people believing there is too little talk of religion in politics in the early Bush years, that number flat lined throughout the decade before dropping sharply from 37 to 30 from 2010 to 2012.

Prayer Comes to Kansas State House

Kansas is at the forefront of the nation is passing legislation that seeks to control women’s reproductive health. So for the Kansas legislature to murmur that Father James Gordon of St John Vianney Catholic school’s address to the Kansas House of Representatives was too political suggests it was quite a barnburner, writes LJWorld.com.

“We ask you to strengthen our understanding of traditional marriage: one man and one woman. We ask you to bring us back to virtuous morals in society, morals that kept us from killing a child in the womb through abortion. We ask you to defend us now in the fight for true religious freedom and freedom of conscience, that seems to be threatened now in the public sphere.”

Perhaps an act of civil disobedience, Father Gordon clearly disobeyed boundaries set by the House that invited guests who lead the daily prayer are supposed to be neutral and deliver prayers that are free of politics and not divisive.

Related

Catholic bishops silent on issues affecting poor Chicago Tribune