Sunday, May 8, 2016

Mother's Day Around the Globe

As usual, the coffee tastes horrible this morning and they got the history wrong (then again, I would expect nothing le$$ from the war pre$$).

This will make her happy:

"Capital W sparks a conversation about women in venture" by Janelle Nanos Globe Staff  May 06, 2016

Capital W, the Boston Women’s Venture summit, held its second annual event at District Hall on Friday, drawing a crowd of more than 200 to hear advice from successful business executives and pitches from female-run companies.

The summit’s aim was twofold: to provide a networking platform to connect women entrepreneurs with deep-pocketed investors, and to serve as a call to action for the city’s venture community to include more women-led businesses in their portfolios.

But judging from the mostly female crowd, the event still has work to do to get more men to engage in that conversation.

“Most of the men here are on the [summit] panels,” said Maia Heymann, the senior managing director of Converge Venture Partners, and one of the few female venture fund managers in the city. She said she was eager to support the conference but it was tough not to think of the event as a case of preaching to the choir.

Thanks for coming, reader.

As the panelists repeatedly noted, the venture community, both here and nationally, continues to be a boys’ club, and the funding allocations reflect that: Babson College’s Diana Project found that between 2011 and 2013, women-funded businesses received only 3 percent of the $50 billion that venture firms nationally invested, totaling just $1.5 billion.

Sheryl Marshall, Capital W’s founder, said getting male panelists was a first step for the conference. “We want to get the best [venture capitalists] in the room to judge,” she said. “Once men take the problem on, then the dynamic completely shifts.”

One way of sending a message, she added, was through the summit’s Ada Lovelace award, which is given to the local venture fund that has done the most in the past year to advance the careers of women.

Got it.

This year’s winner was Zaffre Investments, a fund spun out of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts in 2014. The fund was commended in part because 60 percent of its portfolio now consists of women-led ventures.

Oh, they going to fix health care now?

Last year, the Ellen Pao trial lent a sense of urgency to the discussion at Capital W, as the San Francisco-based venture capitalist was in the midst of suing her former employer, Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers, over discrimination. She eventually lost her case.

Oh, yeah.

This year, John Landry, a self-described serial chief technology officer and angel investor, stirred up the crowd with a statistic-laden speech underlining the power that women have in the economy: They control 85 percent of all consumer purchases in the United States and 95 percent of all household purchase decisions.

That would get a laugh from women I know!

“Women represent globally a marketplace twice as big as China and India combined,” he said. “What the hell is going on? . . . This enormous amount of money and income is not being recognized, obviously, by the men.”

Landry estimated that only 3 percent of the investing partners in the city’s top 25 venture firms were women.

He called on the National Venture Capital Association to release a longitudinal study of the number of women partners working in venture firms in the United States.

That information, Landry said, would provide a base line to set goals for diversity, as is done in other industries. 

Starting to look like quotas, thus the $y$tem can be kept intact.


Yup, women can empty out endowments and pensions funds just as well as the guys. 

Of course there is still the "if women ran the world" crowd. Never mind that two of the most powerful people in the world are women, those being Yellen at the Fed and Lagarde at the IMF. We've also had Thatcher, Meir, and a few others that didn't seem to improve things.

Whenever I mention that to the frothing-at-the-mouth feminists they have nothing to say. It's about cla$$, not gender, and yet they still keep falling back into the same familiar patterns, contributing to the divisiveness that is the entire point of diversion to race, gender, sex, age, anything else they use to distract you from the party going on above.

"More women are founding their own companies or rising to lead family businesses, or have already sold or retired from them, a common springboard to the upper reaches of political fund-raising. Within marriages, they said, women now had more authority to steer family decisions about political giving. The rise of women in business is providing not just the discretionary income required for large contributions, but the kind of personal networks that power presidential and congressional fund-raising...."

That's the narrative to Hitlery winning the presidency:

“It’s actually quite rare for a name to be eliminated by issues in the news,” she says, noting that the name Adolph was still at No. 555 in the United States at the end of World War II when the Nazis and Adolf Hitler fell. There’s another recent example, though: the name Hillary dropped off the list in 2009." 

What do they know that we don't.

And oh, yeah, don't name your girl ISIS™ (in what has to be the most insulting and offensive usurpation of all time, as those that bring forward such propaganda are undoubtedly laughing in your face at the despoilment).

According to the history, she was the mother of all mothers, so God help us all.

"For Democrats, it may be the Year of the Woman" by Erica Werner Associated Press  May 06, 2016

WASHINGTON — If 2016 has been the Year of Trump in politics, it may also end up being a new Year of the Woman, if Democrats get their way. And that won’t be a coincidence.

Democrats aim to have female Senate candidates on the ballot in nine states in November, a near-record, and the contenders are likely to share the ticket with the first major-party female presidential nominee in history, Hillary Clinton.

Donald Trump, whose commanding win in Indiana cemented his status as the GOP’s presumptive presidential nominee, is viewed unfavorably by 70 percent of women, according to Gallup. So as discomfited Republican Senate candidates released statements trying to change the topic or have it both ways Wednesday, Democrats made plans to link their largely male opponents to Trump, seeking to win back control of the Senate by electing Democratic women coast to coast.

So that is what is going to come along with the rigged vote, 'eh? A swap in the Senate. 

‘‘I’ll tell you as a professional woman, too many women have had to fight Donald Trump’s type of sexism and offensive rhetoric their entire lives,’’ said Democratic Representative Ann Kirkpatrick of Arizona, who is challenging Republican Senator John McCain. She released an ad in February tying the incumbent to Trump.

‘‘After 33 years in Washington John McCain has changed, and Donald Trump proves that he has changed,’’ Kirkpatrick said, reflecting the Democratic approach in key races. ‘‘Because even after Trump’s sexist and offensive rhetoric, McCain has been really clear that he would still support Trump.’’

Republicans have grappled for months with the impact Trump would have on efforts to protect their slim 54-46 Senate majority. Last fall, the executive director of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, Ward Baker, wrote a memo later leaked to The Washington Post that warned candidates to take lessons from Trump’s rise but steer clear of his incendiary stances.

‘‘Houston, we have a problem,’’ Baker wrote. ‘‘Donald Trump has said some wacky things about women. . . . We do not want to re-engage the ‘war on women’ fight, so isolate Trump on this issue by offering a quick condemnation of it.’’

Indeed, for all of the controversies he’s stoked and every voter group he’s offended while appealing to enough white Republican men to emerge as the GOP nominee, women could be Trump’s biggest problem this fall, and the biggest problem for Senate Republicans.

Women vote in higher numbers than men — in 2012, about 10 million more women cast ballots than men — and vote more heavily Democratic. This year, strategists in both parties expect those trends to be magnified, given Trump’s unpopularity with women, Clinton’s historic candidacy (though she herself faces high negative ratings), and the large number of women running for Senate.

On Wednesday, Emily’s List, an influential political committee dedicated to electing women, targeted five GOP Senate candidates who face female opponents in November, demanding to know if they would play the ‘‘woman’s card.’’

Do they also support Republican women, or.... ??????

‘‘Are we about to see him devalue his female opponent and launch character attacks on her in the same vein as Donald Trump?’’ asked releases aimed at McCain, Representative Joe Heck of Nevada, and senators Richard Burr of North Carolina, Mark Kirk of Illinois, and Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania.

Emily’s List president Stephanie Schriock said this election presents a chance to send a historic number of women to the Senate, more than in 1992’s ‘‘Year of the Woman,’’ when female voters outraged over the all-male Judiciary Committee’s treatment of Anita Hill at hearings on Clarence Thomas’s Supreme Court nomination swept women into office around the country. 

It's never enough, should be 50% because of population figures. That's what some women argue. Forget about policies or anything else. It's your private parts -- or at least, which ones you identify with -- that is the important issue and factor in electing a dictator, 'er, president. I don't want to minimize the repression, suffrage and all, but that was then. Stop using it as a club to complain and furthering the victimization complex. It's distasteful coming from women who claim such strength.

‘‘Donald Trump is going to have to really expand the electorate to overcome how badly he is seen by women,’’ Schriock said. ‘‘If you’re starting your presidential campaign with 70 percent basically women who don’t like you, you’re going to have to find a lot of brand-new voters, a lot. And the truth is there’s not enough.’’

Trump has brought in millions of new voters. So has Sanders. In fact, he's going to get more actual votes than Clinton, but the superdelegates are going to steal the nomination from him.

Already, a GOP-run anti-Trump political action committee has aired an ad featuring women reading Trump’s negative comments about women, including ‘‘bimbo,’’ ‘’dog,’’ and ‘‘fat pig.’’ In Arkansas, Democratic longshot Connor Eldridge released a digital ad showing Trump saying some of those things and worse, and Republican Senator John Boozman pledging to support the GOP nominee.

Democrats say much more of the same is yet to come.

‘‘We have repeatedly called on Pat Toomey to distance himself from those and other comments of Donald Trump’s and he’s refused,’’ said Katie McGinty, the Democrats’ Senate nominee in Pennsylvania. ‘‘What we have is a Trump-Toomey ticket.’’

Toomey’s spokesman, Ted Kwong, said Toomey has made clear he disagrees with Trump in several areas, and he accused McGinty of being ‘‘a total rubber stamp for Hillary Clinton and the Washington party bosses.’’ McCain spokeswoman Lorna Romero offered a similar retort to Kirkpatrick, saying her ‘‘only accomplishment in office is being a rubber stamp for this president.’’

Yet Toomey, McCain and other Republicans find themselves in a no-win situation. All have pledged to support the eventual nominee — to do otherwise would risk alienating Trump’s many enthusiastic supporters. But most want to create some distance from Trump if they can, a delicate dance that might get trickier.

Senator Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire, a vulnerable incumbent, summed up the dilemma by declaring through a spokeswoman Wednesday that she would support Trump for president — but just not endorse him.

Trump's silent majority (and of that I say nothing further).


So how goes the Senate campaigns?

"Senate Democrats’ unusually active role in primaries seems to be working" by Amber Phillips Washington Post  April 27, 2016

WASHINGTON — On Wednesday morning, Senate Democrats were patting themselves on the back for a job well done. They had successfully put two intraparty feuds behind them, and in a crucial swing state that could play a role in which party controls the Senate, they had ensured their preferred candidate would go on to the general election.

They put down the lefties, did they?

None of this happened by accident. Quite the opposite: Democrats have been strategically — and often very publicly — trying to shape the outcome of contested primaries this cycle. They’ve endorsed candidates in nearly every contested primary so far, and in one case, they spent more than $1 million to push the chosen candidate to victory.

It’s a risk that party bosses on both sides tend to shy away from, for reasons we’ll get into (especially on the GOP side, where the national party’s blessing has become something of a scarlet letter for candidates). But when the prize is the Senate majority, it seems like Senate Democrats are calculating that the risks are worth it.

Pennsylvania is a good example of why Democrats are more active than usual. They have a chance to take control of the Senate after losing it just two years earlier, and their path to the majority goes directly through vulnerable GOP incumbents like Pennsylvania Senator Pat Toomey. It makes sense they’d want to put their best candidate forward, right?

What's with this ballot supplied the Boston Globe? Not all the print is there.

At this time last year, Senate Democrats already had a clearly viable candidate in the race, former congressman Joe Sestak. But Sestak lost a disappointing race to Toomey in 2010 and earned a reputation as a wild card whom party leaders couldn’t work with. During the 2010 race, Sestak said he was offered a job in the Obama administration if he didn’t run. So they searched for an alternative and eventually recruited Democratic Governor Tom Wolf’s former chief of staff, Katie McGinty.

They Swiftboated Sestak!

They were so committed to McGinty over Sestak that, when she struggled, they spent more than $1 million of precious campaign resources to get her over the line. They also dispatched Vice President Joe Biden to the state on Monday to campaign for her and rolled out the endorsement of President Obama.

The gamble worked; McGinty won the primary Tuesday by 10 points, despite polls indicating a close race.

OMG! Another rigged vote!

But it’s actually pretty unusual for parties to play so heavily and so openly in primaries. A heavy hand can backfire, both before a primary and afterward. Remember when the GOP quickly united behind Charlie Crist for Senate in 2010? Ever since, the national GOP has been hugely gun-shy about picking sides publicly in primaries.

He had other problems.

Outside help risks galvanizing the grass roots against the ‘‘establishment, and it risks undermining the candidate’s own skill. Katie McGinty ‘‘didn’t really win’’ Tuesday night’s primary, Senate Republicans said in a press release Wednesday. ‘‘Democratic outside groups spent at least $4.86 million supporting her.’’

And drawing media attention to primary feuds inevitably draws media attention to your party’s divisions — kind of like using social media to broadcast you’re taking sides in a family dispute.

Senate Republicans — who lately have been the ones with more dramatic primaries — like to point out how these contested primaries have cost Democrats time, energy and, most importantly, money. The $1 million Democrats spent on their preferred Democratic candidate in Pennsylvania is $1 million less they can use to attack Republican Senator Mark Kirk in Illinois, for example.

But Senate Democrats say the fact they’re playing so fiercely in primaries suggests they’re in a position of strength. Republicans are defending 24 of the 34 seats up for reelection this November, and eight of the 10 top most competitive seats are held by Republicans. Democrats say the favorable map affords them the luxury of paying extra-close attention to their primaries. And the Senate map is looking better and better for Democrats.

That means the Senate is going to change hands as insurance against a Trump presidency. That's the narrative we are being sold.

Outside Pennsylvania, The Senate Democrats’ campaign arm endorsed former Ohio governor Ted Strickland, who easily beat Cincinnati Councilman P.G. Sittenfeld last month. (Obama and Biden threw their names behind Strickland, too.) In Indiana, they endorsed former congressman Baron Hill. In North Carolina, they backed former state representative Deborah Ross. In Florida, they endorsed Representative Patrick Murphy (as did Obama and Biden). In Illinois, they got behind Representative Tammy Duckworth. And almost a year ago, they endorsed Catherine Cortez Masto in Nevada, the preferred successor to outgoing Senate minority leader Harry Reid, to ensure she runs without any serious primary challenger.

Their endorsements didn’t necessarily smooth over contested primaries and feuds. Pennsylvania’s primary, in particular, was close right up to the end. In Florida, a candidate Senate Democrats very much do not want to win, Democratic Representative Alan Grayson, is defiantly still in the race, despite Reid’s having called for him to drop out. Grayson is even leading in some polls.

For shame, Floridians.

Related: $eeing Grayson in Black-and-White 

Was a one day wonder, and Mom loves him!

But Senate Democrats are 4-for-4 in primaries that have happened so far — Illinois, Ohio, North Carolina, and now, the one that was really in doubt, Pennsylvania. All four are states Democrats would love to win — and at least some of those are races they need to win — to be in the majority come 2017.

Meddling in high-profile primaries is a bold and risky way of doing things, but so far for Senate Democrats, it seems to be working.


Years ago I actually gave a shit about the musical chairs in Congre$$.

I will be taking rest of day off to salute the women in uniform as you send them off on their final flight:

"Professor’s airplane math didn’t equal threat" Associated Press  May 07, 2016

PHILADELPHIA — An Ivy League professor said his flight was delayed because a fellow passenger thought the math equations he was writing might be a sign he was a terrorist.

American Airlines confirmed the woman expressed suspicions about University of Pennsylvania economics professor Guido Menzio. She said she was too ill to take the Air Wisconsin-operated flight.

Menzio said he was flying from Philadelphia to Syracuse Thursday night and was solving a differential equation related to a speech he was set to give at Queen’s University in Ontario, Canada. He said the woman sitting next to him passed a note to a flight attendant, and the plane headed back to the gate.

Menzio, who is Italian and has curly, dark hair, said the pilot then asked for a word and he was questioned by an official.

“I thought they were trying to get clues about her illness,” he told the Associated Press in an e-mail. “Instead, they tell me that the woman was concerned that I was a terrorist because I was writing [strange] things on a pad of paper.”

Menzio said he explained what he had been doing, and the flight took off soon afterward. He was treated respectfully throughout, he added. But, he said, he was concerned about a delay that a brief conversation or an Internet search could have resolved.

“Not seeking additional information after reports of ‘suspicious activity’ . . . is going to create a lot of problems, especially as xenophobic attitudes may be emerging,” he said.

American spokesman Casey Norton said the Air Wisconsin crew followed protocol to take care of an ill passenger and then to investigate her allegations.

Norton wouldn’t specify the details of the allegations but said officials determined them to be noncredible. The woman was rebooked on a later flight.

Menzio’s differential equations used math symbols but no Arabic.

He is known for his work on search theory, which helped him earn tenure as an associate professor at the University of Pennsylvania. He has also taught at Princeton and Stanford’s Hoover Institution.


I'm surprised "the woman" didn't see him as a fascist that would burn mosques, but....

Pilot ejects safely before ocean crash

That SEALS this post shut.

Don't forget to give mom a hug and cherish her wherever you are today. 

She did something no else could have done. Gave you life.

(Of course, some mothers are just mean)

Mercury passes in front of the sun on Monday

My mother always told me not to look at the sun before sending me off to school.

Harpooning Harvard

"Harvard is one of 11 Massachusetts colleges under investigation by federal officials for allegedly failing to properly handle sexual assault allegations."

Good thing Malia is taking a year off before attending.

MIT launches $5 billion fund-raising campaign

They want more venture capital (stealing others endowments?), and they even had a parade to celebrate.

Happy Mother's Day, folks.


Emerson College employees vote to unionize

Harvard gets the mumps, but students fret and joke

Suburban women key bloc for Clinton in fall election

I no longer want to be here, readers.