Hilary Rosen: DON'T APOLOGIZE

Let’s get one thing straight. Ann Romney knows ZERO about the economic struggles of American women. Raising five boys is hard work, no kidding. Raising ONE child, boy OR girl, is hard work. But if Ann Romney had raised 14 children, all of them hell-raisers and trouble-makers, she would know ZERO about the economic struggles of American women. Nor would she know what kind of hard work it is to raise even one child, much less five, when you’re a single mom working in a bar at nights to feed your kids. Or if your husband has been unemployed for a year or more and there’s no work to be found. Or if you and your husband are both trying to make ends meet and still can’t do it when you’re both working two or three or more jobs. Hey, Ann Romney: Try raising five children on $40,000 a year. Now try raising five children when one of them has a serious chronic medical condition, like Rick and Karen Santorum’s daughter, but without any of Rick and Karen Santorum’s resources. Or your husband’s. Or yours. Try raising two or three or four or five children with no health insurance. Or when you can’t afford to pay for the birth control that you, Ann Romney, use without giving the expense a second thought, while your husband courts the votes of the right-wing Republican base by supporting the “right” of any employer to refuse to cover contraception in their insurance policies, even if they’re not paying for it. Imagine if you can (and I know, of course, that you can’t) raising children when you’re living below or just above the poverty line and your husband is traveling the campaign trail with a U.S. member of Congress who’s become the darling of your party by writing a budget that gives massive tax cuts to the wealthy and pays for them by ending Medicaid, ending food stamps, ending Aid to Families With Dependent Children (i.e., welfare).

No one is going to deny that raising five boys is hard work. But it’s less hard when you’ve got all the help that money can buy to keep your home clean (or your three or four homes), cook the meals, and do the grocery shopping, laundry, lawn mowing and yard work, etc., etc., etc. It’s less hard when you don’t have to be constantly dealing with the heat and hot water breaking down, or dealing with infestations of rats and roaches, or losing everything you own in a tornado or a hurricane.

Raising five boys is hard work, no shit, Sherlock. But the only thing it makes you an expert on is raising five boys when you’re married to a fabulously wealthy man, are wealthy yourself, and know you will never, EVER, have to know or understand what most American women — and men — struggle with every day of their lives. It does not confer on you any understanding or knowledge of, much less expertise on, the economic struggles of American women. It doesn’t give you a clue, which means that you remain clueless, just like your stiff, cold, callous, animal-abusing husband.

And Hilary Rosen? Damn straight — stay strong and resolute, and know a lot of American women have your backs and admire you for not apologizing to Ann Romney, even if Pres. Obama’s crew decided to throw you under the bus.

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Kathy Kattenburg

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  • Character Assassination of an opponent so any hard-hitting truth said by this person becomes automatically tainted. It’s one way of avoiding having to address the issue being raised.


    “OTP – Occupy The Patriarchy” ~ me

  • Probably. Hard working? Probably. Lots and lots of nannies and au pairs(sp?). Almost certainly. Leaving the kids with a nannie/au pair to fly off in the Lear for a week in Aspen or Bermuda? Common.

  • for making it look like the dems do HAVE a war on women. Her comment was stupid and she should know that most American voters do not understand nuance.

    Always keep an open mind and a compassionate heart. ~ Phil Jackson

  • that Rosen earns big bucks as a lobbyist. Certainly not what the Romney’s make but enough to not have to ever worry where the next pair of kid’s shoes is coming from. One member of the elite lecturing another, richer, member on something neither have any idea about just to score cheap political points.

  • Rosen was simply pointing out how Ann and Mitt’s wealth insulates them from the harsh economic realities that millions of Americans face. And validly criticizing Mitt for distancing himself from issues which concern women by using his wife as his information/opinion source.

    What we’ve got here is pseudo-feminism run rampant.

    No one is saying a stay-at-home mom spends her life in carefree idleness in a bed of roses, But as KK noted, the difference between Ann Romney’s mothering ‘work’ and the average mother’s situation is huge.

    My grandmother never had a job ‘outside the home’. She did, however, take over running a household and raising her siblings at the age of 10 when her mother died in 1880. Married at 19, she bore eight children, raised the six who survived childhood illnesses, tended a paralyzed husband, ran a cattle ranch without hired hands, grew and preserved enough food to feed her family and earn needed cash.
    My mother was a working, single mom raising three kids. Worked an 8-hour day as a reporter and clerk, and another 10+ hours of housework/childcare.
    She was once told she couldn’t have particular job because she was a woman.
    She told the most powerful politicians in the county they were full of shit (politely, of course, she was brought up a lady).
    She demanded – and got – the job. To her, it wasn’t “Woman’s Lib”, it was “Me Lib”.
    They both had a tough row to hoe and did whatever it took.
    They were feminists – and did more in a day than Ann Romney does in a month.
    And they would have smiled at the claims by and on behalf of Ann Romney about how how much ‘work’ her life has been.

    It is worth remembering that the Founding Fathers were all traitors.

  • From Zaid Jilani’s article:

    Last night, Hilary Rosen shockingly claimed that Mitt Romney’s wife, Ann Romney, “actually never worked a day in her life,” referring to Romney’s role as a stay-at-home mom. Watch her remarks[.]

    Hilary Rosen was NOT referring to Ann Romney’s role as a stay-at-home mom when she said Romney “actually never worked a day in her life.” That is precisely the point righties are misunderstanding — intentionally, in my view.

    Reading comprehension is really important.

  • [edited] Are you most American voters, Tina? Our job is to point out the nuance when it isn’t understood, not use that to justify criticizing someone like Hilary Rosen.

  • that Rosen earns big bucks as a lobbyist. Certainly not what the Romney’s make but enough to not have to ever worry where the next pair of kid’s shoes is coming from.

    You can say that about everyone in the Obama administration and in the Democratic Party leadership. The point here is that Rosen did not CLAIM a personal authority she does not have. She did not say or imply that she was a spokesperson for American women. And that despite the fact that Rosen apparently is a paid adviser to Obama, presumably at least partly about women’s issues. But she did not use that position to claim that she’s just like millions of other American women and understands just how they feel on the issues.

  • and everyone like her, especially since we have no chance of pointing out nuanced crap to those who only watch Faux news. You are singing to the choir here.

    Always keep an open mind and a compassionate heart. ~ Phil Jackson

  • The culture wars equivalent of one group of folks lecturing a modestly different group about their vision of military strategy when neither could successfully perform and IA and stoppages check to save their lives. Giving them even a speck of attention is a total waste of brainspace that could otherwise be devoted to something that actually matters.

    Everything around you that you call life was made up by people that were no smarter than you and you can change it, you can influence it, you can build your own things that other people can use.” ~ Steve Jobs

  • Of course you have every right to criticize Rosen. Did I say otherwise? In my opinion, however, your criticism is misplaced — and especially if made on the basis of Americans’ limited understanding of nuance. I don’t think repeating Republican talking points is a good way to enhance anyone’s understanding of nuance.

    Rosen really said nothing wrong, and she certainly didn’t say what Republicans are claiming she said. Ann Romney has not spend one single day in the workplace. Raising children at home is not the workplace. That doesn’t mean it’s not work. But it’s totally irrelevant to Ann Romney’s ability to understand what most American women’s lives are like. It’s even almost totally irrelevant to Ann Romney’s ability to understand what it’s like for most women to raise five kids at home, since she has a wealthy husband and is wealthy herself. It’s really not as hard to raise five boys when you have the money to buy nannies and all the household help you need, then when you don’t.

    ETA: BY THE WAY, I just noticed the title of my other comment to you. I had gone back in as soon as I published and taken that line out of the comment. It was confrontational and unnecessary. I didn’t realize (or didn’t notice, after publishing the edited comment), that that line was still the title. It was my intention to completely eliminate that line. So I apologize for that.

  • This is a reply to my own comment. Hilary Rosen is not a paid adviser, or any kind of adviser, to Pres. Obama. Sorry for that error. It does make it even more ridiculous that the right is trying to pin one woman’s opinion, however right or wrong, on Obama or the Democrats.

  • of saying something wrong but a matter of something wrongly said. I don’t know why anyone is surprised at the barbs thrown her way, dems do the same type of attack when republicans make gaffes.

    I don’t believe in defending democrats right or wrong. She should have just said her words came out wrong or something to that effect and stated Ann can’t relate to working moms or single working moms…

    Instead she was stubborn and gave the republicans a toehold. Telling people that they are spouting republican talking points because they disagree with you is not productive in anyway.

    Always keep an open mind and a compassionate heart. ~ Phil Jackson

  • I goofed up.

    So what was Zaid Silani’s motive for wishing to tarnish Hillary Rosen’s reputation? Maybe he had several. I found the most applicable one to this story at the very end of his diatribe. Zaid Silani not only dislikes the messenger but also her message. This is what he said:

    Rosen was wrong to attack Romney’s respectable decision to be a mom.

    Wow! Maybe Silani would like to stifle a discussion about the rat race that is most women’s lives. He would like women to just shut the fuck up and do their work … and look pretty while they’re at it.

    So I’ll leave it to Amanda Marcotte, who focuses exclusively on the message, to explain what weapon Ms Romney is using to attract the women’s vote on behalf of the Republican Patriarchs. She calls it “Housewife Romanticization”.


    “OTP – Occupy The Patriarchy” ~ me

  • Rosen did not attack Ann Romney’s “respectable decision to be a mom.” This is the entire point of why the GOP hysteria is a misdirection.

  • I understand what you’re saying, Tina. I think the crux of the disagreement we have on this subject is that I do not think Hilary Rosen’s “wrongly said” words were “wrongly said” enough to obscure her actual, real, legitimate point — that Ann Romney has no qualifications to be Mitt Romney’s pipeline to what American women are thinking and feeling. She is as out of touch with and clueless about the real lives of real American women as her husband is.

    It’s *obvious* that that was her point. It was *obvious* that she was not attacking Ann Romney’s decision to be a stay-at-home mom. The fact that she expressed herself not as precisely and clearly as she could/should have does not even begin to explain the way Republicans reacted.

    I do not believe in defending Democrats right or wrong, either. That’s why I am saying Democrats are wrong to jump on Rosen as they did and condemn her “attack on stay-at-home moms,” as if that’s what she was doing — accepting the premise behind Republican attacks on her. When Democrats are wrong, they are wrong and I am among the first to say so; for example, when Think Progress wrote a worshipful piece about how wonderful and awesome Obama’s Afghanistan policies are — drooling all over him for unmanned predator strikes, e.g., that they would have roundly condemned had Bush done the same thing.

    This is not about me being unwilling to criticize Democrats when they’re wrong. This is about being unwilling to join in when Republicans take legitimate statements about Ann Romney’s qualifications to speak for American women and twist them into something unrecognizable because they want to distract everyone from their war on women.

    I do understand that you disagree with me. That’s fine. I just want to have it be clear what I’m saying and what I’m not saying.

  • Me, skeptical bastard that I am, this reminds me of the folks in my neighbourhood who think that the key thing missing in our national childcare policy is lowered immigration barriers and relaxed labour laws so they can more effectively exploit their nannies.

    This isn’t a real discussion on the topic – this is a “my guy good / your guy bad” memefest using language intended to refer to the issue, without actually doing anything to address it other than promise that their guy is the more empathetic. Which candidate more genuinely and acutely feels my pain is a hell of a lot less important than which candidate actually has the chops and the will to relieve my pain.

    Everything around you that you call life was made up by people that were no smarter than you and you can change it, you can influence it, you can build your own things that other people can use.” ~ Steve Jobs

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