Wednesday, December 20, 2006

14 months from today...what DO we want for our future?

14 months from today, we'll have a new President. (That's 761 days and change if you're counting.) During President Bush's press conference today, I was surprised to hear him support increasing the minimum wage, though I wonder what tax cuts he has in mind to pair with them.

Other than that, there is very little I agree with the President about, and with an all-time low approval rating of 36%, that puts me in a two-thirds majority.

The website Bush's Last Day sells "01.20.09" logo items.

I put their bumper sticker on my car yesterday. I like this site's call for change. As I listened to the press conference today, I realized that in the next 14 months, we who are dissatistified with Bush need to articulate what we are FOR. As the War on Terror has shown us, struggling against something can end up creating more of it.

So what are we for? As a mother I would like to suggest the proposals at as one starting point.

I have also been wondering what is the opposite of "waging war." The great thing about "waging war" is that it is such a verb. It is active; it jumps off the page and onto the battlefield. "Peace" can seem like it means doing nothing. The root word of pacifism means "to pacify." "Peace" has connotations of stopping, refusing, silence. We need to come up with ideas about going, advocating, speaking.

What would the active form of Peace be, one that transcended the frame of War? ("Waging peace" falls in the shadow of war, for example.) The actions I can think are all on national levels: diplomacy, multilateral talks and conference.

What can we as citizens do to work for peace? We can protest against the actions of war, but we need to find another way to work toward the world we want. A worldview that recognizes that you can inspire Democracy in other countries but cannot declare it through armed Imperialism. A holitic approach that includes the mutual, global concerns about the environment, poverty, and human rights. I know that we Progressives across have it in us to work this out, but the clock is ticking. We have 685 days to articulate our vision for the future and choose a leader who will truly find "a new way forward."

This story is far from written, and I pray that we can hold on for the next 685 days, which right now feels like an awfully long time to run out the clock on Bush II.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Bland menace?

Maybe you read it in Frank Rich's column....maybe you heard it on Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me....or maybe you even went to the source itself, MegaShift Ministries chair and conservative columnist Jim Rutz of WorldNetDaily.

Put down that tofu dog and soy formula, says Rutz, because "Soy is feminizing, and commonly leads to a decrease in the size of the penis, sexual confusion and homosexuality. That's why most of the medical (not socio-spiritual) blame for today's rise in homosexuality must fall upon the rise in soy formula and other soy products."

What's amazing to me is seeing the right wing suddenly embrace SCIENCE when doing so helps make an anti-gay point. When it comes to evolution or the basics of reproduction (ie how emergency contraception works) they are not interested in scientific thought. But hey, if throwing around a supposedly scientific argument can link "liberal food" with gayness, then they are all for science.

Scientific American responded with a rebuttal, Eating Soy Will Not Make you Gay (We Swear). Personally, I like the Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me panel's take on this issue, in which they point out that a man feeding his boyfriend tofu in bed, naked, does in fact make him gay.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Don't let NeoCons have it both ways

Conservatives' split between their private judgements and public policies isn't compassionate, it is merely hypocritical. I am glad that our Vice President loves his daughter. I am glad that President Bush believes, "I think Mary is going to be a loving soul to her child. And I'm happy for her." But how can these leaders reconcile those warm familial feelings with their policies that deny same-sex couples the right to form legal families?

We've heard line of reasoning before from the GHW Bush administration. Remember when Dan Quayle said during the 1992 election season that if his own daughter needed an abortion, he'd support her decision. He later made it clear that while we would support his daughter's choice, Quayle still remained politicially opposed to abortion rights.

That's the public policy we get: Conservatives live with the privilege to extend exceptions to their family members when needed, but the rest of us are stuck with their restrictive interference in our lives. Since when did nepotism become a prerequisite for liberty?

MotherVoice08: A place to be as political as I wanna be.

I've been posting to my MojoMom blog regularly for a few years now, and I've worked hard to make it a worthy destination for thinking Moms. In my Mojo Mom book and blog, I trace a path that starts with self-care and builds toward women's leadership. In my personal life I have continued on that trajectory, becoming more politically invovled throughout the 2004 and 2006 elections. I am contributing to the group blog on, but event that requires a modicum of detachment from my personal opinion. Part of me still craves an outlet where I can be as partisan, political and opinionated as I want to be. This isn't really appropriate for the MojoMom blog. I have struggled with the decision to create a new blog, dividing my writing energies further, but the time has come to give it a whirl.

So here I am on MotherVoice08, my new blog that will chronicle my adventures on the road to 2008. I don't yet know where that road will take me, which is part of the fun of writing about the journey.

I am going to try to keep my posts short and snappy, but I will tell you two important things to get started: I am proud to be a progressive Democrat, and I believe that all Moms should take up politics. Motherhood is inherently political, and if you need evidence to support that, just read The Motherhood Manifesto by the founders of The frustrating thing is, many Moms' groups are expressly apolitical, trying to keep discussion on non-partisan level to avoid having anyone's feelings hurt by differences of opinion. In the long run this is extremely boring and further isolates mothers from the political process. So bring your opinions, join me here on MotherVoice08 and shout it out.