Some news about women’s “progress” here and around the world

I looked around the WWW, and pulled out some articles of interest  – some bad, some good – about the progress of women.  Just some stuff to chew on for an open thread!  🙂 

Anger as male MPs avoid feminist anthem appeal

Conservatives members of the federal parliament in Vienna (MPs) have been accused of acting “childish” after blocking a bid to change the lyrics of the national anthem.

Rauch-Kallat planned to launch a fresh attempt to adapt one line of the Austrian anthem from “Heimat bist du großer Söhne” (Home you are to great sons) to “Heimat großer Töchter, Söhne” (Home of great daughters, sons). Rauch-Kallat already failed to enforce such a reform in 2005 when she was the federal minister for women. The Alliance for the Future of Austria (BZÖ) – which formed a coalition with her party at that time – vetoed her bid back then.
—- snip —–

Women earn almost 32 per cent (2004: 37.5 per cent) less than men in Austria. This fact puts Austria in 25th among the European Union’s (EU) 27 member states. The gap is even larger in Estonia and the Czech Republic. The salary gap between women and men in Austria has been in decline over the years but at slow pace compared to other industrial states. Studies have also shown that women are offered 18 per cent less than men on average when they apply for a job in Austria. Experts have pointed out the high risk of unmarried women raising children on their own to become poor.

I wish the photo below had turned out more clearly.  This ad just blows me away;  they don’t even HIDE their sexism anymore!

 PMS, The California Milk Board, and Commercial Sexism

Is the man in your life suffering from PMS?

If so, milk can help.

This according to the latest ads from the California Milk Processor Board, which rely on studies that show diets high in calcium can reduce symptoms of PMS in women.

The $1.2 million campaign, which includes print ads featuring distressed, guilty-looking men with taglines such as “I’m sorry I listened to what you said, not what you meant,” social media and a website, plays it up to the poor men who are burdened each month by nagging, irrational and, god-forbid, bloated premenstrual women.


And in doing so reveals himself to be just as sexist as his creatives. This isn’t the first time the agency has exploited women to sell milk, he told Elliott. In 2005 the agency created a television commercial called “Milk to the Rescue,” depicting men buying up all the milk they could find in stores to calm their raging hormonal wives.

 If I read the following article right, these French soccer players were trying to make the point that they are athletes, not eye candy.  Good for them!

Isn’t there a better way to generate interest in women’s soccer?

If you’re following the Women’s World Cup, you may know that three members (L-R Elodie Thomas, Gaetane Thiney, and Corine Franco) of the French  team posed for some for the German tabloid Bild under the heading, “Is this how we should show up before you come to our games?”

I wish that women’s athletic performances, not images of nude bodies, drew viewers.   (snip)   The same three players are shown in soccer action  below.  These are the images that I hope inspire my soccer-loving daughter. (not shown here)

Now here is some remarkable news!!!  Keep it up, Tina Brown!

Tina Brown’s Newsweek covers have featured women 6 of 14 weeks

Of the 14 issues of Newsweek she’s edited since taking over the magazine, Tina Brown has featured women as solo cover images in nearly half of them (see cover images below). In the 14 issues prior to Brown’s tenure, only one cover featured a woman, Michelle Rhee.

Ever feel like you’re taking one step forward, three steps back?  Scotland – buy a vowel!

 Scotland’s City Councils are clearly in a competition for “feminist fail”

Last week, it was Edinburgh; this week Glasgow’s city council is behaving as if they had never met a feminist, let alone employed one! In a letter to the parents of children at a local secondary school, GCC stated that children’s shouldn’t wear short skirts or tight trousers as it might attract paedophiles. Yes, you read that correctly – it’s children’s clothing that makes the vulnerable to paedophiles. Does this sound familiar?

Well, fortunately, the Chief Exec at the Scottish Parent Teacher Council had the sense to point out that this was very unhelpful advice as it blamed children for the activities of paedophiles. And, even more interestingly, directly compared this to discussions of adult women’s dress and their ‘responsibility’ for rape.

Time for the local councils to send their peeps on some rape awareness/ gender sensitivity training, me thinks.

This last article is by the inimitable Ani!!!  Click on over to the article; lots more over there!

 Wacky, know-nothing women need not apply!!  Why do we still resist women in leadership?

I pondered what made a good leader. I liked Hillary Clinton’s method at State. Start by getting the lay of the land, keep your head down and master your brief before retooling the place. Sometimes good leadership is about anticipating opposition or problems before they take hold. More often, it is about giving others a respectful hearing – the fifth of Stephen Covey’s Seven Habits of Highly Successful People: Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood. Lastly, it involves taking a fiduciary and cautious approach to spending other people’s money.

Elizabeth Warren is basically credited with designing and staffing the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, yet President Obama has chosen a man to chair it. The brilliant Sheila Bair who just ended her tenure at FDIC has been credited by the Wall St. Journal and the New York Times as turning that organization into one with teeth, yet when it counted, she was passed over for Treasury Secretary in favor of Timmy “turbo-tax” Geithner.

Bair offered fabulous ideas for getting the housing and financial sector in line – why were they not implemented? Why was her “leadership” not tapped? I have been told I give the impression I could command an army – so do many women, without being emasculating by the way – so why the perception that we “don’t know how to do anything” or that “you would never want to work for a woman.” Are these just rallying cries that protect against disrupting the status quo? Fear of altering that standard can come from women as well as men, even today.

Happy Saturday, everyone!

Don’t forget to eat shoots and leaves! 

(h/t Andy!)


46 Responses

  1. And a very Happy Saturday to you, lorac.
    Thank you for putting together this thought-provoking collage. It really makes one want to scream.

    The Ani piece is really good. Ani, if you’re lurking here, well done!

    Being the political-hound I am, I was particularly drawn to this article about the depiction of women in politics that Ani’s piece linked, and highly recommend a read:

    The reason that the image of a crazed female politician is so powerful, and powerfully dangerous, is because it stems from a much older story about women. Whether burning them as witches or dismissing them as bitches, Western culture has always disciplined women who transgress established societal and political boundaries. One way in which this discipline has historically been meted out has been to classify women who resist traditional roles and boundaries as insane (or possessed) and burn them at the stake (18th century), consign them to sanitoriums (19th century), or encourage them to self-medicate with alcohol and anti-depressants (20th century). During the 18th and early 19th centuries, women were widely regarded as incapable of the rational thought required for democratic deliberation and, thus, denied the right to vote. Nearly 100 years after women won the right to vote in the U.S., female politicians are still trying to prove that they’re sane enough to be trusted in high office. Those with presidential aspirations are particularly vulnerable to being depicted as crazy—and not just run-of-the mill crazy. Both Bachmann and Sarah Palin have been denounced as “batshit crazy” and the corresponding images bear the distinctive markings of female political psychosis: bulging eyes, gaping mouths, exaggerated expressions, and uncontrolled fury or glee:

  2. lorac- good job! Lots of interesting material here- I will surely be back when I have time to do them all the justice of a thorough read. I saw the milk board ad a few days ago and was so furious I could not coherently write it up.

    Looks like I missed something in the last thread- sorry I wasn’t available to moderate yesterday Uppity. Son got home from his NCO class- and we only have a few days together before I fly home.

  3. woman power… 🙂

  4. Lorac – I’ve not read yet. Taking the laptop to the hospital now and having more ram added to the HP Desktop. I am on the VERY OLD Dsktop now – slw as molasses but not infected. BBL to read all.


  5. Very nice collection lorac.

    Get well wished for you laptop FF.

    Packing up mu gear and heading home form the office for now. traffic today was worse that a week day at rush hour.


    Check out number 12 – whose smile would you guess THIS refers to? ROFL

    UW – there’s an Italian word in number 3 – have you ever heard of it?
    The Global Language Monitor estimates that there are currently 1,009,753 words in the English language. Despite this large lexicon, many nuances of human experience still leave us tongue-tied. And that’s why sometimes it’s necessary to turn to other languages to find le mot juste. Here are fifteen foreign words with no direct English equivalent.

    1. Zhaghzhagh (Persian)
    The chattering of teeth from the cold or from rage.

    2. Yuputka (Ulwa)
    A word made for walking in the woods at night, it’s the phantom sensation of something crawling on your skin.

    3. Slampadato (Italian)
    Addicted to the UV glow of tanning salons? This word describes you.

    4. Luftmensch (Yiddish)
    There are several Yiddish words to describe social misfits. This one is for an impractical dreamer with no business sense. Literally, air person.

    5. Iktsuarpok (Inuit)
    You know that feeling of anticipation when you’re waiting for someone to show up at your house and you keep going outside to see if they’re there yet? This is the word for it.

    6. Cotisuelto (Caribbean Spanish)
    A word that would aptly describe the prevailing fashion trend among American men under 40, it means one who wears the shirt tail outside of his trousers.

    7. Pana Po’o (Hawaiian)
    “Hmm, now where did I leave those keys?” he said, pana po’oing. It means to scratch your head in order to help you remember something you’ve forgotten.

    8. Gumusservi (Turkish)
    Meteorologists can be poets in Turkey with words like this at their disposal. It means moonlight shining on water.

    9. Vybafnout (Czech)
    A word tailor-made for annoying older brothers—it means to jump out and say boo.

    10. Mencolek (Indonesian)
    You know that old trick where you tap someone lightly on the opposite shoulder from behind to fool them? The Indonesians have a word for it.

    11. Faamiti (Samoan)
    To make a squeaking sound by sucking air past the lips in order to gain the attention of a dog or child.

    12. Glas wen (Welsh)
    A smile that is insincere or mocking. Literally, a blue smile.

    13. Bakku-shan (Japanese)
    The experience of seeing a woman who appears pretty from behind but not from the front.

    14. Boketto (Japanese)
    It’s nice to know that the Japanese think enough of the act of gazing vacantly into the distance without thinking to give it a name.

    15. Kummerspeck (German)
    Excess weight gained from emotional overeating. Literally, grief bacon.

    Many of the words above can be found in BBC researcher Adam Jacot de Boinod’s book ‘The Meaning of Tingo and Other Extraordinary Words from Around the World.’

  7. I’m Italian all the way through and I never heard of #3. Of course, my not having heard of it doesn’t mean much.

    I wish we could have #15 instead. Like pancetta di tristezza. Then again, I don’t think Italians turn to bacon when depressed. It would probably be more like cannoli di tristezza or gelato di tristezza.

  8. I’ll guess: Obama! Do I win the microwave, lorac?

  9. If anybody stops by- here is something I saw that you might enjoy! Any info on the guy paying for this?

  10. Interesting (and heartening) ad, PMM. Why do you assume the payor is “a guy”?

  11. What happened at the debt-ceiling talks ordered by Commander Obama today? Did he burst into tears and throw a tantrum?
    I’m more convinced than ever that Bammy lost the last round to Boehner.

  12. PMM – are they putting out those ads again? I hope so. Here’s info on William De Jean:

    text from link:

    There’s plenty of speculation who will run against Obama in 2012.

    Nevertheless, the first television ad for the 2012 election supports Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for president.

    A Chicago dentist named William De Jean spent ,000 to create the ad, which is currently airing in Washington, New Orleans, New York, Los Angeles and Houston as well.

    We saw it during our brief visit in Washington.

    “I’m a dentist and I don’t think this country is headed in the right direction, “he told CNN. He said Clinton is the “most qualified” to be president.

    The ad is 30 seconds long of pure adulation, with a portrait of Clinton rotating to symphonic music.

    “She has more experience working in and with the White House than most living presidents,” the caption reads. “She is one of the most admired women in our nation’s history. Let’s make sure the president we should have elected in 2008 will be on the ballot in 2012.”

    “When there’s a Hill, there’s a way.”

    In our opinion, we need the Clinton’s back in the White House to fix this country!

    Run Hillary Run….

  13. NES- at the end of the ad it says “Paid for by William DeJean” just wondered if anybody had any info. Poor woman if her parents named her William- but one never knows these days. Moon, June, Elm, River, Sky- I suppose a good old fashioned name like William might be a blessing compared to some of the weird monikers imposed on progeny.

  14. Thanks Lorac! Sorry I haven’t been around much- last few days of my visit here!

  15. I liked the ad and the slogan “Where there’s a Hill, there’s a way”, but thought he could’ve picked a better photo of Hillary.

  16. NES, yes! You win the microwave!

  17. NES, thank you for that link. I am starting to get annoyed at how Bachman is being treated. And the thing that pisses me off the most is how “liberal” women jump right in and agree with the sexism. Do you think for a moment that those same women would be okay with depicting Condolezza Rice in Mammy clothes, or saying “In many ways, she is a typical black woman, she sometimes says things that make me cringe”?
    Sexism aimed at any woman is insulting to all of us and we should remember that and spread the word. Otherwise women will continue to be the underclass even though we are the majority. It’s crazy and gutless for women to continue thinking we have to deny each other to fit in to whatever other group we identify with. It reminds me of all the times we have heard “I’m not a feminist, but…..”. Why do we still feel we have to make disclaimers before standing up for our gender and ourselves?
    To me the label female comes before girl friend, wife, democrat, liberal, singer, actress, photographer, and mother.

  18. Taking the laptop to the hospital now and having more ram added to the HP Desktop.
    FF, I read this and for a minute thought you were referring to your Harry Potter desk top.

  19. NES- at the end of the ad it says “Paid for by William DeJean” just wondered if anybody had any info. Poor woman if her parents named her William- but one never knows these days. Moon, June, Elm, River, Sky- I suppose a good old fashioned name like William might be a blessing compared to some of the weird monikers imposed on progeny.

    I read this comment out of context and thought you were serious….lol

  20. For those of you who commented at Talk Left during the primaries (up till the day of the sham convention) this is utterly delicious. Better than PIE. Well, almost.

    And Uppity, if you are LURKING (lol) much love and thanks to you as always. If you take the summer off as you said you will, then it is a well deserved break. Just like with Hillary, we’ll be here for you when you are ready. Don’t make us wait too long! xxoo

  21. That ad is really moving. Oh, that it were true and she would run. And he mansplainers and woman haters would finally shut up and let a woman who can actually do something win!

  22. K for C: I did enjoy reading the comments there, but they still don’t get it. Even the commentors who are advocating primarying Obama still don’t mention the obvious choice.

    In 2008, I thought these people couldn’t be so stupid as to believe the Obama hype or couldn’t be real Democrats (of the Liberal variety). I figured they must be Hillary haters (not being ambitious enough dig in to the truth of matters). I still think that.

  23. Sophie, I read that site every day until the convention. Jeralyn was behind Hillary up to the convention. BTD (bigtentdem) supported obama but constantly called him campaign out on their foibles. That site, with its combined legal background of readers and posters, was excellent in the coverage of the RBC disaster from beginning to end. BTD also made it clear that he respected and admired Hillary but that he thought obama would have a better chance of being elected.

    They are eating stale old crow now.

  24. ack… his campaign not “him” – I changed my mind in mid sentence.

    Anyway, they weren’t Hillary haters at all. Quiet the contrary.

  25. Political Poisonous Penicillin

    Is it just me, or has political theater actually seized control of all of our lives and is now demanding our attendance every minute of the day after day, week after week?

    In other words, for me, the “political” being a dominate force in my life is suffocating the very life out of everything that really matters.

    How did “they” get so much control of “me” that they could command my attention to their do or die importance in my speck of a life?

    Better yet, I would like to know how in the world did everything that “we” value, that which we have created out of our lives, need to believe in and have some level of trust and security – planted roots, so to speak – become dominated by a relative handful of bureaucrats who inevitably align themselves with the powerful few against the multitude?

    The simple truth is: “I” let them. I kept believing in the “process” that was simply a breeding farm for more of the same.

    Now, I find myself among the multitudes, staring in horror at a bureaucratic monster that I, too, have been feeding .

    I think it’s time that I take off the 3D glasses, break them and throw them at the deformed, shrieking THING that IT is and put my hands over my ears as I back away slowly, staring at IT in horror, lest I forget what IT is.

    I do not want to blink my eyes nor listen to another word from this FREAK of a political system, spewing poisonous gases on the desperate to believe — that the monster, as destructive and ugly as IT is, brings “our” only hope for a better tomorrow.

    I am in desperate need to turn to my neighbors for support in finding answers to help ourselves – to encourage one another to stop feeding the very thing that is eating us ALL alive.

  26. Why Not, women have never been represented or had a full voice in that freak show. We’ve been told to sit down and shut up every time we get close to it. It’s okay for us to have positions that don’t threaten the almighty penis but, as soon as we want to break a barrier there’s always another cause, more important. Another stance to direct us, another scare tactic.

    When I feel like my vote counts and somebody who remotely is like me at all, or who understands what it means to live as a female in the world is given an ounce of fairness then I’ll look away. I can’t afford to look away. I’m not represented at all and until I am, I’m not going to run for the hills just because the system is corrupted. Maybe if women had been given equal status in anything except words things wouldn’t be this way.

  27. AliceP.

    I fundamentally agree with a great deal of what you are saying.

    They, that have been “given” the power to “give me my freedoms,” are all gelling in the same mold that will opportunistically use that power to deny me my freedoms and/or take the ones I should have away. To view myself as my rights being at the mercy of a power-over-people driven, political system is playing right into it, imo.

    They need us to keep their “jobs” – as long as we go along with the top-tier, trickle-down system that they are creating. We are getting more dependent on such a system – not less.

    I’m free now, and only because I have finally accepted that “he” isn’t going to change. I have and I am not going back to enable the “family” to keep denying that they are playing their roles within a very “sick” system. It’s getting sicker by the day, as is societies.

    I don’t need “them” to survive or thrive. I’m done with being on the political Hamster wheel. Being out of the cage, the landscape is full of possibilities.

    We don’t need their “permission” to be women of independent thinking, decision-making and implementing changes in course when necessary, unless we stay bound in permission-granting political systems, of course. The first wave fully grasped that ideal as the ultimate goal for all women.

    Oh, but the allure of the hamster cage… a conditioned response to systemic abuse – keeping women fighting for permission to be both equal and highly effective members of society that they are and can be.

  28. I agree with quite a bit of what you are saying. I know I’m free without them…it’s not a “he” I”m wanting into the halls of power. It’s someone who puts forward women’s issues and who has more influence. We’ve skipped over that part. I don’t have all my eggs in that basket of course. How could I? We’ve been walked over and skipped over forever. Like every woman I’ve had to make my own place in the world. I do think though it’s still important to see equal representation. Not just in our government but, in places of power around the world too.

  29. I wanted to share this. I tweeted it the other day. This is my friend Lisa Scholder and her work for women survivors of breast cancer. Powerful stuff – and what she is doing to help women with this disease.

  30. AliceP,

    “I do think though it’s still important to see equal representation. Not just in our government but, in places of power around the world too.”

    I might have added for my own reinforcement of my own position:

    “keeping women fighting for permission to be both equal and highly effective members of society that they are and can be.”

    ‘If they would only allow us to be’ is a meme that keeps us “fighting for our rights.”

    ‘We already are!’ is the reality that needs to become the meme, imo.

    I was initially furious that HRC accepted “the lesser role” of Sec of State position. Now, I see her as representing our true “Power” all over the world and smiling at us all as if to say: “Walk this way.”

    Barack Obama didn’t “grant” her that opportunity. HRC’s experience and qualifications – all highlighted by the support of 18 millions voters demanded it.

    He has failed in his position. She has succeeded in her’s.

    “We” didn’t “lose” the election of our “first woman president.” America lost the greater leader, in all capacities, for “managing” our domestic policies.

    The meme is that “we” lost. The reality is that “we” won – “we” chose the winner – as recognized and acknowledged all over the world now..

  31. freedomfairy01, on July 24, 2011 at 3:02 PM said:

    “I wanted to share this. I tweeted it the other day. This is my friend Lisa Scholder and her work for women survivors of breast cancer.”

    Wonderful and powerful! Thank you for sharing it, I’ll pass it along.

  32. Thanks WhyNot? Her calendar is great (see other link). This has been her project for a few years now. She does women w/o breast cancer too. Truth be told, I have been one of her subjects – and I had to laugh when I saw myself in the montage at the start of the video – but I’ll never say who! LOL

    I have four great pics from my session with her about 3 years ago or so. It was a little nerve wracking and a lot of fun! My pics were above my sofa in the LR until jut recently when I repainted. Now they are in my office. She’s awesome.

  33. “Truth be told, I have been one of her subjects – and I had to laugh when I saw myself in the montage at the start of the video – but I’ll never say who! LOL”

    …looking… looking…. looking…. lol.

    I love her website, what a great cause.

    Oh, and the link to the petition? I’m in and would love to see it taken to the streets as a full-blown street petition/campaign, wouldn’t you?

  34. I do hope UppityWoman is having a wonderful and restful time.

    Hope to see everyone keep posting. It’s going to be a much longer and hotter summer without reading your excellent posts and comments.

    I’ll be back.

  35. I’m in and would love to see it taken to the streets as a full-blown street petition/campaign, wouldn’t you?

    Yes and no, WhyNot? – Obama has SO POISONED THE WATERS in and around Real Democrats, that it is likely a good portion of the country who would LIKE to vote for HRC would not do so in 2012. Obama, Nancy, Harry and the VERY CORRUPT DNC/OFA has shot a hole in our party too large, I believe, for even HRC to fill. I think her (and our) time would be better spent eradicating the parasites and the Big Banksters who ate our Party from the inside out and spending the next four years rebuilding it with strong leaders with HRC as the head. I would rather do four years of Mittens or someone like that than allow Obama another four years to complete his destruction of the country. At least we KNOW how the Republicans will screw Americans. With Obama, it’s a crap shoot. But destroy, he will. That is a given.

  36. I signed the petition. Thanks F.F. for posting it here. I passed it along to a few friends too.

  37. Will one of you guys be doing a post for tomorrow?

    FF, maybe that petition could be front page….? Maybe the video of your friend, filled in with maybe a little more info? (maybe which body you are? hehe)

    DE, maybe you could write something up about how you came to pottery, put in some of the videos, pictures of the finished work…? ?Show us the process, a photo of the kiln (?), etc? Talk to us about the happiness it brings you, maybe some of the frustrations, some of the funny stories of – I don’t know – pots in process flying off the spinner? 🙂

    PMM – sounds like you’re busy moving back home right now…?

    NES? Mcnorman? Townecrier?

    This post of mine has 38 comments in two days ROL let’s replace it!

  38. lorac- We spent the day out on my son’s boat- and tomorrow is a packing day- flying out Tuesday am. If nobody else has anything can we maybe put up a Vivaldi Summer open thread?
    Looks like everybody is off for the weekend! Hope Uppity is enjoying her much deserved break!

  39. File this under “we are soooo screwed” and “thanks for NOTHING DNC and Barky” What the hell have we come to when “people” trust the R’s more on the economy AND healthcare AND SOCIAL SECURTY- and just about every other damn issue. WTF????

    Trust Republicans more on Social Security? The Democratic party is officially dead. Hell has frozen over.

  40. Uppity- and Lorac, DE, FF, mcn- I have a post in the drafts scheduled for tomorrow morning.
    UW- if you have something else- delete mine. If any of the mods have something scheduled feel free to delete me.

  41. About SS and “insurance,” not every company is licensed to sell every one of its products in every state. Each of the 50 State Insurance Commissioners controls the number of operatives – much as the Government of Japan and other Tiger Economies – to minimize domestic competition and afford the companies advantageous conditions permitting them to accumulate lots of cash for INVESTING locally in low risk, community projects. When Wall Streeters, Fannie Mae and your Chicago Community Organizing hot shot Harvard Law Review Editor blew the funds on risky housing balloons, the insurance commissioners of their respective states had the authority to bust those companies and force restitution or put them out of business. They could have come up with ANY sum, had that been the presentation. Instead, they were permitted to use that money to buy the presidency for a fellow Banker’s grandson who in return, covered their second, third and fourth homes in the islands where they moved their corporations to evade their fair tax share. Aren’t we all delighted with the vicarious enjoyment of Carnivale?

  42. My dear lorac, I love your enthusiasm and energy. (Can you bottle some and sell it to me?)
    Listen pal, if you can draft my two briefs, I’ll gladly do a post for the morrow.

  43. Fascinating vid, FF. i’m sure lorac recognized your image! A twelve-egg omelette often gives one ultrasensory perception.

  44. Hmmm- had the new post scheduled for 5am and it did not release. BUT
    I got it up!

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