Tuesday, August 08, 2023

Women Vote for Freedom

Way to go, Ohio. You showed the power of united voices for freedom from men's legal hands on our bodies. 

Ohio Voters Take First Crucial Step To Protect Abortion Rights Ahead Of November Vote

Voters in Ohio successfully thwarted a Republican attempt to make it harder to pass a November pro-choice ballot measure.

On Tuesday, Ohioans voted to defeat Issue 1, a ballot initiative to raise the threshold for altering the state constitution from a simple statewide majority vote to 60%. Although a simple majority has been the standard in Ohio for over 100 years, anti-choice Republicans in the state called for a special election to raise the vote threshold in a preemptive attempt to block the abortion-rights constitutional amendment that will be in front of voters in November’s general election. 


The special election is also an important reminder that whenever the public has been given the opportunity to directly vote on abortion rights, it has continually protected access — in both red and blue states. A year ago, Kansans overwhelmingly voted to keep abortion protections in their state constitution in the first big vote on abortion since Roe fell. And last fall, voters protected abortion access in the five states where it was on the ballot — including in Michigan, Kentucky and Montana. 

Saturday, August 24, 2019

U.S. Racism under Trump Administration

American Institutional Racism: Societal patterns and structures that are designed and implemented to systematically oppress people of color on the basis of their race or ethnicity while conferring benefits to people who are white (especially those with the additional privileges of being male, Christian, heterosexual, tall, able-bodied, educated, rich and attractive).

Want to see a Portrait of American Institutional Racism? Look at this graph.


We've been a racist country since our founding. The racism has been implicit and explicit in waves.

This is a tsunami.

Can Democrats stop it? Will anyone among the Republicans cede power to side with justice against this blatant discrimination?

Please note that the racist outcome of more federal arrests of non-citizens than US citizens was true BEFORE Obama took office. It looked like the the trendline reverses direction in what looks like Obama's 2nd term. Then note the exponential climb toward disproportionate injustice for people of color under Trump's leadership. Then go write some letters or join a protest or volunteer for a campaign or at least GO VOTE.

Friday, January 02, 2015

Bank (De)regulation, Income Disparity, & Bank Failure - A Cycle

Mikaela says:
Every time I hear about income disparity, I think about this article from NPR, which connects some key dots.  Right before big economic collapses and bank failures, the income gap yawns open to eat all but the 1%.  Then comes regulation on banks, income equality gets better, the economy improves, and the Right decides it's time to deregulate again.  And then we start the cycle again.

Here's the graph from Harvard Business School Professor David Moss in 2010:

P.S. Check out these amazing graphs about income inequality in America over the last 40 years.  

Friday, January 31, 2014

Unequal pay for women planners

Mikaela says:

On the heals of President Obama's State of the Union speech, here's what I find an "embarrassment" not to mention demoralizing:

APA's Salary Survey for 2012 shows this pay discrepancy between men and women, which only GROWS with experience.

Friday, October 04, 2013

I'm speechless.  Infuriated and speechless.  Republicans have shut down the government over providing healthcare to Americans at price they can afford.  It's a Tea Party, a spilled wet dream.  You mean we can force the Democrats to negotiate about an adopted law AND we can stop the government?  Really?  Christmas!

I can't even imagine where we go from here.  No one seems to have a rational explanation for an end game.

I'm not feeling backlash yet.  What if we go on like this for weeks, and they start thinking maybe we should go without government at all?

And Darwin comes by and starts turning out lights? Hello, Great Depression.  Nice to see you again.  So nice of you to drop by. More on financial implications here.

John Boehner's Shut Down

With No New Plan, Boehner Makes Plea on Shutdown

This says what I want to say, in much the same exasperated tone:
Wrong Side of History

A Population Betrayed

Why Conservatives Should Reread Milton Friedman

Why the Right Fights

Why Boehner doesn't just ditch the hard right

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Monday, October 22, 2012

Women, Work, & Family

Mikaela says:

Given the next installment about to hit our family, I had to archive this amazing article about women in the workplace trying to balance childrearing.

This article is unapologetically written from the perspective of a woman arguably at the top of pyramid, with lots of choices about where and how to work and when. Anne-Marie Slaughter worked in the State Departments for 2 years and stepped down to take a more active role in the life of her teenage son, who was struggling.  Umm... awesome.  I love her candid advice in this article, as well as her honesty. She mentions several times not knowing what to say when some women ask her how to proceed, how to strike the perfect balance.

Brace yourself; it's a long article, but I love that about it, too. There are no candy-coated aphorisms offered here.  Just some really brutal truths served up for our contemplation, as well as some well-deserved praise for strong women role-models who don't often get recognized for their mothering AND professional success.


Thursday, June 28, 2012

Class-based Hypocrisy from the Supreme Court

Mikaela says:

Had to archive this little gem from the Washington Post.  It's so surprising that the rule came in favor of the universal healthcare mandate, although a somewhat cynical friend speculated that right-leaning Chief Justice Roberts may have framed the ruling as constitutional only under the taxation clause as a short-term tactic toward the long-term strategy of wiping out taxation and anything hanging on it eventually. Sigh.  For the moment, though, hurray, America! You've joined other civilized nations in protecting the health of your own citizens.  Long time in coming...

But in the midst of diving around various analyses of the healthcare case, here was this about another recent ruling by this court:

Taken in context with the conservative majority’s other recent rulings, Alito’s majority opinion [in Knox v. Service Employees International Union, Local 1000] revealed the most class-based double standard the court has exhibited since before the New Deal. In the 2010 case Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission — rendered by the same five justices who signed onto Alito’s ruling inKnox — the court ruled that corporations could directly spend their resources on political campaigns. These two decisions mean that a person who goes to work for the unionized Acme Widget Company can refuse to pay for the union’s intervention in political campaigns but has no recourse to reclaim the value of his labor that Acme reaps and opts to spend on political campaigns. Citizens United created a legal parity between companies and unions — both are free to dip into their treasuries for political activities — but Knox creates a legal disparity between them: a worker’s free-speech right entitles him to withhold funds from union campaign and lobbying activities, but not the value of his work from the company’s similar endeavors.

Does that not just kill you?  With the good comes the bad, I guess.  Holding my nose as I party...

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Living in the Sprawl...

Mikaela says:

Dead shopping malls rise like mountains beyond mountains
And there's no end in sight...

Ah the ironies of listening to Arcade Fire's brilliant The Suburbs as I labor to create the plan for a walkable, urban, transit-oriented development on Albuquerque's sprawling West Side.

Thanks, Mags for the kick in the donkey to get this gem of an album!

Thursday, October 27, 2011


Mikaela says:
Albuquerque's Mayor, as part of his "accountability measures" decided to post the name & salary of every City employee in an online database.

(See Graded and Ungraded Employees.)

That's the end of accountability, I guess, because the Mayor had no plans to address any issues with pay disparity, gender inequity, departmental inequity, etc.

I've done a very surface-level analysis of the Planning Department, for example, which headed by a woman might have the best chance for gender pay equity, one might expect. On average, men make $6,000 less more than women. Women are overwhelmingly assistants and support staff. Men are the engineers. Even with the same title, most men make at least 10% more money. Of the top 10 highest earners, 8 are men. Even the director makes less than 2 men that report to her.

Likewise, of the 25 top earners at the City, 20 are men (80%), and on average, these high-paid men make $6,000 more than high-paid women. Mayor Berry, if you care, is #25, making just over $100K per year.

Hurray. Such accountability, Mayor Berry! Way to go.