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Women are full citizens with full rights; not political diversions.
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Moving Beyond Politics as Usual on LUNCH WITH LOUDEN Today 3pm EDT, Noon PDT

Moving Beyond Politics as Usual on LUNCH WITH LOUDEN Today 3pm EDT, Noon PDT | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

A place to begin our conversations today:

 

We are in a crisis; there is no time for politics as usual. Our lives are on the line. We can't be expected to just play cheerleader because we fear things could get worse. We are drowning and failing either way because we are simply on the wrong path. It's time to hit reset and if Washington doesn't understand that we must find a way to make our voices heard. (7/31)

 

Is it possible to create a network of 5 million or more determined American citizens to make money in politics and corruption THE issue of our time? To ask candidates at every opportunity what they will do about it? Who won't get distracted or fractured by the divide and conquer tactics of the two parties? (8/2) - Annabel Park

 

LUNCH WITH LOUDEN, 12 Noon Pacific (3PM Eastern) Click in or Listen Live at 646-929-2495.

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Women Voters: Are Your Photo IDs Up to Date?

Women Voters: Are Your Photo IDs Up to Date? | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

by JOAN BAMBERGER, Huffinton Post


Women voters beware. Right-wing attempts to push through tougher voter ID laws may keep you from voting in November.


I'm not talking about zombie moms. I'm not talking about women trying to pull the wool over some poll worker's eyes in order to vote in a different town. I'm not even talking about undocumented women who some worry might be sneaking into your local voting booth.


I'm talking about women who just haven't gotten around to changing their names on their driver's licenses because of the paperwork and time required -- either because they've gotten married or divorced.


[CLICK THE HEADLINE TO READ MORE]

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Female Olympic Athletes Still Have “Beauty” To Hurdle

Female Olympic Athletes Still Have “Beauty” To Hurdle | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

Today, in honor of the Olympics, in honor of the strong, skilled, and powerful US female gymnastic team, Proctor & Gamble’s official beauty Twitter account tweeted a kick in the groin to the gymnasts -- and all women really.


Via Deanna Dahlsad
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Benefits of Contraceptive Use in the United States

Guttmacher Institute, YouTube


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Honoring Military Servicewomen Month

Honoring Military Servicewomen Month | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

UniteWomen.org


The Petition begins:


Designate August as National Military Servicewomen’s Month.

In much the same way that the contributions of civilian women have not received their proper recognition in the annals of American history, the contributions of those women who have risen to the call of duty in service to their country have also been largely overlooked. The President and these committees can play a part in rectifying this oversight by doing their part in honoring these womens' service, sacrifice and devotion to their country.


[MORE, and to SIGN]

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‘Obamacare’ means preventative care for women beginning August 1st

‘Obamacare’ means preventative care for women beginning August 1st | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

by CAROLYN JOHNSON, PeoplesWorld 


Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, starting on  August 1, all new health care plans will be required at the start of their plan year to cover a variety of preventive health care services with no co-pay or deductible. That includes a wide range of health care services for women.


Because some preventive benefits are already in place, such as prenatal screenings and mammograms, over 20 million American women have received at least one preventive health care service without having to make a co-payment or pay additional costs.


Starting August 1, new health plans, must provide the following preventive services without co-pays or deductibles: Well-woman visits, breastfeeding support, supplies and counseling, contraceptive methods and counseling, screening and counseling for domestic partner violence, screening for gestational diabetes, counseling for sexually transmitted infections, including HIV and screening for HIV itself, as well as DNA testing for high-risk strains of HPV.

[MORE]

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Voter ID is the fraud

Voter ID is the fraud | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

By Sally Kalson / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette


All this time we thought Republicans hated government waste and bureaucracy, unfunded mandates and over-reaching laws that infringe on freedom. Was that just an act? Because Pennsylvania's voter ID law requiring certain kinds of photo identification for most voters is the very embodiment of that loathsome list.


1. It will "solve" a problem that doesn't exist.
2. It will impose unnecessary hardship on those least able to overcome it.
3. It will squander millions of scarce public dollars.
4. Its application will be inconsistent.
5. It will impede the freedom -- not to mention the constitutional right -- to vote.

...


As for disproportionate effect, the study found 22 percent of voters in households earning $20,000 or less lacked a valid photo ID, vs. 8.2 percent of those in the $80,000-plus range.


These gaps are more than enough to swing an election, which is exactly what state Republicans had in mind. Rep. Mike Turzai actually admitted it when addressing his fellow party members: "Voter ID, which is gonna allow Gov. Romney to win the state of Pennsylvania -- done."


The voter ID law was on trial last week in Commonwealth Court, with the ACLU calling it what it is: voter suppression. But since voter fraud has proven to be a complete fabrication, state attorneys haven't even tried to show a need for it. Their argument boils down to this: We did it because we could.


[Read more.]


Via Lynda Park
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Surplus-Based Tax Cuts in Deficit Times

Surplus-Based Tax Cuts in Deficit Times | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

by JEANENE LOUDEN, Pointed Postcards


Agree with Bush tax cuts or not, at least there was a budget surplus at their inception. Some wanted to pay down the debt instead….


But keeping the surplus-based tax cuts after going to war was like my deciding to buy a yacht after choosing to work part time! War without war tax (a first) was the beginning of the end of any meaningful budget or debt management in Washington, DC.


Private money has been spent on lobbyists, special interest groups, and candidate election funds, all intended to coax America to suspend financial reason for over a decade. It has been expensive beyond belief, but the best investment the 1% could have made: they are over the moon; We the People are under the bus.


I am going to count to three. We will all wake up, feeling refreshed, and ready to end these suicidal tax cuts. One… two… THREE!


[Originally posted in Pointed Postcards - jkl]

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Child Poverty Rate (% of children living in households with income below 50% the national median income)

Child Poverty Rate (% of children living in households with income below 50% the national median income) | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

imgur.com

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Feminism is equality - is full self expression - is ours to reclaim

Feminism is equality - is full self expression - is ours to reclaim | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it
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Daily Kos: Volatile first-time unemployment benefit claims drop to 353,000

Daily Kos: Volatile first-time unemployment benefit claims drop to 353,000 | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

by METEOR BLADES, Daily KOS


The Department of Labor reported the sharpest drop in seasonally adjusted initial claims for unemployment benefits in 16 months Thursday. For the week ending July 21, initial claims were 353,000. That's a decrease of 35,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 388,000. That week was originally reported at 386,000.


Changes this summer in yearly auto plant shutdowns are making it difficult for the Labor Department to adjust the data for seasonal variations. Normally, carmakers lay off workers for a few weeks in the summer to retool and those workers apply for jobless benefits during that period. But this year, because of heightened demand for cars, the manufacturers have either not shut down or done so for a shorter than usual period. In the past, the weekly claims report becomes less volatile in August, and that presents a better picture of labor market conditions...[MORE]

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Lunch with Louden • Today at 12:00 PT (3 PM Eastern)

Lunch with Louden • Today at 12:00 PT (3 PM Eastern) | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

Amanda Kathryn Roman and Joan Blades, co creators of Living Room Conversations will be our guests today.


From the web site: "Sadly, at this time, the art of civil conversation and the ability to harness the power of genuine connectedness and alignment is at a historic low. Political parties are failing to collaborate or even compromise, to the detriment of our future. It is time for the citizens to lead the leaders.


"Living Room Conversations are designed to revitalize the art of conversation among people with diverse views and remind our fellow Americans of the power and beauty of civil discourse."


We will open the show with Will Rice, Coffee Party Commonwealth, who helped to deliver our petition with almost 2 million signatures to the Senate Judiciary Committee meeting on the Citizens United decision.


Listen live or pod cast HERE. Call in at 646-929-2495 to talk to the hosts or listen in.

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Living Room Conversations Named 1 of 16 Organizations Changing the World in 2012 by Craig Newmark of Craigslist

Living Room Conversations Named 1 of 16 Organizations Changing the World in 2012 by Craig Newmark of Craigslist | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

Living Room Conversations


Intimate and personal conversation is a powerful means for revealing the truth. Joan Blades, co-founder of MoveOn and MomsRising, shared her idea for a citizen’s movement to create real change. “When I watch our leaders and media, the focus seems to be primarily on our political differences… Perhaps we could help lead the leaders out of this destructive political bickering we find ourselves engaged in again and again, despite the earnest desire many have to find common ground. Perhaps here in our local communities with 6 people of good will who hold different view points, we can begin to discover how we can have a meaningful conversation that will help us exit this hall of mirrors.” Check out the rest of Joan’s post to learn more about her Living Room Conversations project.

[MORE]


[Amanda Kathryn Roman of Living Room Conversations will be this week's guest on LUNCH WITH LOUDEN, Thursday at Noon (Pacific)]

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Sexual Harassment in Online Gaming Stirs Anger

Sexual Harassment in Online Gaming Stirs Anger | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

by AMY O'LEARY, NY Times


When Miranda Pakozdi entered the Cross Assault video game tournament this year, she knew she had a slim chance of winning the $25,000 prize. But she was ready to compete, and promised fans watching online that she would train just as hard as, if not harder than, anyone else.


Over six days of competition, though, her team’s coach, Aris Bakhtanians, interrogated her on camera about her bra size, said “take off your shirt” and focused the team’s webcam on her chest, feet and legs. He leaned in over her shoulder and smelled her.


Ms. Pakozdi, 25, an experienced gamer, has said she always expects a certain amount of trash talk. But as the only woman on the team, this was too much, especially from her coach, she said. It was after she overheard Mr. Bakhtanians defending sexual harassment as part of “the fighting game community” that she forfeited the game...[MORE]

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The kind of woman who needs a late-term abortion | The Washington Post Opinions

The kind of woman who needs a late-term abortion | The Washington Post Opinions | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

By Christy Zink


We are not reckless, ruthless creatures. Our hearts hurt each day for our losses. We mourn. We speak the names and nicknames of each other’s babies to one another; we hold each other up on the anniversaries of our losses, and we celebrate new babies and new accomplishments, all bittersweet because they arrive in the wake of grief. We extend our arms to the women who must join our community, and we lament that our numbers rise every day.

...


The consequences of the House bill, if it becomes law, will be inhumane. If the restrictions in this bill had been the law of the land when my husband and I received our diagnosis, I would have had to carry to term and give birth to a baby who the doctors concurred had no chance of a real life and who would have faced severe, continual pain. The decision my husband and I made to terminate the pregnancy was made out of love — to spare my son pain and suffering.


The ugly politics in this Congress and the sheer number of Republicans mean that this bill will likely pass in the House. I understand any citizen’s hesitancy when the issue of the right to middle-term to late-term abortion arises. But I also know from my own experience that this bill would have calamitous ramifications for real women and real families, and that the women it would most affect could never imagine they would need their right to abortion protected in this way.


Women and their families must be able to trust their doctors and retain their access to medical care when they most need it. To make sure that happens, members of the Senate and ordinary people across this country must see through the stereotype of the late-term aborter and see, instead, the true face of a woman who has been in this situation. I extend my hand; it is an honor to make your acquaintance.


[Read more.]


Via Lynda Park
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J'nene Solidarity Kay's comment, August 1, 2012 1:29 PM
Thank you for this lovely post, Lynda. I know young people who have had to face this terrible decision, and fight for their dignity all too often. Their sorrow is only exacerbated by the insensitivity of the cult that forgets that only god can judge. xo
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Under Health Law, 'No-Cost' Birth Control Starts Today : NPR

Under Health Law, 'No-Cost' Birth Control Starts Today : NPR | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

by JULIE ROVNER, National Public Radio


LISTEN TO THIS STORY


Beginning today, most new and renewing health insurance plans must begin offering a broad array of women's preventive health services, most notably coverage of birth control, at no upfront cost.


But even as they take effect, the new rules remain the subject of legal challenges.


That didn't stop Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius from taking a victory lap of sorts Tuesday on Capitol Hill. Surrounded by more than a half-dozen Democratic senators who voted for the health law, she noted that before the law was passed, many insurance plans either didn't cover basic women's health services, or they charged high deductibles or copayments.


"So as a result," she said, "surveys showed that more than half the women in this country delayed or avoided preventive care because of its cost."[MORE]

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What About the Children?

What About the Children? | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

Reuters, July 2012

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Leymah Gbowee

Leymah Gbowee | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Leymah Roberta Gbowee (born 1 February 1972) is a Liberian peace activist responsible for leading a woman's peace movement  that brought an end to the Second Liberian Civil War in 2003. This led to the election of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf in Liberia, the first African nation with a female president. She, along with Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Tawakkul Karman, were awarded the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize "for their non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women's rights to full participation in peace-building work."



[MORE]


[Earlier this week when NBC covered the opening ceremonies in London, they announced all the Olympic Flag bearers except Leymah Gbowee. I have not been able to find out why great pains were taken to omit the name of a Nobel Peace Prize winner, but I feel the need to tell you about her here. - jkl]

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Politics Doesn't Trump All: A Bipartisan Love Story

Politics Doesn't Trump All: A Bipartisan Love Story | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

by MARISSA ALIOTO

 

High-profile bipartisan relationships and even marriages have always been a small part of the Washington mix. But one Democratic-Republican couple says such relationships are becoming rarer in a politically divided country.

 

[Thought I'd post something to remind us that politics isn't everything.... MC] [concur! - jkl]


Via Michael Charney
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More women's history at the 30th Olympiad

More women's history at the 30th Olympiad | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

Thanks to The Other 98% on Facebook

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Wambach Gets Even, Cristiane Extends Record, and More

Wambach Gets Even, Cristiane Extends Record, and More | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

[We pause for women's sports, specifically American Olympic Soccer. Girls Kick Balls! - jkl]


by MICHAEL LEWIS, Fox News Latino


U.S. striker Abby Wambach did not get mad, she got even against Colombia in Olympic women's soccer on Saturday night.


After she was sucker punched by forward Lady Andrade in the first half, Wambach exacted the perfect revenge with the second goal of the Americans' 3-0 triumph over Colombia at Hampden Park.


The result lifted the U.S. (2-0-0, six points) into the quarterfinals, while the South Americans fell to 0-2-0 and no points.


[MORE]

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The Sharp, Sudden Decline of America's Middle Class | Culture News | Rolling Stone

The Sharp, Sudden Decline of America's Middle Class | Culture News | Rolling Stone | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it
They had good, stable jobs - until the recession hit. Now they're living out of their cars in parking lots.
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ALEC Rock

"ALEC Rock" Produced by Mark Fiore (http://www.markfiore.com), The ALEC Exposed Project (http://www.alecexposed.org) and Alliance for a Better Utah (http://b...
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Permission to Live: How I lost my fear of Universal Health Care

Permission to Live: How I lost my fear of Universal Health Care | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

When I moved to Canada in 2008, I was a die-hard conservative Republican. So when I found out that we were going to be covered by Canada’s Universal Health Care, I was somewhat disgusted. This meant we couldn’t choose our own health coverage, or even opt out if we wanted too. It also meant that abortion was covered by our taxes, something I had always believed was horrible. I believed based on my politics that government mandated health care was a violation of my freedom.


When I got pregnant shortly after moving, I was apprehensive. Would I even be able to have a home birth like I had experienced with my first 2 babies? Universal Health Care meant less choice right? So I would be forced to do whatever the medical system dictated regardless of my feelings, because of the government mandate. I even talked some of having my baby across the border in the US, where I could pay out of pocket for whatever birth I wanted. So imagine my surprise when I discovered that Midwives were not only covered by the Universal health care, they were encouraged! Even for hospital births. In Canada, Midwives and Dr's were both respected, and often worked together.

...


Fast forward a little past the Canadian births of my third and fourth babies. I had better prenatal care than I had ever had in the States. I came in regularly for appointments to check on my health and my babies’ health throughout my pregnancy, and I never had to worry about how much a test cost or how much the blood draw fee was. I didn't have to skip my ultrasound because of the expense. With my pregnancies in the States, I had limited my checkups to only a handful to keep costs down. When I went in to get the shot I needed because of my negative blood type, in Canada it was covered. In fact I got the recommended 2 doses instead of the more risky 1 dose because I didn’t have to worry about the expense. I had a wide array of options and flexibility when it came to my birth, and care providers that were more concerned with my health and the health of my baby than how much money they might make based on my birth, or what might impact their reputation best. When health care is universal, doctors are free to recommend and provide the best care for every patient instead of basing their care on what each patient can afford.

...


Since all of these benefits are available to everyone, I never heard Canadians talking about capping their incomes to remain lower income and not lose their government provided health coverage. Older people in Canada don't have to clean out their assets to qualify for some Medicare or Social Security programs, I knew older people who went in for procedure after procedure, and we never heard about dwindling resources, kids paying for their parents medical expenses, or being forced to use up life insurance or funeral savings in order to get the health care they needed. I heard of inheritances being left even amongst the middle classes. Something I had only heard about in wealthy families in the USA.


And lest you think that the Canada system is draining the government resources, their budget is very close to balanced every year. They’ve had these programs for decades. Last year Canada’s national debt was 586 billion dollars, the USA has 15.5 trillion dollars in national debt. Canada has about one 10th the population of the US, so even accounting for size, the USA is almost 3 times more indebted. And lest you think that taxes are astronomical, our median income taxes each year were only slightly higher than they had been in the States, and we still got a large chunk of it back each year at tax time.


In the end, I don't see Universal health care as an evil thing anymore.
Comparing the two systems, which one better values the life of each person?

Which system is truly more family friendly?

[Read More.]

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Senator Richard J Durbin, Senator Mark Kirk, Rep. Bobby Rush: Pass the Human Traffic Protection Act

Senator Richard J Durbin, Senator Mark Kirk, Rep. Bobby Rush: Pass the Human Traffic Protection Act | Coffee Party Feminists | Scoop.it

Change.Org


Human trafficking is a broad term that refers to the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt of persons by means of threat or force or other forms of coercion, deception, or the abuse of power against a person of vulnerability for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation includes prostitution, other forms of sexual exploitation and forced labor comparable to slavery. Human trafficking is an organized criminal industry that affects every nation. The statistics can seem overwhelming, but please don't just see a bunch of statistics and remember that every number represents a human being whose life is being taken away. Human trafficking is the second largest global organized crime today, generating approximately $31.6 billion each year. Specifically, trafficking for sexual exploitation generates $27.8 billion per year. There are 1.39 million victims of commercial sexual servitude worldwide. The U. S. Department of Justice estimates that there are 200,000 U. S. citizens, mainly children and young women, who are at high risk of being trafficked throughout the U. S. for sexual purposes. I encourage everyone reading this to support a new Senate Bill 1301 and House Resolution 2830 titled “Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2011″ by contacting their local government officials. Abraham Lincoln said, “An injustice anywhere is an injustice everywhere”. Any woman, girl, or boy can be kidnapped and forced into human trafficking. Imagine your daughters, sons, mothers, wives, sisters, friends, coworkers, and neighbors, yes anyone. We need to take action by volunteering our time, money, and pressing our government official to pass laws to punish this crime!


[THE PETITION]

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