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November 25, 2017

Open Thread – March!

Don’t forget to join your favorite Alaskan women (and men) at the Unite Against the War on Women March on Saturday, April 28 at 9th & I St. in Anchorage at 12:00 noon. Marchers will walk from there to Town Square, where there will be speakers and love music.

People across the nation will unite to tell lawmakers in 50 states that we’ve had enough!

(Everything below is shamelessly lifted from the announcement over at Bent Alaska)

Everyone is invited to join, plan, and rally as we unite to demand that every person be granted equal opportunities, equal rights, and equal representation.

We will assemble at the flag pole on the Delaney Parkstrip at 9th and I to pick up signs (first come, first served) or bring your own. And remember, you don’t need to have a sign to march – just bring yourself!  At noon we’ll start marching from Parkstrip (9th & I), down I street, right on 6th Ave, to Town Square at 6th & F St.

Join us for great music and speakers at Town Square following the march:

  • Shannyn Moore – Mistress of Ceremonies (Radio/TV host, “Just a Girl from Homer”) welcomes us.
  • Libby Roderick, Alaskan musician extraordinaire, sings!
  • Dr. Colleen Murphy, OB-GYN, speaks about women’s health care, including reproductive rights, abortion.
  • Rev. Connie Jones, Anchorage Episcopalian priest, on economic disparity.
  • Lennie Moren, activist and women’s rights advocate, tells us the “Facts of Life” for women in Alaska.
  • Diane Benson, UAA instructor, former Congressional and Lt. Governor candidate.
  • Helen Nienhueser, Alaska Women’s Hall of Fame member, instrumental in establishing freedom of choice for Alaska women, speaks about Planned Parenthood and women’s right to choose.
  • Eric Croft, Anchorage attorney, former legislator.



58 Responses to “Open Thread – March!”
  1. Krubozumo Nyankoye says:

    Writing from Alaska, – perhaps that is why you are living in a condition of subservience to the fanatics that do find the energy and incentive to not so much understand the issues, but advocate for the point of view they are told by the SPs of the world to believe. Perhaps you should re-evaluate your priorities?

    Mo – well, yes I glossed over that, there are just too many things to address, which is really the whole point. Individuals have a difficult time collecting information of a large number of issues and then sifting through it with a critical eye to see what is true and what is patent fraud. Moreover, even if they had the will to pursue it, they would not have the resources. That is precisely why we have government. To look out for all of us against the special interestests. Unfortunately, during the 8 year reign of Bush the special interests were given decisive roles in all levels of government, such that they can fomet even more injustice, and worse still, such enourmous screw ups as the gulf oil
    disaster and skate any culpability. The list is long and sad. Millions of people have been made homeless because of wall street’s frauds, yet not a single wall street mogule has stood in the dock.

    It is pathetic that some of us, who know full well we are being cheated and sold down the river, are simply too lazy to read a few hundred words and try to get a handle on what the plutocrats are doing to you. But that is really unsurprising in a way. Something like 75% of the U.S. population believes in a supernatural sky daddy that has a plan for us all. If you subscribe to that, there is no limit to the frauds that can be perpetrated upon you.

    I get a sense this may be my last comment on the mudflats. If so I wish to leave you with this simple credo, you cannot fool nature. Nor can you ignore it. We are a part of it, but not in any sense able to determine the future. To a small degree, we can accurately predict the future, and that is useful to anyone who wishes to cope with what it will bring, but we do not determine it, we have no other option than to try to cope with what it is. Nothing will help us but our own genius.

  2. Krubozumo Nyankoye says:

    That would be ponder. Damn keyboard.

  3. Krubozumo Nyankoye says:

    All jokes aside, there are some deadly serious issues floating around here that are being effectively ignored because of the outrageous antics of the so called conservatives. So let’s look at what is on their agenda to conserve.

    First and foremost is their own level of privilege, but they would not be satisfied with just staying as priviledged as they already are, they want more. They want to be able to teach your children their religion but with the imprimature of the state.

    They want to conserve economic inequality at all levels, but foremost in terms of education which is the great leveler. In any truly free market economy, whomever has the best skills supposedly should get the job. So to conserve the disparity between superficial measures of skills, the simplest possible thing to do is make it too expensive for most people to earn the credentials that supposedly qualify one for high paying jobs. A complimentary effort manifest inthe NCLB act is to systematically dismantle the public school system which was in fact the foundation of the huge economic and technological advances we have experienced in the last 5 decades. Well, we have to exclude the last decade because during that interval quality of education has declined on almost every metric.

    They want to conserve the multiple ways in which our so called system of justice is injust. Take for example the highest court in the land. The theory behind lifetime appointments is that without much if any threat of retaliation a jurist should be independent and able to make well thought out decisions that reflect their constitutional obligations. Today we have a court on which a majority of justices have perverted that maxim into, well, since I am above the law, I can decide whatever the hell I want and no one can touch more for it, so bidding is open, put your markers down, what decsion do you want? If you don’t know what I am talking about look at Scalia and Thomas for starters. But it goes much deeper than that. We are now in the transition to a new kind of slave state where commercial interests can profit from enslavement. Private prisons. Seriously, does no one understand the pernicious nature of this? The state may or may not have a legitimate right to incarcerate certain citizens deemed to have violated the law, but the motive of the state in that case is to primarily protect the law-abiding from risk. Ostensibly at least. But a private prison has an entirely different motive, namely PROFIT. The longer they can keep people incarcerated, and the more people who are incarcerated, the bigger the profit. Justice? In addition, private prisons are great at exploiting their convicts. For pennies a day they can force them to work, to produce products that make an uncompetitive profit against legitimate businesses. How does this differ from slavery?

    Next let’s consider conserving our resources. Back in about 2001 Sir Cheney stated that conservation doesn’t work. Isn’t that a self-contradiction? And who would actually argue with it?
    Everyone knows that conservation works. Or they should, or they will learn that it does the next
    time they are low on gas between Winnemucca and Klamath falls and try to get to a station as
    fast as they can.

    But that example is actually pale and superficial, think of the much larger example of us, the people,
    the 7 billion pluse individuals who must by definition compete with each other for a fair share of the vital resources upon which everyone of us depends. First of all you have to confront that idea of a fair share. To the people who call themselves conservative there is no such thing. That is why it is so easy for them to codemn millions to austerity measures that may in fact result in their deaths, in order to preserve, or rather conserve, the enormous advantage they have of not only earning hundreds of times the annual salary of an ordinary slave, but tithing to the collective good at a lower level. One has to wonder, what kind of logic goes into determinng that the tax on capital gains, which is totally passive income, interest earned for all intents, is actually less than the tax imposed on physical labor? Is that not upside down?

    Then opens the panorama of the population issues that are so critical to the future of not us, and probably not your children, though maybe, but certainly your grand children. We are destroying the environment upon which we depend for survival. In part we do so because there are simply too many of us. Far far too many. The earth is not able to sustain our current population. And yet the population grows. Until we, as a species exercise some self control, we are doomed at some point to commit a blunder from which we cannot recover. Climate change might be that blunder. I hope not, because I do not want to be a witness to the catastrophe.

    The conservatives want to conserve the 18th century idea that unlimitied breeding is the only means of obtaining security from helpless destitution in old age. And they want to make it certain that their predicition is ture by destroying the very successful social security system In that context,
    the current issue before the corrupt scotus questioning the mandate of the ACA is exactly analogous except for the provision that individuals will have some minimal choice among exchange pools of insurance, instead of being directely taxed to pay into a single national pool.

    Be assured, that if the ACA is ruled unconstitutional because of the insurance mandate that the next target will be social security itself.

    Read this and poner, what conservatives value….

    • Ivan says:

      How many prayers must America cry
      Before she heeds the word and stops living a lie.

      A Christian nation she vainly decrees
      Yet the homeless and hungry she refuses to see.

      Unto the least of these their savoir declares
      As they torture and kill in their self-righteous airs.

      Exceptionalism and Chosen they stand up and yell
      God bless American and the rest to hell.

      Health care is only for those who can pay
      Capitalism is divine there’s no other way.

      I point out that Christ is love and compassion
      They call me a communist of a socialist fashion.

      How many prayers has Jesus endured
      From America’s Christian’s who ignore his word?

      Ivan Bacon

    • thatcrowwoman says:

      You give us much to ponder,
      the Big Picture, there,
      do we see the trees for the forest?
      the forest for the trees?

      much to talk about
      much to study
      much to share
      while we march on.

      {{{{{Krubozumo Nyankoye}}}}}

    • Mo says:

      Excellent summary of so-o-o-o many outrages.

      Here’s more reading, for those unlike WfromA who only watch Short Attention Span Theater:

      “Justice SCALIA delivered the opinion of the court: The Court today announces a new clear standard to guide lower courts in their application of the commerce clause…. [A] law passed pursuant to the commerce clause is constitutional if Justice Scalia likes the law and unconstitutional if he does not. Similarly, if the law is regulating things that Justice Scalia wants regulated, it is constitutional. If it does not, it is not…. A close look at the ratification debates reveals that the scope of the commerce clause was intended to be equal to, and co-extensive with, Justice Scalia’s political preferences.”

      We imprison 1 in 100 of our population (larger than the top 35 European countries combined), and 1 in 12 of or black population. And just try to get a job if you’re an ex-con.
      Prison: Slavery in the 21st Century, indeed.

    • Mo says:

      Defunding public education is just the start; next, make it difficult to impossible to repay student loans for skyrocketing college tuitions:

      “As credit card and housing debt become unbearable, there’s a point at which they get written down. That point is too high, but because of various laws regarding debt collection that shift the strategy and potential end results between the actors, there’s a logic to it. As far as I can tell, there’s simply no equivalent chart, or even logic, for student loans. Because of legal choices we’ve made in how to set up this relationship, it stays forever, is virtually impossible to discharge under hardship, churns fees when it goes bad, and creditors can get to anything, including Social Security, to get it repaid. Meanwhile, we have a Great Depression-like event that is throwing college graduates into a labor market that is far too weak.”

  4. Mo says:

    And a final laugh about that pit bull thang:

    “Obama delivered the laughs early on and didn’t shy away from any subject including his eating of dog as a child. Obama asked what’s the difference between a hockey mom and a pit bull? A pit bull tastes delicious.”

  5. Mo says:

    Pix from some of the rallies:

    My favorite:
    “We Won’t Ignore the Elephant in the Womb!”

  6. blue_in_AK says:

    Thank you to the organizers of this much-needed event. A great turnout for this beginning of the protest season. And god knows, we’ve got enough stuff to protest this year. 🙂

  7. Zyxomma says:

    If you really want to see how these RWNJs believe (I can’t bring myself to say think), check out Mississippi’s Governor Phil Bryant (and take a gander at that toupee):

  8. E of Anc P says:

    I’m not able to hear Shannyn Moore’s radio show now, so look forward to the TV program. I notices last week there were advertising programs on, and they don’t show it her show on for today either. Is she no longer having a TV program?

  9. Ivan says:

    now if only
    we could vote these people out of office. But alas the democratic process has been aborted, our vote has been taken away from us.

  10. OMG says:

    This article on its surface seems great but I disagree with the premise that to elect more women will end the ‘war on women’. Some of the loudest voices in the ‘war’ come from GOP women like Sarah Palin, Michelle Bachmann, Jan Brewer and too many female republican congresswomen to list. Then you have Ann Coulter and Michelle Malkin who sing along with Rush Limbaugh in a chorus with all those Fox News ladies who attack women like Sandra Fluke and Michelle Obama. The solution is not simply to elect more women…the solution is to elect the right people who support the right stuff–male or female. Gender should not be a qualification.

    • Mo says:

      And you’re forgetting the grandma of them all, Phyllis Schlafly, whose efforts got the Equal Rights Amendment defeated.

    • leenie17 says:

      Sad but true. The qualifying factor should be compassion, not chromosomes.

    • beaglemom says:

      I think Dante saved a special place in hell for these women who obviously lack compassion and empathy.

      • Alaska Pi says:

        I disagree here. Women traditionally talk about the lack of “womanly” virtues of compassion and empathy when talking about why some women are disconnected from the broader group in the ways the aforementioned ladies are.
        I think this is a mistake on a number of fronts.
        It is no small thing that the Bachmans, whatzernames, et al make much of their empathy and compassion for every fertilized egg that comes along and while many arguments could be made that this is a peculiar notion of compassion/empathy I think it derails too many conversations.
        It also has an equivalent in the larger history of the battle to achieve civil and political rights for women in all the years and years and years of paternalistic compassion and empathy for those-poor-gals-and-the need-to-shield-them-from-reality-and-real-work-so-as-not-to-ruffle-their-emotional-lil-selves- aided and abetted by women like Schafly who readily dismiss the experience of far too many women because she’s happy to decide those women are not acting womanly/are sinners/ blah, blah, blah.
        (The resurgence of the idea that the madonna and the whore fully describes the experience of all women is part of the the latest right wing dealie which needs a full smackdown)
        Compassion and empathy can help us move towards justice and parity for all but it is the constant attention to notions of what constitutes justice and parity which keeps it all alive.

        • leenie17 says:

          I see your point and it’s clear that the right wing is trying everything possible to bring women back to the 17th century, but I maintain that compassion and empathy are important qualities to look for in legislative representatives.

          I just believe we should require those qualities in BOTH men and women.

          • Alaska Pi says:

            I agree with you that we should look for these qualities across gender lines- men are imbued with both as much as women are .
            What I’m saying, rather untidily, is that it is something we ladies do- question whether other ladies have these qualities when we disgree with them. I don’t think it works very well. There are altogether too many really right wing women who felt whatzername truly understood them with her mama grizzly and sundry other crap, which just flat derails the argument.
            I’m also saying, again untidily, that there are pitfalls in the arguments for compassion and empathy if those qualities are not checked against results and reason.
            I have a deep and abiding distrust that qualities alone are sufficient . Churches regularly rely on compassion and empathy for the “less fortunate” when soliciting funds to minister to those in need. Squashing the language and way of life of my mother’s people to “save” them damaged generations of Aleuts in the name of compassion and empathy attached to some wacky notions of justice and goodness.
            It was and continues to be a high price for people to have paid .

          • leenie17 says:

            “I’m also saying, again untidily, that there are pitfalls in the arguments for compassion and empathy if those qualities are not checked against results and reason.”

            Not so untidily! I think the problem comes when it is assumed that the women in politics ONLY have those ‘soft’ qualities and aren’t given the respect they deserve for their intelligence, vision, experience and tenacity. Frankly, I would have been shaking in my sneakers to go toe-to-toe with Hilary Clinton in an argument…and she was my Senator!

            I agree with your points completely. I would also add integrity and honesty to that list of qualities, but I’m afraid we might end up with no candidates at all!

            Oh well, we can always strive for the best!

  11. Zyxomma says:

    Here’s Ocean Conservancy’s blog on proposed drilling by Shell (Beaufort, Chukchi):

  12. Zyxomma says:

    I adore that live music was typed as “love music” above!

    I, too, will be virtually marching with Anchorage, AKjah in her park, thatcrowwoman in her forest, and all the rest of you, everywhere. Women’s rights are human rights.

  13. AK_South says:

    And did you know that if you live in AZ, you’re pregnant 2 weeks before you even have sex? I think global warming is frying people’s brains in those states!

    • leenie17 says:

      Next up…a bill to declare all females officially and legally ‘pregnant’ from the first onset of their period to the last gasp of menopause.

      Lesbian? Celibate? Nun? Infertile? Post-hysterectomy? Who cares! As long as you have them female-type genes, you’re pregnant in AZ from 10-55!

      That’ll fix ’em all!

    • beaglemom says:

      Hooray! Those who marched for women in Anchorage and elsewhere around the country were in my thoughts today – I marched in my mind with them. In reality my husband and I shopped for some things for our newly redone (not quite complete but 100% usable while we wait for the tile work) kitchen. Everything that was in the kitchen before has to go back and then some things that we could not fit in before will be moved from from shelves in our little laundry room and our even smaller furnace room (no basement in our house; just a crawl space ruled by the Lochness monster – our sump pump. It’s taking time but I think we’ll be satisfied with the results. But today, my thoughts kept going back to those who were marching today for all women in this country. Hopefully the marchers can spend the evening with their closest friends and family and with their feet up.

  14. Man_from_Unk says:

    It’s way about time we American’s demand equality for all. Sex and Race have no place in politics. It’s about being human and having choices. I applaud all you people standing up down there in Anchorage today.

  15. COalmostNative says:

    Me, too. And I had multiple D&Cs, due to abnormal clotting- before I had a total hysterectomy; the women on my mother’s side have a high level of breast and ovarian cancer.

    So, I suppose this makes me a serial murderer in TN… Aargh.

    I salute all of you in Alaska from Colorado!

    • beaglemom says:

      I expect that some state will soon pass a law that forbids hysterectomies before the age of 70! I first wrote 65 but then I thought that the crazy legislators would find some woman who had a baby at the age of 66!

      What I find particularly annoying about all of this (in addition to the mere idea of these laws, the perfidy of women who support them, the creepiness of men who support them, etc.) is the ABSOLUTE SILENCE of the medical community in this country about them. It cannot be a good think to do vaginal ultrasounds of pregnant women, and to criminalize miscarriage is simply contrary to nature.

      • beaglemom says:

        Oops I meant “thing” not “think.”

      • Lacy Lady says:

        I agree with you on the ABSOLUTE SILENCE of the medical community on this.
        Another thing I didn’t mention in my post—-when I broke my arm a year ago, I had to answer a lot of medical questions on a form before being treated . I am still trying to figure out why in the hell that one of the questions was as to whether or not I had had a D&C.
        If I was a young woman—-would they have put me in jail? Scary!

  16. thatcrowwoman says:

    Well, d@mn,
    if miscarriage is murder,
    most of the women I know could be jailed in Tennessee.
    I am one.
    I have suffered multiple miscarriages
    -before and after giving birth to our one-and-only littlebird-
    but would you know if I didn’t “confess” ?
    Would it matter to you,
    beyond sympathy and empathy, beyond shared pain?

    I am Not a Murderer.
    Nor are most of the women I know.
    That’s sick.

    Who are these guys,
    and why are they so Twisted?
    ChickenHawks want War?
    They should be careful what they wish for.

    *checking calendar. 2012. Yep. 2012*
    Election Year

    Now is the time for all good women
    and the not-women who love us
    to Occupy our Rights.

    I’ll be standing vigil in the forest
    shoulder to virtual shoulder
    with marchers in Anchorage,
    with AKjah in the park,
    with all who respond to the Battle Cry today,
    with all who continue to rally the troops
    on this long march to November
    and beyond.

    Power to the People

    *checking calendar again just to be sure*
    yep. 2012. 21st century.
    What a long strange trip it’s been.

    • OMG says:

      I know what you mean…three of my conservative cousins have had multiple miscarriages. One cousin is a devote Christian who is also an expert equestrian–she would have been an easy target for some zealot to claim that her love of horses endangered her fetus.

    • Lacy Lady says:

      I would be in prison too. I have a negative blood factor—-which creates problems. I feel so fornuate to have two children. My second was born very premature.
      This law is mind-blowing to me. Where is the sanity in all this.?
      All this crap that is coming out now, seems to have been brewing for sometime. Someone took the lid off. It’s like the Taliban has come to America.

    • mike from iowa says:

      I’ve got killer,smoky blue eyes with hazel highlightS(according to my beautiful barber) so that makes mikey a murderer and I’m lining up with all the ladies here to protest rwnj treatment of all females everywhere. SOLIDARITY compadres.

    • leenie17 says:

      It is truly astonishing that so many evil people with the deepest, darkest, ugliest malevolence towards women could all be elected to public office and granted untold power over this country at the same time.

      What disgusting, slimy rock did they crawl out from under and how could anyone – especially women or anyone who loves women, knows women or is related to women – consider voting for these misogynistic, vile, pathetic excuses for human beings?

      To accuse a woman who has just lost a child of murder, especially when doctors don’t even know why many pregnancies end in miscarriage, is simply repugnant. These malignant legislators need to be removed from office at the first possible opportunity and prevented from ever having any power over public life forever.

      • Zyxomma says:

        In addition to that (all of which is true), by some measures, up to HALF of all first-trimester pregnancies end in miscarriage, which is why the announcement that one is pregnant is inappropriate before the 2nd trimester.

        We have to vote these thugs — any of ’em, all of ’em — O-U-T, and keep them out. They have poisoned our politics and our discourse.

        Throw them out like the trash they are.

  17. OMG says:

    For the march today and the elections to follow, this is probably one of the most important pieces everyone should read:

    For conservatives that roll their eyes at the headline “…the republicans are the problem” they need instead open their eyes and see the true nature of what is happening in American politics. They need to understand that the type of Republicans that they once admired no longer exist. They must accept the fact that Ronald Reagan would not support what is happening in the party and that the party would most certainly not support him.

    • Zyxomma says:

      Excellent opinion piece! Thanks for posting.

    • Mo says:

      Yep! I almost never read the WP, as it seems the embodiment of Brad DeLong’s constant wail, “Why oh why don’t we have a better press corps?!”

      But in the article you linked to, they finally got a focus on the truth from their binoculars in the Village tower:

      “We have been studying Washington politics and Congress for more than 40 years, and never have we seen them this dysfunctional. In our past writings, we have criticized both parties when we believed it was warranted. Today, however, we have no choice but to acknowledge that the core of the problem lies with the Republican Party.”

    • bobatkinson says:

      What gives added weight to this excellent WaPo article is that Norman Ornstein is a resident scholar at the very right wing American Enterprise Institute. When you’ve lost Norman, you’re losing the war.

  18. OMG says:

    With the passage of Tennessee’s ‘miscarriage is muder’ law ( the GOP is stepping up its war against women. People need to stand up and vote against these extremists now! A strong message must be sent and voting against the GOP is the best way to drive the monster away.

    Now Sarah Palin has jumped in to support Mourdoch in Indiana who is considered extreme even by the standards of her own extremist party. It’s not surprising that Mrs. Palin would jump to his side (he is leading slightly in current polls) since one of his goals is the elimination of the Department of Education. And there’s nothing that the Palin’s dislike more than education.

  19. AKjah says:

    I cannot be in Anch for this. But i will go at noon and stand in WKFL park and hold a lone vigil for women everywhere.

    It is no small thing that the PTB are messing with womens rights.

    Who votes for these people anyway? Do they even think?

  20. Pinwheel says:

    “Its Pro-Choice or No Choice” !!

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