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In the Land of Conservative Women: The Fetus Beat Us

September 18, 2010 | By | No Comments


The central issue is not privacy–a woman’s right to control her own body–but rather the reality of visibly moving fetuses that they believe to be fully human.

“You can’t appeal to us through our wombs,” Kellyanne Fitzpatrick says. “We’re pro-life. The fetus beat us. We grew up with sonograms. We know life when we see it.”

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Kellyanne Fitzpatrick Conway

Smart women and technology and open debate are moving the country to consider the life of the unborn baby. The Atlantic Monthly magazine took note of the shift back in 1996.

Excepts from The Atlantic Monthly, Politics, September 1996

In the Land of Conservative Women

A diverse group of woman

activists, including many young people

and small-business owners, are bringing

new energy to the Republican Party

by Elinor Burkett

NO one had ever before tried throwing a big party for young conservative women.

But even before the RSVPs started coming in, April Lassiter was certain that the Eighteenth Street Lounge, the club she and some friends had rented in Washington, D.C., would be as packed on their Thursday night as on any Saturday night.

The invitation–an entreaty to “Merge Right”–had been an immediate hit.

When the Republicans swept into power on Capitol Hill, scores of young conservatives were suddenly emboldened, sure that they now represented the cutting edge–socially as well as politically.

These were Hill rats–that horde of ambitious, idealistic, and underpaid young people who work as press secretaries and floor assistants in congressional offices, as researchers at think tanks and public-relations companies, and as rising associates at law firms and in special-interest lobbies. They see themselves as a generation wresting the Republican Party away from the country-club set.

“For us, there’s been no galvanizing event to connect us to the government; therefore we don’t trust or need it,” says Kellyanne Fitzpatrick, who at twenty-nine runs her own firm, The Polling Company, and sees herself as one of the nation’s only truly conservative pollsters.

She is also a regular election commentator for CNN. “We grew up in car seats while Ma and Dad pumped gas on odd and even days. We watched Challenger blow up. We were the children of no-fault divorces. When I was seventeen, I watched Geraldine Ferraro accept the vice-presidential nomination at the Democratic convention, and thought it was interesting.

Then I listened to Ronald Reagan and saw someone four times my age, of a different gender, and from a different coast, who was communicating a message that appealed to me as a young adult.

Being a liberal is no longer fashionable. It went out with bell-bottoms. We’re never going to be Stepford Democrats. Most of us make Ayn Rand look like a leftist.”

Continue reading at the jump.

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Be sure to follow Your Business Blogger(R) and Charmaine on Twitter: @JackYoest and @CharmaineYoest

Jack and Charmaine also blog at Reasoned Audacity and at Management Training of DC, LLC.

Thank you (foot)notes,

Full Disclosure: Charmaine Yoest, Ph.D., served on the Board of Advisors on the Independent Women’s Forum.

Charmaine Yoest, Ph.D., has retained The Polliing Company to research attitudes on abortion.

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Abortion & Life by Jennifer Baumgardner Selected Quotes Photographs by Tara Todras-Whitehill

September 6, 2010 | By | No Comments

I had an abortion.

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Abortion & Life

Jennifer Baumgardner, pregnant on Left

Gillian Aldrich, producer/creator of I Had an Abortion

“By creating a T-shirt so many would see as offensive, the pro-choice movement has intentionally sought to outrage the Christian Right.” p. 174.*

Front: I had an abortion.

Abortion & Life by Jennifer Baumgardner, a pro-abortion feminist, was written in 2008 and published by Akashic Books.

The book begins with a pull quote from Loretta Ross,

The defensiveness that the pro-choice movement has is well-earned. We’ve been shot at, picketed, fought every step. But I’m very glad that the conversation is changing.

Image and imaging are important. The coat hanger “doesn’t evoke memories of barriers that women faced.” P. 10

The book is presented as an even handed “conversation” but devolved by page 10 to ad hominem argument, of, “The fleshy pink faces of Senator Jesse Helms and Representative Henry Hyde…”

The “current symbol of reproductive freedom…?” Could be, “Angels’ wings, to indicate the thousands of women who have abortions and yet believe that a fetus has a soul and is watching over them?” p. 10. Baumgardner is suggesting that the unborn baby might be an eternal being ushered from this world into the next by the “choice” of the mother. This fits with Candace C. Crandall‘s assertion that “The Fetus, Beat Us,”* where pro-aborts had to deal with the pain and loss of the “baby.” This is, of course, merely a tactic to remove or deflect the ‘harm to women’ argument advanced by the pro-lifers.

The author lists “after-abortion counseling groups like Backline and Exhale…the zine Our Truths/Nuestra Verdades to the films Silent Choices and The Abortion Diaries?” p. 11. Baumgardner could have added Racheal’s Vineyard and Silent No More to pro-life counseling services of women who suffer from the trauma of abortion.

“I’ve visited abortion clinics around the country and observed what happens to the remains of eight-week, twelve-week, and fourteen-week aborted fetuses.” P. 12 Baumgardner is silent as to what was seen. Were the remains stuffed down a garbage disposal? Treated as medical waste? Or given a decent burial?

Baumgardner asks herself, “How do women experience abortion?…Why aren’t there more after-abortion resources? And: If you admit you are sad about your abortion, does that mean abortion is wrong?” p. 13. The author asks but does not fully answer the question: If a women feels remorse after an abortion, is it possible the woman now understands that there was a living baby involved? And that the mother regrets her abortion? Polling suggests that women are concerned. Rasmussen reports that 58 per cent of women feel abortion is immoral.

“The number [of abortions] has gone down slightly in recent years…possibly linked to the virginity-abstinence movement…Lack of access and affordability have also been factors.” p. 19. This is confirmed by academic research. Abortion has an elastic demand, where the demand for a product or service is directly tied to a variable: price, 24-hour waiting periods, proximity, viewing a sonogram. (See Michael New, 2010.)

“Although it’s shortsighted, when faced with a slim deadline to raise money and make this decision, some women simply miss the window in which they can have an abortion. P. Baumgardner’s wording is misleading. A woman in the USA can have an abortion at any time even when she goes into labor. She can have an abortion with her child’s feet out of her body with only her child’s head not visible; the child can still be “terminated.” P. 19.

“Abortion is the U.S. is safe. The death rate at all stages is 0.6 per 100,000 abortions…and [is] nearly ten times as safe as carrying a pregnancy to full term.” p. 20.

“Sherri Finkbine, a young mother and television star…host of Romper Room…wanted to warn other women about the dangers of thalidomide to their pregnancies…Finkbine [traveled] to Sweden for her [abortion] procedure. P. 23 Baumgardner is silent on whether the drug thalidomide was a greater danger to pregnancy [re: baby] than abortion.

“My friend got the abortionist to agree to (re)do the procedure–this time for an additional price above his regular price, which was agreeing to his f$cking my friend right after the abortion was performed on her sister.” P. 24. Bumgardner seems to settle the debate that abortion harms women: The mother gets rid of her baby by pimping out her sister-prostitute to the abortionist. All three are without honor and, as a result, there is one less baby in the world. Ramesh Ponnura first wrote of the ‘character’ of the type of person that does the actual abortion baby-removal, “What mother rejoices in proclaiming to the world, loudly, proudly announcing, “Meet my son, The Abortionist!”…?

“The Supreme Court upheld the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act…except to save the life of the mother. This marked the first time any medical procedure was banned, as well as the first time an exception for a woman’s health had been overruled.” P. 34. Baumgardner fails to note that there is no medical justification for a Partial-Birth Abortion, as C. Everett Koop, MD, has written.

“Restrictions [cause] women [to] rarely change their minds about having procedures just because they are forced to jump through hoops.” P. 34. This has been superseded by peer reviewed studies demonstrating that commonsense abortion regulation such as waiting periods reduces the numbers of abortions, suggesting that women, in fact do change their minds. (Michael New, 2010.)

“There is not a link [between having an abortion and breast cancer] at least not according to the National Cancer Institute, the American Cancer Society, or major research universities.” P. 37

“Nada L. Stotland, MD, president-elect of the American Psychiatric Association [writes] that “meticulous research shows that there is no causal relationship between abortion and mental illnesses.” P. 37.

“I started allowing myself to understand what is true for me: that I think of pregnancy as “life” but this doesn’t have to mean abortion is murder.” P. 47. This is a non sequitur and reveals the twisted backwards logic pro-abortion-choice advocates must fabricate to justify the taking of innocent human life. Indeed, the killing of a baby by the mother. Note Bumgardner’s odd use of ‘truth.’ Truth to her is not transcendent but dependent on her personal interpretation or perhaps her feelings at the moment…

“[A woman who had an abortion] realized that she…actually needed some help with the aftermath of what had turned out to be a profound experience. She began looking for after-abortion resources…All she could find to offer support were thinly disguised antiabortion groups. As a feminist, she says, “I didn’t see anything that reflected my experience” of having and sad feelings around her abortion, but not wanting to make abortion illegal.” P. 50. It is not disclosed if this woman contacted Rachel’s Vineyard or not. This group does non-judgmental post-abortion counseling.

“[A woman who had an abortion] interned at NARAL Pro-Choice California…But when she raised the issue of the lack of emotional resources for women, she was confronted with blank faces. It was, she says, as if admitting that she was struggling with her feelings meant that she wasn’t really pro-choice.” P. 50.

“Aspen Baker…in 2000…created Exhale, a nonjudgmental post-abortion talkline. In 2007, Exhale created a series of Hallmark-like e-cards that people could send to loved ones who’d had abortions–not to celebrate the abortion, but to acknowledge it and offer comfort.” P. 51.

“This shift in focus in the national conversation from “Keep your laws off my body!” to “Let’s talk about feelings and whether fetal life has value” has bee tough for the pro-choice movement…” p. 51

“Peg Johnston…operating Southern Tier Women’s Services, an independent abortion clinic [would] sit in a counseling session with a woman who’d say, “I feel like I’m killing my baby.” Johnston believes that women were genuinely struggling with the value of life and how to do the right thing and be a good person…using words like “loss” and “baby” and “killing”…” p. 53.

Baumgardner asks but does not answer, “What do you do if a patient wants to baptize the remains?” p. 54, emphasis in original.

Women who had abortions would write, “Don’t think of it as losing a baby, but as gaining a guardian angel. These were women who clearly felt relationships to their pregnancies as children, not as masses of cells.” p. 55 Italics in original.

“Emily Barklow [a college student] “struggled with feelings of deviance, selfishness, and loss [after her abortion]…Four years, lots of counseling [led her to] preparing a presentation about her experience [at a NARAL event]…I was disappointed with the lack of depth in the other presentations–all recycled coat hangers and We’ll never go back signs. I would cite this experience as my first real disconnect from the mainstream abortion rights movement.” p. 59.

“Perhaps younger women, in their own entitlement, will begin to make blasphemous statements even more loudly. The most profane is this: Why are feminists so obsessed with abortion? Some of this lingering fascination is [that] we focus on this right because it is fundamental; having the right to control our bodies is directly associated with the right to control our lives.” p. 59.

The author Baumgardner was five months pregnancy and giving a speech at Barnard College’s Students for Choice when she referred to the contents of her uterus as a “baby” instead of “fetus.” “If I said “baby” [referring to her unborn baby] that meant i wasn’t pro-choice, or with the program, or knowledgeable.” p. 60.

“Hillary Clinton…asserted her belief in [Roe v Wade] but also admitted that abortion can be “tragic” for some women…NARAL President Nancy Keenan confessed that “our community tends to run away every time somebody talks about the many emotions that come with this choice” and “we have not done enough to make people who are ‘pro-choice but struggling’ feel like they are part of this community.” p. 60.

“In March of 2007 Aspen Baker…wanted to celebrate the fact that Exhale was sending out 2,500 e-cards every month.” p. 61. Charmaine and Baker debated on CNN; pull quotes here.

“[Democrats for Life] executive director Kristen Day cites a December 2003 Zogby poll finding that forty-three percent of Democrats oppose abortion except in the case of rape or incest or to save the live of the mother…” p. 64.

“The need for abortion will never be totally eradicated, according to health activist Barbara Seaman, unless society commits to giving vasectomies to all boys after freezing their sperm, and only allowing procreation through in vitro fertilization after demonstrating sufficient income and maturity to support a child for eighteen years.” p. 65. The Alert Student would be tempted to dismiss Baumgardner for including this passage. But Seaman’s concept was advanced by Margaret Sanger who suggested, without humor, that licenses to marry and procreate be awarded to only those deemed “fit” by your local Planned Parenthood affiliate. The late Barbara Seaman is little known outside academic women’s studies programs and should remain so.

“Norma McCorvey [Roe in Roe v Wade] never actually had an abortion…” p. 70.

Baumgardner is concerned about forced adoptions, “I cried for the many women who were conned into relinquishing their children…

I cried remembering how intense it was to be pregnant and to give birth–how hormones and pain and extreme physical duress combined into what felt like a near-death experience [for her as mother-no mention of an aborted baby]. I recalled how I really understood–in my loosened pelvis, my stretched-out ribs, and the kicks to my cervix from tiny limbs–the sensitive factory that is our bodies, arduously creating another human. p. 70.

Baumgardner is lamenting the “choice” women endure when giving up a child for adoption but come precariously close to advancing a pro-life argument. This defines the schizophrenia of the abortion movement: The baby is human, the baby is a person-and the mother can terminate on a whim.

“So, can you be a feminist and pro-life? The answer is a resounding “yes.”” p. 71.

“With many of the women…giving birth seemed to preclude an investment in their own lives; it meant saying goodbye to a fellowship, to a career of their choosing, or being forced to stay in a relationship they didn’t want with the baby’s father.” P. 74. One could wonder that terminating a baby could indeed terminate a relationship: between mother and child(ren) and father(s).

“Gloria Steinem, born March 25, 1934, [could] not see any way that I could possibly give birth to someone else and also give birth to myself.” P. 79. In Steinem’s search for self, “someone else” — her baby — was sacrificed. To advance women.

Baumgardner quotes Barbara Ehrenreich, “Women do use abortion as backup nowadays, but they often don’t acknowledge it. I’m referring to women who get pregnant purposefully, for instance, but assume that legal abortion will be available as a backup should the child they’re carrying have Down’s syndrome or another abnormality they decide they can’t handle.” p. 87

Baumgardner quotes a Marion Banzhaf, a lesbian (Why do I need to know this? Why does she need to tell me?), “[After the abortion] I was thrilled…I was so happy to see the blood. I felt like my life was beginning over again…I saw a little baby in a carriage and a mom and I thought, Oh, I’m so glad that’s not me…I felt like I had control over what I was going to do with the rest of my life.” P. 90. Italics in original, bold emphasis mine.

Baumgardner quotes Giliian Aldrich, “I called my mom and said, “How could you have done that? I could have had this older brother or sister and you killed them…” p. 98. She later decided she was pro-abortion-choice.

At age 30 Gillian Aldrich was pregnant, “I had zero sentimentality, and didn’t want to even open that door [of keeping the baby]. I thought: If there is a baby in here, It’s not staying. I knew it would destroy our relationship [even though boyfriend wanted the child]. p. 99. Italics in original.

“We went to this…[abortion] clinic…The place was kind of a factory. The counseling session was a joke. I thought that there would be more of an emotional support system in the clinic itself, but there wasn’t.” p. 99.

“That Sylvia Ann Hewlett book came out [Creating a Life: Professional Women and the Quest for Children]…There was something retrograde about her attitude, but her facts [demonstrating fertility declines precipitously throughout your thirties] were correct…” p. 100.

Baumgardner quotes Amy Richards, “I was…pregnant with triplets…and made the decision to have a selective reduction…a stand-alone fetus…would continue to term…[the] identical twins were aborted…instant death. After I went through the procedure, my boyfriend Peter was much more traumatized than I was, even though hospital policy didn’t allow him to witness the procedure.” p. 104 The Alert Reader might wonder, What’s to be traumatized about? It’s not a baby. It’s not human. It’s not a person. Or is it?

Richards continues, “I…speak at colleges…I meet so many girls who are trying to make sense of abortion. They really want to support abortion rights…but at the end of the day [they] just can’t say, “I’m pro-choice,” or, “I support abortion,” p. 105.

Men quoted in this book are as ambivalent about abortion as the women. A George is quoted, “For me, I think the abortion [with my girlfriend] will stand as a symbol that I thought of myself as this open, loving guy, but I wasn’t.” p. 110. Emphasis mind.

Baumgardner quotes Ani Difranco, “I want to tell women and men, “You are an animal and it is a beautiful thing.” p. 113. The pro-abortion-choice argument is revealing: human personhood is not transcendent from lower animals. Most religions hold that only humans are eternal beings with a soul. It appears that the human with the religion of feminism (where abortion is a sacrament) would have no soul.

Where do pro-abortion-choice women find these men: “He was an activist and a poet…he was having sex with me, and sometimes choking me. It was horrible.” p. 117. I am sure that the choking was terrible, I guess. But begs the question: How many times did the pro-abortion-choice poet choke you? Sometimes? Just a few times?

Baumgardner quotes a Robin Ringleka, “The doctor was very rushed and didn’t have much of a bedside manner. I was pretty terrified and I began to cry when he entered the room. This seemed to piss him off and he demanded to know why I was crying…[later] The one-year anniversary of my abortion was approaching and I was having bad dreams.” p. 125. Why do these pro-abortion-choice women have bad dreams? Why do they remember the dates of the abortion and “birthday” of the baby terminated? Can a clump of cells, a mere fetus cause so much anguish? Or is the death of a baby painful even to a woman in denial?

Ringleka continues, “I have come to believe that having an abortion can be a very motherly decision.” p. 125. Except for, maybe, her baby.

Baumgardner quotes, Jenny Egan, “I went with my boyfriend…to Planned Parenthood…I had assumed that I …would finally be able to tell someone or talk to someone about how freaked out I was, but I didn’t get to…My boyfriend started the breaking-up process the day after the abortion. He said he wanted to date other people.” p. 127.

Baumgardner wonders, “I recognize that is serious [an unborn baby might be a person], but my own life is too important to sacrifice for an unplanned pregnancy.” p. 133. This is understood to not be an act of selfishness to the pro-abortion-choice supporters.

“[A father] describes, bluntly, how a recent abortion felt “more like murder”…” p. 113.

“Inga Muscio, the author of the contempory feminist classic C@unt: A Declaration of Independence (1998) [available at bookstores everywhere]…said the surgical solution…”sucked.” After Muscio discovered herself pregnant a third time, she vowed not to go back to the clinic and “waltz with the abhorrent machine.”” p. 142.

“Dr. George Tiller of Wichita, Kansas…says: “Abortion is not a cerebral or a reproductive issue. Abortion is a matter of the heart…[U]ntil one understands the heart of a woman, nothing else about abortion makes any sense at all.” p.143. Indeed, abortion follows the emotion of the woman’s heart. The logic of the brain, less so.

Baumgardner closes Abortion & Life with a profound and profane quote from,

popular musician and activist Ani DiFranco, who has a strong appreciation of the taboos surrounding abortion, wrote a song lyric that refers to the single cell that is an egg: “To split yourself in two is just the most radical thing you can do.” Life begins in that split–transformative energy is released into the aperture. The Ani adds: “So girl if that sh!t ain’t up to you, then you simply are not free. p. 144. So there.

“By creating a T-shirt so many would see as offensive, the pro-choice movement has intentionally sought to outrage the Christian Right.” p. 174.

One wag suggested a tag line on the reverse of the t-shirt to Baumgardner,

Front: I had an abortion.

Back: Roe v. Wade–Eliminating Future Democrats One Choice at a Time. p. 174.

***

Baumgardner is not happy about restrictions that help make abortion rare, “Planning a Pro-Choice Event…is…one way to fight the gloom…make the Roe anniversary powerful–a day of consciousness-raising and fundraising.” p. 148. She seems unaware that hundreds of thousands from the pro-life community march in Washington, DC on the Roe anniversary, January 22, each year.

Baumgardner wants the reader to celebrate and to mark your calendars that “the National Day of Appreciation for Abortion Providers is March 10.” p. 149.

Baumgardner refers to the Reproductive Health Blog: www.rhrealitycheck.org/blog

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Be sure to follow Your Business Blogger(R) and Charmaine on Twitter: @JackYoest and @CharmaineYoest

Jack and Charmaine also blog at Reasoned Audacity and at Management Training of DC, LLC.

Thank you (foot)notes,

*Baumgardner’s opening quote is from Rebecca Hyman’s essay Full Frontal Offense: Taking Abortion Rights To The Tees.

*”The fetus beat us” has been incorrectly attributed to Naomi Wolf. She writes us in an email, “I never said The fetus, beat us. I think it is an awful phrase, would never have said something so brutal and trivializing about this issue…Thank you! Take care, Naomi wolf.”

The book was funded by pro-abortion-choice individuals and groups, Amy Ray, Merle Hoffman and the Diana Foundation, Gloria Browning, Karen Burgum and the F-M Area Foundation Women’s Fund and Roberta Schneiderman…” preface page

Gillian Aldrich directed the documentary “I Had an Abortion”… preface page

Charmaine on CNN: Abortion Mourn or Celebrate?

See The Fetal Hand Grasp on Charmaine Debates Abortion on CNN.

A Man Who Said No To Bill Clinton: Jesse Brown

August 13, 2010 | By | No Comments

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Jesse Brown

Secretary of Veterans Affairs My friend and mentor Jesse Brown died on 15 August 2002.

I’m not sure I thanked him enough while he lived.

So I try to acknowledge him every August since he passed.

He died of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. But, for the Hand of Divine Providence, he should have died decades earlier in Vietnam.

He survived and devoted his life to service to others and mentoring goofs like Your Business Blogger(R).

And he accomplished much in the federal government — in what he did. And didn’t do.

The combat wounded Marine was able to do two things few bureaucrats have been able to do:

Close a government facility, and


Say No to President Clinton.

Jesse Brown managed to do something many government watchdogs felt impossible: As Secretary of Veteran’s Affairs, he worked with veterans’ lobbies and closed out-dated or non-performing Veterans’ Administration medical facilities.

These days when a government building or base needs to be closed, a special commission is set up to spread the guilt and minimize finger pointing.

Jesse Brown closed government buildings. Unbelievable. And he was a Democrat.

But an even bigger achievement was his ability to refuse Bill Clinton. Over lunch Secretary Brown told me the story of how he tactfully, adroitly rebuffed the chief of staff and the president’s “requests” to cut the VA budget.

Jesse Brown did not succumb to Clinton’s charms and other lies challenges.

As Jesse Brown tells the story, the chief of staff, Leon Panetta, I believe, called Jesse and instructed him to initiate and implement a sizable cut in his budget–and then take the ensuing political heat, sparing the president any collateral damage from Veterans’ groups.

Brown declined.

So Panetta then puts Clinton on the phone to work his charm…

[Your Business Blogger(R) once worked with a beautiful young woman from Arkansas — a rock-ribbed conservative — who met Bill Clinton.

“It was the strangest thing,” she said. “He ignored the whole rest of the room, looked deep into my eyes and asked for my vote.”

Your Business Blogger(R) didn’t move. It wasn’t too hard to see where this was going. “What did you say?” I asked.

She said, “I told him ‘yes.’ It was like he hypnotized me. I said yes…”

She wouldn’t be the last.]

…Panetta knowing that no one could resist Bill Clinton; no one could say ‘no.’

So Bill and Jesse had an extended conversation and Clinton oozes and slides all all-round the topic — but never makes a direct statement; never a suggestion; never a directive.

The President was simply smarmy and Jesse was un-seduced.

“Great talking with you Jesse,” said Clinton.

“Great talking with you Mr. President,” said Brown. And White House Signal signed off.

Jesse might well have been the only man to say “No” to Clinton.

Except for maybe Obama…

***

Jesse Brown was only 58 when he died.

He was wounded by enemy sniper fire in Vietnam leaving his right arm and hand partially paralyzed. This never slowed him down. People who knew Jesse always extended a left hand for a hand shake in greeting. His right wasn’t serviceable.

I once asked him when he was at the pinnacle of his career what drove him to work so hard. Money, I thought; status, celebrity? No. “I just want to help my friends,” he said.

His passion for service helped him become the Veteran’s Affairs Secretary for Bill Clinton.

And yet he helped me, a nobody who worked for a Republican, a Republican governor.

Jesse is buried in Arlington National Cemetery, not far from my dad. Two warriors to whom I owe so much.

Semper Fidelis.

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Three Duties of a Mentor

In Memoriam: Jesse Brown

Job Interview: 3 Questions for Your Prospective Boss

Follow us on Twitter: @JackYoest and @CharmaineYoest

Both President Obama and Secretary Brown called Chicago ‘home.’ The VA Medical Center in Chicago is named after Jesse Brown.

Update 28 Oct 2010, Florida candidate Meek is another black man who resisted the “First Black President” Bill Clinton, Bill Clinton Urged Meek to Quit Fla. Senate Race to Stop Rubio.

Jill Biden Teaching at the Northern Virginia Community College

February 3, 2010 | By | No Comments

Alert Readers know that Your Business Blogger(R) teaches at the Northern Virginia Community College in Alexandria and Arlington. Jill Biden, The Second Lady, is an enthusiastic supporter of the Community College system and proves it two days a week.

By teaching English at the Alexandria campus.

Even if one disagrees with her politics, everyone agrees on one thing about Dr. Biden:

She is authentic.

Following is her interview on CBS.

(Sarah Palin never got a softball interview like this. Goodness, this is typical of interviews JOE Biden lounges through…)


Watch CBS News Videos Online

Article here, Jill Biden: Second Lady of the Land; Exclusive Interview With Wife of Vice President, Who Talks About Family, Career, and Advocating for Military Families

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Thank you (foot)notes:

Botox, hair plugs, capped teeth. Why does the media love Joe Biden? Because he’s authentic too…

Be sure to follow Your Business Blogger(R) and Charmaine on Twitter: @JackYoest and @CharmaineYoest

Jack and Charmaine also blog at Reasoned Audacity and at Management Training of DC, LLC.

Virtual March for Life Banner Code

January 19, 2010 | By | No Comments

Be sure to get your personal avatar when you visit www.virtualmarchforlife.com

And bloggers get the code for a banner.

Abortion Tax About To Become Law, Americans United for Life, Protecting Life In Law

December 31, 2009 | By | No Comments

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Cash for KidsDon’t Like Abortion?

Don’t Have One.

Pro-Choice Bumper Sticker

Like abortion or not, soon we may all have to pay for them.

Down baby?

“It’s Girl, but I want a boy.”

Bad Hair Day?

Whatever the reason abortion is legal.

Now Pro-Lifers will fund abortions. (A simple follow-on tax: we already fund Planned Parenthood offices with our tax dollars.)

Charmaine sends this along,

Dear Friend of Life,

They did it. On Christmas Eve, the Senate pushed through the largest expansion of federally-funded abortion since Roe v. Wade. This reckless bill will subsidize insurance plans that cover elective abortions – and your tax dollars will be paying for it.

Americans United for Life is fighting back against taxpayer-funded abortions. Will you stand with us against Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, and Planned Parenthood by making a year-end, tax-deductible contribution of $50, $100, $250 or more?

The taking of innocent life is indefensible, and now they want to force you to pay for it. Your tax dollars should never be used to pay for abortions.

For the first time in history, this irresponsible bill actually imposes a mandatory abortion tax on unwilling Americans. Even if you never intend to have an abortion, this bill forces you to pay for elective abortion coverage with your tax dollars! However there is still time to prevent this tragedy.

Please help us fight back against taxpayer-funded abortions with an urgently needed year-end, tax-deductible contribution of $50, $100, $250 or more. I’m counting on your financial support so we can continue our life-saving work today.

We urgently need you to stand with us and the millions of pro-life Americans who will be funding abortions every time we pay our federal income taxes. The pro-abortion forces and their supporters in Congress have been emboldened by this government takeover of health care. They are rolling back decades of pro-life law and will not stop. As we enter the New Year, we will continue to stand for the cause of life and against these pro-abortion forces that are on the march.

Yours for Life,

For Life,

Charmaine_Yoest_aul_pub_shot_2009.jpg

Charmaine Yoest, Ph.D.

President & CEO

Americans United for Life

P.S. This is your last chance to make a year-end, tax-deductible contribution of $50, $100, $250 or more. Every dollar of your generous donation is 100% tax-deductible.

With your support, we’ll continue working to ensure that your tax dollars are never used to pay for abortions.

655 15th St NW | Ste 410 | Washington, DC 20005

310 S Peoria Street | Ste 500 | Chicago, IL 60607

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Thank you (foot)notes:

Be sure to follow Your Business Blogger(R) and Charmaine on Twitter: @JackYoest and @CharmaineYoest

Jack and Charmaine also blog at Reasoned Audacity and at Management Training of DC, LLC.

10 Years Later, What We Learned from Y2K: Technology vs. Political Management

December 30, 2009 | By | No Comments

Y2K_bug_credit_Hannah_Yoest.png

The Y2K Bug

Credit: Hannah YoestThe world was coming to an end at midnight 31 December, 1999.

We had planned for it for years. It was, as one techno-wag said, “a disaster with a deadline.”

The Year 2000 roll-over was going to be big; world wide. No escape.

We knew this would be no mere technology challenge to be solved with exceptional American ingenuity. Y2K was problematic with unknown unknowns.

The internet would crash. Cell phones dead. The power grid dark.

Armageddon.

***

In the late 1990′s one-half of the world’s internet traffic passed through the Commonwealth of Virginia, thanks to America On Line — AOL.com. And maybe another Northern Virginia entity in Arlington: the Pentagon. I think that was a secret.

Your Business Blogger(R) had the Y2K responsibility for Health and Human Resources, a $5 billion enterprise in the Virginia government. The boss, governor Jim Gilmore, a former military intelligence officer, knew what we could and couldn’t do to combat the Y2K Bug.

There was a lot we couldn’t do. And it wasn’t all technology.

***

It was a condition of continued employment that there were to be no interruptions or adverse incidents to the citizens of the Commonwealth and the rest of the World.

(We worker-bees could not get it wrong. The world ends AND get a bad employee appraisal. A sub-par job performance would not be a simple career-ending/world-ending mistake. Going out with a bang, so to say.)

Business literature notes the adrenaline rush of the “peak experience.” The Governor of Virginia had this as he had The Whole World In His Hands.

The web had to run for the wide world and more: Virginia’s hospital doors had to remain open; the prison doors closed. Fresh water and waste water valves had to direct flow in the correct and desired directions.

Local first responders had to be able to coordinate communications across jurisdictional silos. Governor Gilmore was among the first to realize the importance of seamless radio traffic between Fed-State-Local law enforcement. (It still wouldn’t be fixed years later. Re: 9.11).

Lots of challenges beyond government resources. So Gilmore hired the biggest IT consulting firms on the planet and bought their solutions packages. In my weekly staff meetings I had a dozen of the smartest experts in the business. I was not one of them.

They let me think I was in control at the head of the table. And maybe so. But these consultants wouldn’t let me, a mere bureaucrat, make a mistake.

But there were some mistakes the professional tech-gurus could not save me from.

***

One of the first steps was to inventory hardware, software for both the public sector and those private vendors who supplied the government. Every computer and bit of software that touched the government had to be inspected and brought into a procedure for standardized compliance. Verified with a form. With signatures. Every laptop. Everywhere.

I started by reviewing the vendors for the $400 million Department of Health. It had over 11,000 suppliers.

—Easy MBA 101 stuff—

So I directed the staff to report on the number of vendors that did most of the business with us, say 80-90% of the dollar volume.

—More smarty-pants MBA inquiries—

To no one’s shock and awe, save mine, we learned that 900 vendors did 90% of the business with that government agency.

I addressed the staff. “You mean,” says I, “We have to manage over 10,000 vendors to deliver 10% of our purchase orders?” My chin thrust with smug disbelief.

“So?” the staff asked as one man.

—Shortly, know-it-all MBA would meet political realities—

I strongly suggested that we should look to consolidate some vendors and look at ways to reduce the number of transactions and paper work. Time and motion studies demonstrated that processing each purchase order cost $150. I would fix this! The efficiency of Frederick Taylor.

The staff left the room. Slowly. They knew something I did not.

But they got on the job and the machinery of government began to move. I so pride myself on getting completed staff work.

The staff saw the wisdom of my directives. The efficiency! The simplicity! The savings!

I leaned back in chair pleased with the MBA-intellect the governor hired.

The Governor would have done better to hire a politician.

***

In mere hours the calls came in. No, not from disgruntled vendors, but from locally elected officials representing the disgruntled vendors who were about to be shut out of government business.

No one was happy that rice bowls were going to be broken.

And the fact that this all took less than a day alerted me that back channels were working at the speed of light.

The vendors and the politicians were aided and abetted by an army of helpful bureaucrats who pushed all that paper around.

The populace clamors for efficient government as long as suppliers and jobs are cut in someone else’s backyard.

I didn’t have a chance. Nor did the citizens’ tax dollars.

This was my first rude lesson in ‘multiple points of accountability.’ In government a civil servant answers to his boss, of course. But he also must be mindful of other politicians, the press, the public, the unions, the lobbyists and peers making a grab for his budget.

The supply chain efficiency fight wasn’t worth the political capital necessary to win. There are real reasons why governments seem to be so inefficient.

My lesson learned, I quickly moved on to other battles where I had half a chance.

***

Virginia spent $215 million and nothing happened here or the rest of the world. There were some problems in Nigeria. We now think it was some kind of scam.

Nothing crashed. Except for that super-secret three-letter-agency satellite…and some defibrillators. Not my fault. No one died.

The lesson learned was that managing technology was the easy part. The real challenge was in managing people.

It always is.

###

Jack Yoest is an adjunct professor at the Northern Virginia Community College. He teaches management, sales, marketing and new media.

Thank you (foot)notes:

Be sure to follow Your Business Blogger(R) and Charmaine on Twitter: @JackYoest and @CharmaineYoest

Jack and Charmaine also blog at Reasoned Audacity and at Management Training of DC, LLC.

A Christmas Greeting for Liberals and A Greeting for Conservatives

December 26, 2009 | By | No Comments

Alert Reader Terry, one of the sharpest lawyers in DC, sends this along,

To My Liberal Friends:

Please accept with no obligation, implied or implicit, my best wishes for an environmentally conscious, socially responsible, low-stress, non-addictive, gender-neutral celebration of the winter solstice holiday, practiced within the most enjoyable traditions of the religious persuasion of your choice, or secular practices of your choice, with respect for the religious/secular persuasion and/or traditions of others, or their choice not to practice religious or secular traditions at all.

I also wish you a fiscally successful,personally fulfilling and medically uncomplicated recognition of the onset of the generally accepted calendar year 2010, but not without due respect for the calendars of choice of other cultures whose contributions to society have helped make America great.

Not to imply that America is necessarily greater than any other country nor the only America in the Western Hemisphere .

Also, this wish is made without regard to the race, creed, color, age, physical ability, religious faith or sexual preference of the wish.

To My Conservative Friends:

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

###

Thank you (foot)notes:

Be sure to follow Your Business Blogger(R) and Charmaine on Twitter: @JackYoest and @CharmaineYoest

Jack and Charmaine also blog at Reasoned Audacity and at Management Training of DC, LLC.

Insurance and Pre-Existing Conditions

December 24, 2009 | By | No Comments

Merry Christmas.

NSFW

Politically Incorrect. At the Yoest house this morning we are getting reading for the health care vote — getting ready to watch government run amuck.

The Senators are advancing the health care bill that covers pre-existing conditions. This is not insurance.

Insurance is the management and calculating for risk. Covering and paying for pre-existing conditions is not insurance — it is charity. Once an adverse health condition is known there is no risk to manage and insurance companies do not need to be involved. The care of the currently sick is the job of health care providers and can be paid and provided for by philanthropy.

Not the insurance companies. Not the taxpayer.

To be precise, if ObamaCare demands to cover pre-existing conditions, then Pelosi-Reid should should remove insurance companies as middle man and force the taxpayers to fund the unfortunate, unwilling and unknowing directly. But.

But this would be charity. Such philanthropy is not the purpose of government. Charity is a test of the human heart — not government coercion. And worse:

The Senate will force taxpayers to pay for abortions through insurance companies — pre-existing or not.

The Senate has confused Health Insurance with Health Care.

###

Thank you (foot)notes:

Americans United for Life does not take a position on insurance or the insurance industry. AUL is a law firm concerned with protecting Life-at conception, abortion and rights of conscience. AUL and AUL Action opposes abortion and its public funding as written in the Senate’s current proposed legislation. The opinion here is from Jack Yoest and no other.

Be sure to follow Your Business Blogger(R) and Charmaine on Twitter: @JackYoest and @CharmaineYoest

Jack and Charmaine also blog at Reasoned Audacity and at Management Training of DC, LLC.

Americans United for Life Offers Urgent Legal Briefing for Senator Nelson

December 23, 2009 | By | No Comments

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Merry Christmas. Charmaine with Jack and

The Penta-Posse in her DC office

Senator Ben Nelson (D) of Nebraska doesn’t seem to fully understand that your tax dollars will go into the US Treasury and can come out as abortions.

Senator Dr. Tom Coburn noted an analogy: Just as taxpayer dollars go into the Treasury and come out as Social Security, all taxpayer funds are co-mingled and fungible.

To help clarify the cash flow, Charmaine sent this letter to Senator Nelson

Americans United for Life Offers Urgent Legal Briefing for Senator Nelson

AUL Legal Team Documents Reveal Details on Mandatory Abortion Tax

WASHINGTON, Dec. 22 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — At 4:45 pm today on the floor of the United States Senate, Senator Ben Nelson of Nebraska made the following statement:

“…even though they [pro-life advocates] cannot constructively point out how it doesn’t prohibit the use of federal funds or wall off those funds or keep them totally segregated. They just didn’t like the language…”

As a result of this statement, Dr. Charmaine Yoest, President of Americans United for Life, directed her legal team to contact the Senator’s office and offer to provide an urgent briefing to clarify the facts about abortion provisions in the bill. In addition, she has issued this statement:

Senator Nelson has a strong, consistent pro-life voting record, and his vote for the manager’s amendment was a surprise to all of us.

We have contacted his office and have offered to send our top legal team to fully brief him as soon as he has an opportunity. I believe it is absolutely critical that Senator Nelson has all of the facts before he casts his final vote on Christmas Eve.

The facts demonstrate that this bill will create the largest single expansion of abortion since Roe v. Wade and impose a first-ever abortion tax on the American people.

As of this posting, Nelson’s office has not agreed to meet with the AUL legal eagles, standing by even over these Christmas holidays. The Senator has been a bit busy with constituent concerns.

FOR THE FACTS, CLICK BELOW

http://blog.aul.org/2009/12/20/the-abortion-tax-and-other-problems-in-senator-reid%E2%80%99s-amendment/

http://blog.aul.org/2009/12/19/legal-analysis-of-life-concerns-in-managers-amendment/

###

Thank you (foot)notes:

Be sure to follow Your Business Blogger(R) and Charmaine on Twitter: @JackYoest and @CharmaineYoest

Michelle Malkin has More Nebraska voters call out Cornhuckster Ben Nelson

Jack and Charmaine also blog at Reasoned Audacity and at Management Training of DC, LLC.