Warning: the following may be too badass for you to handle.
Today the Conservatives filed out of the House of Commons in Ottawa early. The NDP followed. Moments later, all the NDP MPs came back into the house and took their seats. They had realized that, with time still on the parliamentary clock and no Conservatives in attendance, they had a very rare majority. In Canada, the conservatives have a majority-controlled house. What followed knocked my socks off. We have a big problem in Canada. Aboriginal women and children have been disappearing for decades from their communities. Sometimes the bodies are found, but often times they’re simply forgotten by everyone but their family and the aboriginal communities. This is a growing problem all across Canada, with the numbers of missing or murdered aboriginal women becoming more and more alarming. The police won’t do anything. The government, despite the pressure that’s been put on them by the NDP, won’t do anything or even talk about the issue. So with a sudden majority in the house and no Conservatives there to mess things up or heckle too loudly for us to be heard, the NDP forced the debate on the Missing or Murdered Aboriginal Women of Canada. It was a stunning moment, made even more so by the fact that the Opposition (NDP) had to literally trick the government to get the issue to the floor. I’m amazed. What a moment. Well done, especially to Mr. Romeo Saganash and Mr. Tom Mulcair. Bravo, New Democrat MPs. Jack would be so proud. To see a video of the incredibly emotional moment in the house, see my blog, I just posted a link.
One correction. The majority of the conservative MP’s had left the house but there were a small number still in attendance. But definitely less than the full NDP caucus which is why they were able to force the debate.
What an amazing moment.
thank you, NDP.
This month, long time friend of the blog Rebecca Traister wrote a stunning profile of candidate Lucy Flores for Elle Magazine. Flores, the Democratic hopeful for Lieutenant Governor of Nevada decimates other political origin stories – she’s Mexican-American, one of 13 siblings, the child of immigrants, and former gang member. She turned her life around, started at community college, became a lawyer, and decided to run for office. She’s unapologetically pro-choice (and one of the rare candidates that will share her own story.) Domestic violence shaped her world – and her life experiences lead to a very pro-populist platform.
But what really gives Flores’ story bite is her unique position in politics – not only who she is, but what she represents for the Democratic party:
"When a governor steps down in the state [of Nevada], the lieutenant governor, who’s not necessarily of the same party, assumes the post. Nevada’s current governor is the immensely popular Republican Brian Sandoval, whom Politico Magazine dubbed “The Man Who Keeps Harry Reid Up at Night.” That’s because many believe he’ll challenge the majority leader for his Senate seat in 2016, if, that is, the person who’d take his place is a fellow Republican: Flores’ opponent Mark Hutchison. Which makes Flores, to use Politico-speak, “The Woman Who Could Save Harry Reid’s Hide—and Keep the Senate in Democratic Hands.”
Go read it. Read it all."
best of #WhyImVotingUKIP
Wow that is depressing.
sorry, but i call bullshit (at least to the notion that michelle obama is the single source of this culinary hellscape). that crusty fried chicken sandwich in the top picture? i got served that shit in high school fifteen years ago, when michelle obama was an illinois senator’s wife. that ugly mess of ground “beef” and corn and mashed potatoes, with a single sad white roll? that shit’s so familiar i might as well be high-fiving it at a family reunion. our school lunches have been garbage for decades, ever since we let corporations enter the business of feeding schoolchildren on contract, when school lunches stopped being cooked at school and started being cooked in factories and freezer-bagged and microwaved on site. this shitty situation can’t be dropped entirely in michelle obama’s lap: she didn’t start sysco or aramark or maramont or any of the giant food conglomerates that serve up deep fried frozen faux food by the truckload into america’s schools, at a profit. why don’t we hold accountable giant corporations and industry lobbyists- like, i shit you not, the national potato council- who have fought against improving school lunch standards for decades?
michelle obama’s fighting an uphill battle because let’s face it, school districts across the nation are suffering and hemorrhaging money, and school lunches have always been a target of cutbacks. rather than spending money on healthy foods to cut calories and maximize nutrients- re the obama guidelines- schools just cut corners and serve less. their shitty substandard implementation of the guidelines does not mean that the concept of bringing healthier food into public schools is a failed one.
and if you want to change school lunches, instead of complaining to michelle obama on twitter, you can support the local efforts of students, parents and teachers to improve their lunches, like the campaign going on in philadelphia right now. these schoolkids have organized to try and end the contract with their shitty corporate meal provider, and gather support for meals cooked in-school with better ingredients. i guarantee there are fights like this going on in more places than philly, and they could use your help.
Native American Women Finally Gain More Protection From Rape and Abuse Thanks to VAWA
Thanks to the latest reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), the U.S. government is beginning to take steps to strengthen protections for victims of domestic violence within American Indian tribes. On Thursday, the Justice Department announced that three tribes will participate in a pilot program that will allow them to prosecute non-Native men for abuse against Native American women, an initiative that will eventually be expanded to additional tribes.
remember that republicans wanted to kill this bill for precisely this reason
February 7, 2014
On Friday, President Obama added his signature to legislation that will cut $8.7 billion in food stamp benefits over the next 10 years, causing 850,000 households to lose an average of $90 per month. The signing of the legislation known as the 2014 Farm Bill occurred at a public event in East Lansing, Mich.
The food stamp cuts are one component of a massive omnibus bill which also includes billions of dollars in crop insurance and various other programs and subsidies involving American agriculture. Before he signed the legislation, President Obama praised it as an example of bipartisan problem-solving that would help create jobs and move the American economy forward.
“Congress passed a bipartisan Farm Bill that is going to make a big difference in communities across the country,” said the president.
Obama’s remarks also focused heavily on economic inequality, which he has previously called “the defining challenge of our time.” The Farm Bill, he said, would “give more Americans a shot at opportunity.”
When House Republicans originally argued for a food stamp cut of between $20.5 billion and $39 billion, the White House threatened to veto both of those proposals. During his Friday speech, the president did not say whether he was satisfied with the final $8.7 billion figure, or even mention the cuts at all. Instead, he praised the food stamp program and said that the final Farm Bill preserved much-needed benefits.
“My position has always been that any Farm Bill I sign must include protections for vulnerable Americans, and thanks to the hard work of [Senate Agriculture Committee chair Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich] and others, it does just that,” he said.
Stabenow, who played a key role in Farm Bill negotiations, fully embraced the cuts in a speech delivered shortly before the president took the stage.
“This is a nutrition bill that makes sure families have a safety net just like farmers do,” she said. “The savings in food assistance came solely from addressing fraud and misuse while maintaining the important benefits for families that need temporary help.”
Speaking to reporters on Air Force One before the speech, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack made much the same point, saying that the $8.7 billion cut “probably makes the program more legitimate than it was.”
In fact, the benefits reduction would eliminate the state-level “Heat and Eat” policies currently employed in 15 states and Washington, D.C. Left-wing opponents of the Farm Bill, including Rep. Jim McGovern, D-Mass., expect the burden of burden of the cuts to fall disproportionately on the elderly and disabled.
“Poor people are getting screwed by this Republican majority [in the House] and Democrats in my opinion aren’t doing enough to push back,” he said. “I wish there had been more of a fight from the White House and others.”
McGovern also admitted to being “puzzled” by the White House’s silence on hunger and food stamp cuts. He predicted that Republicans’ success in getting a several billion dollar food stamp cut meant that they would soon try again for even more.
“They know they can’t get a $40 billion cut right off the bat, so what they’re doing is they’re chipping away at it,” he said.
bolded more so that people wouldn’t just take away “obama cut $8.7 billion out of nowhere!” because THAT SUCKS SUPER BALLS but this is also clearly the republicans fucking with shit and making “just” $8.7 billion seem better in comparison.
politics sucks shit.
The National Republican Congressional Committee appears to be registering donation websites using the names of Democratic candidates in the URL, distinguished from an official campaign site only by plain text reading “donate to help defeat” below the candidate’s name. Donations from all these sites currently redirect as donations to the NRCC.
There’s a formula, obviously, and it’s being applied to at least a half a dozen candidates already: pages using the same template, all redirecting to the RNCC, exist for the Democratic candidates Alex Sink, Martha Robertson, John Lewis, and Domenic Recchia at the time of this writing.
These are not presented as Republican sites, nor are the names suggestive of opposition sites. The URLs are all, without exception, either the candidate’s name or the candidate’s name accompanied by “forcongress,” “for2014,” or some similar campaign theme.
You have to scroll all the way to the bottom to get any text that suggests Republican involvement, usually in as low-contrast a font as possible.
I’ll try to stay on top of this story and any updates, but for now you need to know at least this much: the RNCC, going into the 2014 elections, is definitely registering misleading websites that appear to support Democratic candidates for Congress, but that direct donations to the RNCC.
This is absolute desperation - the same strategy used used to sell weight-loss cures and penis pills. I can’t imagine that the Republican Party is helping restore their brand for young people with these kinds of tactics.
THIS IS ABSOLUTE AWFUL