It's 2017. Women are better than men at most things. Get over it.
A film about women of color working for NASA just overtook a female-led sci-fi action blockbuster at the box office. Awesome.
In space, the future is female—at least according to US moviegoers. Variety reports that Hidden Figures, a biopic about three female African-American mathemeticians who made and checked the calculations needed to safely send John Glenn into orbit—and get him home again—knocked Star Wars sponoff Rogue One, which is about a young woman who leads a courageous and diverse band of misfits on a dangerous mission to change the fate of the galaxy, out of first place at the box office this weekend.
"Charming" 86-year-old jewel thief strikes again
Southern California senior citizen Doris Payne, whose career as a jewel thief stretches across seven decades and three continents, was arrested again last week at an Atlanta mall for lifting a $2,000 diamond necklace.
An African American woman raised in segregated Ohio, Payne's first score was to walk out of a store wearing a watch she was trying on when another customer walked in; the shopkeeper, she said, didn't want to be seen serving a black customer and abruptly ignored her. By her twenties, she decided to use her skills to support her mother, who objected to the scheme, but, "I kept saying, 'No, it's not stealing. I'm only taking what the man wants me to have.'"
Payne has never used violence and claims she never conceals the items she steals—she's always walked out the door wearing them. Crime is the only career she has ever known, taking her as far as Paris, Milan, and Tokyo—she claims to have escaped custody at least once, in Europe—as well as all across the United States.
Her lifetime take is estimated at $2 million. Her career has even inspired a 2013 documentary, The Life and Crimes of Doris Payne.
Dec 13, 2016
For 30 years, it was just assumed that using male crash test dummies would suffice, even though women are typically smaller than men and the smaller a person is the less force they can tolerate in a crash. That cars were not tested to be safe for female bodies helps to explain why women are killed and injured in car accidents at disproportionately higher rates than men. It’s because women were not included in the analysis—at all.↩︎ The Atlantic
Whose political coverage has been killing it all year?
A whole lot of (mostly male) journalists are working through their feelings after reading Teen Vogue's "Donald Trump is Gaslighting America" and realizing that maybe young women really do care about more than lip gloss and fall fashion—and that publications that cater to them are stepping up.
That thing where Teen Vogue's coverage of Trump is more critical and hard hitting than the New York Times'. https://t.co/v6FvvEVcCO— Ian Millhiser (@imillhiser) December 10, 2016
Did not expect this exegesis of gaslighting and its relationship to current day politics from Teen Vogue https://t.co/cwNhZ6wvJH— David Folkenflik (@davidfolkenflik) December 10, 2016
But Teen Vogue (and adult Vogue, and Cosmopolitan, and Marie Claire, and Vanity Fair, and Elle, and...) have been covering politics like champs for a while now, running excellent pieces that would be right at home in, say, the New York Times Magazine.
Hard to believe? Check out Jill Filipovic's "Is the GOP Setting Itself Up for a War on Women II?" in Cosmopolitan and Lyz Lenz's "The Donald Trump Supporters...Who are Secretly Voting for Hillary" in Marie Claire, and judge for yourself.
Only a third of countries that have been run by a woman have gone on to put another woman in charge
Electing our first female president will be great, but some experts think we can't call it progress until we elect our second.
The woman behind Trump's gilded curtain: A brief profile of Rebekah Mercer
The puzzling rise of Stephen Bannon from the internet's frat row to a top office in the West Wing may have less to do with Donald Trump’s personal ideology than that of a little-known hedge-fund heiress and activist libertarian mega-donor named Rebekah Mercer.
Mercer, an intensely private woman who manages her family’s political investments and whose family is also a majority investor in the psychographic analytics company Cambridge Analytica, appeared out of nowhere in 2012 when she attended an election postmortem for GOP mega-donors and, according to the Washington Post, “stood up before the largely male crowd and delivered an unsparing critique of the Republican’s technology and canvassing operations.” Disgusted by what she viewed as the ineptitude of the Koch operation during the 2012 campaign, Mercer decided on election night to devote her family’s political efforts to burning the GOP’s house down.
Over the past four years, Mercer has frequently bucked the GOP establishment in order to drive the party ever further right, and originally backed Ted Cruz, whose constitutional originalist approach to governance closely aligned with her tea-party sensibilities. But when Cruz dropped out of the race and Trump emerged as the nominee, Mercer, unlike the Koch brothers, was unafraid to shift her support to the political novice, whom she saw as a convenient vehicle for advancing her populist agenda.
Though the Mercer family's political investments don't begin to approach the Kochs', she amplifies its impact by actively involving herself in how it's spent—including guiding Mercer-funded campaigns to hire Cambridge Analytica to drive their decision-making. But Mercer is not shy about exerting considerably more influence, up to and including influencing staff appointments. Mercer is believed to be behind the replacement of Corey Lewandowski and Paul Manafort with Bannon—who according to The Hill is “tied at the hip” to Mercer—and Kellyanne Conway—who worked on a pro-Cruz super PAC with strong ties to Mercer—earlier this summer.
Mercer remains closely involved with the Trump operation today, currently serving as a member of Trump’s transition team, overseeing the hiring of lower-level appointees and lobbying for Cabinet secretaries she views as conservative true believers.
In light of this, Bannon’s elevation of starts to seem less surprising. Bannon, as it happens, has served as a board member of Cambridge Analytica and run the Mercer-backed Government Accountability Institute, and the Mercers, as it happens, have a significant financial stake in Breitbart News.
If you can’t fathom why your Republican representatives are having such difficulty publicly expressing reservations over the appointment of such a rabid alt-rightist like Bannon to a White House post—maybe it’s because the Mercers have a financial stake in them, too.
Nov 21, 2016
If you want something done, if anybody wants something done, you go to the person who knows how to get it done. Nine times out of 10, it's the support person—the person that's in the background doing the grunt work. We know who to talk to, and how to make the end result flawless from the outside.↩︎ The Atlantic Monthly
Nov 16, 2016
The heartbreak of this election for Clinton supporters is not just the loss of a tough, smart, and inspiring first female president—though that is wrenching—but also the loss of the idea that this country was so very close to being better, more inclusive, more just, and more representative.↩︎ The Cut
Fact: The "Hillary treatment" extends to Hong Kong. Fiction: Coco Austin is the president of Croatia.
A young Hong Kong lawmaker is getting what Americans are starting to see as the “Hillary treatment”—being brutally excoriated online and at demonstrations by opponents with gendered slurs and threats. Yau Wai-ching, along with a fellow pro-self determination Youngspiration Party legislator who is male, have not been shy about using coarse language to speak out against mainland rule of the island. But the pushback against Yau has been much more intense—and sexually aggressive.
Not even heads of state are immune, as Samantha Bee recently learned. In Europe, the taboids are full of photos purporting to show the president of Croatia, Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović. Except they're not: It’s Coco Austin, wife of Ice-T. And it turns out that possibly the best place in the world to be a female head of state is a Pacific nation you may have never heard of: The Marshall Islands.
How Donald Trump created the "Nasty Woman" economy
Donald Trump’s “Such a nasty woman” comment to Hillary Clinton during the final presidential debate has inadvertently created a booming cottage industry of “nasty woman” swag for Clinton supporters.
Huma Abedin is a very Clinton-specific Google search of a human being
The latest Wikileaks dump reveals that Abedin, whose first job for Hillary Clinton was as an intern in the First Lady’s office, is not so much Clinton's body woman, power-broker, or strategist—so much as she is Clinton’s “external hard drive.”
“No one has more respect for women than me"
Melania Trump’s demand that People reporter Natasha Stoynoff retract her claim that she had a brief, friendly conversation with Mrs. Trump when they crossed paths in New York after Stoynoff said Donald Trump had groped and kissed her during a photo shoot seems bizarre on the face of it.
In the request, Melania’s lawyer writes, "The two are not friends and were never friends or even friendly. At the time in question, Mrs. Trump would not even have recognized Ms. Stoynoff if they had encountered one another on the street.”
There’s more to it than just inexplicable Trumpian crazy. In fact, it’s a power grab. In essence, Melania—or, Donald working through Melania—is asserting that Stoynoff, who covered the Trumps often, was so insignificant, so unworthy of the Trumps’ attention, that Melania would never have bothered to acknowledge her on the street. In doing so, Trump not only belittles Stoynoff but also bolsters his argument that he never would have assaulted her because he never would have even noticed her in the first place. Which is an unusual claim for a man who says, “No one has more respect for women than me."
Donald Trump and the "glass cliff"
Pity poor Kellyanne Conway, possibly the most visible embodiment of the “glass cliff” today. Hired to salvage Donald Trump’s flailing campaign this summer, she’s one of the latest top female executives brought on specifically to turn around a struggling enterprise. (See also: new Britain prime minister Teresa May and Yahoo’s Marissa Mayer.) Women, it turns out, are most likely to be hired in troubled times—and therefore more likely to be set up to fail than their male peers. Is it because women candidates are more likely to take risks to advance their careers, or because boards become more open to the idea of a nontraditional candidate when all else has failed? If the campaign of misogynist-in-chief Donald Trump is any indication, the answer may be both.
Fear of a Female President
The visceral backlash against Hillary’s candidacy for president can be linked to a social phenomenon called “precarious manhood,” which posits that while femininity is biological, masculinity is a behavioral achievement that must be earned and maintained.
Peter Beinart writes in the Atlantic: “Two analyses of American murder statistics, for instance, suggest that in cities in the South, where men tend to hold traditional attitudes about gender, greater economic equality between men and women correlates with higher rates of male-on-female murder.”
The Future Is/Should Be Female
There’s a good chance we’ll see a record number of female Senators come November, and that’s great news for anyone aggravated by Washington gridlock. (So, everyone?) Women, recent research has begun to show, just get more done. They’re more likely to sponsor and cosponsor legislation, they’re more bipartisan than men, and when their party is in the minority, they accomplish more than their male counterparts. Time will tell if they remain this motivated once women consistently achieve true parity in the legislature—the same research that shows female members of the minority get more done also shows that this is also true for any legislator holding an unsafe seat.
Sep 16, 2016
For most of 2007, Clinton’s language is consistently more masculine. By late 2007, however, when she was trailing far behind Barack Obama on measures of likability, Clinton’s language became more feminine, particularly in interviews. Clinton, in response to her likability problem, deviated from her dominant, masculine strategy in late 2007 into early 2008 in order to present herself to voters as a warmer, more feminine candidate↩︎ London School of Economics Blog
Amplify Thy Sister
Half the battle is just being heard, especially if you’re a woman of color, as Attorney General Loretta Lynch can attest. At one point during her career, it took the reprimand of a male colleague to get a client to direct his questions toward her.
But not all women have strong male allies at work, and it’s up to them to have each other’s backs. In 2013, New York Magazine writer Ann Friedman coined the term “shine theory,” urging women to befriend powerful women rather than compete with them based on the advice of her best friend Amina, who liked to say, “I don’t shine if you don’t shine.” Female aides in the White House have been using shine theory to great effect in meetings with the president, echoing each other’s ideas while explicitly naming the woman who originated it. They call it “amplification,” and say it’s helped to ensure women are credited for their contributions and has increased the likelihood that they’ll be invited to contribute more.A
Women are better at everything, perhaps even leadership
A whole stack of organizational research suggests that women are more collaborative and empathetic and significantly less violent than men, and the American public regards female politicians as considerably more honest, ethical, and willing to compromise than men. But whether those traits can be extrapolated into any generalization about female leadership remains to be seen.
Sep 1, 2016
Maybe women are so busy faking it—to be more like a man at work, more like a porn star in bed, more like 30 at 50—that we don’t trust our natural responses anymore. Maybe all that wine is an Instagram filter for our own lives, so we don’t see how sallow and cracked they’ve become.↩︎ Quartz
We will never have a FLOTUS like this again
A deep lifetime affection for pop culture and comfort with the inherent silliness of the medium has enabled Michelle Obama to advance her agenda in ways no other first ladies could imagine. She’s guest-starred on NCIS to promote Joining Forces, her campaign with Dr. Jill Biden to support military families, sang karaoke with James Corden to promote Let Girls Learn, and engaged in a goofy Twitter war with Britain’s Prince Harry to promote the Invictus Games for wounded veterans.
But it might be her intentionally goofy Mom dancing with Jimmy Fallon to encourage parents to cut a rug with their kids as part of her Let’s Move campaign that shows Obama at her least self-conscious. (For the record, Obama really can dance. Check out her moves during National Dance Day.)
Sep 1, 2016
You can quote facts and figures until you are blue in the face; more women on boards, on leadership teams, on creative teams makes sound business sense and study after study proves it. But if any of those facts and figures worked, our industry would look completely different. Rational facts and figures do fuck-all for this issue. You have to make it emotional.↩︎ Ad Age
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