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Entries in Kathleen Sibelius (2)


America's New Mothers More Educated Than Ever | Heritage Foundation's Jason Richwine Resigns

1. Federal judge Edward R. Korman slammed the Obama administration on Friday, denied the government’s request that he suspend his ruling making the morning-after emergency contraceptive pill available to women and girls of every age and without a prescription.

The Ronald Reagan appointed judge called efforts to delay distribution of the pill based on “frivolous” and “silly” arguments and not scientific evidence. Korman is so angry over the efforts by secretary of health and human services Kathleen Sebelius to deny full implementation of the pill that he questioned her credibility and integrity.

Judge Korman postponed the enforcement of his order until today, allowing lawyers for the Justice Department to take their case to the appeals court. via NYT

2. In an attention-getting opening line, celebrity interviewer Lynn Hirschberg writes “The only thing that worried Michael Douglas about playing Liberace, the flamboyant Las Vegas superstar, was the fourteen-inch penis.”

Who knew!! Douglas opens up on playing Lee, as Liberace was known to friends, in HBO’s Behind the Candelabra’. The focus is the famed entertainer’s life with Scott Thorson, played by Matt Damon, who was Liberace’s live-in boyfriend for five years.

The movie represents a return to public eye for Douglas, who reveals more of himself in questions about his battle with stage four cancer and his son’s imprisonment.

See graph larger

3. New mothers are more educated than ever, writes PEW Research. In 2011, 66% of new mothers had some college education, with 34% having a high school diploma and 14% not having finished high school.

The trend reflects a continuous rise in educational levels of all American women, as well as a decline in births set in motion with the Great Recession in late 2007. Between 2008 to 2011, the number of new mothers with no high school degree dropped 17%, as the number with only a high school diploma dropped 15%.

4. Co-author of the Heritage Foundation’s disputed immigration study Jason Richwine resigned on Friday, as questions mounted about the racially-charged conclusions in his previous work. Richwine as hired by the ultra-conservative think tank in 2010, and his departure comes less than five weeks after former Republican senator Jim DeMint assumed leadership of Heritage.

To date, the organization defends its methodology, one rejected by libertarian groups like the Cato Institute. The report argues that low-skilled immigrants have less education and lower IQs, making them likely to earn less money and need more taxpayer-supplied benefits.

In 2007, a similar Heritage report helped derail immigration reform, arguing that the plan would cost $2.7 trillion, instead of last week’s $6 trillion.

5. PEW Research reports that Hispanic high school graduates have passed whites in their rate of college enrollment. In post recession America, a record 69% of Hispanic high school graduates in the class of 2012 enrolled in college. As the rates of Hispanic college enrollment have risen from 49% in 2000 to 69% in 2012, the rate of college enrollment has dropped among white high school grads to 67%.

In 2011 only 14% of Hispanic 16-24-year-olds were high school dropouts, 50% less than the 2000 level of 28%. PEW suggests that some educational growth may be driven by declining employment among young Latino youths, where unemployment has risen by 7 points, compared to 5 points among whites.

Hispanics are less likely to be in a four-year college, be enrolled full time, and complete a bachelor’s degree.


Melinda Gates Makes Global Contraception & Family Planning Top Priority of Gates Foundation | Sibelius at Georgetown

Daily French Roast

Anne is reading …

Besides trying to save Planned Parenthood for American women, there is probably no issue that upsets me more in life than the Catholic Church’s refusal to allow contraception in poor countries. American women had better fasten our own seat belts, because the bishops are on the march here in America to end contraception, too.

Reading now that Melinda Gates has made a decision that family planning will be her signature issue and a primary public health priority nearly has me weeping. Michelle Goldberg shares the news that the Gates Foundation will convene a summit of world leaders in London in July, to begin raising the $4 billion the foundation will need to get 120 million more women access to contraceptives by 2020.

Melinda Gates says that she will also invest in sponsoring research in the “long-neglected field of contraceptive research, seeking entirely new methods of birth control.” Melinda seeks to galvanize a global movement.

Gates believes that by focusing on the lives of women and children, and by making it clear that the agenda is neither coercive population control nor abortion, the controversy over international family-planning programs can be defused. Right now, she points out, 100,000 women annually die in childbirth after unintended pregnancies. Six hundred thousand babies born to women who didn’t want to be pregnant die in the first month of life. “She is somebody who really sees this as a public-health necessity,” says Melanne Verveer, the United States ambassador at large for global women’s issues. “I think she believes, and I hope she is right, that people of different political persuasions can come together on this issue.”

Melinda Gates on Contraception

“You get her out in the field with a group of women, she is totally in her element,” a foundation official says. (Courtesy of Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation)Melinda Gates won’t have an easy time launching this new initiative. Susan Yoshihara, director of research at the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute — a huge factor in resisting foreign aid or philanthropy dollars for family planning programs — says about the initiative: ““If she wants to put money into it, that’s fine, but she doesn’t get to say no one gets to argue with me.”

After making her announcement in April at a TEDxChange conference in Berlin, the headlines were devastating.

“Melinda Gates Promotes Abortion at Mtg, Attacks Catholics,” read a headline on The U.K. Catholic Herald’s Francis Phillips was more measured, saying, “It is always a disappointment when a public figure of great wealth, standing or power explains that although they are loyal Catholics they think Church teaching is wrong—predictably on moral matters.”

See — How Have Contraceptives Changed Your Life.

Georgetown Rebels, Invites Sibelius

Days after the Vatican demanded that Catholic bishops be put in charge of teachers at America’s Catholic Universities, and all speakers and talks be subject to bishops’ approval, Georgetown University has fired back by inviting US Secy of Health and Human Services Kathleen Silbelius, a Catholic who lives in the bullseye of bishops’ scorn, to give the policy institute’s commencement address.

Sebelius announced the Obama Administration contraception mandate compromise, an action that has caused the Catholic Church to launch a “fortnight of freedom” crying that the church is being persecuted in America. via USA Today