Thursday, 30 June 2011

colbert super pac

could the colbert super pac really determine the 2012 election? if the choices really are the koch brothers or colbert choosing the president, i'd choose colbert. so check it out: and help make a better tomorrow, tomorrow ;)

Sunday, 19 June 2011

childhood abuse keeps seniors from sleeping

Published: June 8, 2011 at 11:38 PM

LOS ANGELES, June 8 (UPI) -- Children who have been abused by their parents might have more trouble sleeping when they are age 60 and older, U.S. researcher found.

Lead author Cecilia Y. M. Poon, a doctoral student at the University of Southern California's Davis School of Gerontology and colleagues conducted an analysis of data from 877 adults age 60 and older found that early parental emotional abuse was associated with a higher number of sleep complaints in old age.

However, it was emotional abuse, rather than physical abuse or emotional neglect, which was linked to trouble getting a good night's sleep as a senior, Poon says.

"A negative early attachment continues to exert an influence on our well being decades later through an accumulation of stressful interpersonal experiences across our lives," Poon says in a statement.

"The impact of abuse stays in the system. Emotional trauma may limit a person's ability to fend for themselves emotionally and successfully navigate the social world."

The study data was from 3,500 adults who responded to questions about their childhood, then a decade later, they were asked follow-up questions about sleep, relationships and emotional distress. Poon's study analyzed answers from those age 60 and older.

The findings are published in the Journal of Gerontology Series B: Psychological and Social Sciences.

original article

Friday, 17 June 2011

Campaign to Cut Waste

i love this!!!!! i'm not sure why it took so long to get this done, but for realz! thanks so so so much for doing this. waste is waste!

though i kinda think the building in brooklyn should be turned into condos . . . that might help pay down the deficit. rent in that neighborhood is so steep . . . don't sell, turn it into something cool ;)

gettin' real in the whole foods parking lot

this reminds me of being called a bitch in the MOM's parking lot one day . . . seriously, this must be a common feeling amoungt us bobos

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

President Obama to Host Military Fathers and Children for Screening of Cars 2 in Advance of Father's Day


Office of the Press Secretary



June 15, 2011

President Obama to Host Military Fathers and Children for Screening of Cars 2 in Advance of Father's Day

To Help Fathers and Kids Connect, Fatherhood and Mentoring Initiative to Include New Partnerships with Organizations Including Bowling Centers, Sports Leagues, Zoos, Aquariums, LivingSocial and Groupon.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – This week, President Barack Obama’s Fatherhood and Mentoring Initiative will kick off a year of Strong Fathers, Strong Families through events highlighting the important role fathers play in creating strong families. Over the past two years, the President’s Fatherhood and Mentoring Initiative has helped fathers nation-wide engage with their families by providing support for local fatherhood programs, town halls around the nation, partnerships with outside organizations and This effort is supportive of all families, and affirms the central role of mothers in the lives of our children, especially those who have stepped up to the plate when dads haven't been around.

“Father’s Day reminds us parents that we have no more solemn obligation than to care for our children. But far too many young people in America grow up without their dads, and our families and communities are challenged as a result,” said President Obama. “Through my administration’s fatherhood initiative and the year of Strong Fathers, Strong Families, we’re taking steps to offer men who want to be good fathers a little extra help, while working with partners around the country to encourage personal responsibility and help fathers connect with kids.”

Today, President Obama will host military fathers and their children for a screening of Cars 2 from Disney•Pixar. As a commitment to the First Lady and Dr. Biden’s Joining Forces initiative, major studios including Disney, Universal, Warner Brothers and Fox are hosting special movie screenings for military families throughout the year. The Walt Disney Studios is kicking off the Joining Forces Summer Movie Series with a special advanced screening of Cars 2 at the White House today June 15th. President Obama also wrotean essay on fatherhood in People Magazine.

Fatherlessness is a growing crisis in America, one that underlies many of the challenges that families are facing. When dads are not around, young people are more likely to drop out of school, use drugs, be involved in the criminal justice system, and become young parents themselves. Fathers are facing more challenges than ever before - from military dads coming home after deployment to unemployed fathers struggling to make ends meet. That’s why through the year of Strong Fathers, Strong Families, the President’s Fatherhood and Mentoring Initiative is working to promote simple, yet meaningful, opportunities for dads and kids to connect through partnerships with organizations like bowling centers, sports leagues, zoos and aquariums and companies like LivingSocial and Groupon.

Additionally, the Office of Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships and the Office of Public Engagement have worked with cabinet secretaries across government to hold events highlighting fatherhood and mentorship:

· June 13th: On Monday, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan encouraged fathers and father figures to become more involved in education at a Watch D.O.G.S. program taking place at Two Rivers Public Charter School. Duncan was joined by Principle Maggie Bello and Watch D.O.G.S. coordinator Eric Snow. He toured the school and discussed the importance of father involvement in schools and education with students, parents and community members. He also spent time with participants of the Watch D.O.G.S. program and children who they’ve impacted.

· June 17-19th: U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Shaun Donovan will announce a new effort to focus on fathers in public housing.

· June 20th: Through the Office of Public Engagement’s “Champions of Change” website, the White House will spotlight 12 dads from around the country who are doing great things for their families and communities, many in trying circumstances. The Corporation for National Services will continue to highlight additional “Champion” dads throughout the year.

· Next week: HHS will announce new support for local fatherhood programs


isabel's tips for dating guys

i ended up talking to my 9-yr old neice isabel today. she told me a story about a boy she has a crush on at school and how scared she is about it. so i told her some dating story that prompted her to give me the following advice (she apparently doesn't have much confidence in my dating abilities . . . i'm taking tips from my 9-yr old neice hoping on the next go around i get things closer to right.)

isabel's tips for dating guys

  1. what you want to do, is you don't want to act too weird. you want to be funny. just be really funny. but you can't be so funny that he can't be funny too. guys like to be the leader of the female. you want to ask him questions, to make him feel because that will make him feel like he is leading. it will make him feel good.
  2. you don't want to be known as kinda dumb. you want to be knows as cleaver. you want to do cleaver jokes. don't look like a brainaic but also not dumb. a good cleaver joke is an inside joke
  3. first dates should not be formal. don't go to fancy restaurants, go to normal places. go to an aquarium for your first date and just wear normal clothes. if you get too dressed up and too formal, then he will feel kinda pushed. if it is casual then it takes the pressure off. then later when do you go to a fancy restaurant then both of you will be ready to be dating.
  4. on special occasions, like when you go to a fancy restaurant, you don't want to look like you tried too hard, you just want to look really hot and awesome . .. just throw your clothes on and run a comb through your hair, and throw on some earrings. you don't want him to think you care about your looks too much
  5. and, aunt teabelly, for you, its really important that you introduce them to your cats. then he can see the soft and nurturing you are; fast.
maybe this song will help too (it is the year of love after all):

Sunday, 12 June 2011

cleon vs. hugh

in the end is the biggest debate the one that went on between cleon skousen and hugh nibley? if so, we need to find hugh's glenn beck . . . maybe its rachel?

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Thursday, 9 June 2011


when ali and sawyer visited recently, we watched the movie 2012 at sawyer's begging plea. it is a horribly scripted, directed, and acted movie, but the plot is pretty trippy.

since then i've been more curious about the mayan predictions about 2012. this video makes me wonder if there might actually be something to their predictions?? maybe the whole world doesn't end, but some crazy stuff goes down for sure. because, japan already was moved 9 feet and the earth moved on its axis . . .

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

gorillas in the midst

i just stumbled upon this video looking for something else. and when i watched the video i remembered the power of this experience and thought i'd blog about it now, since then i didn't have a blog . . .

this is video i took in 2006-ish. i had been working in rwanda and stayed over a weekend (before heading to kenya) to visit the sousa gorilla family. the sousa family was the family diane fossey studied.

Fossey was found murdered in the bedroom of her cabin in Virunga Mountains, Rwanda on December 26, 1985. The last entry in her diary read:

When you realize the value of all life, you dwell less on what is past and concentrate more on the preservation of the future
i will never forget being there. rwanda was amazing in and of it self . . . this is a link to a blog i wrote after my second time in rwanda . . . there is a powerful sense of forgiveness and hope.

anyway, here i am being chased by a gorilla . . . i had been watching and taking photos of them. they were transfixing. they would look at you and it would feel like they were looking in your soul. the babies played and fought and needed codling. the old lady's sat around grooming each other. and the teen age boys tried to be the alpha male.

i was watching one too closely. i'd been told not to make eye contact because it can be threatening . . . but i couldn't help myself . . . and one of the teen boys got a little crush on me (or something). i must have accidently hit record when i was running away from the gorilla. he reached out and touched my back . . . which was CRAZY but the guides him and he ran away (they had tranquilizer guns if they needed them). . . i think about it now and it is crazy scary. but you can see in this, i have a high tolerance for adrenaline.

i kept messing up and saying gorillas in the midst (instead of in the mist), hence the title. they were actually in my midst, which was one of the coolest things ever!

Sunday, 5 June 2011

al queda's plan to exploit weak US gun laws

this seriously freaks me out!

this is the al queda spokesman, on the short list to replace bin Laden, in a chilling video calling on jihadists in america to exploit loopholes in american gun laws to create terror in our country . . . as if we need more terror here . . . seriously, we have got to change these laws. he claims, gaps in our guns laws are a “golden opportunity” to claim more american lives.

i joined a group called at which was started by a group of mayors in the US who want to see the gun laws in our country changed.

they are advocating for two critical changes:
  • Get all of the names of people who should be prohibited from buying guns into the background check system.
  • Require a background check for every gun sale in America
even if you are a gun rights advocate, these seem pretty reasonable. i have family members who are ardent gun right fighters, but even they agree that people with schizophrenia or with a criminal record of violence shouldn't be allowed to purchase guns (let alone, automatic weapons).

please check out this site and sign your name . . . i'm not sure what signing our name really does, but hopefully it is meaningful in some way. for more information about how this group is trying to close these loopholes, check out

Friday, 3 June 2011

strong is beautiful

this is a great campaign! i wonder how many female athletes it will inspire. will it change female tennis for the better by attracting so many more women to the game? will it inspire a new LARGE generation of women that play sports? will this have impact on america's obesity epidemic? if playing a sport is sexy, not being rail thin, will it change things?

Thursday, 2 June 2011

Drop Charges Against Saudi Woman Arrested for Driving a Car

The most controversial YouTube clip in Saudi Arabia this week doesn't feature obscenity, violence, or sex. It's an 8-minute video of a woman driving a car.

Technically, Manal al-Sharif didn't do anything wrong. She has a valid U.S. driver's license, recognized in Saudi Arabia, and she had her brother's permission as well as her brother himself beside her as her requisite accompanying male relative.

Yet Saudi police arrested and imprisoned Manal for eight days for defying a long-standing ban against women driving.

That's why Saudi women activists have created an urgent petition to demand that King Abdullah and the Saudi royal family drop charges against Manal. They describe the petition as “a call for solidarity with Saudi women’s rights.”

Click here to add your name to their petition.

In Saudi Arabia, women cannot vote, hold property, or even open a bank account alone. Most institutions are segregated by sex, with unequal access for women—in other words, gender apartheid.

Saudi Arabia is the only country in the world in which women cannot drive. Additional prohibitions against taking buses, riding bikes (can you even imagine??), and appearing in public alone essentially rule out independent travel for women.

For Manal, as a divorced, working mother, restrictions on travel create an immense burden. Her male relatives can't drive her daily, but private drivers cost an unaffordable $300-400 per month. Taxis are scarce, and drivers frequently exploit and harass female passengers.

Manal’s act of protest is part of a historic campaign encouraging Saudi women to begin driving en masse on June 17. Click here to join the petition to have charges against her dropped and bolster her efforts.

Without significant support, Manal may face harsh penalties. Saudi cleric and government leader Sheik Ghazi al-Shemri is calling for Manal to "be flogged in the women's marketplace as a model and a lesson."

Leading Saudi women's activists tell us that placing international pressure on King Abdullah is critical to ensuring Manal's safety -- and to galvanizing the June 17 movement.

Click here to add your name to this petition urging King Abdullah to drop these unjust charges against Manal al-Sharif:

Thanks for taking action,


Wednesday, 1 June 2011

First White House Roundtable with Young Latter-day Saints

below is cut and pasted from the WH blog (click here to see the original posting)

On May 16th, Kal Penn and I hosted a youth roundtable with about 20 members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Our conversation touched on issues of top concern including ways to expand volunteerism, LGBTQ equality, and the relationship between the federal government and the Church. While admittedly a small group, it was a reminder of the variety of viewpoints that can exist in any large organization.

One of the participants in the roundtable was Kristine Haglund of Boston. She’s currently the editor of Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought and maintains a popular blog, “By Common Consent.” Below she shares her thoughts about the roundtable:

“Have I Done Any Good In the World Today?” A popular Mormon song reminds members of the church that service and charity are fundamental duties of believers. One doesn’t have to look too far to find reports of Mormons visibly engaged in civic projects in their bright yellow shirts. Mormons are well-known for being highly organized, cheerful helpers in disaster relief and civic projects. They are also well-known for being politically conservative. An unlikely group for a meeting with the White House Office of Public Engagement, perhaps.

But there we were, about a dozen young (and young-ish) Mormons, talking about the kinds of civic engagement that could be the basis of collaboration with public agencies and other religious groups. It turns out, unsurprisingly, that young Mormons mostly care about the same issues as other young Americans: jobs, health care, the cost of higher education, the deployment of American troops overseas, GLBTQ rights, and the environment.

Although these concerns are shared with other young people, there are some peculiar valances for Mormons—since Mormons generally marry younger and have more children than the general population, they worry about having jobs that can support a family, rather than just a single person through their 20s and early 30s. They are more likely to be tuned into education issues than their peers, since they are likely to have children in public schools.

Another family-related issue that is especially salient for young Mormons is GLBTQ rights. Because of the Mormon Church’s very public stance on same sex marriage, young Mormons are more polarized over this issue than their peers. It’s important to know, though, that there is a wide range of opinions on the topic, even among believing and engaged young Latter-day Saints.

Another area of divergent opinion is on immigration issues—the Church has taken a fairly progressive position, and publicly articulated the principles that inform their stance. Nonetheless, significant numbers of conservative Mormons have dissented from the leadership, just as liberal Mormons did over California’s Proposition 8.

This diversity among Mormons belies the commonly-held stereotype of efficient, obedient, and uniformly conservative religionists. It was exciting to think about ways that working together on social issues where we have common ground can start to dilute that stereotype while, more importantly, building healthy families and the kinds of caring and connected communities we all want to live in.

Paul Monteiro is Deputy Associate Director for the Office of Public Engagement.