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Suspiciously sensible, once upon a time

From Grist, further evidence that Mitt “Etch-A-Sketch” Romney is/was the the moderate, Northeastern Republican that haunts the dreams of the party’s extreme fringe — otherwise known as the Republican leadership. Now, while I’m always happy to catch a Republican with his ideological pants down, in this case, it may not work to the Democrats’ advantage. Because the more moderate Mittens appears in the eyes of the true believers, the more pressure there will be to pair him with an extremist personality like Paul Ryan or Eric Cantor to excite their base and get them to turn out:

A new document has surfaced [PDF] showing Mitt Romney’s strong support for regulating carbon dioxide in 2003, when he called cap-and-trade “an effective approach” to combating climate change.

The comments were made in a letter from Romney to New York Gov. George Pataki (R) about a regional cooperative system for regulating greenhouse gases. In the letter, Romney agreed with Pataki on the need to “reduce the power plant pollution that is harming our climate.”But today, in trying to align himself with conservative political backlash against climate science, Romney says “we don’t know” whether humans are warming the planet, and that doing something about the problem “is not the right course for us.”

Here’s the full letter [PDF] from Romney to Pataki:

Thank you for your invitation to embark on a cooperative northeast process to reduce the power plant pollution that is harming our climate. I concur that climate change is beginning to effect on our natural resources and that now is the time to take action toward climate protection. Furthermore, I share your interest in ensuring that the economic and security contributions made by our electricity generating system are not negated by the impact of emissions from that system on the health of our citizens.

As you may know, the commonwealth is making major strides to reduce the environmental impact of our power plants. Specifically, I am making good on my pledge to clean up the six oldest and dirtiest power plants in the state and bring them up to new plant standards for NOx, SOx, mercury and CO2. We are the first state to enact a cap on CO2, implementing regulations that, by 2008, will reduce these emissions by 10%, removing 6,750 tons of Co2 per day. Furthermore, Massachusetts, along with the other New England states and Canadian provinces, has a target of reducing greenhouse gases and improving the efficiency of the grid substantially over the next 20 years.

I believe that our joint work to create a flexible market-based regional cap and trade system could serve as an effective approach to meeting these goals. I am ready to have my staff work with yours to explore how we might design such a system — one that would keep the cost of compliance as low as possible, diversify our fuels, encourage energy efficiency and renewables, and keep our energy dollars in the region. Thank you for your initiative in proposing this project.

Even though he’s done everything but demand drilling on every block in America to make up for it, Republicans are still suspicious that Mittens is, deep down, a sensible sort. And in the modern Republican party, we can’t have that!

Make it easy on yourself

More Walker Brothers:

Secret o’ life

India Arie:

Needles and pins

The Searchers:

Every time you walk into the room

Jackie DeShannon:

By Odd Man Out

Who would have dreamed in 1962, when “Surfin’ Safari” was released, that America would one day be openly run by high-stakes gamblers and extortionists? That an emotionally stunted, compulsively lying, super-wealthy jobs destroyer — “Corporations are people, my friend” — would be a major-party candidate for president? More here.

Here comes my baby

The Tremeloes:

Virtually Speaking tonight

Tuesday, April 3 | 9 pm eastern | 6 pm pacific |Virtually Speaking Tuesdays | Spocko and Mike Stark talk about today’s media environment, effective activism, organizing strategies and the power of the 99%. Follow @spockosbrain @mike_stark Listen live and later on BTR


One of my friends just emailed his take on the president’s statement today:

The President said he has done pretty much everything the Republicans asked for, he’s cut government down even smaller than it was under Reagan, and they still say bad things about him. So he is prepared to cut the things government does for us even more just to prove he is not what they say he is.

Hmm. Well!

I have to agree: The guys whose wives stay home do seem to have a bit of what we would call in Philadelphia an “attytude” problem. And as the study says, it’s not overt hostility toward women – it’s more of a paternalistic upper-management mentality:

By insisting on staying the breadwinners for their families, men seem to also be subconsciously buying into the idea that their wives shouldn’t work. And according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics from 2010 (as cited in the study), there are more than 11 million men in such arrangements, contributing to a culture opposed to women working. The study suggests that these men might be characterized as “benevolent sexists,” but clarifies they are not likely to be overtly hostile towards women.

There is an age-old problem with being a woman at home, and it has to do with distribution and claiming of power. The woman’s opinions are too frequently seen as advisory-only (except in the areas traditionally designated to women: children, decor, schools, etc.) and it’s been my observation through the years that women then indulge in covert strategies to assert their power. In other words, “what he doesn’t know won’t hurt him.” So purchases are made in secret and smuggled into the home, much like an “I Love Lucy” episode.

You see a lot of hostage-like negotiation in which the financial hostage (wife) isn’t even aware that she’s conceded her right to partnership power. Instead, she’s focused on wheedling, nagging, cajoling and subterfuge. No way for grownups to act!

A lot of guys like it, though. After all, it’s familiar to them. Their mothers did it (or their mothers didn’t do it, and the sons preferred they had), it seemed to keep the family together, what’s the big deal? The big deal is, one “partner” in this sort of relationship is accepting inferior status. The other partner is agreeing.

Over the past few years, I’ve had male friends mention how much they wished their wives would go to work. “But not a real job,” they’re quick to add. “Just something to help out.” Because if women insist on career jobs, it’s a lot more threatening than a part-time gig at a convenience store, I suppose.

I’ve also known couples where both partners have careers, but the husband makes a lot more money. That person seems to retain the same paternal mindset as if she wasn’t working at all, which is interesting.

The marriages in which both partners earn a comparable amount of money seem to me to be a lot happier, I suppose because they’re not fighting about money – or at least, not from the power perspective.

I’m interested in hearing about your own experiences, both men and women. What do you think?

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