Sunday, May 31, 2015

Condolences to the Biden Family

I am sure we all join the Clintons with our thoughts and prayers for the family at this difficult time of tragic loss.  Our deepest condolences to the family and friends of one gone way too soon.
My heart is broken for the family of Beau Biden—a wonderful man who served his country with devotion and lived his life with courage. -H
Hillary & I mourn the loss of Beau Biden - so full of life, love, honor, and service - and we pray for the strength of his wonderful family.
May 31

Statement from President Clinton and Secretary Clinton on the Passing of Beau Biden

Hillary and I mourn the loss and give thanks for the life of Beau Biden, so full of love, honor and service - and we pray for the strength of his wonderful family. He was a son to be proud of, a brother to cherish, a husband and father to love and be grateful for. The pain of his loss is so great because his life was so large and good.
Because it is simply so loving and touching, I am also sharing Secretary of State John Kerry's statement, and sending him wishes for a speedy recovery.

Statement on the Passing of Beau Biden

Press Statement
John Kerry
Secretary of State
Washington, DC
May 31, 2015

Teresa and I are heartbroken for Hallie, Hunter, Ashley, Jill, and Joe, and particularly for Beau and Hallie’s two remarkable children, Hunter and Natalie. Beau’s loss is crushing for everyone lucky enough to have known him and the whole Biden family, because you can’t know them without feeling their overwhelming love for each other – for family.
For the Bidens, being there for each other was and is everything. Any real conversation with Joe was about family and how much he and Jill loved their children and grandchildren.
Life for them is family.
I’ll never forget what Joe Biden said to me about Beau while he was serving his country in Iraq. Beau had just turned down what some considered the opportunity of a lifetime, to be appointed to the Senate seat his Dad had held for almost 40 years.
"Beau is just so good," Joe said. "He's so good."
What an all-encompassing statement about how much Joe loved his eldest son and how much Beau loved his Dad.
Beau Biden was a son any father might hope to raise, and Joe Biden is the kind of father any boy would want. It made their relationship special. Beau also was special.
I got to know him just listening to Joe talk in the Senate cloakroom about his boys. Then I was fortunate to spend time with Beau when he first ran for Attorney General in 2006. He went off to war two years later. He didn't have to go. He didn't have to do any of it. But he was filled with a sense of honor, duty, and humility – to the core. He was a class act, period, ingrained with integrity, compassion, a sense of moral obligation to help others, and especially people who were hurting.
All that and more has long been ingrained in the Biden family, which has experienced pain before and come out stronger at the broken places, as Hemingway wrote so poignantly.
As we know, there are some things only God can explain. The tragic loss of the good, the young and the brave has haunted me for a long, long time now – and again today, with Beau's passing.
A few years ago, Joe, who, tragically, was already speaking from experience, described the period after losing a loved one as akin to "that black hole you feel in your chest, like you're being sucked back into it." But Joe has also said there comes a day "when the thought of your son or daughter, or your husband or wife, brings a smile to your lips before it brings a tear to your eyes."
As usual, Joe said it better than anyone else could. And while I know it may not come soon, Teresa and I wish that same peace for the Biden family, and all those who love them.
That's the solace we all rely on as we mourn Beau Biden and extend our profound shared sorrow to all the Biden family.

Biden family statement

It is with broken hearts that Hallie, Hunter, Ashley, Jill and I announce the passing of our husband, brother and son, Beau, after he battled brain cancer with the same integrity, courage and strength he demonstrated every day of his life.
The entire Biden family is saddened beyond words. We know that Beau’s spirit will live on in all of us—especially through his brave wife, Hallie, and two remarkable children, Natalie and Hunter.
Beau's life was defined by service to others. As a young lawyer, he worked to establish the rule of law in war-torn Kosovo. A major in the Delaware National Guard, he was an Iraq War veteran and was awarded the Bronze Star. As Delaware’s Attorney General, he fought for the powerless and made it his mission to protect children from abuse.
More than his professional accomplishments, Beau measured himself as a husband, father, son and brother. His absolute honor made him a role model for our family. Beau embodied my father's saying that a parent knows success when his child turns out better than he did.
In the words of the Biden family: Beau Biden was, quite simply, the finest man any of us have ever known.
Rest in heavenly peace, Beau.

You can leave your personal message of sympathy at this White House book of condolences. 

Saturday, May 30, 2015

In Other Hillary Clinton News ... Anita Finlay's New Website and Understanding the 'Listening Phase'

Anita Finlay invited friends, fans, and followers to her exciting new website, this week.  Featuring interviews, op-eds, and news from all corners of 2016Land, it promises to be a go-to spot for all who want to stay informed on this exciting election cycle.

Subscribe free to my new website -- great articles & video in an inviting new format. Go to and get my latest on Hillary, social, political and pop culture in your inbox!

Current offerings there include an interview with feminist filmmaker and writer Jennifer Hall Lee whose article at The Broad Side this week, took the weepy press corps to task for tantrums rivaling the one little Claudia Chaudhary threw in front of President Obama this week.

Hillary’s Listening Tour Makes Media Angry. Poor Babies!

Younger, hipper and less traditional media members, like Buzzfeed's Ruby Cramer totally get what a listening tour is, are patiently following this phase of the campaign,  and know that ultimately, when Hillary has listened for awhile, she will unveil a message that will pack a wallop.

Hillary is organized, deliberate, and methodical.  During this listening phase she is taking it all in. Before long, she will explain how she, as POTUS, plans to address the concerns she is hearing from Americans.  I do not expect that to be a one-word solution.   It is a big reason why I love her.

Finally, earlier today in characteristic cordial fashion, Hillary welcomed Martin O.Malley to the arena.

Bluewater Launches New Hillary Clinton Production

Amid the flurry of activity this week, the announcement from the  New York Times  of a new edition of Hillary's story from Bluewater got lost in the shuffle.
Credit Bluewater Productions
Bluewater Productions, which publishes comic book biographies, has come down with 2016 presidential campaign fever. On Wednesday the company will release “Hillary Clinton: The Road to the White House,” written by Michael L. Frizell and illustrated by Joe Paradise. It follows the release of a comic devoted to Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky, and there are plans for comics focusing on Jeb Bush, Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont and Senator Marco Rubio of Florida.
Read more >>>>
This edition follows two previous editions of Hillary's story.  A 2008 offering came on the heels of her first presidential campaign.


BELLINGHAM, WASH. (September 23 , 2008) -- Bluewater is pleased to present a unique venture in the history of comic books, a biography featuring the historical Hilary Clinton. The comic will be released in January for Inauguration Day.
Undoubtedly historic, Hillary Clinton’s life has had a major impact on politics over the last twenty years. From her beginnings at Wellesley to her battle for the democratic presidential nomination, Hillary Clinton has changed a battered political landscape for women in ways that we are only beginning to comprehend.
“We’re excited to bring this book to the table,” says Bluewater’s Vice President Jason Schultz.“There are a couple comics focusing on John McCain and Barack Obama, we wanted to feature Hilary who broke all the rules in this election and made history”
Read more >>>>
In mid-2011, Bluewater Productions' Political Power debuted starring Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Bluewater is making a library of biographical materials about presidential hopefuls available for young readers.  The GOP must be keeping them hopping!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Hashtag #NotaWomen'sIssue: What I Learned from Hillary Clinton Today

Here is a great example of how Hillary Clinton innovates, teaches, and generates change.  A little while ago, her Twitter account tweeted this quote from her speech at Day in Blue today.
Hillary on equal pay: "This is not a women’s issue. This is a family issue. This is an American economic issue."

For seven years I have posted remarks Hillary has made here in the U.S. and all over the world on issues that I have automatically tagged "women's issues."  You can search that category here and come up with pages and pages of posts with that tag.

But the truth about these issues is what Hillary said today, and I shall have to create a new, and more powerful tag:  NOT a women's issue.  

For many years, George Lakoff, linguist and political commentator,  has been busting his suspenders over the way Democrats have allowed Republicans to control framing.  Here is a sample.  There are many.

George Lakoff: Progressives Need to Use Language That Reflects Moral Values

Tuesday, 30 October 2012 10:00 By Mark Karlin, Truthout | Interview
OK, so he doesn't wear suspenders.  He just looks like the kind of guy who would.  The point is that for decades Democrats have allowed Republicans to control the language of policy-making and legislation.

In Hillary Clinton Democrats may have the candidate who can change all of that,  Hillary is inventive where language is concerned, so much so that when her 2008 campaign site urged us to follow her on Twitter I thought she invented brand-name.  It sounded like something she would make up, and I asked her that on Twitter after I joined.  Who had ever heard of a "townterview" before Hillary became Secretary of State?

She may not have laid out a platform yet, but Hillary has, since she began her public speaking tour in 2013, been drawing the blueprint, and it involves changing points of view by changing the way we talk about things.

Today she made something clear.  "Pink" issues are red, white, and blue issues.  If we adopt her phrase as a tag and a hashtag we can go a long way toward establishing some of the viewpoints Hillary is going to be advocating.  In other words, we can help her reframe the issues by adopting her vocabulary.

I have never failed to learn something by listening to Hillary.  Her 1000 Days initiative taught us how providing good (and surprisingly inexpensive) maternal and child nutrition over the 1000 days from conception to age two can change the future, not just for families, but also for nations.  Her Clean Cookstoves  Initiative taught us how cooking over unsafe fuels affects the health and lives of billions of people all over the world.

When Hillary Clinton speaks, there is always something to learn.  I have learned today that I can help  her reframe how we talk about (frame) and then see things by changing how I categorize them.

P.S.  Something else I just learned.  I think the hashtag works better if you leave the apostrophe out.  #NotAWomensIssue   *sigh*

What has Hillary Clinton taught you?

Hillary Clinton in South Carolina: Vol. 1 Columbia

It should be safe to call this volume one since it is pretty certain Hillary will return to the Palmetto State in the future.  Might as well be organized from the start!

In the state capital today, Hillary gave the keynote speech at the Third Annual Day in Blue at the Columbia Marriott.  She told women legislators and leaders that she is running to live at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue again and wants to reverse a trend.  Since she has been coloring her hair for years, she told the audience, no one will see her turn white in the White House.

 Video of this event here >>>>

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At Kiki's Chicken and Waffles, also in Columbia, Hillary made the rounds listening to a series of small-discussion round table groups, and greeted local residents, thanked service members, and congratulated recent grads.

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Last stop of the day:  Columbia's Main Street Bakery where she sat down with Frederick Donnie Hunt.

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“We need to raise wages for the lowest paid jobs in America—which are disproportionately held by women, especially women of color.” –HRC

Hillary on equal pay: "This is not a women’s issue. This is a family issue. This is an American economic issue."

HRC: "When any parent is short-changed, the entire family is short-changed. And when families are short-changed, America is short-changed.”

"Everyday Americans need a champion…who will fight for them every single day. Not for some Americans but for ALL Americans."
First stop in Columbia? Chicken, waffles, and good conversation at Kiki's Chicken and Waffles.